Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Giving Thanks...

Thanksgiving... it's one of my favorite holidays. It's the beginning of the official "holiday" season. It reminds me of cool weather in Tennessee, and the best food you could imagine.

The day before Thanksgiving, I usually get a new hair cut. (Don't ask me why, it's just what I do). We usually are with family. Shane goes squirrel hunting (unsuccessfully of course), just for the memory. Me and the kids watch the Macy Day parade, and then I help my mom decorate the tree. We over indulge in all things yummy! It's super awesome!

We end the day in a huge family meal, recalling what we are thankful for and usually take a minute to remember those who are "less fortunate" as my dad says.

This year... Thanksgiving changes.

While it usually gives off this warm and fuzzy feel, this year I find myself in thanksgiving.

"Father, God... You are so mighty. Thank you for being my Father. Thank you for being our provider, our comforter, our healer. Thank you for the presence of your spirit in our lives. Thank you for your calling upon our lives to change us... to change our Thanksgiving. Father, forgive me of where I do NOT thank you when I should. Forgive me of when I do not recognize the gifts you give, regardless of the packaging. Forgive me of wanting something more than what you have blessed me with. Now, Father... I pray for those who I love. Our family and friends. I pray that you would bless them with a wonderful day celebrating. I pray you would bring remembrance to their hearts for all you have done. God, we pray for those we love here... our new family. Father, I pray that you would meet their needs today. God, provide them food at home. Father, give them health. Please find a way to love each heart today. Help us to give your love so that they can indeed be thankful regardless of their circumstances. Lord, you are mighty and strong. Without you, our work is meaningless. We thank you for the ability to lift up our prayers and thanksgiving to you. Amen."
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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The faces I live with...

*here is my disclaimer... I never intended to be a horrific blogger. I thought I would blog all the time here... afterall, I do have quite the stories to tell. However, fighting the unpredictable power, lightening strikes taking out internet, flooding in the house, balanced delicately with a very full schedule of responsibilities, blogging has proven to be difficult. :/

These are some of the faces I live with. We so often find ourselves looking at pictures, but don't fully know the child behind them.

I can say, knowing makes it all the more beautiful and painful. I never knew that the two could mix so amazingly strong... but I'm finding the true beauty of contrast: light and darkness... joy and sorrow... rejoicing and suffering.


Friday, November 11, 2011

Missionary Mom...

Well, one thing is for sure, when I envisioned being a mom, I certainly never envisioned raising children in Africa. While, yes, I've always felt a strong calling to missions, I kinda thought that would be my "single life" occupation. But, raising kids on the "mission field?" NOT.A.CHANCE.

After all, *Most*MKs are kinda weird, right? (sorry if you are one... but let's be honest)

I thought my efforts in raising my children would be revolving around:

*where to send them to school?
*what kind of birthday party will we have?
*Christmas pictures... oh what to wear?
*what type of cupcakes should I send to class?

Instead they are:

*heavy education of snakes and spiders, and the like...
*shopping consists of traipsing through the local outdoor market...
*praying that NO ONE has to go to the bathroom anywhere other than HOME... and even that, some days, is risky.
*learning what kind of new skin funk we have this week...
*and explaining the really hard things in life: death, disease, poverty...

While my day to day thoughts, as a "Missionary Mom" v. "Mom in the suburbs", have certainly changed, my desire for my children hasn't. I'm just praying they grow up to love Jesus and live that out in whatever way He's equipped them to. (Ok, and I'm praying they don't turn out a little...ahem... strange)

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Saturday, November 5, 2011


So, there's so many wonderful things about living in Zambia. One of those things is that there is NEVER A DULL MOMENT. It's quite up my alley!

The other night, our sweet roomie, Leslie, gave Shane and I a date night by watching our kiddos while we went out to eat at a little restaurant in town. On our way out, we had about 4 boys to drop off near the compound. Shane and I had fun explaining to them what a "date" was, and how important it is for men to love their wives. Anyway, they laughed and thought we were funny.

We drop them off at the compound, and are immediately approached by 2 of the piece workers on our farm. They said, "Shane, we have emergency, my wife is having a baby." Shane said "like, right now?" "yes!" he said. They wanted us to take them to the clinic. Of course, we say YES! So, we drive through the compound (talk about sticking out like a sore thumb... NO ONE DRIVES IN THE COMPOUND HARDLY) ... and arrive at the one room shack... truly the size of an oversized bathroom. ... The men go in, and a second later, one of them comes out with a huge wadded blanket... WITH A BABY IN IT! He gets in the car... and Shane and I are FREAKING OUT! "Um... did she just have that baby?!?!?!" "Yes, about an hour ago..." he laughed. Shane and I are kinda not knowing what to do at this point.

The husband comes out and says, "Well, she is unable to walk right now, so she will need to go to the clinic tomorrow." We paid for a nurse to come and check her out... dropped off the men at the market so they could buy some items, and went on our way.

Needless to say, the dinner conversation was NOT the HIGHLIGHT of this date...

Can't wait to see what happens next time.