I've heard people say before that missionaries are making sacrifices. Missionary kids, even more so. Oh, those poor missionary kids. I recently read this quote by David Livingston, "If a commission by an earthly king is considered an honor, how can a commission by a Heavenly King be considered a sacrifice." Yes, my kids live 13,000 miles away from their grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends. But we are exactly where God wants us. I remember when I first told my dad that I was dating a man that had been called to Australia's Outback. I asked him what he thought. He said, "I would rather you live in the middle of Australia's Outback in God's will, then live next door out of God's will."
Some days it is difficult to not have family living close by, to not go to Cracker Barrel with my dad and brothers Sunday after church, or run to Wal-Mart and get everything you need in one trip. But, oh how the blessings outweigh those little conveniences! My kids have seen more of this world in the last few years than most adults have seen in their entire lifetime. They have opportunities everyday to serve the Lord and serve others. I do not want my children to feel special because they are missionary kids, I want them to feel honored that God chose us. I've met some grown missionary children that have a sense of entitlement, like we owe them something. This may be because people were constantly telling them how much they had to give up, and how sorry they were for them to have to grow up on foreign soil. Not all missionary kids are like this, but I have met some that are.
I want my children to grow up with a desire to serve the Lord, whether we were living in America or here in Australia. We were given a special call to come here to Australia, we are blessed. There are children here in Australia that have lived here their entire lives. No one thinks they're making a great sacrifice. What sacrifices did we make to come here? To live the American dream? Well, we're living the Australian dream! The Lord has blessed us with a nice home, my kids each have their own rooms (something they didn't have in the states, they shared a room), we have a nice Jeep (something my husband loves), and we have a dog (another thing we didn't have in the states). So, if anything we were sacrificing while living in the states! I am blessed. My kids are blessed. God has been so very good to us.
So, I said all this to say this...don't feel so sorry for my kids...be jealous! Ha! Just kidding, well, a little. :) Seriously, my kids do miss their friends and family. They get homesick. I get homesick. But like Paul said in I Timothy 1:12, "And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry." The times I do get homesick, I think of Heaven. What a short time we get here on earth to spend serving the Lord and "sacrificing" for Him, but I will get all eternity to worship God and spend with my family in Heaven. It's only a brief moment in time we have here on earth, and I pray my life will be used to further the Kingdom of Heaven for His name's sake.
Do you feel you are sacrificing, dear missionary friend, or do you feel blessed?