Dearest family and friends,
I have copied, slightly modified and added details to an email that I just sent to my missionary friends / colleagues in Mali and Senegal below, so that you could have my news:
I, personally, am doing really well. I feel so much peace and joy being with my father at this time. He is so easy to care for! My dad has amped up his devotional and prayer time, and I often listen to him crying out to God in his bed for family and friends. He begs the Lord to give him greater understanding of the Word, and to help him with his forgetfulness. I come home from shopping, and I can hear him praying on my way in the front gate. Yesterday, I interrupted Dad who was praying for people on CLC’s church prayer request list. He explained that he doesn’t know the folks on the list, but that the Lord told him that this is something he can do: pray for them.
Periodically, Dad also ask me to call somebody for him, someone that he has on his mind, that he wants to pray for. Yesterday he prayed for my cousin David Wakefield who’s VERY banged up after falling out of a tree while deer hunting.
I have set aside all sorting projects for a while, first because I’m sick of it, and secondly because I needed to finish up with urgent paper work, e.g. Mom’s CA State Teachers’ Retirement funds, (done), her Mass Mutual life insurance policy, (done), her VALIC annuities with her school, (will be done today with agent), and, thorniest of all, getting an appraisal of the value of Dad’s mineral rights, (his oil money) , which is yet to do. I have procrastinated, leaving this hardest job for the last.
I will be seeing my shoulder therapist one last time today. I am now also attending a Women’s Bible Study Thursday nights, and I’ve just joined the health club at the foot of the hill. For a few times, I will meet with a trainer who has set up exercises for me, based on age, weight, and health issues (bad shoulders). I am doing cardio and resistance exercises, as well as (an all-girls) zumba classes. (Love that hot music!) I can’t begin to keep up, but hey, who cares! I am moving, learning, improving. I will, of course, have to FORCE this into my daily routine, which seems so insanely busy. . . .
I’m presently teaching the Seniors’ class at church. We’re working through 2 Peter together, and then we do cross-cultural exercises, (application of biblical truths to other cultural circumstances). I present a real situation that either Faouzi or I or both of us have gone through in either Ivory Coast or Mali. Then the class has to decide how to respond calmly, thoughtfully and in a godly manner to situations that are entirely outside the norm of their experiences, situations that are often muddled with wild emotional reactions. The class has to keep in mind the notion of (1) setting an example and (2) setting a precedence, which is what happens to us missionaries all the time! I have never had so much fun!
In the light of the terrible destruction and suffering happening on the east coast, I am half embarrassed to say that we’re having glorious fall weather. We’ve had a total of 4 night of heavy, steady rain (a great start—and no more fires!), and many days of mild sunshine and moderate temperatures. I am absorbing by osmosis as much as I can of this gorgeous autumn weather. Unfortunately, I have not yet learned how to “clothe myself” in such memories when I’m back in 120 degree weather in Mali.
Love to you all,