A Second Chance
A second chance is the grace from God that glues life's broken pieces together, for dynamic praise and service.
I've had my share of second chances. Times after a fall, or a chance to step up to the line again after an initial unsuccessful effort. This second chance is quite different indeed. At least my mind and heart, filled with hope, tell me it is so. An opportunity to walk with God among African people who do not know His love for them. But, they will. I've seen it before. With eyes of faith I am seeing it happening again.
My part happens in stages. Some are tough and long, demanding more than I've got, but that is how I learn why He is called the Almighty. The quick, out of the eternal "no where" stages, because of their sheer exploding revelation or change, they push my emotions very high.
There is something about the aroma in mud huts, the slapping of feet running down a path, and the melodies of doves and the crowing of roosters greeting a new day. Kids everywhere. People with so many needs, yet they give me a papaya, a chicken, a hand to hold as we walk together, and their attention when I speak.
Something about pace of life in Africa.... Where He spoke to me through Carlos Castanada and Paulo Freire, Ezekiel and Daniel, Dietrich Bonhoffer and Francis Schaeffer, Donald McGavran and Jacob Lowen, Joshua and John. Where I studied the crafts of Lawrance Block and Art Spikol, while wondering at the life of Michaelangelo. The Materisee Circle and Firehouse Seven, what diversions. And the new perspective from a Fool for God, Mission Messenger, and Restoration Review.
But since that first time in Africa, God, even in the hustle of life in my homeland, has prepared me for this second chance. He has introduced me to Nkruma and the Marabous of Niger, systems thinking and, yes, computer technology.
And the years have brought to this second chance, at the best time I've ever had, not so quick a temper or trigger to sound alarm. I, only by His grace, still dream dreams and think of more projects than I know I can complete. But, this time, because I've walked with him on this continent before, I have some sight to my faith.... So much so that patience is truly a virtue I must seek as I, once again, am required to go through the stages of preparation. Different from last time around, when youthful reflection did not know that time marched on, I am now aware that this walk must be filled with choices of where to walk, knowing I cannot walk them all.... savoring the moments.... in fact, I think I just did.