Traveling the Dusty, Bumpy Road of Life
A cool breeze is a refreshing counterpart to the constant Kenyan dust circulating through our safari truck and coating everything in a fine powdery layer as we bounce from pothole to pothole along this country’s infamous dirt roads. The dirt is thick on my skin, heavy in my lungs, and dry in my throat. I long for another large bottle of cold water available at our next stop that will wash away the dryness and relieve my thirst, temporarily.
Our mission team, made up of students and faculty from Tulsa Adventist Academy and Ozark Adventist Academy, participated in a music festival with students from Maxwell Adventist Academy in Nairobi before heading on an all-day bus ride to spend several days building faculty housing for a mission school in the western Maasai Mara region. Every day, we have faced challenges and every day, we have witnessed a loving God that is bigger than those challenges.
As I bounce along on our journey back to Nairobi, my mind is filled with thoughts and reflections on facing challenges in our spiritual journey. So many times in our lives, the dusty and bumpy roads that we travel become such a distraction that it draws our focus away from the countless blessings which surround us every day. We forget to smile, to be grateful and full of joy. Just like the fine dust that has covered our group for the last 11 hours of travel today, sin is constantly getting us dirty, clouding our vision, making it hard to breathe, and simply making our life uncomfortable. Even as those thoughts are going through my mind, they are met with the sound of music coming from students playing guitars and lifting their voices in praise to God. On this trip so many of us have realized or been reminded that no matter where we live this world, we will face challenges in life, especially spiritual ones. As I sat there on the bus with those children, all of us covered in dust, they shared a wonderful lesson with me. Little did those students realize that through their songs of praise, I was reminded that we are all called to praise Jesus while traveling this dusty, bumpy road called life. Being physically thirsty is a challenge. Experiencing spiritual thirst is an even greater challenge. Even though the dust of sin covers us all, Jesus promises to wash us clean through the power of His blood. He also promises us living water that will quench our thirst. In John 4:13, 14, Jesus says, “Everyone who drinks this water will get thirsty again and again. Anyone who drinks the water I give will never thirst—not ever. The water I give will be an artesian spring within, gushing fountains of endless life” (MSG).