Skip to main content

In Between

Friday's Five Minute Friday is being written on Monday..... better late than never.
1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in {you can grab the button code in my blog footer}.
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you.

It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.

OK, are you ready? Let’s see your best five minutes for the prompt:

In between

During John's doctoral studies, he has come across the term liminality which Wikipedia describes as " the quality of ambiguity or disorientation that occurs in the middle stage of rituals, when participants no longer hold their pre-ritual status but have not yet begun the transition to the status they will hold when the ritual is complete."

In other words, it is a state of being in-between.  John and I have discussed how being a missionary puts us in a state of liminality or in-between-ness.

I live in between cultures ... I no longer feel completely American, but neither am I any where near being Nigerien.  I am constantly working to figure out what is the appropriate response in which culture.

I live in between languages ... English definitely comes most naturally, but I feel the struggle of trying to express myself in another language and just not doing very well at it.

I live between riches and poverty.  The USA is within the top four countries on the UN's human development index.  Niger is dead last.  I have a low income compared to my American peers, but I'm pretty rich compared to my Nigerien peers.
 This creates quite a lot of tension.

I live in between families in a sense ... there is my extended American family who I see once in awhile and there are my friends and co-workers who I get to know as closely as if they were family.  

Sometimes I feel that my extended family doesn't completely know who I am because they have never seen me in my real environment. (That doesn't mean I feel like they don't love me!) I am always the guest, the visitor.  I live between who I really am and who they see while I am on home assignment.  I just wish they knew ALL of me.

I live in between my adult children and my growing older parents.  I wish we all lived next door to each other and could just spend all the time we want together.  I wish I could help all of them in the way a mom or a daughter should help.

Most of all, I live in between now and eternity, between earth and heaven.  Perhaps all this liminality, this in-between-ness is just to cause me to long for heaven.

(woops, that was a bit more than five minutes!)


Peas on Earth said…
Stopping over from 5MF. I can relate so well to your in-between. Well written! Blessings to you from Papua New Guinea! ~sharon
Rebekah Ruth said…
I forgot to link my post this weekend. I'm glad I did, or I might not have seen your post. I love your heart. I love the way you describe the tension of all your in-betweens! As soon as your page came up, I felt at home. I've been to Sierra Leone three times to help bring clean water and a part of my heart still lives on there. Bless you for all you do!
podso said…
Love this! You express it all well. Sometimes we feel this way even though we live in the US !
Dani said…
This is just perfect! We live in Maradi and often talk about the very same feelings you shared - ALL of them. It's comforting to know we aren't alone in those feelings. I'm so glad I stumbled across your blog. Thanks for sharing... Dani

Popular posts from this blog

Practice Hospitality

My mother-in-law, Jean, is an amazing person with many gifts.  One of the first things I noticed about her when I was but a young bride, was her gift of hospitality.  It was nothing for her to invite a large group of people over, make each one feel welcome, cook a big meal,and seemingly do it without stressing herself out.  I don't know if hospitality just came naturally to her or if she learned it.  In this picture you can see Jean throwing a party for a class she taught in Nigeria.  

I believe that for me it has been a learned skill.  My parents were hospitable and it wasn't unusual for us to have guests over (though usually not as many at a time as my mother-in-law would do!).  But when I started living on my own, I had to learn hospitality.  The first time I invited somebody over for a meal, the lid got stuck on the pot of vegetables, I put too much salt or soda or something in the muffins, and I forgot to serve milk and sugar with the hot drinks.  I've gotten much bett…

Graduation Season

It's the season for graduations!  Yesterday I attended two graduations.  Thankfully one was in the morning and one was in the evening.  There were differences and similarities.  

The morning graduation was at the flight controller and meteorologist training school.  Six of the graduates attended our Bible study regularly and a seventh came occasionally.  We grew to dearly love this group.  

The evening ceremony was at our MK school and all of the graduates this year were missionary kids and one pastor's kids; the majority of the missionary kids were from our mission.  So I've known most of these kids since they were little. 

The similarities were:
1.  Both groups were fairly small (30 for the flight controller school and 13 for our mission school).  Both groups were very close to each other; at the flight controller school they have all classes together and live in dorms together for 14 months with only a few days off and no real vacations; at the mission school the kids have …

Beyond Our Ability to Endure

I've been working on our home assignment audio-visual presentation.  It's been a lot of work, especially since it requires sorting through hundreds of pictures to choose the ones we want to use.  I was hoping to put together something that would be really "Wow!"  Well, in the end it's just a power point with some music and a few slides coming in with a fancy spin.  But it's our story, and our story is nothing more than God's story when it comes right down to it.  In fact, I have used Big Daddy Weave's song, My Story in part of the presentation.  If you're not familiar with the song, you can listen to it here
As I looked over the past four years of this term there were days that we felt we had reached our ability to endure.  We started the term in July 2013 and we were still recovering from the flood of 2012.  We have all of our "normal" stresses such as living in an extremely hot climate, living in the poorest country of the world, livi…