What happened today

I went to a Colegio today. It's sort of like a high school except you don't get a general degree like in the US. It's more like a trade school. And they have 5-20 year olds.

Anyway, some friends of ours asked me if I would be interested in helping this particular Christian school out. Maybe teach a Bible class every 2 weeks or so. Sounded great. She wanted to know my credentials, sheep skins, etc.

So we go to visit and I talk to some of the administration folks. Turns out they don't really want someone to teach a class every 2 weeks. See, the kids, at least many of them, don't' have 2 parents at home because one of them is working in the US and sending money back home. So their home lives are pretty dysfunctional and several of the older kids (18-20) work during the week to pay for school and have no one to, well, just to talk to about their life.

They want me to be the school psychologist. A counselor.


Yes, I have a B.A. in Psychology but anyone who has that degree will tell you it does NOT qualify you to be a counselor. Now I also know that I have more education than...well, than most folks here. A Masters in the states is not that abnormal. Here, it's pretty big. But to be a counselor in the states I need a lot more training. Like a few more years.

They want me to come Fridays and Saturdays but I don't know for how long. I can't give them even a full day - it's not why I'm here. You get warned a lot not to do everything that people want you to do because when you're a missionary folks think you can and should do everything that helps somebody else.

I bet that sounds pretty snooty.

What do you think? Can I do it all? Should I? I'm here to train pastors. That's not all I'll do - but how much do you add? How often do you say, "no" and get that horrible look from people who actually need help and dont' have anyone else to give it?

It's not an easy answer. On one hand I have the opportunity to influence and help high school and college age kids who don't have anyone else guiding them. On the other hand, the work I came here to do will very soon become all consuming. It will very soon become very, very busy.

I can tell you one thing for certain. The Lord will help me. He doesn't call Himself a shepherd on accident.


Toni said...

Brandon, I think you should go for it. You have experience with leading younger folks and you are very personable. There is a verse that says we go in a direction and God guides our steps. Maybe they have been waiting on you. If you can change just one life in the school, it would be worth it, just as Jenny touches lives at the orphanage.

Zach said...

I just prayed for you. I hope you noticed ;-P

Seems to me that you shouldn't get too stressed out about this decision. Make sure you are following God by faith, that's all. Don't start cataloging your skills and abilities to see if you are capable of the job. It's God's responsibility to give you what you need to do it (See Moses, whose spiritual gift was not public speaking, apparently). Also, if this really is God's specific will for you it will be obvious and you will end up doing it (see Noah).

Take comfort in the fact that God is ultimately responsible for seeing His will done. If there is nothing evil men can do to mess up God's plan, then the prayerful decision of one of His children certainly isn't going to.

Zach said...

Of course, I'm coaching you from the bleachers here. Sorry about that. I feel for you. Big decisions make my stomach churn. I'm better at giving advice to others because I'm not required to follow it :-P

I'll keep praying for you. Mostly for wisdom and peace. Anything else you need?

Zach said...

I meant Jonah, not Noah. I always get those two confused.

Brandon and Jenny said...

Thanks you two for your comments and encouragement!

Zach, I think both Noah and Jonah fit into your thoughts. though Noah is the clearer example, Noah still works.

I'd rather not take Jonah's road though. Just go to Nineveh and same yourself the grief!

Zach said...

True, Jonah isn't ideal, but it's comforting to know that if God wants you to do something, He'll make sure you do it. If you can't get away from it on purpose you certainly aren't going to get away by accident.

You know what it is? Jonah and Noah are almost anagrams. Well, I guess Jonah is an anagram of J. Noah. I'm pretty sure Noah's first name was Jeffrey.

Ian said...

I say do it :-)

But you know I'm a sucker for helping folks in tangible ways, especially one-on-one.