A few pictures are long overdue. I am sorry.
I don’t have any amazing or inspiring words to type today…possibly for the next few weeks/months? (I am hoping that our newsletter filled you all in with some “details” from the last month. To sign up for that, click on NEWSLETTER above!).
I also wish I had some amazing and inspiring images to share with you, but to be honest, my camera hasn’t come out but once since we arrived so iPhone pics is what we have!
Moving and setting up house with 3 kids in a foreign country is a process and a challenge. When you don’t speak the language and traffic is insane and you are learning how to shop/cook/clean/communicate all over again…you kind of start to feel like a 2 year old. Add staph infections and sinus infections and fender benders and floods and new schools and ….. well, ya know, there have been a few challenges these last 2 months.
Our head is above water but only by the grace and strength of our great God. He sustains. He keeps the smiles on our faces and the joy in our hearts. He reminds us why we are here and that He has began a good work that He will accomplish. That the GOOD NEWS OF JESUS is worth every ounce of hard and frustrating. We trust that He is accomplishing things in us and through us during this season that are important and good and needed. Praise Jesus!
We hope these pictures give you a tiny glimpse of life here.
During the month of April it rains and rains and rains. The storms are fierce. Streets become rivers and pretty much everything shuts down. Ezra enjoyed lots of puddle jumping during this wet season!
but nothing beats our “vintage” 1997 mini-van! We are thankful for this vehicle. (Purchasing a vehicle in Dar is not like in the states. Cars in the lots are so crammed together that most of the time you can’t even get in between them. We prayed that the Lord would give us a peace about which vehicle to purchase and right when we saw this one, we knew it was it.)
We have been in lots of transition since we moved here almost 2 months ago. The first month we all slept together in a studio apartment at the pastor training school while we looked for a house. This was a HUGE blessing to have a landing pad with a family that could help us get around, get our kids to school and help us sort out things that needed to be done in order for us to settle in well. We started looking for a house right away, which took about a month. We finally found a house that we felt would fit our family during this time of language and culture learning (which we realize will continue forever:). The only problem was that the tenant would not be out for 3 weeks. At about that time our teammates were leaving for Cameroon for 2.5 weeks and asked if we would house sit. So, we moved into that house. (The Lord takes care of us. His timing is perfect!) We were not able to purchase a car yet so it was another huge blessing to be able to use their car until our paperwork came through and we could purchase ours. Finally, the day before our teammates came home, we were able to move into our house. PRAISE THE LORD! We joke that in the last 2.5 months, we have “lived” in 5 houses. Although we are still living out of suitcases and now need to have furniture made, we are “HOME.”
We found a little compound with 3 bedroom condos on it. This is not what we had “expected” to live in, but we are loving it. The kids have made friends with all the neighborhood kids and love riding their bikes together around the court after school.
The view from the boys bedroom. Good morning goats!
Typical. These cows could care less that we have places to be.
Luke standing in line to get his drivers license. This took 3 days of traveling about 30 minutes each way to stand in line, then another line, then go to another location, then go to the police station, then back here, then…. He still officially doesn’t have his license. Ha. Luke worked hard for this TIN certificate. Again, lots of back and forth, confusion and praying. We couldn’t buy a car without this, so we were SO happy it was finally in our hands!
Ezra started preschool at a local preschool called Mbezi Chapel preschool.
We were SO thankful and excited to have Steve and Dianne Warn (and Dianne’s sister and her husband) with us for a few days. (They were traveling from Zanzibar to Kenya. What a blessing they were to us and our children. They came bringing gifts, energy to play with the kids and so much encouragement for us. What faithful and passionate followers of Christ these two are.
Full time Swahili learning started this last Monday. We work 4.5 hours a day, 4-5 days a week, plus studying at night. We are so thankful for Carlos, our language nurturer for teaching us and being an encouragement to us. Please pray for this time of concentrated language learning.
Amongst all of the transition, we have had many opportunities to enjoy being a family and enjoy exploring our new city together. Amongst all the challenges…we are experience so many blessings as well!
THANK YOU to all who are supporting us through prayer, financial support and encouragement. We need you and are thankful that you are partnering with us to share the love of Jesus with people here in Dar es Salaam. We pray for a love for the people here. We pray for relationships building and Gospel sharing and changed lives. Thank you for joining us in these prayers.