from Afghanistan to the Pentegon (sort of)

14 Mar

“What do I call you? Are you still a missionary? Cause you were, and now … what are you?”

The question is often repeated these days. And I didn’t know what to say. You see recently, we finished up our time in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. We were in between assignments. And we didn’t know what the future held.

Then an offer came to work alongside the Africa regional director over all of Africa, Greg Beggs. Communications will be my portfolio. I will travel to Africa some, work out of our headquarters (well, down the street) doing media and storytelling for Africa. It has been cool to see how God has confirmed this to us, even giving someone we know a dream of where we would be living, that we’d drive a Uhaul there, and who we would be working with.

But that still doesn’t answer the question, does it? Are you still missionaries?

I still work with the mission of our movement, the Assemblies of God. Still doesn’t answer the question.

The best way I can describe it is a military metaphor. I’m telling people I’ve moved from Afghanistan to the Pentagon. I realize I wasn’t putting my life on the line the way those in the military do, but its an apt metaphor. We still have a mission, still have a mandate, and are still serving.

I’ve never liked the title missionary. People say goofy stuff to missionaries, like “you’re my hero.”  In Africa, I didn’t like that title either. At our first place of ministry, we were teachers. Then in Kenya, I became a lifecartographer. It was a self-invented title, and gets people to ask the obvious question.

“What’s a lifecartographer?” And now the conversation is open, and we can talk.

We are still donor supported. We are still in ministry. We still need you.  14 years into this Journey, our boxes are less rigid than before. Thanks for going on this Journey with us, to tell everyone about life, life found through the map to Jesus.

Call me what you want, but my preference is what Jesus calls me. Jesus still calls me "'Charles."