Jesus's car & other awesome & tough things
So right now Anni and I are hanging out in our apartment in Chicago watching Olympics and doing some laundry. Ah, a moment off relative quiet. We are here for a just over 24 hour stop over to try to figure out the whole schooling starting in just a few weeks thing. I thought teaching in Chicago Public Schools was rough until I tried negotiating the system as a parent. Yikes! Prayer required for sure but despite many closed doors Anni and I are making the most of our day; bike riding, swimming, and we did a early dinner of devouring samples at the Farmer's Market just down the street. Did I mention I love Chicago in the summer?
I have been itching to write but time with family and cousins has been just too attractive. And there are so many thoughts swirling in my head I am struggling to give them a voice. I do know we have so much to be thankful for in this season. God has continued to provide in ways that leave me speechless (and that is quite a feat). Like a family moving to Africa gave us their car. Yes, gave. it. to. us. Hence it's new name: "Jesus's car" so dubbed by Anni and repeated by Evy every time we get in it. And that is perfect as we need to remember who is the source of our blessing. Always. We even got the AC fixed for free too! Another crazy happening: our insurance changed when we hit the states making our deductible kick our butts and our out of pocket costs higher. We were a bit nervous about how we would pay for the kidney stone and ER debacle of last month until we got a check from our insurance company. Turns out they gave us around 400 dollars a day per person for the hospitalization after the electrocution accident (in addition for paying all those costs). So that money is now helping us cover all the medical costs right now. His provision is outrageous! Add that to a friend who handing me a check to pray for Anni to take dance this fall and I just start tearing up. Because God is so good and we have done nothing to earn it.
We have been blessed to be invited to share some of our experiences and both of us cannot share anything about the accident otherwise known as 'the day Jesus performed a miracle and saved my family' without crying. But as someone commented this past Sunday during our time of sharing I cry a lot but "at least you recover quickly." Sounds about right. It is humbling and encouraging to be included in community and see how God has used everything for His purposes. We are not sure about a lot these days because life is still very much in flex. But I am sure that adjusting to life in America is not getting easier. Anni asks to go back "home" to Africa at least once a day and in the same breath she talks about how much she loves family here. I feel her. I have spent some of the last four years longing for America but the reality is it is tough to do this 'living for Jesus' thing anywhere. We had adapted to the challenges there and are now relearning the struggles here. It is hard to focus on His Light when we are all surrounded and distracted by such shiny and bright things. That junk obscures our view. I want to live in need of His presence every day in every moment. Our life in Africa forced me to lean more fully into His protection and provision and to breathe Him in more deeply. This was a painful process but His grace was abundant. We learned that He alone is good, that life isn't good because we have hot water, internet, Target, or cheese. He is good. Just Him. We are trying to live in that same constant need of His Spirit, presence, and guidance in the land of excess. Anyone wanna join me in this messy journey? more soon,