Friday, March 25, 2011

End of Senegal

It is not my intention to make this post long, but if it happens im sorry. I have two big spiritual toad stools to sit on and mull over for a while so we'll see.

The end of the trip ended very well. Our second OCC distribution was at the secondary school of about 130 kids, Mr. Lo's part of the school. To start, the english classes had an english trivia contest, then they wrestled, and then they danced. It was funny to see the faces of Ash and Nathan, and Josh. Ashley was get flustered that they were only in what looked like diapers. That made me laugh b/c I know the men she lives/used to live with and they wear much less.

The distribution was a little harder than others, b/c about 400 people came to watch the wrestling match so when there was word of us giving away something, they all crowded around asking if they could have one too. But the high schoolers that did receive one were very happy and we just kept smiling and saying, sorry I don't understand...even though....well yeah...

The last couple days at the house were really fun for me. During the day it really wasn't anything special except for helping Kim and Mary Nowell (sp) do house stuff. All of us were snacking on fruit the whole time, and the last couple of days we went into town and bought no less then 10 lb of fruit (apples, bananas, clementines, and oranges)

As we prayed and headed into Dakar, the truck squeeked alittle more than usual but we smiled, b.c as soon as we were to get there, Kim was getting a new one. When we got there, we headed down the the statue that is kind of like their Statue of Liberty that was just finished about a year ago and took some pictures. There we found out that the demonstrations had already started and so we laid low for the evening. We headed to a great restaurant on the Atlantic ocean (THAT WAS REALLY COLD!) and went back and played cards.

Saturday was really just a calm day at the market, cards, and dinner out again. A good relaxing end to the trip. Kim had a really good conversation with us right before we headed to the airport that's kept me thinking still about different things. Home felt good, but now that im here i feel pretty worthless. Back to the routine and to being too busy for what im supposed to be doing. There's a pull that I keep facing... I could be doing so much more for God if i were to change directions in life from what im doing right now, vs. God has put me in this place right now to use me. But i have been praying and trying to figure out which it is or if it both. Feelings: Right now I feel like I'm sacrificing happiness for life and trying to maintain a joy for God when what I really want is for my happiness in life to fuel the joy that i have for God.

I'll talk about my other toad stool later... have you ever written/typed something out and then thought, "OMG! That's what im feeling!" That's kind of happening right now.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A Night in the Village

Sorry for the lack of updates. I know that Ashley has written a few, but still no excuse.

On Sunday we had a meeting in the evening with a group of believers. They were planning our mini revival out in the village of Sange. There was a media group, a group that coordinated where people would walk and talk to the people, security for the evening sessions and our group, the toubabs, were the intersesary team. We were to continuously pray for everyone. Our plan was to show the Jesus video Monday night when we got there, and then the next day, walk around hut to hut and talk to the people about Jesus and then invite them to the program we were having that night. So the party begins....

Monday afternoon we started loading everything up. We packed sandwiches, chips, and granola bars for breakfast that Margaret and I made, grabbed some Tampicos (basically Tang in a Capri Sun bag), and drove out to the village. Nathan, Josh, and Travis stayed to finish the cart and wait for the horse to come. As soon as we arrived, we went to the house of a catholic family with lots of space and rooms. They cleaned out a spare room for us six toubab girls (including Pastor Cole and Paul killing a geko and us killing about 12 spiders the size of 1/2 dollars) and laid out our mats.

We headed up to the center of town, (HUGE baybob tree where many gathered tor shade) and listened to people singing and speaking asking all the people of the village to come and see what all this comossion was around. We started around 5:00.. about 8:30 we started the Jesus film and around 10pm we had to stop b/c the kids that were watching needed to make to school on time. It was a big night of worshipping, speaking, and children singing.

We then ate dinner and headed to bed. Now, when i say bed, i already was preparing myself for not sleeping more than usual. I was in for an adveture and please understand that i didnt mind not getting too much sleep but i was more looking forward to the experience... and MAN did I get one. As soon as I got used to the loud goat outside the window, Margaret popped up and said, "O snap, a mouse just ran over my feet." From then on, there were squeeks eatting left over rice the men ate for dinner. Then once i verified in my mind, "They wont come to my side b/c there's no food..." a baby goat got lost and proceeded to bleet for his mother who responded for about 30 min. As I cacoons into my sheets, i smiled and said, ok God, experience had!

We woke up the next morning, and after a great granola bar, and a wonderful prayer meeting with pastor Cole and the others, we split into groups. about 4 of us began to prayer walk around the village and we soon realized that the man of the house send his son, Marcel, to guide us. As we headed towards the school to pray over the students, Marcel asked if we would like to go inside. Through a process of God moments, Marcel led us to meet the head master of the secondary school (high school) who knew english, pray with them and with their emom (sp...their muslim intercesor), the head master of the primary school, then head to the hospital and prayer for the patients. (side story: The head master of the secondary school who spoke english stopped by the hospital to check on a student and helped us b/c the doctor and nurse spoke no french or english. He helped us interperate our prayers. Total God thing.)

It was awesome! We then ate lunch, took afternoon naps, and then headed back to the center of town for the evenings presentation. It started about 4:30pm and we decided to leave around 8:30pm b/c we were all whooped and we still had to get ready for the OCC distribution today.
We had the best time in Sange. It was really evident that God had big plans for this visit. Even Mary and Maragret got a new contact at the school and will be heading there soon to help teach with the english teachers.

Today was the OCC distribution at the primary school of about 500 students in Poultock where Mr Lo is the principal at the secondary school. The children were soooo happy to see us and i know that many awesome pictures were taken. Tomorrow is the secondary school which is three class... around 130 students. It will be sure and i always feel i connect a little better with the older kids.

A few prayer reqests:
- There is some civil unrest and there are plans of a bg riot in Dakar on Saturday. We were planning to go to Goree island saturday, but we have to rearrange so that we're safe. Pray that it doesnt get big enough to close the airport and generally pray for our safety.
- Pray for Sange, the city where we witnessed. I can safely say that 100s of people heard about Jesus and were willing to listen to what we had to say.
- Pray for our distribution again tomorrow as we go back to Poultock.
- Pray for Mr. Lo who continually interpets for us and has shared the gospel through his interpetation but is a Muslium. Also, he is building a house in Dakar with his son Jr. who is about 7. Pray for money so he can keep building and for his relationship with the forsyths and the teams.

Ok love you all. Off I go to bed. It's about 9:30pm and we have had a long day in the sun with another one yet to come.

Friday, March 11, 2011

My Lovely Dirty Toes

I was cleaning my feet yesterday with a smile on my face b/c i was just sooo excited they were covered in the African dirt... *sigh*

Our flights were awesome... There was really nothing to complain about beside the ususal.. small seats and sketch food. Kimberly and Mallory met us at about 7ish and picked us up. We went to the guest house where we ate breakfast, met the rest of the team, packed up the groceries that they purchased the day before.

We started driving home and stopped at Dakar Academy to drop off some clothes for gloria. Then we headed to Mbor for fruit, and Mallory got a new facet. It was so awesome to see nathan and ashley and josh's face as they were experncing things for the first time. It's like things that have been in my heart that ive just been waiting to see.

We got home, ate thiebougen, and did everything possible to stay awake. We planned the schedule (tentively,of course) and then assesed the bench making process. Finally, travis got the local pharmacist to come and sort out medical supplies and what would be beneficial in certain places.

Today was AWESOME!!! We got up (learned of the earthquake, and got really sad) ate breakfast, and then got ready for a great day! Margaret and Mary came over to plan english club for tomorrow which is understanding everyone needs to be rescued. Then after we were done, we headed out to help the boys work on benches. They are going to be building a stage and benches.

We ate lunch, worked a little more and then headed over to the hospital. We got a mini tour of the facilities and then we went to meet the leaders and hand out the mattresses and medical supplies. It was really awesome. They were so appreciative and met many different people from many departments. Pastor Cole then took us to meet with a man that was recording parts for the radio station. We took the lady in charge of maternity and the administrative assistant and they talked about what had happened. Then I chatted for a sec about what we brought and why we were here. It was pretty awesome.

Then we came home and starting making the Friday nite pizzas Nathan and Josh headed off to play soccer with Nathaniel and the other boys out in a field behind the house and we all cooked to get ready for movie night. We ate pizza chatted for a long time, the boys came home and ate, and then we watched the Kings Speech. I then fell asleep and became a party pooper and headed to bed early.

Here is what our schedule looks like for the rest of the week:
Saturday: English Club this afternoon
We start fasting at 7pm for the work the team is doing

Sunday: Church in the Morning
Meeting with Victor and Pastor Cole about plans for Monday and Tuesday in the villiages

Monday: In the PM head to the village to set up and watch Jesus film and Chat with the people. This is the night that we are staying the night

Tuesday: Go hut 2 hut talking to people about why we are there.

Wednesday: Our first distribution of OCC boxes to Mr Lo's school

Thursday: Second OCC box distribution

Friday: Heading to Dakar

Saturday: Goree Island

Sunday: Flying home.

Bill, we talked to Halifa (sp is way off) and he was happy to hear of your greeting. They kids really miss everyone. Ethan loved the picture he got of him and tricia. They miss Liz and everytime they see a picture they say, Oh, I miss Miss Liz."

It feels crazy wonderful to be here! I'll write more from the heart later i just wanted to get out there what we are doing every day.

Love you mom. Love you Dad. Love you Brittany.