Tomorrow I leave for Africa. I will be gone for over two months. I have quit everything and I am leaving everything behind. I've cut all ties to jobs and living spaces, and I begin a new stage in my life. My greatest fear is that it might somehow be the same as the last one. But I do not believe it will be. I do not know what it will be like, but I believe that it will be... stormy. I don't know why I say that, but... it is just the impression that came to my head just now, and I'm in one of those moods, like my mind is reaching into the depths of the unknown. I have no way of knowing if it is true or not. But after some time of dreariness, I believe that soon is coming the storms and floods of spring, after which will burst forth the bright beauty of summer.
Do not get me wrong when I say this: I do not believe that the coming era of my life will be extremely unpleasant and tremendously painful. It will be difficult, rocky, and challenging, but I love storms. I love to experience the waves and the winds and the torrents, because they are not all about suffering or hard times. They are turbulent, shake-you-up times, and I find them exciting and inspiring. It is the time out of which comes the best poetry and the greatest beauty and the deepest joys of a person's life. I begin my journey now, and I like to think that it is a spiritual journey that will last much longer than my two-month trip, but will take me places I never imagined and teach me things I never dreamed. If you have never read "Hind's Feet On High Places," I would highly recommend it. It wasn't the type of book that changes your life in an instant, but it has stuck with me over several years, and its unique perspective has instilled in me a hope and a confidence that I perhaps might have lost otherwise.
I am not ready for the road ahead, I am pretty sure. But I am willing to face it and to travel it. Truly, I am dying to do so. May the Spirit of the sovereign God rest on me as I go. May he rest on all of you as well. Surely goodness and mercy will follow us for all of our days.