African outfits

African outfits
Our crazy family

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Unmet Expectations

Yesterday was a long day and I feel into bed exhausted. Today will be more of the same: there are more linens to wash and I need to find some order to my new home. I'm trying not to be discouraged but I'm not really succeeding. This is our 4th place to stay since leaving our house in MN 2 weeks ago - each place has gotten progressively worse.

I talked to Ancela this morning (she was one of our cooks last week), she told me that her truck was stolen. Her kids use this truck to get water and now they have to carry it on their heads. The pump that brings water to their home is turned on only once a week - at which time they fill every container they have to use throughout the week. It did put my problems in perspective though after talking with her. This home (and the teams home) has a couple of large barrels that fill up when the pump is one, so we have never had to go without water (yet). We have water whenever we turn on the sinks but we also have leaks whenever we turn on the sinks. Drew plans to look at the problem tonight but it is hard to find parts - you can't just run to Home Depot. The person who "fixed" the leaks before used a plastic bag and some scotch tape... now wonder it didn't work. There is a little Hardware shack that I have bought a number of items from, so we will try there first.

My friend Andrea (here with her family from Edmonton, Alberta in Canada for 1 month)and I were discussing this problem with our expectations this morning. It doesn't bother me much when the electricity goes off - we expect it to. At home, I would never put up with my electricity going off on a daily basis. Even here, I have an expectation (although unmet), that my sinks should drain without leaking and my toilet should flush, yet the people living right next to me do not have that same expectation. For me, I should lower those expectations if I am to find any joy in this journey.

Some things that I am struggling with in this new home are: the ants, cock roaches, lack of storage space, the leaky EVERYTHING, the showers and toilets... but I know that with a little (or a lot) of work we can make this place feel like home. We can get some shelves built and fix the leaks to bless whoever moves in after us. Ellie already has made an effort to make her room work for her - she is busy taping verses up all over her walls. My favorite one is Matthew 6:33
"...and He will give you ALL you need from day to day if you live for HIM and make the Kingdom of God your primary concern."

Sounds good - I just need to adjust my thinking on what a NEED is.

7 comments:

  1. Marie,
    You are ambassadors for Christ. Your home is not a reflection of what you can do or how you care for your family. Be safe. You (like me) are a do-er living in a culture that is about relationships. Am I right that time (by the clock) is not important there -- but is is to us. You're simply slipping out of the honeymoon phase of your journey ... this is where it gets good. I remember when I lamented about running out of twist-ties!
    We love reading your heart-journey. Thanks for being real.

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    1. Thanks for the encouragement. I think you're right and I know it is a process of surrendering. I appreciate everyone's prayers so much. I also love the comments from people - makes me feel somewhat connected :)

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  2. May God bring you some encouragement and extra blessings and hugs today!It is hard not to have expectations but you are right we all need to so the joy can be there!

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  3. Marie, I am so proud of you! I know that these next 8 weeks will probably be very difficult at times, but knowing you (the one who always finds something positive in everything)you will find your joy in the smallest of things. God is right there with you, right beside you, watching over you as you sleep, counting the hairs on your head (he can see the grey ones the best!). The next 8 weeks will be over before you know it and lives will be changed - cherish every trial and every joy! I love you! :-)

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  4. Even though it leaks, what a blessing you have running water and a flush toilet! The roaches, not so much. (Even though they're an incredible bug, can't find much to like about them. And they probably don't taste like chicken.) I will continue to pray! That pic of the little ones in their uniforms is SO precious!

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  5. Brenda SchlickberndJanuary 20, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    Love the pics and the blog Marie! We are praying for you and miss you all. Jenna keeps asking "When can Ellie come and babysit again?" We've been learning about maps and countries and have followed where your family is in Africa. May you have the peace and wisdom of God today. -Brenda
    P.S. It is -5 today in MN.

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    1. Thank you for your prayers. Tell Jenna that Ellie says HI and she misses her too (Owen and Leah too). BRRR! I thought it was chilly here at night - of course there is no heater so 40 - 50 feels cool.

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