Friday, March 25, 2011

My Permanent Souvenir from Cote d’Ivoire

The rumors are true….I had an appendectomy! For those of you who didn’t know, having a problem with my appendix was number one on my "biggest fears" list! So praise God for taking away my biggest fear! God has a great sense of humor for a couple of reasons.
#1 The last email I sent the day before my surgery said and I quote “just for your information I would give anything to be cold.” I got my wish, I spent three days after my surgery in an air conditioned room. And I gave my appendix.
#2 The morning of my surgery, we had a Journey Corps Korhogo team meeting and I wanted to present some ideas about how we can be more intentional and purposeful here in Korhogo. That afternoon I had my appendix removed. God clearly wants me to wait on Him.
#3 While I am laying on the operating table about to be put under, my amazing American Doctor explains that there will just be a little scar on my right side and says I’m guessing you don’t wear bikinis too often. I reply, um I’m from Southern California. That is all I own.

All that to say I am out of the Hospital and doing great! I'm healing quickly and was even able to eat normal food last night. My stomach revolted a bit but today I am feeling great. I am able to walk a little and am blessed to have an amazing missionary woman taking care of me at her house. Which means I get a hot shower, a toilet and a fan. So I am living the life of luxury!

Thank you so much for your prayers. I know that God has heard them. He is really molding me right now, but blessing me tremendously with a good attitude. A verse that has been ministering to me is Joshua 21:45 “Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to the house of Israel failed, every one was fulfilled.” That is our God! He is so faithful and steadfast. That one verse speaks volumes about our God. Find hope and reassurance in that today. I know I have.

~Please pray for Cote d’Ivoire. Horrible things are happening in the South, people are dying, and being tortured and many are fleeing to the North. Currently Gbagbo has cut all electricity in the North and West. Who knows when it will come back on.
~Pray also for the Journey Corps team. We were all so sure that God has a reason for us to be here and still are. But it is stressful and difficult to be this close to suffering. Pray for us to stand firm, knowing God is still in control. Pray for us to know how to respond to people around us and to the situation itself. I know that Satan is working, and we are battling against the evil powers at work in our world. Pray for strength and faith in the battle.

God is stronger than Gbagbo or any other man. He has a plan. It is unclear to me what this plan is but I want to be faithful in obeying Him. I pray this also for you today. Once again updates from your side of the world are welcome and appreciated!
Our God is greater, our God is stronger. Amen.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Situation

So I don't know how much you have been following the news about Cote d'Ivoire or what the news is even saying, but things are heating up the South. I want to preface this by saying that I live in the North and there is no fighting where I live. With that said there is some fighting in the South West and there have been deaths. This saddens me as the country was so hopeful for peace and a new start with the elections last October. Here in the North not too much has changed but my heart aches for those living in Abidjan. Last week (Monday the 28th of Feb. until Sat. the 5th of May) there was no power in the Northern and central part of Cote d'Ivoire.

I didn't really realize at first all the implications for this fact, since we don't ever have electricity at my house. But without electricity those living in town had no water. They would take their motos and drive around looking for water to fill their containers. We had some people come to our house to get water from our well each day. Also there was no refrigeration so all the vaccines in the hospitals went bad. Babies and others who were on life support or oxygen died. No surgeries were performed in the hospitals. I am sure there are things that I missed but the point is without electricity many of the necessary activities are put to a halt. The crazy thing is that there was no technical reason for the power to be out. The news states that it was Gbagbo who cut the electricity and one realizes how much this power struggle is affecting the civilians here. In my opinion that itself shows that Gbagbo is undeserving of presidency but no one knows what to do about it. The committee of four presidents from other African countries have been given another month to decide on a solution. So we are just waiting, continuing on with life.

So I have been living with my family for a month now. I get bossed around almost as much as my little sisters. It is great. I hated feeling like a guest and I wanted to be able to help out more! Wednesday through Saturday of last week I spent with the other journyers in Bouake resting and debriefing. It was like three days in the US. I wore shorts, went running, played soccer, went swimming, ate ice cream, cake and hamburgers!!! It was a great time of prayer and encouragement as well and in ENGLISH! Don't take for granted being able to communicate your thoughts easily, it is a blessing. On the other hand, French has changed the way I way pray (When I pray out loud it is 90% of the time in French now). It has been a cool renewing of my prayer life and has simplified my prayers in a beautiful way.
Still trying to figure out day to day life but for the most part just living as fluidly as possible with the Ivoirians. Be praying for this country. There isn't work or school right now so life is a little less purposeful for many. My ten year old sister struggles to read even simple French words. I am working with her on that but who am I to teach French, I have studied it for all of four months! I guess if she learns to read it will be clearly God! Ok love you, think of you often and send up prayers to our Father on your behalf. <3