"For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, so that no man may boast before God." (1 Corinthians 1:26-29)
Thursday, January 14, 2010
No news is good news!
Sorry to keep you all "in the dark" for so long! We took a "break" from the blogsite over the Christmas holidays and then were busy settling in to the place we will call home until we pack to return to Burkina.
Things are very well for us here in Grantham, PA (near Harrisburg, and right next to Messiah College). So far, in our first week-and-a-half, we've had 8 doctor's appointments, 5 meetings, 6 dinners with friends, and 2 presentations. In addition, Florence and I went out on our first date (without the boys) in almost a year. We visited with both Florence's parents and my parents again, and saw my brother and sister-in-law in Harrisburg.
We often get some of the same questions over and over again. So for your convenience (and curiosity), here are some "frequently asked questions":
Q: What are you guys doing now?
A: Our 8-month "home assignment" is meant for 3 things: find more support (prayer and financial, for both us and our ministry in Mahadaga), report about what we're doing to our friends and churches, and REST & renewal! We'll spend a lot of time visiting with people and preparing presentations for churches and Sunday School groups. We'll also do some traveling in May and June. And rest? Yes...I don't think we knew just how exhausted and nearly burnt-out we were until we got back and gave ourselves some space. Rest is also important if we're going to be able to minister in Mahadaga for a long time. We're also meant to find renewal...now that we're not always the ones being the ministers, we can find ways to be "ministered to"...like a marriage retreat in February, church Bible studies, moms' groups, etc.
Q: What are Caleb and Joel going to do for school when you go back?
A: We're really happy about Caleb going to "pre-school" three times per week right now. After three days, he seems to really enjoy it, and the teacher has been giving positive feedback. As for long-term schooling...that's another task that we have before us while we're home. We'll need to find a good home-schooling program for the boys. While we're on our second term in Burkina, Caleb will complete kindergarten and 1st grade, and Joel will be ready to start kindergarten near the end of our term. If anyone knows of someone who could come to Burkina to teach the boys, we'd be delighted to talk to them!
Q: Has it been hard to come back to the States? Has the weather been too cold?
A: In some ways, it's been shocking to come home. Going from one of the simplest, poorest areas in the world, to the US during the Christmas season is shocking. All the stuff, all the lights, all the sales, all the cars...etc etc. We kept asking, "why do we need all this stuff??!" But in other ways, we know that we have to do a "brain transplant". In order to survive, we have to take out our "Burkina brains" and put in our "American brains". It's not a perfect coping mechanism, but the two worlds are just too different. And yes, the cold has been a tough adjustment. Fortunately, we were able to "ease into it" by traveling in Europe before coming home. And hey, EVERYONE here has been complaining about the cold! :0)
So I hope that helps some. We really hope to be able to see all of you in the coming months. This is an exciting time for us. That's one more benefit to living overseas...we enjoy life in the US in a new, fresh way!
That's all for now. Keep praying for Haiti and the missionaries there. Help however you can!