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Chase Park Warehouse
Athens, Ga


MEIRA Missions


Meredith Raiford

Some of you may already know this, but I’m a bit of a perfectionist. (Surprise!) If I can’t get something just right, I don’t want people to see it. Which, is how I end up going so long without writing updates. I intend to write, and often times I’ll write three/fourths of several different blogs, but if I can’t make it completely honest and somehow beneficial or interesting, I scrap it. Maybe it’s a problem, maybe not. But, for now it is what it is.

Today I am going to try to write a whole post to y’all without overthinking it. If you are reading this, that means I have succeeded!

My life since I’ve come back here to Maputo has been so wonderful and full. I love it here. I love that I don’t have to adjust. I love that it’s familiar. I love that for the first time in over a year I feel comfortable, like I belong. I’m not saying that I’m going to move to Mozambique, because God hasn’t told me anything in regards to that. But, after such a long season of adjusting and readjusting with so much isolation, it feels unreal how good and whole my life is right now, and I am choosing to enjoy it.

I haven’t started my painting. Crazy, I know. It’s borderline uncharacteristic how relaxed I have been about getting started. With every other trip I’ve had ridiculous deadlines and boatloads of work. But here and now I have time, not a lot, but enough, and I am savoring it.

It’s funny, but I think living these next few weeks here in Africa is going to be the best possible way for me to transition and figure out how to live in America once this is all over.

Paul talks in Philippians about how he has “learned the secret to facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need”… “How to be brought low and how to abound”… How “in whatever situation [we are] to be content.” (If you look that up, be warned its completely out of order. 4:10-12)

In this year I’ve learned a lot about how to live with less. I’ve learned how to be broken. I’ve learned how to fight for my needs and be satisfied without my wants. But in my rebuilding from brokenness, I’ve yet to learn how I can live again in abundance. It’s no longer natural or easy for me to live with so many of my wants taken care of on top of my needs.

It’d be easy for me to cop out and say that that’s a good thing. That it’s right for me to be content and joyful with less. That I don’t need more. That abundance is another word for materialism and that’s bad. But I committed at the onset of my being rebuilt this year that I wouldn’t allow any lies to embed themselves back in my mind. And a partial lie is just as dangerous as a full one when allowed to take root.

Paul says we need to find contentment in both. God has taught me the first part. Now it is time for me to figure out how to live in the second as well. I have trusted God to take care of me and be with me in my season of need, now I’m setting out to find him and our rhythm in this season of plenty. I’m so grateful that I get to learn that lesson here!