Friday, January 02, 2009

Quiet Time

A sweet, quiet Christmas. The last two weeks have been filled with the simple pleasures of life: chatting with friends, making meals together, kids of all sorts running thru the house and yard, putting over-tired but happy kids into bed, learning new songs, praising God for the wonder of Christ's birth, sipping cups of hot Milo, reflecting, talking, listening, praying.

Christmas is a rather quiet affair on this end of the world. It's a good time for one's soul. For reflection, evaluation, worship...quiet.

This year it's been a blessing to read John 1 and mull this truth over and over in my mind and heart. Especially these verses:

"He came unto his own, and his own received him not.
But as many as received him,
to them gave he power to
become the sons of God,
even to them that believe on his name:

Which were born, not of blood,
nor of the will of the flesh,
nor of the will of man,
but of God."

Reviewing the last year makes me savor these memories...

The obvious one is Evie joining our family in April of 2008. A close tie is the vivid memory of Darryl (in the months of her extreme colic) walking around everyday singing "It's the end of the world as we know it." That still just makes me laugh and laugh.

Sitting at church and having to make more and more room for the people who kept coming in after an outreach dinner. Times like that make any 'sacrifice' in living here absolutely minuscule. It was moving to hear the gospel presented at another dinner to many leaders in the community and made us pray and imagine the transformation the gospel could make in this place.

Having my mom and aunt visit this side of the world. It was awesome. and I want them back. I still can't get over how adventurous my mom was! And my aunt's affirmative nod to "they should take everything out and start this whole city over" still makes me laugh. That and the memory of their experience with a Thai traditional massage which ended up being payment for torture. We will never forget.

Everyday interactions with my neighbors and friends. Lots of time sitting on the front steps. Discussing life, the day, dinner, kids, language. Lots of time with the Khmer woman at Logos on staff. My life wouldn't be the same without Elina, Tepy, Hena, Samoan, Navi, Yvonne, Sopi, Tan. I'm so thankful for them.

This list could go on an on.

Reviewing the last year brings regrets. And the regrets make me humble, wanting to right these things in the new year. Desperately needing the grace of God to change my many areas of weakness. Regrets also bring about new resolves:

Being patient. With my kids. With the other drivers on the road (seriously!). Waiting for the Lord to work in His timing and in His way in Cambodia. When the power goes off and I'm ready to take the next plane outta here. When my camera gets stolen...again. When I see injustices on every side...patience.

Living everyday with joy. It's all too easy to let the circumstances in our lives dictate who we are and how we respond to life. Cynicism and bitterness are always close at hand when we forget the goodness of God. When things are good let me be still, humble, quiet and praise God for his mercy. When things are difficult in life let me be trusting, hoping, and abiding in Him. That brings joy. Living out of that joy will make me a joyful mother, wife, sister, and friend.

Being more disciplined in studying the word. Letting the truth of Jesus Christ move my heart, change my life, and transform my family.

Blessings to you and yours in 2009.

1 comment:

Kate said...

Great stuff, Kara! Keep writing...