Skip to main content

[Five Minute Friday] Safe

July 4th, 2010.

Not my first Fourth of July spent away from home, but definitely my first in another country. My team was in Mwanza, Tanzania, and there were no fireworks, parades, or other celebrations of the anniversary of America becoming a nation. We lived in a house with two other teams that month. Two other teams were on the other side of town, one team was in Eastern Tanzania, and one more team was headed back to Kenya because their ministry in Tanzania didn't work out, but something in Kenya was being arranged.

So the six teams that were in Mwanza for the Fourth had a party that night. Lots of music, games, and catching up on what everyone else had been doing in Kenya. The neighborhood couldn't have missed the spectacle of 40+ Mzungu in one place.

Just like the robbers didn't miss the opportunity when they discovered we hadn't securely locked up the front door after our guests left and before we went to sleep. Like thieves in the night took on a whole new meaning for me when I walked into the front room for breakfast the next morning, and was greeted with the news.

There were so many people staying in the house that some of the guys were sleeping in the front room. It was their computers, their electronics, and some of their wallets that were taken.

Along with whatever trust I had that any of my belongings would be safe. Or that I would be safe.

I took every precaution available with my stuff after that night. Locked things up where I could lock them up. Put things away, always, so that what I had wasn't obvious. Trust eroded further when the news of a team in the group ours was partnered with had been robbed at gun point, then one of their group leaders by machete. Any illusions I had of safety were shattered.

Until I turned my trust back over to God and laid my fears down at his feet, I didn't feel safe again. That is an ongoing process. Every time I go back to Kenya, even, God and I have the conversation.

Me: I don't feel safe about going, God,
God: You don't trust me to keep you safe?
Me: I do, but... *sigh* 

And then I lay the fear down and walk away from it until the next time, because I'm still learning to let it go.

"The safest place I can be in this world is in the center of God's will." - Click to tweet

The truth I've come to know (and need to be reminded of occasionally) is that the safest place I can be in this world is in the center of God's will. A broken world like ours doesn't guarantee my health, my wealth, or anything in between. None of that is going to make it into eternity - just my soul will, if that's been entrusted to the hands of God.

My soul is the only thing that really needs to be safe.

Praise the Lord that it is.

Wondering what Five Minute Friday is? Curious about how it works and what other people are writing? Click on the logo to your left. If that doesn't work out for you, visit for more information or to join the linkup fun.


  1. "The truth I've come to know (and need to be reminded of occasionally) is that the safest place I can be in this world is in the center of God's will." This is true, and even though scary things happen we can have peace and you're right - "My soul is the only thing that really needs to be safe." Blessings to you! I'm your neighbor at #FiveMinuteFriday.

    1. It feels like such a weird thing - the older I get, the more I see the scarier things happening in life. But you're right in that we can have peace in those situations.

      Thanks for stopping by, Gayl!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Metaphors: Candles

I've recently fallen in love with candles. Since coming home from the World Race , I've bought at least one a month. My favorite candles are the ones that come in glass jars - because when they burn out, I can clean the remaining wax out and put the jars to other uses. Right now,  that means they get cleaned out and packed away in anticipation of my move to Flagstaff. But as I was lighting one tonight (vanilla spice... Thanksgiving smells? Yes, please!), I saw a metaphor for writing flickering away in the flame licking at the wick and melting the wax. I suppose it could be a metaphor for life in general, but since the theme of this blog is writing... Well, you do the math.

[Five Minute Friday] Purpose

Fiber bars, strewn along the side of the road. There had to be at least a dozen of them, still in their wrappers and completely unopened. No box in sight. Really? That's about the reaction my younger sister and I had when we stumbled on them on our early morning run. Really? along with disgusted sighs about the wastefulness of it. These were the expensive ones, not a generic store brand that kind of tastes and kind of looks the same sometimes. So, when we weren't keeping an eye out for their box, we speculated about what had happened. And wondered how many more we were going to see before the end of our run. "Maybe they took one bite and thought they were gross," my sister said. "So they threw them out because they didn't want them anymore." I let out one of those disgusted sighs and nodded along with her theory. "Yeah, or they got in a huge fight, and threw them out in a fit of rage." "That's a possibility." And

How to Make Sure Your Book Review Request Does NOT Get Deleted

I've been hesitant to write this post. That is due, in large part, to how angry I get some days after reading book review requests. I curse, I rant, I snark. My cat will tell you it's not a pretty sight. But I also feel like this is a good opportunity to talk about what it is that makes me feel those feelings AND how to not stir them up. I'm not the only reviewer that gets frustrated when I see certain things in my emails from authors looking for a review. And I know I'm not the only one who gets triggered enough to ignore or delete those messages. I never feel good about doing it. It's just that I'm hitting the proverbial wall here and I want to hit it a little less often. So if you're an author looking for loving advice on how to approach reviewers (especially this one), read on. Review Requests I Always  Delete Before I get into what to do, I wanted to take a minute to look at what not to do (and how I handle it). Want to know what immedi