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Thursday, November 26, 2009


TNTC: that's the lab shorthand for "too numerous to count", something seen through the microscope eyepiece, usually referring to bad stuff that you don't particularly WANT to see in a body fluid. But today, it refers to blessings for which we are thankful. Too numerous to count . . . but spiritual health requires that we at least list a few which are front and center in our field of view today. So let me focus the microscope and thank God for a safe landing on our soggy airstrip a few hours ago: Luke and Caleb are home (!!!!) accompanied by Sam, Greg, and Adam, three of Luke's friends and dorm-mates whose families also live in Uganda, and released them to us for the next five days or so (none are American so celebrating Thanksgiving away from home was OK). The MAF flight was delayed, first because the commercial flight from Kenya was late, and then even more because Luke and Caleb's one and only duffel bag (they packed together) from school was misplaced by the airline (and is still missing). That delay was another item of thanks today, because a torrential, sky-darkening, earth-soaking rainstorm blew in about the time they would have been arriving had they been on time. We spent most of the morning juggling phone calls, trying to determine the safety of landing once the storm lightened, starting to set up contingencies for the boys to land elsewhere and come overland . . but in the end the pilot decided to give it a go (later he said it was actually much worse than last week's monsoon that nearly derailed Barb's travel plans . . ). It was a difficult landing, with mud spraying and wheels skidding, but all's well that ends well. It is GREAT to have them home.
Once they hit the ground (literally) I left Julia in charge of lunch for 9 teenage boys (mine, visitors, and a handful of friends from here who were waiting to welcome Luke and Caleb home) and rejoined another Thanksgiving. Today was the last day of the year for Christ School Bundibugyo! We celebrate a year completed, with all its sorrows, victories, memories, stresses. The Pierces generously decided to buy all the students a logo-T-shirt which Scott ended up working on designing and procuring. It was a lovely gesture, everyone was thrilled with their shirt and the school was awash in green, the color of Bundibugyo really, of life and leaves, banana trees and rice crops. This was also the end of the Scripture Union crusade, three days and evenings of worship, Bible teaching, and prayer. Scott was the last speaker, on the Kingdom of God, or how being a Christian impacts development. This is the essence of the school vision: reaching a generation of young people spiritually and intellectually to equip them to transform this district! Along with his teaching there were numerous choirs, and David and Annelise also gave words of farewell and blessing and encouragement to the students. We thank God for the Pierces and the life they have poured into CSB in the two years they have carried the burden of leadership there. Tonight we will recognize them more fully with a party for all the staff and team down at the school, an opportunity to give God glory for these years together.
And we thank God for Deus, the new head-teacher. He spoke briefly to the students today, too, generating immediate connection, and respect. He told them that this was the school he had always wanted to lead, and that God had put him on earth for this purpose. It was very encouraging as we face the grief of the Pierce departure and all the uncertainty a leadership transition involves.
I'm thankful for my courageous husband, my loyal kids, my persevering friends. For patients who gain strength, for toddlers who regain their smile. For the prayers which sustain us. For a family that loves us from afar. For the privilege of standing for the Kingdom in this place. For the hope that it will, one day, come.

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