Monday, February 28, 2011


59. Dirt and the hope of a compost bin

60. Reminders of God's promises from others

61. Going jacketless to language lessons

62. Having people I can e-mail when I'm broken

63. A 'cuppa' with some old friends

64. Getting my grades entered into my computer

65. 800 mg Ibuprofen

66. Being totally out of my comfort zone

Sunday, February 27, 2011


I don't feel like being thankful today. But I am thankful:

55. That no one is threatening my life.

56. That I enjoy my Kurdish class even when I'm tired.

57. That God convicts me of sin and that even when I don't want to let my bitterness go I see that it is worth it because God is worth so much more than my hurt feelings.

58. For my quiet bedroom.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

A Day in My Life...

The alarm went off at 5:55am, which wasn't too bad since I'd been to bed on time the night before. I got up, called my mom and we talked for about an hour until the power went out at 7am. I took a shower, got ready for the day, and began my fifteen minute timers. Fifteen minutes in the living room, fifteen in the kitchen, fifteen in the bathroom... I skipped my bedroom one because I cleaned it pretty well yesterday and used it to mix up a batch of bagels instead. I took the trash out that Molly had bagged up, removed the "Die America" sign from the windshield of my car, and carried up a new propane tank. Did you know that if you want that rusty colored jeans look all you need to do is carry a large rusty propane tank up your stairs! Voila! $100 dollar jean look for only 7,000 dinar! It's a deal! I did some grading and got the bagels in the oven. Now I'm off to a homeschool mom's meeting and it's only 11am! Happy Day!

Friday, February 25, 2011

The Disciplined Life

Today: Feeling convicted. How often am I one of those who "joyful rise"? Do I offer each morning to God? It's his anyway. Why don't I? Elizabeth Elliot put it well:
We make a huge joke about our self-indulgence and treat with amusement our failure to pull ourselves out of bed early enough to get to work without a hectic rush. An eighteenth-century hymn by Thomas Ken would seem quaint nowadays:

Awake my soul, and with the sun
Thy daily stage of duty run:
Shake off dull sloth and joyful rise
To pay thy morning sacrifice.

Monday, February 21, 2011


46. Pouring drenching brown rain that turns everything to mud including the tile patio, but it makes the sky clear!

47. Not getting days off for local rioting because it means my kids (students) aren't curiously wandering about the streets getting hurt.

48. Helping resolve issues peacefully between friends.

49. Ranch dressing... enough said.

50. Talking with the neighbor lady and being able to be a friend who knows what it is like to live in a different culture and learn a new language. (She's used to living in the UK, but doesn't speak English.)

51. A water bottle full of Airborne to drink all morning in class.

52. Being caught up on my grading (even if it was only 12 hours!)

53. Whoever it was that switched on the neighborhood power breaker to our house (we were running the dryer)... thank you!

54. Reading Psalms with my kids... we can't get to God... SO MUCH TRUTH!

I can't even think about anything else anymore except good conversations with my students as they walk themselves through their own depravity. The Word is so logical. Everything follows. How amazing is that!

Friday, February 18, 2011


I think I am learning to pray for things that I've never thought of. I prayed for a table and God has promised me one. I've prayed for years for the harvest here and I was told it was here, ready, now by a great man. And now, when I go to pray for something that is not as big and certainly not as important, I hesitate. Is this really what God wants? Is this really something worth praying for?

As a young girl I remember my mother teaching me that nothing is too small to pray for. Having searched through the shoe basket what seemed a hundred times I was then praying to find my lost shoe to put on for church.

NOTHING is too small for the God who made cells and atoms and electrons and amoebas and fingerprints and isn't this a horribly and amazingly complicated "backdrop" for the story that God is so flamboyantly writing?

So I pray for books. Enough to give away to aching expat women. Pray with me.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


40. Pictures of my friends babies. (So cute!)

41. Texts that wake me up at 3am from a dear friend 11 time zones away.

42. The toys and puzzles in my house getting played with.

43. Green tea and white pear scented candles.

44. Relying on God for provision in every area of life... and how this becomes a habit after extended practice.

45. Having lasted longer in the psychological war with my students than they expected. (They tell me they are now going to bring out the big guns!)

Monday, February 14, 2011



34. The smell of bacon cooking. I live in the Middle East; this is truly an amazing thing.

35. My yellow tablecloth.

36. Asking God for some kind of extra time off and actually getting it. (Who knew that a celebration of Muhammad's birthday could be an answer to prayer.)

37. A clean house.

38. Listening to sermons on Ecclesiastes. I'm so excited to teach this next week.

39. Molly wearing a camo adventure hat.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

My students' next writing topic...

What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us. The history of mankind will probably show that no people has ever risen above its religion, and man's spiritual history will positively demonstrate that no religion has ever been greater than its idea of God. Worship is pure or base as the worshipper entertains high or low thoughts of God. For this reason the gravest question before the Church is always God Himself.”

- A.W. Tozer, The Knowledge of the Holy.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Here, there isn't 24 hours a day of electricity. The city provides anywhere between 6-12 hours of power which lately has been at about half power, leaving lights dim and the refrigerator off. Then we have Molida, or a neighborhood generator. This gives us what we pay for, about 6 amps. It isn't enough to run heaters or the hot water heater but does great for lights, computers, and the internet. We've discovered that it will also run the microwave... but only in segments of time less than 30 seconds. After 30 seconds it will flip our neighborhood fuse.

This all leads up to the point that I just spent almost 10 minutes heating up my soup in 30 second increments. Sometimes I wonder where the time goes... this is one of the places.

Sunday, February 06, 2011


26. Gerbera daisies in bright colors

27. New lamps with bulbs that are more than 20 watts! I love light!

28. A team who loves me in spite of my faults.

29. The book of Judges and how it, too, points to Christ

30. The aroma of Highlander Grog Coffee

31. The eyes of someone desperately concerned about their sin

32. Making dinner for a large group of people! (As a single girl with one roommate this isn't everyday for me!)

33. Having made it to the age of 27.

I Win!

I managed to celebrate my birthday without my class being in an uproar, without a super dry oil frosted cake, without silly string or crazy snow, and without any perfume being given me as a present. I win!!!

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Thankful... trying...

I am remembering that this large pile of grading means that I have students who are working hard and turning in their homework and learning things.