I was with a friend the other day sharing with him the calling that God has placed on my heart: To serve missionaries and missionary kids by offering counseling. He, being a pastor and acquainted with missionaries and the life they lead, knows the importance of my role. He then proceeded to give the best metaphor that describes my role on the mission field.
He said I was like a cook in the army. You never hear about the cook or never see Uncle Sam recruiting for cooks. They never appear on billboards or are on the tongues of Army recruiters. But one day without a cook and soldiers get grumpy. A hungry soldier is not someone to reckon with. After prolonged bouts of hunger, he or she becomes ill and weak, not able to fight and carry on their roles.
This sounded more like me than any other thing I had heard about before. I was and am the Army cook. I wish I could recount to you the number of times I have heard people say that they have never heard of someone like me doing what I am doing. Some of the individuals have been in missions sometime, also. Wycliffe, the great organization that it is, does not recruit for my position. As a matter of fact when they begin their Last Scripture push this fall, which is well warranted and much needed, the money which comes from that will not go towards counseling missionaries, but to translators doing the work.
But what is the work?? To me the work is any part of the body that helps accomplish the bodies goal. I think I fit into the role and fulfill that purpose. I recently read in a journal article that almost 7500 missionaries leave the field every year because of preventable reasons such as trauma, family conflict, organizational conflict, and stress, to name a few.
But with all the lack of notoriety that comes with this position, it is what God has called me. I am love being the cook.