In the weather report of my heart, yesterday was dark and stormy with a high tornado warning and unstable shelter. Today, on the other hand, was sunny and warm with cotton candy clouds and a light breeze. Yesterday I went into the camps anticipating great conversations and gospel presentations. I was disappointed and discouraged when Ruhia couldn’t remember anything after the letter D.
As I was talking to Jesus last night He sweetly reminded me that this journey of faith is not short for a reason. I’m learning to be still and to be patient because He is preparing me for a future that only He knows. These lessons are precious and valuable and I don’t want to wish them away. I was refreshed and restored by my time with Him.
This morning, right before the students arrived for English lessons in the first camp, I read two emails (one from Mom and one from Dad) that were such a gift. Here’s a piece of what Daddy said:
“Jenn, I would give anything to go with you today and share the good news of our Redeemer to those in the camp. However I am once again finding that my position as a ransomed member of the house of God is to cheer you on. So sweet lady, today go strong, go bold, go totally abandoned to our Jesus. He alone will fill you with his PEACE and me with the JOY of knowing you serve our King with all your might.”
Saying I have the best parents on the planet is a gross understatement. For me to read this right before I entered a battle in which my adversary is seeking to steal, kill, and destroy every ounce of my joy and peace was a profound blessing.
I went into my work today ready to conquer the enemy and stand tall with hope. Wanting not to teach Ruhia the entire English language, but seeking only for progress. If I left today and she knew the letter E, I would be so satisfied. She arrived right on time and we began again with the alphabet. We learned all the way to J!!! Praise God!
Actually. That’s kind of a lie. We learned to J, not counting H. For a reason I simply cannot understand, this sweet Somalian woman can’t remember H to save her life. Having just gone through the process of learning Greek, I felt like I could understand the process of learning a little bit better (how neat for God to orchestrate that!). I was focusing on repetition, so I would write a letter on the little white board and have her say it. I started to do H every other letter because she knew the others so well. Y’all, H might as well have been Hebrew. She would look at it, (mind you: just moments after correctly identifying it) and with a blank stare say, “Um, X? No, M. No, S?” I almost giggled every time because it was so random! But rather than being frustrated (like yesterday…), I was hopeful and anxious for her to understand. Every time she correctly said “H” I would do cartwheels in my mind. I’m so proud of her progress and confident that she will know the alphabet before I return home!
Before I get hasty, tonight I am simply praying for the letter H. I might cry from excitement if I arrive tomorrow and she knows it. But even if she does not, I am thrilled for the opportunity to teach her the other letters.
That is just a snippet of what we experienced today. The stories we hear of their travel to Malta are mostly heartbreaking. So much turmoil and so much pain. Be in prayer for healing and restoration as they share these things with us.
So, dear friends, this is my mantra: I will go strong. I will go bold. And I will go totally abandoned to my sweet Jesus.
Thank you for committing to bring us before the throne. We truly need your prayers to carry us. I love y’all something fierce, and I’m so glad to be your sister and co-laborer!
Much, much love,
in Christ alone,
p.s. here’s a picture of me and Ruhia learning our ABC’s! :) She’s lovely. There are more photos where you can see her sweet face, but right now I do not have access to them. They will come soon :)