Lessons Learned

I’d been eight months in the country. It was my first of many experiences: First time living away from family. First time overseas. First time living on my own. First time in a job where I was responsible for the work being done. First time living with the consequences of my actions when no one … More Lessons Learned

The Outsider

The year I graduated from college, I left home to spend two years in the Ivory Coast. Being a French major, I worked in a publication house for French-speaking West Africa. Now, thirty-some years later, I look back at my journals and see how I’ve changed or haven’t changed. I wrote about thinking how hard … More The Outsider

Volunteer

I had a memory pop up on Facebook this week, reminding me that it was nine years ago that I headed to the library to volunteer. A short four months later, I was running the joint! I wasn’t really going for that purpose. We had just returned a year earlier from the mission field. Twenty … More Volunteer

First Impressions

There are some moments in life you never forget. They become embedded pictures in your mind, even when the details grow fuzzy. My first visit to an African marketplace did it for me. The year was 1986. Only a few months in the capital city of Abidjan, Ivory Coast, a friend took me to the … More First Impressions

The Best Gift

Today would have been his 73rd birthday. This day comes now with a bitter-sweetness that is hard to shake, but the Lord has made this one especially sweet, so I want to tell you about it. As pilgrims on this journey, we do not always have the joy of seeing the results of the seed-sowing … More The Best Gift

The Maiden Voyage

I can’t decide if I should call this post, “The Maiden Voyage,” or “The Voyage of the Maiden.” Either one works, as I recall my first overseas flight. I was a mere 22-year-old maiden. The year was 1986, long before cell-phones or the internet or even fax machines. The Dark Ages, for most of you … More The Maiden Voyage

Singing in Tongues

I was going through some old journals a while back and came across a little green notebook that made me smile. It was full of French choruses I’d learned during my years in Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), West Africa. I began flipping through the pages, trying to remember the tunes that went with the words. … More Singing in Tongues

Two Faces

Strange thoughts come to us in life, and I had one of those moments this last week. I was standing in my bedroom, looking at a picture of my late husband that hangs on the wall. It’s a picture our oldest son took of him, and it’s very good. It represents him as the pastor … More Two Faces