Category Archives: africa

Rhythm

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Five Minute Friday
Today is my grandmother’s 89th birthday and we share a birthday, just 60 years apart. We are here celebrating with her. She is towards the end of her days, and I’m in the middle of mine; my kids are at the beginning of theirs (Lord willing). I am so thankful for the rhythm of faith and joyful service that has been passed down from my grandmother and pray that the Lord continues His grace to my children. My grandmother has loved her Lord most of the days of her life; her life has been a song of praise to her God.  In laboring to raise my own children and live led by the Spirit, I am increasingly thankful for the patterns that have been passed down to me. As the pace of her days slows, I am so blessed to realize how the rhythms of a life well-lived continue even to effect even my own children, 4 generations later

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5 Minute Friday: On Distance

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  This is a particularly poignant prompt (nice alliteration, huh?) for me today. I was just kind of waking up after a long night with boys who didn’t sleep well because of colds, when my phone rang, and my sister asked me if I had checked the news. One of the countries that we have lived in is enduring a war. I have grieved over that far away suffering, but also been thankful that my parents, although nearby, were in a relatively stable country.

But the news this morning told me something different, the army in that country was unhappy and had mutinied, shooting and looting in the city where my parents live. Moments like these ones are when I feel the distance, the ocean, the cultures, the prosperity, that separates the place I live from the one in which my parents serve. Most of my friends have never heard of the countries that are breaking my heart, and many of them have no idea what’s happening in them unless I share a prayer request.  That makes the distance seem so great and almost insurmountable.

But, skype! Really. I’m so thankful to the Lord for webcams and computer screens, and electricity that stays on when my family is trying to talk through these things. The distance is not to great for the Creator and Sustainer of all things, and he hold the heart of men in his hands.

This is a prompt from the Gypsy Mama. Go check out her blog, and the other Five Minute Friday posts.

Summer Rain

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We’ve been having quite unusual weather for about a week now. Its been rainy and cool not sweltering. I love the rain and many of my favorite childhood memories are of playing in the downpour of an African thunderstorm. Earlier this week, Luke played in the rain for the first time.

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He wasn’t sure about this at first…

 

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But then he decided that this was very fun!

The Epic of the Dinner Rolls

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I signed up to bring dinner rolls to our small group gathering earlier this week. I found this great recipe online, and calculated how many hours I needed to get everything ready before we left, but still have them hot when we got there. I felt all prepared, and excited to try my hand at making rolls (I’ve only made them one other time, with a different recipe, and they didn’t turn out so great).

So, at the right time, I put all the ingredients in the breadmaker, and left it to do its thing. About an hour later, I went back in to check on them, but when I opened the breadmaker lid, NOTHING had happened! I realized that I had selected the cycle I wanted to use, but neglected to press start. After some quick recalculation, I figured I might be able to JUST make it. So I pressed start.

A little while later, when the kneading began, the breadmaker began to make funny noises. So I went into the kitchen, where it dawned on me that I had forgotten to put the paddle in the bottom, so all the “kneading” was pointless. By this time it was only a little over an hour before we left, so I ended up making biscuits to take to Care Group instead.

While I was running around, scrambling to get biscuits made and in the oven, my sister, Ruthie, gets on the instant messenger, and asks to talk to me. I start talking to her, all the while, measuring flour and adding in salt. I do that until she tells me the reason that she wanted to talk:

SHE IS ENGAGED!

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I am so excited for them! Congratulations, Ruthie and Stephen!

Anyway, with excitement adding distraction to my baking efforts, I did manage to get one batch of biscuits in the oven, and Bret made another. They turned out just fine, and were enjoyed at care group.

I ended up baking the rolls the next day, after they sat in the fridge all night. I just couldn’t bear to waste all those ingredients. And guess what? They STILL turned out good!dscn3309

African Baby

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This was just too fun not to share! This is how the ladies carry their babies where I grew up in West Africa. I tried it the other day, to see if I could carry a real baby on my back after practicing my whole girlhood with dollies and stuffed animals. I guess it worked okay, and Luke seemed to like it. Its not particularly comfortable, but it was really fun to try for a short time.  

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This is an excerpt from an email coming from the area of the world in which I grew up.

“Even as I write, today there is a situation among the new believers’ fellowship that needs your prayers.  Recently, the son of a very influential man became a Christian, and this provoked the man to order retaliation on the believers in his area.  This past week their houses were burned in the night, but they escaped into the bush, where about twenty men and women, and a number of children, spent several days and nights in the open, unprotected from the rain and cold.  Among them, six men were caught and detained for questioning.  The leader of their network went to help them, and he too was detained and beaten.  

    Since then, another leader has been working for their release.  He told me today that the network leader could have been released several days ago, but refused to be separated from the others.  The young Christians were offered their freedom if they would recant their faith by reciting the creed of their former religion, but they all forcefully declined.  Everyone involved has seen the strength of their commitment.  Thank God for their witness, and pray for the resolution of this situation.”

This is such a poignant reminder to me to be steadfast in prayer for my suffering brothers and sisters. Their faith is also a great example to me, especially since many of them are new believers.