We did attempt some bush-trimming on Saturday but no sooner had Jeff fired up the electric trimmer and began shearing the monstrous azaleas, than an angry swarm of bees living in our shrubs descended on my poor husband. And me. Visons of killer bee attacks we'd seen on the news in S. California danced in my head. I'm sure we looked like idiots, flailing our arms and jumping around frantically. When we finally got in the house - thinking the worst was over - we realized there were bees in our clothes!!! Jeff got about 7 stings and I got several repeat stings by one very vengeful bee in my shirt sleeve. Even today, my arm is swollen and itches like crazy. Needless to say, the azaleas are still huge and may stay that way.
I heard from Lisa in Ethiopia today - a quick email to say she is loving it so far. She especially enjoyed the time they spent with the teenaged girls in Addis Ababa. They took them on a special retreat at a hotel, where they shared, ate, laughed, prayed and cried together. Her next big adventure is a 12 hour car ride to a little village near the Sudan border where Adoption Ministry is starting an orphanage. The team may get to bring back 4 babies to one of our orphanages in Adama. Imagine that ride back to the city with 4 little infants (I think they're all boys)!
I also talked to Lindsey yesterday, who is working at a camp in Alberta, Canada. She spent last week as a counselor in Teepee Village. This week she told us she is THE cook for Teepee Village, which means cooking for ~22 people over an open campfire. I've seen her make Top Ramen and even a great Mexican meal, but I sure would love to see what she's going to do at camp! I love that she's up for the challenge. If it were me, I'd see how many different things the kids could roast over the fire on a stick and put between graham crackers.
Amy is looking for a design job in Seattle, preferrably with a large firm and having to do with motion graphics. She's working at a restaurant and doing some design work at Seattle Pacific in the athletic department - designing athletic/event calendars. She is managing to support herself but would sure love to find something with a salary and job security!
I'm so thankful for this current season I'm in. We are here because we know God told us to move. And we've never doubted that decision. We don't know what the future holds - but really, we never do! Even when I've thought I had things all planned out, God had something else in mind. If you had told me two years ago that I'd be working with adoptions in Ethiopia, that we'd be living in Portland without a job, that three out of five of us would travel to Africa... I wouldn't have believed it.
I'm very glad that I can trust God's wisdom, His timing and His sovereignty. I'm learning not to look at my circumstances and then come to some conclusions about God based on what I see or feel. Don't we all tend to do that?
- My prayer hasn't been answered so God must not care.
- My circumstances are difficult so God must not be good.
- My loved one died so there must not be a loving God.
Instead, I look at my God and make a judgment about my circumstances based on who He is and what He's said.
- God is faithful so there is a reason He hasn't answered my prayer yet
- God is all-knowing so He's going to use this tough thing to draw me closer to Him
- God's love never fails so I can trust Him in my pain
That is life-changing to me!O great and powerful God, whose name is the LORD Almighty, great are Your purposes and mighty are Your deeds! Jeremiah 32:18-19