my mission, my children

Children weren’t in my preferred future. I remember growing up baby-sitting was the most painful way to earn money. I did it for a season until I gathered ample funds to purchase my first Bible, but then I quit. In college studying the affects of advertizing and programming on children – again I was convinced parenting with all those choices was not for me. I avoided children at church, refusing to volunteer in Sunday School. Sticky, smelling, loud and demanding kids didn’t appealed to me. I wasn’t parental stock.

Then we adopted two babes.

I was quite right. Kids are sticky, smelly, loud and demanding of nearly all my waking attention. They never cease to need me. But they send so many hugs and kisses my way – and squeezes that smash our cheeks together into doughy goodness. They pepper me with questions: How can Jesus be ‘with us’ and watching the whole world? Why doesn’t God make things fair for everyone everywhere? When I die do I get to go to Jesus’ house? (So much for Sunday School avoidance!)

The caring, wondering, responding and cleaning leave me spent most weeks. Parenting’s every bit as hard as I’d once imagined – and harder. But sometimes I think that this is my Africa, the place I did not want to go but where God sent me anyway. Parenthood my field for incarnational mission to unfold down our tiled halls, in our spice-filled kitchen, over and under my unmade bedcovers. Far from my shores of expectation two fertile souls await my daily arrival for nourishment.

My mission is raising one son, one daughter to possess hearts for Jesus and eyes for His world. My mission – to stoke their hunger for justice, cultivate their imagination for peace, fill them with the sweeping visions of hope found in Isaiah and the stories of deliverance from Exodus. My mission – and I’ve chosen to accept it – is to see Gospel stories ignite in their hearts and minds and incarnate in their lives lived here, there and beyond.

My children are the mission field God calls me to each morning. And I am theirs, these youngest of missionaries daily converting me to deeper generosity, hospitality and a love that plumbs depths of my soul previously unknown, untouched.

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6 thoughts on “my mission, my children”

  1. Tina/ @teenbug
     ·  Reply

    – “…and squeezes that smash our cheeks together into doughy goodness.”
    – “…But sometimes I think that this is my Africa, the place I did not want to go but where God sent me anyway”.
    – “Far from my shores of expectation two fertile souls await my daily arrival for nourishment.”


    • kelleynikondeha
       ·  Reply

      you noted my own favorite lines (is it okay to confess that out loud?)!

      you get me!

  2. d.l. mayfield
     ·  Reply

    ah! i was just thinking yesterday i want to know soooo much about your family, your adoption. excited to read any bit you are called to share :).

  3. Sarah Bessey
     ·  Reply

    Sometimes you write bits of my own story, you know that, right?

  4. J. R. Goudeau
     ·  Reply

    I loved this! As someone who wasn’t sure mothering was for me, and has been thoroughly converted, I completely agree.

  5. kelleynikondeha
     ·  Reply

    Mothering is not for the faint of heart… for me it was really a call. But I watched the kids this morning, happily traipsing into the school yard and realized they are where I am daily called, and I could not love them more, even when it is hard for me to find the energy! So glad we moms can share together… that I am not alone.

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All writing on this site represents my own journey, my own wrestling, my own epiphanies. While I work with Communities of Hope, ideas shared here do not necessarily represent this organization.