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

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy 2011!!!

Dude…I cannot believe that it’s already New Years. That’s insane! I hope and pray that your New Year’s celebration was joyful and safe.

I want to talk about our New Years extravaganza, but first I’ll give a quick update on our Christmas vacation. So for the girls, we made the very bumpy trip to Korhogo (northern RCI). On the way up to Korhogo a few of us took a bus, because that’s going to be our means of transportation when we leave for our Home Stays. Well, needless to say, it was quite the adventure. We were stopped about four or five times at various rebel barriers. A few times they even made our group get out of the bus and show some sort of I.D. At one barrier the guard actually thought we were spies. It was pretty funny trying to explain to him why five American girls would want to come to Cote d’Ivoire (especially now) to learn about their culture. The bus ride that should have taken 4 hours took 6 plus we were waiting at the station for 2 hours. It was a long and frustrating trip up there for everyone, but everyone on the bus said we were superstars and were absolutely the sweetest people. While in Korhogo we had the opportunity to visit other missionaries and different work sites for us in the very near future. We also visited some villages and learned how they make jewelry and various sorts of fabrics. On the third day we were told to stay inside of the guest house at IBB-bible institute, where we were staying. The country had been ordered to participate in a general strike, where no one would go to work, travel or even go to the market. This was attempted a few different times, but no one had taken it seriously. So on that day we walked to a church (using side streets to avoid drawing attention to ourselves) and visited a pastor who a few of us will be working with. The rest of the time was full of relaxation, which was so very much needed! Our last day, we climbed Mount Korhogo (it’s actually a little hill) and that took 30 minutes up and 30 minutes down. The voyage back to Bouaké only took 3 hours by car and was crowded, but way more enjoyable with some dance party action. Great vacation!!

Our New Years Eve bash was a real hoot : ) The day started out around 9:30ish am. The boys woke up to help dig a ditch for roasting our pig, underground. I’m not quite sure how it worked either, but it tasted pretty good. Some of us girls decorated the picnic area in front of our gym. When the pig was finally done, we had a huge (late) dinner. All of the nationals living on campus came, plus all of the leadership team, plus a missionary family that’s on vacation here. About 30 people total at the dinner table. Afterwards some of us hung out at by the bon fire. This fire was no joke, 5 feet tall!! The wood! It was insanely huge! We played games and talked for a bit. Afterwards the dance party started around the fire, which our French military friends found extremely entertaining. We brought in the new year with the perfect touch...some worshipping of the Lord. It was amazing!! We also figured out that those of us Journeyers that were at Urbana ’09, this was our second New Years together. It was super fun. All and all, our holiday break was nothing less than spectacular. Absolutely, hands down, the best African Christmas Season ever. I hope and pray the same for you and your families. And as always I want/NEED to hear about how your New Years went and about any fun New Year’s resolutions :) Love it!!
Scripture of the Week:

This is what God showed me during my quiet time on vacation, I’ve been super distracted by things lately…
“And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me-everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.” ~Philippians 4: 8&9

Prayer Requests:
-The political situation
-This is our last month living here on campus, pray for our Home Stays
-Against distractions, that all of our thoughts would be good and praise worthy

Thanks so much…I hope and wish a very Happy New Year. Know that you are missed and loved! Until next time : )

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