Tuesday, December 18, 2007


Aren't you glad we're not who we were?

I've spent the afternoon deep in thought. I won't go into it all here, but it was triggered by the word that a former classmate had passed away. He was definitely not someone I was close to--in fact we got into it on several occasions. And the guy I disagreed with so bitterly a decade ago was the guy that was frozen in my mind. But as I thought about it, I realized that he probably hadn't been that guy in a long time. After all, I'm not the same person I was ten years ago. And thank God for that.

It made me think about all of you who read this blog. Some of you know OC Val. Some know Val the church secretary. Some know Val the missionary. Some just know Russell's wife, Val. And a select few of you remember Val the child or Val the teenager. More than likely, how you think of me and my personality depends on when you met me.

I look at all those mes and I realize who I've been. I've been short-tempered, quick-tongued, downright mean at times, lazy, gossipy, the list could go on. (Please resist the urge to comment with other adjectives!) Sometimes I still am those Vals.

But with each me I've been, there's been a progression. Technically I'd have to say that they haven't been individual personas but one person on a continuum. Every day I lose more and more of the old me and become more and more of who I'm supposed to be. (Not without setbacks, but we can safely call it a general trend.)

We're getting ready to start a series at church about being "Under Construction". I don't know if our members realize that we missionaries are on the same journey that they are. We fight to be who we need to be. And sometimes, it's only when we take the time to look back that we realize that we're actually succeeding. I'm no longer who I once was. God has transformed me; not just once but over and over again turning me into someone who looks like His child.

I'm a little curious. When I look at how much my life has changed--how much I've changed--I wonder what I'll look like at the end of my journey. I hope that regardless of when you came to know me, the Val you think of, the Val you'll remember, is the one that wasn't content to be who she is right now. I'm glad I've changed and can't wait to be transformed even more!


Heather A said...

I like the Val that I know! And I like that you are humble enough to continue letting God work on you. It is neat to look back and see how God has grown you. I was thinking about that the other day (one of the random things I've pondered at this milestone in my life). I'm not the same little freshman I was when you met me. I'm thankful for the ways God has grown me too! And I'm looking forward to continuing to grow alongside you guys as we work together to serve the Lord in Salvador. I can't wait to be there with you! Lots of love, Heather

Court said...

Ooooh, great thoughts, Val. They're a very good reminder to me that I need to be patient--both with myself as well as with others. So often, I find myself being short-tempered and irritable with certain people, and then I get really frustrated: first with them, for not being less frustrating, and second with myself, for not being more patient!

Sometimes, I remember that kids' song we used to sing: "He's still workin' on me, to make me what I ought to be..." I have to be patient with others because God is still helping them to grow into who he wants them to be....and he's doing the same with me. Thank God that I will not forever remain the person I am now!

I'm interested in the fact that you've been having these thoughts recently; I have, too. I wonder if it's because we're both in the midst of big changes: You're going to have a baby (yay!!!!!!), and I'm majorly transitioning.

I also heard of the recent death of a former classmate....I wonder if we're thinking of the same person?

Anonymous said...

you guys are doing an amazing work, and God continues to use you. We look forward to seeing you soon.

Side note - we used a travel agency recently that did a great job at saving us money. if you think about it, you may want to give them a shot. They saved us a bunch of money recently with our teams that we sent to Haiti and to Nairobi - www.vergeglobal.com - hope this helps.

God bless, and see you soon