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Showing posts from September, 2017

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…

Cooking Ex-Nihilo: Bierrocks

When we lived in the village, every now and then we'd escape the craziness of the Grand-Central-Station-that-was-our-yard life and take a picnic out into the bush.  I am sure everybody thought these anasaras (white people) who had a perfectly good kitchen and table from which to eat were crazy to take their food into the middle of nowhere and eat outside.  

Well, the idea of getting away from it all by going on a picnic sounds like a good idea until you try to figure out what to take.  Sandwiches are ok, but home-made bread tends to crumble when made into sandwiches.  And the bigger question is what to put in sandwiches in a place where you can't buy lunch meat or sliced cheese!  Well, we discovered a great hot sandwich to make that totally eliminates the need for cutting bread or figuring out what to do with the bread.  I'm not saying these are less work ... in fact, they are probably far more work than just making a sandwich, but the deliciousness of them is worth it.

I am…

Comforting Each Other -- II Corinthians 1:1-7

I have always thought of the Apostle Paul as a stern, hard person who laid out a lot of rules and didn't experience a lot of emotions.  Of course, he explained a lot of doctrine to us, but that just confirmed in my mind that he was somehow above and beyond the messiness of life that most of us experience.  He was somehow able to cope with all the hardships he faced in victorious ways that the rest of us can never hope to achieve.  

But I've been spending a lot of time in II Corinthians and am learning to see Paul in a new way.  He very much struggled with his emotions.  He actually wanted to be liked and respected.  He despaired of life and was very discouraged and depressed at times.  This letter is very personal and helps us see Paul as just an ordinary man fully devoted to the gospel rather than some sort of super saint who found it easy to face hardship and to be a good Christian and who expected the same of others.  No, Paul knows first hand what it is like to struggle in …

August Reading List

One of the nice things about so much time on the road is lots of time to read!  One of the big things I read this month was John's dissertation (thesis if you follow the UK system).  I was one of his proofreaders, so I spent a lot of road time on that.  It's really very good and I can even understand most of it!

Without further ado, here are my other books, in the order read:

Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome.  Three men take a trip on a boat from London to Oxford, with many an adventure along the way. Truth be told, though, a lot of the adventures are reminiscing about adventures. I love the dry British humor in this book and even though it was written in 1889 it is still humorous today. One of my favorite sections was the description of being a hypochondriac.

Rab and His Friends by John Brown.  This is a short story rather than a book, though it was published in book form. I got the free Kindle version after seeing it in a list of required reading for high school back in …

An Apple a Day ... for Days and Days

We have just returned from a six-week road trip.  I didn't blog much during that time for several reasons.  First, one thing after another was going wrong with my computer by the time we left Niger, so I decided to not replace it until September.  That would give me time to just unwind and time to spend with family without the distraction of the computer.  I think I did that fairly successfully, though one ends up substituting their phone for a computer.....  So, blogging required borrowing somebody else's computer, which is inconvenient for everybody.  And we were really busy with family, so I honestly had little time.  And then the internet was pretty slow at places, so that was a hindrance as well.

Now we are in one place for awhile, I have a new computer (yeah! ....though I am a little sad to say goodbye to my old one that I had for seven years), I have some time to work on my blog, and the internet is fairly good.  So, I'm back in the land of blogging.

This blog actuall…