Last night, the Waits came to dinner. Despite a coffee with Laura during one of Skater Girl's Saturday workshops and a trip to the rink for the Waits offspring to skate, there was much to catch up on and discuss. Even with the evaporation of hours, it seems like we scarcely touched the tip of the conversational iceberg. Not unlike a doctor's appointment, there were many questions regarding their ministry in Puerto Lempira that went unasked as well as tidbits about their family, daily life, and mutual friends and acquaintances. (That can all be fodder for e-mail and blog surfing in the future.) The dangers of too little time, and the best sort of visit that leaves one wishing for more at the close.
One of those intriguing topics with Laura was her questioning why people sometimes feel the need to trot out justifications for purchases, possessions, behaviors, etc. with her. (Ah, my humble friend...) She isn't the sort of puffed-up person to recognize how the comparable lack of material things in the family's life challenges those who know them. It's not that they do not wish for, enjoy, or acquire stuff, but they did sell everything to head off to the relative wilds in service to others. Shedding the creature comforts and excesses inherent in an area that has been relatively unscathed by the recent economic downturn is going to bring about some justification. Justification not born of any real or imagined judgment on Laura's part necessarily, but out of questions that one might ask oneself when faced with the cost in time, money, and energy to maintain the suburban dream while seeking Christ.
This opinion is formed of experience in giving consideration to life and priorities between their home and our own. Having known the family in their American Dream achieving days and experiencing some of the trepidation felt by Laura regarding the transition to their big adventure, there is much to admire in the changes they chose to embrace on discovering God's call. Comparison of the relative cost of a child's sponsorship providing education and basic necessities to the far more frivolous expenses of a pretty dress for Middle Child or the scheduled time devoted to the rink with the fluid daily work of Reach Out Honduras helps to put our use of resources in a perspective that can be lost in the bounty of Plenty. By living with Enough (or less), the Waits gift our family (and apparently others) with the opportunity personal examination in a light that can bring about purposeful giving, personal appreciation of what one possesses, and temperance of excess.