"There are two great moments in a persons life: the moment you were born and the moment you realize why you were born."

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Joyeux Noel :) [Merry Christmas]

Joyeux Noël 
[Merry Christmas]

Joyeux Noël everybody!! I hope it was amazing for you and your family. I had the privilege of being passed around on the phone with some family back in California and one of my aunts (love you Aunt Leanna) asked me if we celebrate Christmas here in Cote d’Ivoire…the answer to that question is yes we do  haha

Christmas Eve and Day was packed like no other!! I don’t remember a busier Christmas. On Christmas Eve our church had an all night church service where Rod spoke. It started around 9, but in African time that means it didn’t really start until 9:30 or later. My Sunday school class preformed their play and it was HILARIOUS!! Especially since only a third of the kids showed up, but I think they did an amazing job. (I could be biased, but that’s ok). It was the coolest experience being with people whose only focus is on worshipping the Lord! Since Christianity is a minority here, only Christians celebrate Christmas, unlike the states where it can sometimes turn into a secular holiday. The Ivorians danced and sang like nobody’s business. They even taught us how to dance, although we can’t do it very well, we all still tried. I pray that I can learn how to worship like they do, with absolutely everything I have! It was the best way to celebrate that our Savior was born.

Christmas Day, we started late…which was so very much needed, in order to rest and catch up on sleep from the night before. Then all of the families living here on campus came over to our dorm for a late pot-luck lunch. I can’t believe we had that much food! We ran out of counter space, which hasn’t happened yet, haha and we had SO many left overs! (that’s what we are eating for lunch and dinner today). It was great fun! Later that night we exchanged our Secret Santa gifts. I had my friend Devin. I really did want to make something special for him, but I just didn’t know what to do. Haha However, I knew he really missed pies, so my friend Steph got her grandma’s apple pie recipe from her mom and we baked all morning long. (of course Devin, having the servant’s heart he does, asks to help…and my heart almost stopped haha). The great thing was that he had me for his Secret Santa. His gift was the perfect gift for me!! A certificate for unlimited hugs (he knows me so well: first of many in photo) and soon a video from my family, because I miss them lots. I love it! Haha he even cut up paper snowflakes, because we both miss snowboarding.

Although I miss my family and my friends at home, and this is my first Christmas away from home, I am so thankful to be here. It was an amazing opportunity and experience. It’s really cool to miss people you love, and wish that you were with them, but yet still be so content where you are. God had his loving, comforting arms around us. It was the picture perfect African Christmas 

Scripture of the Week:
“Praise the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has visited and redeemed his people. He has sent us a mighty Savior from the royal line of his servant David, just as he promised through his holy prophets long ago. Now we will be saved from our enemies and from all who hate us. He has been merciful to our ancestors by remembering his sacred covenant-the covenant he swore with an oath to our ancestor Abraham. We have been rescued from our enemies so we can serve God without fear, in holiness and righteousness for as long as we live.” ~ Luke 1:68-75

And my favorite 
“So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.” ~John 1:14

Dude how freaking cool is that…Jesus…like GOD came and humbled himself as a baby, because he wanted to reunite us to God the Father. It’s a beautiful story ain’t it? 

Prayer Requests:
~We will be leaving for four days for our Christmas break to see different ministry opportunities in Korhogo (north). Please pray for safe travels.
~The political situation...attached is an email from our patron, Rod about the situation. http://sn139w.snt139.mail.live.com/default.aspx?wa=wsignin1.0
~God would prepare our hearts for our Home Stay.
~Our world’s would continue to get rocked.

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