Hello, My Name is Flora Banks

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Hmm… but we can do both, though, right?

My mind is buzz, buzz, buzzing tonight.

My strategy: (Although I may only be nearly two sentences deep) — write until it buzzes down from high frequency to quiet lull to deep silence.

Two things fly across my mind. Okay, maybe 3… or 15 million depending on how detailed you want to be about it.

Without a doubt, poverty is in my head.

See, I get really into the books I read. I may dream that I’m the main character. This might consist of me excusing myself from my behavior. For example, recently in one of my dreams I told someone that I had short term memory loss and I was Flora Banks.

I might dream about the galaxy, being in an art museum that was just bombed… anything, really.

My point is — I get very involved in my books. We all do, but mine gets so bad that I sometimes confuse the characters with myself! 😬😬 Even in my own reality, I’ll wonder what Flora Banks would have said or what SHE’D have written on HER sticky note… silly things like that!

The book I’m finishing now is about poverty.

Okay, so it isn’t about poverty. Let me further explain…

It’s about a young missionary in Uganda named Katie. What has been bothering me so much, though, is the poverty part…

I’ve been through a phase like this before. I finally fully grasped that there are people around the world… starving. I mean, hunger and disease weren’t foreign ideas to me or anything, but once I reached the age of around 22, it started really getting to me. It sent me into a frenzy at one point. I gave up more than half of my clothes and shoes, more than 50 bottles of lotion and shower gel, maybe a couple of furniture pieces, some pillows, and (most sad of all) my keyboard.

I felt guilty. How could I have so much while other people had so little? Maybe I also got a little bit into some sort of hippie movement as I was inspired by different friends. Maybe it was a rebellious act against all the rich kids I knew. Maybe I was trying to prove something to myself, too.

I did prove things to myself… how much I cared about my clothes. Also, how much I truly did not care. It evaluated a lot for me. It’s not something I recommend, by any means, but it taught me a lesson.

I’m not saying I didn’t have anything. There were still plenty of things to pick from in my wardrobe. But, seeing how I was also very depressed at the time, giving away all of those things only made me sink lower. Sweatpants became the norm more often, the gym slipped out of my routine, and I drank all the more alcohol much more frequently.

As I read about these children in Uganda, I’m taken back to this time and place. Not to my depression, but to my intense realization.

During my realization at 22, the thoughts just kind of sat themselves behind me, hollering at me that I did nothing to deserve all the blessings I had. People were out there… starving, begging for food, and dying of communicable diseases left and right. This attacked me and it became something I thought about so often, I changed my behavior. I felt compelled to help people. Although…this is not what I did. Instead, I was angry at everyone.

Eventually, I became a nurse.

This brings me to my second worry: My new job as a PEDIATRIC NURSE… a job which I finally start tomorrow.

I’m terrified wondering if I’ll be any good. Will this be the calling I imagined?

This all brings me to my 3rd thought.

What are people motivated by? And where do you draw the line on money? Are we taking too much? Why do we always want more?

Children in other countries can go to school for 20 dollars. Education is vital to their health, but I can spend 20 dollars on shampoo alone. What should I do, God? This troubles me…

What I do know is this… I HOPE that my number one motive is helping others. That’s what I hope. I want to say that it has to be true, but if that were the case, why would I be so worried what my hair looked like?

I know that sometimes I’m afraid I’m not making the right choice. Does God tug at me for ministry? Where does he want me to belong in it? Is there something else I should be doing that I’m too scared to take the plunge for?

Am I too disconnected from my Creator that I can’t figure out what it is?

There are too many questions, not enough answers, and I’m running out of time.

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭5:7‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“Listen to my prayer, O God, do not ignore my plea;”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭55:1‬ ‭NIV‬‬

I guess in the end we can only try. We have to try to be good. You can be rich and still be loved by God and still love others. You can be poor, God will love you just as much even if you disobey. It is all your choice. Rich or poor? Who cares, I suppose. This is you and God, not you and everyone else.

God,

Give me the ability to help the children, their parents, and my co-workers. Offer me lots of grace to catch in-between. And if you want something else of me please be loud enough so I’ll know! 💖💖

I love you,

Laura

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