My response was likely a surprise to her, because I said..."No."
She probably had ideas of our marriage splitting up, or my husband dragging me by my hair- we are after all going to Africa... isn't that accepted practice in such a heathen and tribal continent? :)
To explain... my not being "called" to Africa isn't a problem. I am called to my husband, and therefore by mathematical property, I am called to Africa.
1. Jan called to Dan = God's will
2. Dan called to Africa = God's will
3. Jan called to Africa = God's will
Not too hard to understand, but maybe a better question would be... Do I want to go to Africa? Inquiring minds want to know!!!
I could get real spiritual here and give book chapter and verse on why I should want to go. Or, I could tell you that as a Godly woman I should go whether I want to or not. But none of those would make for interesting reading. Well not too interesting.
What I will tell you is... I do want to go! I did not receive the call to the field of Africa, or any other place on this earth. I will tell you I decided that I want to do what the Lord's will is for me. I will also tell you...the Lord has changed my natural desires.
What do I mean? I will give you an example in one area of my life.
I used to live for nothing else than the next room to decorate or the next wall to paint. Sales at the local store... department, warehouse, hardware, any! ... used to lure me with even the lamest commercial or sales flyer. I was a spender, buyer, shopper, consumer- you name it, I was it! Now lest you think I was frivolous, I will tell you I was the most frugal and conscientious shopper their was! I could save over 70% off the retail price on a bad day. Without coupons!
Now, I still enjoy all that stuff! I just no longer have the drive for it. I have the same likes of fashion and taste with regard to how I like to decorate, I just don't feel consumed by it. I am also making many decisions on "to purchase or not" through the filter of two questions. "Would I ship this to Africa?" or "Will I get my money's worth out of it before we leave?" That makes a lot of decisions really easy!
OK, I need to get a little spiritual here.
Psalms 37:4 Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.
I have experienced this verse. He put within my heart the desires I now have. As I continue to delight in the Lord, He does so much more for me than I could ever imagine! I marvel at the things- large and small- that are mine. God is so good, no matter what. If going with my family over seas and living in another culture is what puts me smack in the middle of His will... that is where I will be! There is so much more joy and happiness there... just ask Jonah. Well, on second thought, don't. Read the book, and then try out obedience for yourself... it is great!
"If a commission by an earthly king is considered a honor, how can a commission by a Heavenly King be considered a sacrifice?" -- David Livingstone
"If God calls you to be a missionary, don't stoop to be a king" -- Jordan Grooms
"Go, send, or disobey." -- John Piper