|Nora and Charley in the garden|
This week in church we sang the song Great is Thy Faithfulness. The second verse talks about God's faithfulness through "summer and winter and springtime and harvest." I smiled to myself as I sang about seasons in an almost seasonless place.
We have certainly gone through seasons here though:
The homeschooling season.
It is comparable to a severe Minnesota winter. You are trapped inside day after day with all of your children and digging deep for creativity and a positive attitude.
|Harper and Charley in history class|
This season involved vivid dreams of Chick-fil-a chicken biscuits and cheeseburgers. It began to resolve when Will said to me in a stern voice, "You have got to stop talking about chicken biscuits."
|Hayden and her homemade pop tarts this Christmas. Now I need to get her to make me a chicken biscuit.|
This one keeps coming back around. If you know a urologist that is interested in volunteering at a mission hospital in Kenya please give him our contact information. This is not a joke.
|This baby is cute though...|
Emery Laura, 7 months old
We have had blurbs of time when we think we are adjusted. But right before we get too big for our britches this season comes to an end... usually taken over by the homeschooling season, or the pregnancy season, or the culture shock season.
|We all went to the wedding of Felix our gardener. One of my best memories... particularly Will in his gourd shirt.|
|Felix is the man in the middle|
|Joyce and Harper|
New mercies I see... I want to say that each day I wake up with this perspective. But some days I am bogged down in day-to-day challenges... survival of potty-training, slow internet, disobedient children, unfamiliar cultural situations, loneliness, broken appliances, and water-stained clothes. And on those days I long for relief, for a get-away, for an easy button, for mercy!
But there are also many days when my eyes are open to the mercies around me. One afternoon the week before Christmas, Will took me up to the hospital to sit with him in his clinic. Patient after patient came in looking for good news from their neurosurgeon, looking for mercy.
There was a young girl that came in with her 2 year old daughter, Joy. One side of little Joy's face had paralysis. Will looked at her scans and it was not good. She had a tumor deep in her brain that was too difficult to remove. Even if surgery was favorable, her momma did not have healthcare coverage or the money to pay for her baby's care. I sat and watched Will explain in Kiswahili to this young momma her baby's medical situation. He then called in his Kenyan colleague to re-explain to make sure that she was understanding. I was in tears as this mother, who had a little girl the same age as Nora, listened to the very news that I'm sure she had feared she would receive that day.
Waking up each day to healthy, living children is mercy.
The hope of heaven for baby Joy is mercy.
The opportunity for Joy's momma to see a neurosurgeon in rural Kenya and hear about the hope of Jesus, even in what may seem like a hopeless situation, is mercy.
I went home and hugged my messy two-year old a bit tighter.
|Nora Ellis, 2 years old|
The truth... I fear failure. What if I am never able to speak the language here? I am motivated however, because I'm ready to speak with and understand the old woman that comes to my door every week. I'm ready to speak with the workers in our home using their own language. I'm ready for deeper relationships with my Kenyan neighbors.
But what if I can't clear enough space in my brain? I've barely cleared enough space to fit 5th grade math back in.
|On vacation near Lake Naivasha on New Years Eve. A welcome break from 5th grade math.|