Posted in being a friend, celebrating life, communicating trust, Mozambique, thankful and grateful

A Little Gem

Little did we know when a late night call for transportation to the hospital would result in such a wonderful blessing to our family. This is our guard’s baby, *”Little Gem” and he adds so much to our church Body. Children are celebrated and valued so in this culture and he sure adds a lot of joy to the Body of Christ here.

IMG_1495

And I just have to say, this little guy is absolutely adored by our family.

IMG_1502

We’re so thankful that our guard and his dear wife share Little Gem with us. It’s nice to get our turn to love on him as he gets passed around the church Body on Sundays. He’s definitely a highlight of our home visits and Sundays. =)

IMG_1498

He’s just so wonderfully smiley. =)

*Name changed for protection of the little guy.

Posted in celebrating life, Crossing Cultures, Mozambique, thankful and grateful, willing hands

Cupping a Treasure

We laughed about how the road had deteriorated from the rain as the car leaned to the right on the sandy back-roads. We squeaked past the sideways growing coconut tree, forming an uncomfortably close “bridge” over the only passable part of the road. We rounded the government building, proudly displaying the Mozambique flag on it’s flag pole. How interesting to find the government building out there, tossed right into a neighborhood. I wondered which one came first as we pulled off and parked near the woven palm-branch fence.

Out came four little girls, bounding down the familiar path. “I can’t see him,” they strained to look past the laundry dancing in the breeze. She used a broken piece of a mirror as she picked and styled her hair with the little one cooing on the mat at her feet. Her smile was huge when she caught glimpse of the girls bounding past the clean diapers on the line.

She jumped up to grab us chairs. The girls all went straight to the mat to coo at the baby. “Isn’t he so cute?” They called out his name, let him grab their fingers and his whole face radiated with delight when he focused on their faces. I love that our stories are so inter-twined. I still remember that phone call at nearly midnight. How Matt drove our guard and his wife to the hospital in time to welcome their first child. And this little guy there at all our feet, how we all rejoiced at his welcome to our world. How we celebrated his first day at church when we could all marvel at his little precious self that God had given us all, his community.

Shoes were instantly flung aside as the girls dug into the sand with their toes and found some stray items with which to start an adventure. Mountains were formed in the sand, paths etched out by an unrecognizable metal object they found, and they proceeded to frolic about in the “yard”, adhering to the natural boundaries of the beaten dirt borders.   

There was no agenda. No necessity to our visit. No business to discuss. And suddenly I realized that we had arrived at the very moment in which I had yearned for over a year of language learning. We were just visiting friends. Here in our home city. And it just was normal. 

We were rolling with laughter over stories of learning to drive the stick-shift on the opposite side of the road here in Moz. We listened to shared life challenges and encouraged this dear sister. We bounced from topic to topic as we passed around the baby. Oh that smile he imitates. It’s almost as addicting as just being there, with our friend, doing the normal together.

And when the time came, we walked together to our car, saying goodbye along the way. Four girls bounded to give hugs and say goodbye to our friends. One hug for my friend. One hug for the baby. They waited patiently as they made eye contact with him before they said goodbye. Promises to come again soon and “See you in a few days” were exchanged. Windows were rolled down as the girls waved to a group of kids nearby the car as we backed up. Smiles exchanged and a little greeting. Eden cupping a treasure in her hand as she bounced in the back seat. 

I uttered a prayer of thanksgiving on our drive home. Thankful for my friend, praying our friendship would grow stronger. And thankful for her wonderful little baby. And four little girls who my friend just adored watching gawk over her son. Thankful that Eden had felt comfortable enough to stumble over asking in Portuguese if she could bring home a fake earring pearl that she had found in my friend’s yard. How Rachael had smothered that little baby in love and kept him content for thirty solid minutes. How he just lit up watching her face, locking eyes and using every ounce of his energy down to his toes to coo at our Rachael. And just how the time flew until it felt like we were leaving far too soon despite the passing time.

How richly He blesses us. What a beautiful Body of Christ we find.

Right here on the deteriorating sandy back-roads

In our Mozambique.

Posted in celebrating life, enjoying life, Hi, We're New Here, JOY, living in their world, roadtrip!, sisterhood, thankful and grateful

Road Trip!!!

We had an opportunity to head to South Africa for a few days while getting a car rack installed on our vehicle. We took a few days to play and gather supplies after the car work was done before we returned to Mozambique. Here’s some of our adventure.

I love that despite having a bed for each girl, there in our little cottage, our ladies chose to share a big sister sleep-over each night. Their little hearts are beautiful. No one could be left out.

IMG_0695

We went ahead and got our hair trimmed while there in South Africa. I usually trim everyone’s hair while we’re here in Mozambique, but the girls enjoyed the spoiling.

Eden REALLY enjoyed the hair washing part.

IMG_0684

The girls enjoyed the opportunity to play in restaurant play areas while we waited on our food. Honestly it was insane some of these play areas for the kids and they absolutely had a blast.

We even went to an indoor splash pad.

And burned crazy amounts of energy at a trampoline park.

IMG_0632

We had some really yummy “American” food.

IMG_0571

And while it was an utter blast, I love that my girls could not wait to come home to their backyard, their bikes, their friends and their Mozambique. It was a beautiful time as a family to appreciate the blessing of more “Western World fun” while still appreciating the richness of life here amid the more simple. I love that my girls were really able to embrace that well; rejoicing in both places and having family conversations about the value of the two worlds we live in. And all of our hearts were full to the max as we turned down our street to return home here in Mozambique.

God has truly blessed us to the uttermost.

We are beyond grateful.

IMG_0556

Thanks for the fun, South Africa!

 

 

 

Posted in celebrating life, Crossing Cultures, enjoying life, living in their world, Mozambique

Dança, Dança!

(Title translated: Dance, Dance!)

Minhas pequenas Moçambicanas (My Little Mozambicans).

[Boa noite, Irmã Suzana! Minhas filhas tem uma canção para você e nossa familiares lá em Quelimane!]

(Translation of song: Hallelujah, Hallelujah we are saved in Jesus.)

Éden está dançando como uma moçambicana… ou quase…

(Eden is dancing like a Mozambican… well, sort of. Hehehe)