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Sunday, May 4, 2014

Name them one by one

We are THANKFUL for the SMALL BLESSINGS …

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Thankful:  At five and six years old respectively, Nate and Ethan strap on helmets, climb up on their bikes and ride the roads of RVA.  Fortunately for them, only one or two cars pass by each day - our roads are mostly traversed on foot. 

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Thankful:  Nate’s favorite pass-time right now is catching frogs and chameleons.  Hands and knees covered in dirt, he brags of his find to everyone he sees.  And when he’s not on the ground searching for those, he’s up off the ground picking passion fruit, loquats, mulberries, or gooseberries.  The Kijabe soil is rich and the fruit trees are full of their plenty. 

We are THANKFUL for BIGGER BLESSINGS as well …

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Thankful:  Ethan walks himself to school each morning and home for lunch when the bell rings at noon.  And though we keep a full calendar during the term, Dan is able to walk home for lunch everyday as well. 

Come to think of it, we eat all our meals together as a family (and sometimes we gain a few members)! 

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Thankful:  Sometimes ten pairs of teenage-sized shoes sit outside our doorstep when we invite the crazies into our home for dinner or for dessert. We are thankful that our three are involved in our ministry as they welcome the big kids with open arms. 

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Thankful:  We live just up the hill from Kijabe Hospital and the excellent doctors who serve there.  I can’t begin to describe the tremendous blessing that it was for us to be so close and so cared for by the staff there when Ethan broke his arm in December.  They prayed with us prior to surgery and checked in on us often afterwards.  In fact, its been a huge comfort to us as parents to have quality healthcare so close. 

We are THANKFUL for the CHALLENGES …

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Thankful:   We live in a community that is largely Western, (and purposefully so, to serve as a respite and a support to bush missionaries) but parenting children with purpose means exposing them to the reality that most of the world doesn’t live as comfortably as we do.  And it’s one reason we want to be out in our larger Kenyan community, visiting our Kenyan neighbors and building relationships.   

Thankful:  Our kids know about the unreached.   They know that there are people in the world who have never heard about Jesus, and they know some of these people groups by name.  They’ve seen their faces and heard their stories as we emphasize and pray for tribes and (sometimes) individuals by name during Worship each Sunday. We are thankful for the conversations that follow about missionaries and hard places and knowing Jesus. 

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Thankful:  Our family has seen financial poverty unlike we’ve ever seen in America.  It’s literally right down the road.  It’s a challenge to wrestle through what we could or even should do about it, but it’s a challenge we’re thankful for – lifting the needs of many before the One who meets needs.  Together.  As a family.  Intentionally.  For His glory. 

On this Sabbath day, I count myself thankful – for the little blessings, the bigger blessings, AND the challenges that come along with life here in Kenya. 

**Dan visited the IDP camp church again today and this time he took Ethan along.  This group of Kenyan kiddos took their very first ride in a car today – our car – they all squeezed in the back with Ethan.  (hopefully more on their visit later this week)

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