Friday, May 30, 2014

South Africa Reflections Week 1

So, I’ve been in South Africa approximately 2 days now… I’m not sure I have the composure to tell you all how I feel yet. It’s been tough, interesting and amazing, but I’m not sure I can write paragraphs yet haha I need more reflection time. So, for now you get just a few reflections.

            ~This is hard. Like harder than I ever could have imagined. I refuse to sugarcoat and have committed to be honest about my experience. It’s hard emotionally, it’s been hard and draining physically as well. It’s hard to balance loving this place and being thousands of miles away from so many other things I love. It’s hard not knowing anyone. It’s hard work, 11 hours a day, 4 days in a row, on my feet constantly. I knew it would be hard, but I’m not sure I could have prepared for this. I assure you though, it’s worth it.

          ~  It’s everything I imagined and more. The babies are incredible, such precious, loving children. Every single one of them is just beautiful. I sat and cried today while feeding them, because I just know God has this amazing plan for every single one of them. He’s redeeming their stories already, right here in this place, and I am so incredibly humbled to be a part of it.

           ~God is so present in this place. It might be one of the few things we all have in common actually. Though we don’t share much else in common, we share our faith and we do so graciously and openly. We pray together (in different languages often) and every single precious child in our home has a life verse above their bed because we just know that God promises to do great things in their lives.

          ~  I make life so much more difficult than it really is. In the past 4 days, I have gone without so, so many things I find to be vital at home (a straightener, blow dryer, cell phone, regular internet access, a car, access to “American foods” and so much more) and you know what, I’m okay. Life is simple here. We do our work, make our food, eat and enjoy the outdoors, reading and studying God’s Word. I’ve been able to make time for things I don’t do nearly as much as I should at home. I’ve had a great time with The Lord every day and I’ve been journaling and reading.

           ~A few random things- we leave doors open, like everywhere all the time. Even though we live in a dangerous area and the crime is real, the doors are always open. Weird, I know. The ants are awful… I noticed the first night that we have tons of bug spray under the sink, now I know why. Leave one crumb and they’re everywhere. They have a mall, like yes a real mall, just like in America. Honestly, it’s a whole lot nicer than the Lynchburg mall haha. Lastly, South African winters are not winter hahah. I knew it wouldn’t be cold per say, but it’s hot. Like, in America I’d go to the beach, hot ;)

That’s all for now guys. I promise better, more thorough updates will come, but for now this is a quick summary of my first couple days. Thank you so much for all of your prayers, they’re getting me through and I am loving the cards some of you sent! Keep the prayers coming :)

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