I am fully back into work. Today was a long day in the field. Two hours driving, talking, endless speeches a la Uganda style, more talking, looking at some goats, visit a school. A typical day in the field. Then getting back to office, driving through a typical Karamoja rainstorm. Slippery roads, but being very grateful for that four-wheel drive. And then a proposal written in the wrong format, so you have to do it all again. Great. 

But you know, that’s what my life is these days. In the weekend I really missed my sister. (Still do.) But now I am back into work, I guess I just need to make it all happen again. There’s not much of a choice. Just go with the flow, smile, laugh, cry, sign, do my daily yoga and start all over again tomorrow.

And I must admit, it’s easier than I thought it would be. Not because the enormous amount of emails has disappeared or because the roads have miraculously improved. It’s because of the people around me. Far away and close by. 

The text from South Africa saying ‘I miss you’ or the laughter in the car, singing along with 90s songs on the radio. The baby with its happy smile. Opening a can of jam for me, because I broke of the lit. Making me the best cup of coffee I had in days with tissue paper. These are colleagues, friends, or simply people I love because of their good, good hearts. Not perfect, not pretending, just simply kind souls that the world needs. 

And I sort of scold myself again for making my own life so difficult in my mind. I am probably my worst own critic, at least 9 out of 10 times. Of course, this week was going to be just fine. Of course, things will work out pretty okay. I feel supported, loved, and appreciated. There’s no reason to drown myself in work. There’s no reason to feel guilty about things that are not yet done. Tomorrow is another day. 

…at the end of the day, Lord, You bring us limping ones into the valley of The Cupped Hands,

We trust Your whisper that even at our lowest, You love us to the heights, right into heaven. 

We sigh relief that at our weariest, You strengthen us with the irony, the paradox: that the mysteries we don’t understand are manna to sustain us, that the suffering we don’t want is a gift to rebirth us, that the road we don’t like is the narrow way into the expanse of more God. 

And that’s how it is: suffering can be a friend who drives us where we didn’t know we needed to go. 

The limping lean into You. 

– Ann Voskamp