‘Summer’, or the dry season is trying hard to begin, but like everywhere else, the weather is a bit off this year. Is it just me or does that seem to be happening more and more, so that we really aren’t sure what should be normal anymore?
Today I am reminded of Jesus explaining that only the owner of the sheep takes really good care of them. Okay, this is a stretch, but all of our animals, our garden, and our property just aren’t cared for the same when we are not here. But it did make me think of those verses in John.
We are busy cleaning and repairing, feeding and caring for the animals, searching out the garden amongst the fast-growing weeds, and also enjoying the beauty of this place God has gifted us with. In truth, even the work we are (re)doing is a gift. Lynn loves to stay busy, and it is good for us both.
We have hired on David, a young man from the church who is on summer break from classes, to help with the outside work. He will work 2 days a week, and is doing a great job so far. This is day 2.
As we renew old ties, and catch up on all the happenings, we find ourselves renewed in our hearts toward the folks and see even more surely how much our own stresses and need for renewal with each other influenced our relationship with our family here before we left last August. We still have the same frustrations when a mom is still not providing the care for her children, but we FEEL the love for her in deciding how we can help. I think we had almost lost that to some extent. It is so difficult to see day in and day out someone making the same choices that cause pain to others, and yet feel a need to ‘fix’ it somehow for the sake of the others. As I reflect on the past year, I am not sure which came first the chicken or the egg, but I struggled to see through Jesus’ eyes when Lynn and I were at odds with each other. I think the ministry stresses impacted our relationship, and our relationship impacted the ministry. But God is so good and merciful, and we are both renewed in spirit and love. Praise God!
We are not blind or stupid – we know how hard it is to do this work full time. We feel we are better prepared, and know more surely from Whom our strength comes. Before we had gotten so caught up in the work that there was only a pittance of time to study to know and understand God better. I think we have our priorities straight now, but we also know to be on our guard!
We have written and talked of Yari on and off since our arrival here five years ago. She stole our hearts way back then, and broke them a time or two since then – many bad choices, no good examples of love and commitment – well, she is now back living with us. We are both excited and apprehensive. We ask for your prayers toward this ministry. She so much needs the stability and unconditional love that we can offer through Christ. Again, we are not going into this without a great amount of prayer and consideration, and neither is she. None the less she is still immature and has habits established since her very youngest years that must be overcome.
This is longer than I intended (you are surprised, right?). Blessings to all. We love you!