After much thought, David and I have agreed that the only title for this blog is the above. It is so totally different here in Timor Leste, we can hardly begin to describe it all and regarding the difficulties, we will not even go there, hoping we will have something better to say in a few weeks. What does need to be said, from my perspective, is that I am being profoundly humbled regarding my spiritual and physical ability to adapt to our present home. I am not doing all that well, and in fact, at times, doing quite badly. Badly means I want to run away on the next flight out of Dili International (really?) Airport. Badly means I sink into an afternoon sleep with the hope that I will wake up back in the beautiful, clean and cold state of Michigan or any state within the borders of the USA, where all things are efficient, clean, and organized. Badly means my spiritual temperature seems to rise and fall with the height of the sun, which is usually very high and very hot. Not a pretty picture.
On the other hand, and you were expecting that too, I suppose, this growth in humility or self-awareness or recognition of my sins is really from God, I think, and all to my benefit (albeit hard on David!) Actually, our marriage has undergone some surprisingly good changes in a surprisingly fast time considering how long it usually takes me to “get it” and that is truly a very good thing. In fact, I think it possible that the main reason I am here is to understand who I really am in the sight of God and who I am supposed to be in my marriage to this very good man who is with me in this very demanding country.
We truly need your prayers at this time as we find ourselves deeply questioning whether we can make it. The misery index is so high and the goals seem so illusory right now we don’t know if we can hold on until teaching proves itself to be ok.
Then again, we have been able to work out places to buy food and water and I have even managed to get up at 5:15 am and run before the sun comes up. The neighborhoods don’t look so bad in the semi-dark and the young dudes cruising on their motorcycles are still asleep. And, just when I thought I could not bear it another day, I attended my first English language Bible study at the nearby Catholic parish. The college-aged attendees and their Philippino leader were delighted to have an American senyora join their group, the only one among them whose first language is English. I told them my husband was a great Bible teacher and he would be coming next week and that he could read music to help in their more than humble attempts to sing in English (we heard them last Sunday and they really need help). This group was balm to my weary soul, just when I needed it. The Lord seems to be doing that a lot these days, letting me sink into self-pity and then lifting me out of my pit. There must be a lesson here somewhere, if only I can learn it FAST!
[posted by Rory]