Saturday, December 27, 2008
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Friday, December 19, 2008
Thursday, December 11, 2008
beep beep behind me
what can't open a house door?
Yes, this happened today. I stood at my front door, went to open it, and heard a beep beep beep beep behind me. Yes, you guessed it. My spirits are high enough though that I did let out a little giggle. Please pray for my sanity level. It's been neglected for insanity. I'm staying awake at night with thoughts like "How much contact solution do I need to take to last 3 years?!" This may be serious.
Tuesday, December 09, 2008
yet beloved child i am
A dear friend reminded me of this incredible truth. When I am tempted to put my trust in others' impressions of me, this will continue to be a reminder. Before God, I am both, and His love matters infinitely more than others' incomplete impressions.
These words are credited to my unnamed friend.
Friday, December 05, 2008
I received a letter yesterday with the above letterhead. It was an invitation from the President of the Lutheran Church of Nigeria to be a Language Development Adviser. The office, Nigeria LBT missionaries, and I have been working through the details of my assignment. It is definitely becoming more "real" as I prepare and begin communicating with the nationals in Nigeria.
I've been checking things off my "to do" list, but I end up putting a few more things to do on the list for each one I take off. Aargh.
This weekend I'll be sharing at a church in Fargo. I've been looking forward to this for quite a while. I pray that the awareness of the need for Bible translation would spread. Please pray that God will be honored at this and other upcoming meetings.
Within this next week I will be staying in 4 (possibly 5) different states!
I have gotten to know my car VERY well.
Monday, December 01, 2008
If you've been paying attention to the news, you've probably heard about the riots in Jos, Nigeria due to local election results.
"Soldiers recently wrested control of the streets from armed Christian and Muslim gangs that had roamed the city, in the worst religious violence Nigeria has seen in four years." -NY TIMES
I have co-workers living in this city, and it is a city I will be visiting often while in Nigeria. Please pray for peace there and for the entire country. The country is divided religiously between Muslims and Christians (and animists). Several hundred have been slaughtered by both Muslims and Christians. Homes, churches, and mosques have been burned. Thousands are seeking refuge.
Some have asked me how this affects my upcoming assignment.
I don't know yet.
Please pray that I will be able to leave in January for my first term. Please pray for the nationals and expats working to make the Scriptures available in the languages of the people. There are over 5-600 languages there. Also pray for the Nigerian people who have suffered greatly from these riots and from the unrest in the south due to oil.
Friday, November 28, 2008
I'm multitasking and going nuts. I have two months left before my world is drastically changed. My friend Rachel introduced me one of her stress-relieving tactics. These are my first attempts at writing haiku.
sitting with daddy
wondering what to do next
i am going nuts
I have to pack, get rid of most of my things, and think about what to do with clothes, papers, letters, pictures, and junk. Trash? Scrapbook? Good will? Who has time for that?
season changing so
please come with me, oh few things
coming my way ev'ry month
do i have enough?
call-ed? what am i
obedient and or insane?
oh father, help me
what am i thinking?
living a life worthy is
quite impossible (Ephesians 4:1)
grace, it is enough
for me to live always on
thank you, King, you know
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
I have been depending too much on myself. I'm trying to be as prepared as possible to live in a remote village and to work with the Yala people so they will have and internalize the WORD of GOD. Recently, I was struck. I've been preparing academically, physically, financially, medically, spiritually, mentally, emotionally, etc. This week I feel the Lord told me, "My turn." I don't quite know what this means, but I'm praying. Last night, as I was thinking about it, something bizarre popped into my head. Premarital counseling. No, I'm not anywhere close to getting such a thing.
Okay, so this is still pretty confusing in my mind, so I can't imagine what you readers are thinking. Think about what I'm saying, and feel free to respond. I feel like I am entering a season of refining. I pray that I will be like the clay in the Potter's hands as described in Jeremiah 18 and by my friend here. Is it a coincidence that the idea behind premarital counseling popped into my mind right after I felt like God was say that it was His turn to prepare me?
What is the purpose of the counseling?
It is to help insure that your love and the commitment you are making are protected in ways that help them flourish and grow. What is the purpose for the commitment? What are the good things, the bad things, the hopes, the dreams, the expectations, the potential disappointments, the personal goals? Counseling offers the opportunity to explore and evaluate prayerfully the commitment and situation in a relatively safe and constructive environment. It is primarily done to help prepare for a new season of life.
After analyzing this with my overly logical and practical mind, I have come to the conclusion that I need this. I don't admit to needing a lot, but why on earth would "premarital counseling" pop into my head after I sensed that Lord saying that it was His turn to train me?!?! I am going to a new season of my life by committing to the ministry of Bible translation in Africa, and I'm going to keep praying about the idea of getting counseling for many of the same reasons for premarital counseling. I need to remember my calling, and be intentional with striving to live a life worthy of this calling (Ephesians 4:1).
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Teach Me to Pray (Albert S. Reitz)
1. Teach me to pray, Lord, teach me to pray; This is my heart-cry, day unto day. I long to know Thy will and Thy way; Teach me to pray, Lord, teach me to pray.
Refrain--Living in Thee, Lord, and Thou in me, constant abiding, this is my plea; Grant me Thy power, boundless and free, Power with men and power with Thee.
2. Power in prayer, Lord, power in prayer! Here 'mid earth's sin and sorrow and care, Men lost and dying, souls in despair, O give me power, power in prayer!
3. My weakened will, Lord, thou canst renew; My sinful nature Thou canst subdue. Fill me just now with power anew, Power to pray and power to do!
4. Teach me to pray, Lord, teach me to pray; Thou art my pattern day unto day. Thou art my surety, now and for aye; Teach me to pray, Lord, teach me to pray.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
I don't understand.
Over a year ago my dear friend Everett was diagnosed with Ewing's Sarcoma--cancer in his left pelvic bone.
Last night I found out that he has mets to the spine, legs, arm, and skull. He's 23.
Some months ago I saw him in Houston. Click here.
He said, "Ruthie, this cancer has been a gift in a way."
May God be glorified.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Friday, November 07, 2008
With a population of about a million, it has a quarter of the population of the CITY of LA, where I spent a good chunk of my life.
I stayed in Kalispell (14,000). Ya, Kalispell is considered a big city by Montanans (?). It is beautiful, and I wouldn't mind spending some vacations there. Besides, it is the location of some very dear friends. I had a wonderful time!!!
Then I went to Big Sandy (700). Some of my cousins live here, and I've been having a blast in this tiny little town. I checked out their museum, crawled inside of a teepee, and gave thanks for all those who have walked before us.
Then I gave some candy to some kids with my cousins.
I visited the Big Sandy Jail and thought about my future latrine situation.
I saw the decision point for Lewis and Clark. Sometimes life is like that. You don't really know which way to go, but you make the most logical decision and pray for the best.
Then I checked out Fort Benton.
Then a horse came to visit the my cousins' house. So I rode him.
Man, I never know what kind of adventure I'm going to have next. I love life. Next stop... North Dakota!
Saturday, November 01, 2008
I'm often focused on the lessons to be learned that I overlook the lessons I am learning right now. Recently I have been fighting some very real doubts and fears. As I travel by myself around the country, Satan has loved to try to make me believe that I am alone. I have been learning to surrender these moments to the Lord and to focus on his love and faithfulness. I have quite an active imagination. When people ask me why I'm going alone and why I seem to be so brave, they have no idea of the challenge they are addressing. It's easy for me to say the Lord is with me, and I am doing my best to be obedient. Though this is true, I struggle. Many nights I ask the Lord to help me conquer this fear and to surround me with his angels. He does. I'm reminded of Paul who said,
"An now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warms me that prison and hardships are facing me. However I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me--the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace." Acts 20:22-24
Yes, hardships are facing me wherever I go--Oregon, Montana, or Nigeria. I know this. Remember, this is true for all who are battling for the Lord. We have an enemy who's actively searching for ways to destroy us. Don't forget that! He is constantly trying to deceive us, but we have a God who is infinitely more powerful and infinitely more loving. Good thing we (hopefully you) are on the right side, huh?
I'm still on the road. I left Kalispell, MT this week. I had a wonderful time there. It was hard to say goodbye to friends for 3 years! The top picture is of my friend Jen who lives there. She's quite a kindred spirit I'd say. The bottom pics are of me on the road and living out of my car. It's actually pretty fun most of the time.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
I spent a few days at my great aunt and uncle's farm in eastern Oregon. I had a great time watching a second cousin go fishing, riding a horse, talking about farm things, speaking at their church, making a visit to Washington, and visiting with an incredibly loving and encouraging family.