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Oddly Grateful

November 7, 2015

EDIT: Please read the update at the bottom…one HUGE thing to be grateful for!

One popular activity during the month of November is to publish reasons you are grateful to your social media outlet – one a day.  While I appreciate the purpose of the exercise, I simply do not possess that level of discipline.  However, I have been trying to cultivate an attitude of gratitude, as much as an example to my children, as well as an excellent discipline for myself.  But, as I specifically looked at it during this month of thankfulness, I realized the things I was noticing to be grateful for were not the same as many of my friends’ Facebook posts.

I was grateful that our power has been excellent.  I mean, it isn’t on at this exact moment, but this is only the third outage this week.  And I know very well that this is something to be grateful for!

I am grateful for our well, because city water isn’t always dependable and, of course, not very clean.  Which leads me to be grateful for our Berkley water filter doing its difficult and important job.  Which reminds me to be grateful for the person who bought it for us from our Amazon Wishlist over two years ago.

I am grateful for three healthy kids.  Here, getting sick is quickly escalated to testing for malaria, dengue, or other diseases.  We have access to decent health care and life-saving medications without thinking about how we are going to pay for them (because they are inexpensive to us) – something our neighbors cannot take for granted as easily and we could.

I am grateful for our doctor friends (nearly family) in Vanga – my last blog post alone can explain why, but also that they are just a quick flight away should an unfortunate need arise.  And that they are like family.

I am grateful for the Internet for keeping us in contact with our friends here, since cell phone connections aren’t always reliable (or affordable), but also with friends and family back home.  Matthew was able to spend time talking to both of his brothers yesterday, and they were able to see their nephews and niece.  This is something huge!

The internet and quick flight to excellent medical care, of course, make me grateful for MAF – the reason we’re here, but the reason we and so many others, are able to function so well.  They provide safe, reliable transportation, and also reliable, secure internet.

I am grateful for a mostly pest-free home.  It is so easy, and often out of our control, to have pests invade here in the jungle-city.  With three kids running around and being messy, it is even easier to fall victim to their opportunistic invasions.  But, we have been so grateful that we have seen only three roaches, a few termites, random flies, spiders, and only the hardest working ants.  The mouse running across our kitchen floor yesterday morning only reminded me to ask if one of the kittens our missionary friends in Kikongo had a few weeks ago are ready to be delivered yet.  Because that’s about all I can do at this point.  Life in Africa is like this – but we are grateful, because we also know it could be much worse.

We are grateful for a strong support system, both of ministry supporters, and for our headquarters staff in Idaho.  We cannot be here, living and serving (versus surviving) without any of you!  And of course, we are grateful for our support system living right here in our neighborhood, too!

…the list can go on.  If I were stateside, I would, at this moment, be grateful for convenient food, fall, cozy sweaters (I have only lived in the northern US), and most definitely snow, if there was any.  I might otherwise be grateful for coffee, but this baby has decided that I am on a coffee hiatus until further notice.

So, I don’t have a daily list going on Facebook…but I am cultivating gratitude all the same, even if it is occasionally about something odd, like finding cheap Oreos at the store closest to our house…peanut butter Oreos!  Yay pregnancy craving satisfied!

PS – If you are wondering about our vehicle fund, we are still in need of about $4000 in order to begin searching for a vehicle.  Please be praying about how you can be part of this important aspect of ministry here!  Thanks!  Hours after this blog post was published, God provided the $4000, through one generous gift.  Thank you!!  Wow!!!  We will keep you all posted as we now begin our vehicle hunt.

One Comment leave one →
  1. ricetd permalink
    November 7, 2015 0829

    Wonderful newsletter. Tim

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