Thursday, May 23, 2013

Learning to Adapt

Last week the air conditioner in my house, which I share with four other people, died. Arizona summer is already in full force, and the heat seeping through the walls and windows left our house a nice, cozy consistent 92 degrees. It took a week for us to get a company out to assess the situation, then another few days to fill out paperwork for a loan to buy a new unit. In that time, I learned to adapt, to adjust my lifestyle in a way that accommodated my situation. We pulled in some oscillating fans from the garage, we opened up the doors at night to let the cool air in, and we walked around in our underwear for a few weeks. We adapted.

This experience reminded me of being in India, of the things I learned to live without. In India I lived in a place without air conditioning in 100 degrees, 100% humidity, with only a fan above my bed to cool the sweat. I got used to being without air conditioning. I learned to live without a washer and dryer, as I hand washed all my clothes and hung them on the line outside to dry. I got used to riding the bus and walking everywhere I had to go. And not once did I feel like I was missing out on anything.

We can live with so much less than we think. We are creatures made to adapt, but when we live in a land of money and choices, we don’t see the need to simplify, or to go without. And we miss out on so many lessons God is trying to teach us through simplifying, and relying on Him instead of on our comforts.

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? …But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” –Matthew 6: 25-26,33

I am extremely grateful that I live with my siblings who were able to purchase the new AC unit. I am not able to help them financially, since I have just enough money left in my bank account to pay next month’s rent, but they are generous (and probably tired of being sweaty) and willing to bear my portion. I have been working as a nanny for my friend’s 4 month old daughter for the last 2 months, but that job will be coming to an end next week. I have two months until I leave for Chicago to participate in Mission Year, building community, learning how to live intentionally for Christ in the inner city, and volunteering my time with local organizations that help meet the needs of the community. I do not know what the next two months hold, but I know who holds them in His hands. And I know He will provide.

I am almost halfway funded for my year in Chicago with Mission Year. I currently have about $5,000 donated toward my fund out of the $12,000 I need to raise by September.

If you would like to help me participate in Mission Year, being Jesus’ hands and feet to the inner city, please visit Mission Year’s website from the link on the right side of the page and choose my name from the dropdown menu.

1 comment:

  1. You have a beautiful heart.
    I, too, am braving through this Arizona heat. I lived here my whole life, but it takes getting used to at the beginning of each summer. haha I love what you said about the Lord teaching us through simplifying. This is so true!