Saturday, December 12, 2015

Here, There, Everywhere

My fellow missionaries and I have often laughed about the outdated concept of a furlough for missionaries. Historically, people have expected the time a missionary spends in the States to be a time of rest, catchup with family, and fun with friends. In reality now, it can end up to be even more work and craziness than even life on the field! I love that quite a few organizations have started using the term ‘Home Assignment’ instead. It’s much more descriptive and accurate!


The past 2 months in the States have definitely be that for me as well! I’ve lost count of how many planes I’ve boarded, beds I’ve slept in, and hands I’ve shaken! I won’t lie…it definitely can be tiring! But it is also so rewarding! 


I love every chance to come back to the States and spread the word of how God is working in Uganda. I know that my work in Uganda 9-10 months of the year is not my only ministry. Jesus has also called me to speak His message throughout churches in America too. To call them to a deeper understanding and appreciation of who God is, and what His Kingdom can be. Just like what I do every day in Uganda.


From so many different stages, I get to look into the faces of so many different people here. Some are enthusiastic. Some are church weary. Some are fired up about ministry, especially missions. Some are just there because they feel they should be. Some thought they were called to missions decades ago, but never went. Some are faithfully fulfilling God’s call on them here in the States, and encourage me in my own calling too. They come from every walk of life. They come from dozens of different cultures and subcultures. And each one of them is loved, cherished, and important to Jesus. I know He has placed a special calling on each of their lives, and I can’t tell you how fun it is to hear what that is for each person.


My prayer for the rest of my time here is that God will continue to guide my meetings with people that need His love and encouragement. That He would give me wisdom and insight to recognize and affirm each individual’s personal calling. And that He would use me to excite people in the States about His global work and kingdom (especially in Uganda!)!


I have 4 more weeks here before my flight back to Uganda. Although I’m never sure what each week (or really each day!) will hold, I know Jesus has wonderful things in store for me!

Speaking at Grace Bible Church in Colorado Springs

Saturday, October 10, 2015

A Video to Make Me Laugh



I've only been Stateside for 1 day, and I am missing my kids so much! And while I'm not sure if watching videos of them is especially helpful with that, I couldn't help myself. They're just too cute and entertaining! So I though you might enjoy a glimpse of the things they do that bring me such joy every day.

Issac is the clown at the beginning and end.
Moses is the one nominating Arnold to perform,
and Arnold is the budding dancer.

Many thanks to my P1 class for all the laughs.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

A Forged Visa and the Last Flight out of Entebbe

For the past year, HUM has had a trip back to the States to help do support development planned for me. So everything was set for me to leave on the 5th of October, until British Airways announced they were canceling all flights to/from Uganda effective the 3rd or October. I was definitely more than a bit shocked since I’ve been flying BA since I started coming here as a kid. But they were good about reworking my itinerary and got me rescheduled to be on their last flight out of Entebbe.


Little did I know that would be only the first hump in the road to me getting back to the States. Amidst the usual craziness of handing over all my other responsibilities to other people, packing, and wrapping up all the final details, I was told there was also a problem with my visa.


6 days before I was supposed to pass through immigration and get on a US bound airplane, I found out that my visa had only been forged. This after all the commotion of having my passport stolen, then having it replaced, then getting a new work permit stamped in my passport. Apparently the guy who worked on my visa thought the rather large amount of $750 would prefer to be in a pocket than a bank. so he tried to forge a fake work permit in my passport.


Thankfully, Jesus has me in His hands, and for some reason, the guy confessed to the leadership of the ministry before I showed up at the airport and they arrested me for forging a visa. So I found out with only 6 days before my flight was to leave, and the next days were filled with trying to figure out what to do and how to find the best legal means of sorting out my papers. Also thankfully, I have people here who have been looking out for me and working on my behalf every step of the way. Last night, I packed my bags and set my house in order without a passport in my hands, and no guarantee of getting it back in time with a valid visa. Talk about nerve-wracking. I know I probably should have been a wreck, but Jesus honestly provided an incredible amount of peace with however things turned out.


When I think about all the possibilities that could have happened, I am amazed all over again. I could have shown up at the airport with a forgery and been arrested immediately, missed my flight, lost my money for the ticket, and spent who knows how many days trying to sort things out. I could have missed my flight because Ugandan institutions in general operate with the efficiency and speed of a inebriated snail. There is no end to the negative possibilities that my mind can think up right now. But I am so thankful that that is all they will ever be. I serve an incredible God works miracles for His children.


It was not until lunch time on the very day I was I supposed to fly that I received my passport back, stamped with a special pass that would allow me to leave the country legally. The forged visa had also been stamped with a cancellation stamp and my team here will continue working to get me a genuine visa while I’m in the States. You can imagine the kind of relief and joy that all of us celebrated with as I held that passport!


I was reminded again of what a miracle it was at the airport as I tried to pass through immigration. When they found the forged visa, they asked for my account of how it got there. After they accepted my explanation I asked for them to explain how they could tell it was a forged one. They kindly showed me a whole list of elements that identified it as a false one, and stated, “It sure is a good thing you have a valid special pass. Otherwise….” How glad I am I won’t ever need to know exactly what would have been contained in those ellipses!!


It didn’t sink it until Nat and I were sitting at the gate waiting to board that it really was finished. I had left the country peacefully and legally, without any detention or even extensive questioning at the airport. All of our prayers for a smoothy, uneventful exit had been answered. Praise Jesus! Now, as they continue to work for a valid visa, I would appreciate your continued prayers for that one to come through quickly and uneventfully. I have yet one more story to prove just how much Jesus hears and answers prayers. Many times in a most dramatic fashion! :-)

Friday, September 11, 2015

The Day They said I'm Sorry

It was a Friday afternoon, and my P3 (3rd grade) class was restless. Actually they were more than restless. Downright unruly is more like it. My normally beautifully behaved, obedient, attentive 9-12 year olds were acting much more like my usually challenging 6-7 year olds. I did my best to try to teach for even that short 30 minute period, but left feeling like that day was total bust.

The weekend sped past with an abundance of work and play as usual, and Monday morning found me having forgotten all the woes of Friday’s difficulties. Walking into my P3 classroom, I set my things down, and listened as my children chanted their ritual greeting:

You are welcome, Teecha Melanie. Dis is P3 class. Ouwa school motto is Christ’s ambassadahs tomoooorow.
Smiling, I sat down at my desk and briefly collected my thoughts for the lesson. Before I could speak a word, I saw one of my girls approaching my desk. I thought she would just asked to go to the bathroom, but I was surprised to hear an apology coming from her lips.
Teecha Melanie, I’m sorry for over disturbing you and making so much noise. Can you forgive me?
Confused, I thanked her for her apology and assured her that I have forgiven her (though still not sure what I was forgiving at this point) and love her very much.

She had no sooner turned to leave, then the next student was at my desk, also apologizing and asking for my forgiveness. Understanding dawned on me, and I remembered all the frustration of Friday. Apparently they had also been observant of my feelings and decided themselves what they should do.

One by one, each and every one of my students came, apologized for their actions and also asked for my forgiveness. To this day, I’m not sure how I managed to restrain my tears at I watched face after face humbly admit their wrong and ask for forgiveness. It was one of the most beautiful days ever.

For so many months I have taught them over and over again the importance of humbly apologizing and asking forgiveness. I have had to ask their forgiveness myself more than once, and had to enforce apologies from a number of my students over this year. I have so often wondered what the result of my teaching will be, and whether it will really have an impact on the hearts of my kids. Constantly, I beg Jesus to settle these truths deep in their hearts, for as many words as I speak, only Jesus can bring the change of heart that is so necessary. And that day, I saw a glimpse of what Jesus has been teaching them.

How I treasure those moments. Through these past few difficult weeks, I can still look back on the moments of victory and joy Jesus has brought and remember that He is at work. I am only His tool and vessel in the lives of these kids for now, but He is the One bringing the understanding, conviction, and change in their hearts. His work will never fail, and He will accomplish everything He has promised. How thankful I am to get to see for myself the evidence of that work!


Some of my P3 students in one of their more
studious moments :) 

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Snuggled in Loving Arms



We were playing together. I would hide, she would find me, I would tickle her. I loved every minute of it, and her grin and giggle told me she did too. Then, as she ran around the corner, it happened. She ran her forehead straight into the corner of the metal window frame. I heard the thump and came around the corner to see her small hand clutching her forehead and her eyes filled with pain. But she didn’t shed even a single tear. Usually when a Ugandan child is hurt, they are immediately told not to cry, distracted from the pain, and sent away to continue playing. I can’t do that. I’m thankful for a mother who tenderly comforted me when I was in pain, and believe that is exactly what God would have me to do for these kids too.


So I ran to her, knelt down and pulled her into my arms. Silently, she buried her face in my neck as her father watched on. With hand pressed against her swelling head, and face pressed against my shoulder, she quietly waited for the pain to reduce. If ice had been available, I would have run for it, but as it was, all I could offer her was the comfort of my hugs. She stayed like that for 10 minutes until my knees were aching and I had to carry her to my office chair. There she stayed snuggled in my arms for another 10 minutes. Finally, she started sitting up and looking around, and I pulled out my phone camera to entertain her. It was so fun to coax smiles out of her, and finally even funny faces as she forgot the pain and started laughing again.






As much as I hated to see her in pain, I treasured those moments. I cherished the feel of her small body snuggled against mine, and her arm wrapped around my neck. I was so grateful for the chance to love on her and comfort her in her pain, and to make sure she knew I cared so much for her. 


That’s exactly what my Father God has been doing for me every day. Because every day these past few weeks I have been in pain. And some of it was self inflicted, though much was the result of another’s sin. But when Jesus sees me suffering, does He just reprimand me to be more careful next time, and leave me in pain? No. His arms are just as ready and eager to scoop me up, pull me close and tenderly comfort me until the pain subsides. I can burry my head in His neck, feel His warm embrace and know that He’s not going anywhere. He’ll hold me close until the pain goes away, and then fill me with His perfect joy, just so He can see me smile again.


I know that’s who my Daddy is. And I love that I get to emulate that love for my precious children here.


I also am so thankful that my Father knows when I am in pain and sends me vivid pictures to help me understand the depth of His love and care for me. I know that I am perfectly safe in His arms.


But I’m still having a rough time right now. I am still processing grief and pain, and I would so love your prayers for me. Please pray against the schemes of the Enemy who wants to distract and destroy the work of God here. Pray for healing, and the supernatural comfort and joy that defies circumstances that only Jesus can give. I know Jesus hears and answers your prayers, and I am so thankful for those standing with me in prayer.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

When He Said "I love you"

Everyday I go to school, I say many words, I laugh and smile, and tickle and hug, and exhort and discipline. All of it with one purpose: to make these children know that they are loved. By me, and by Jesus they are so very loved. I know each of their names, and I know their personalities. I know which ones are weak in reading, and which ones are super competitive. I know who is picking on whom, and who has a quick temper. I know them, because I WANT to know them. Because Jesus has given me such a big, uncontainable love for each one of them I am compelled to know them and long to know them better. 

However, these children aren’t used to being shown affection. And there are few people that really know them. Many of them have either dead or absent parents. Many of their guardians are more concerned about what to eat for the day than about asking their kids how school went or playing with them. And although I can tell you that “Nkutaka ino” means “I love you very much” in Lugwere, I’ve never heard it spoken to a child (apart from by the westerners that come). I know that some of them do feel loved by their parents, and all of them know they should love their families, but I very rarely see any kind of affection shown to the kids. 

For years now, I have been telling my kids, “I love each of you so very much!” But only those who were raised at Katherine’s house have ever said “I love you” back to me. All of the other times all these years the response has almost always been them looking shyly down or away, or at most a “thank you.” They just have never been told “I love you,” and are only beginning to know how to accept and respond to such a statement. It grieves my heart so much to know they have had such a lack of affection their whole lives. 

My constant pleading, even begging, prayer is that Jesus would miraculously show me how to help them FEEL loved. To touch each of their individual needs and longings in a way that helps them know how valuable and cherished they are. I have been desperate for so long to see these kids really understand how much Jesus and I both care about their every thought, need, and desire. But I’m left wondering constantly if it’s happening. I’ve been walking in faith, believing that Jesus hears and answers my every prayer, especially when I KNOW it is His desire for them too. 

Then this morning I was walking with one of my P4 kids, and he said, “Teecha, I want to tell you something.” I looked down on his small head spotted with scattered ring worm as he looked down at the ground, and I asked, “Yes Winyi? What is it?” He nervously grabbed my arm and started walking again with me. As he examined my fingers, he hesitatingly said, “Teecha Angelina, (my middle name, and what some of my kids have taken to calling me lately), I just wanted to say that……. I love you very much.” My heart started pounding and I grabbed him for a quick hug. “Thank you Winyi! I also love you very much too.” He ran away grinning, and I walked away with eyes full of tears and a heart full of thanksgiving. 

That was the first time I’ve heard those words voluntarily from one of my kids. 

It means that Jesus is getting through to them. It means He’s answering my prayers. It means that Winyi has felt and accepted my love for him, and is learning how to give it back in return. 

What an incredible day! What a faithful God we serve!




Sunday, April 26, 2015

She Asked Me to Forgive Her!

Last week my students took their final exams while I was at home trying to recover from the threefold onslaught of malaria, an upper respiratory infection, and an ear infection. I was really bummed not to be with them, and very eager to see them when I came back to work on Monday. 

However, when I asked my P4 students how exams went, a couple students were quick to pipe up that some of their classmates had ‘copied’ (or cheated) on their exams. My heart fell with the prospect of disciplining them, and I talked very seriously with them for a while. Then I told them they had one day to come and report themselves to me before I started investigating myself to find out who it was. The following day, 3 of my students admitted to me what they had done. I was glad they had the courage to report themselves, though I realize the fear of their classmates reporting them probably had something to do with it too! I disciplined them accordingly and moved on with my lesson.  
At the end as the kids were leaving for the day, I was surprised by one of the guilty girls approaching me privately. She’s one of the ones I’ve been worried about for a while since she tends to have a rather hard attitude, and does not usually respond to either correction or even affection. I’ve been praying for her for at least 2 years now, that Jesus would soften her heart and let His changing love settle deep. 

So that day, I was definitely taken aback as she very humbly came and softly said, “Teacher Melanie, I’m very sorry I copied on your test. I would really like you to forgive me.” Then, and even now tears still spring into my eyes as I remember her posture and request. I wrapped my arms around her shoulders and said, “Of course I forgive you. I love you very very much.” She looked up into my eyes, smiled, and said, “I love you too.” 

HALLELUJAH!!! PRAISE JESUS!!! He is so good! He hears and answers and works miracles in the hearts of His children! 

I have spent so much time this term teaching my children about forgiveness. It is not a common thing here to ask someone to forgive you, and I have taught, modeled, and helped my children to do it. But this is the first time I have witnessed one of my kids has spontaneously reach out to someone they have wronged for forgiveness. To see Jesus’s truths come to life in my kids is the single greatest joy I have ever had as a teacher. I am so grateful that I get to see Him working in them! 

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Choosing forgiveness

Each day I fight for forgiveness all over again. A month ago, my backpack was stolen from a locked car in a guarded lot during a quick shopping trip. A thousand 'what if’s' and 'I should have’s’ have gone through my head, but what’s passed is passed. Still, I have struggled each day to forgive the ones who robbed me, as each day I look for something, only to remember it was in the backpack. So many small things that to him would hold little value, but for me are an unending frustration.

During that first week, Jesus's grace abounded, and as I went through the motions of replacing the two biggest items: my laptop and my passport (!!), I was surrounded by His supernatural peace. I looked for the miracles and found them. I hadn't carried my Moody Bible this time (which I always do!). At the last minute, I left my cross-stitch at home. Somehow, the thieves missed my iPhone which was in the seat pocket under the croissants which they also stole. The irreplaceable things, Jesus saved, and I lost only what could be replaced. 

Though in a land where nothing comes easy, it's been quite the hassle trying to do so. I can't just drop by Wal-mart for more wart remover, or makeup, or a new iPhone charger, or a laptop case. so I grieve the time wasted and the effort spent trying to replace things. 

It was with some alarm that I realized after a couple weeks that the seeds of bitterness had been planted in my heart. And I know the devastation bitterness brings. So I confess, and I plead for grace and healing. And each morning I again have to choose to forgive. This stranger whose face I will never know must still be forgiven. Not for his sake, but for mine. I choose to release him from that debt, and pray for his salvation and blessing, for in that I know my own healing will come too. 

Friends, this battle isn't easy. I know how much Satan would love to use this to steal my joy, and I am fighting back. But I need your prayers! For unconditional forgiveness, for eyes to see what is most important, for Jesus' own grace and peace, and for victory in the moments of frustration.

Thank you for praying! I know Jesus hears and answers each one! 


Monday, March 23, 2015

When I Prayed for Rain

It’s been so hot here. Uncharacteristically hot. We’re in the end of an elongated dry season that has left each of us here begging Jesus for rain. Water sources around town have been drying up, and the city regularly turns off water in order to conserve it. 

In Kamonkoli, city water didn’t reach the village for over a week. And even when Pastor called to get the fire engine to bring water from Mbale, they said they couldn’t pick water from dry sources. People in Kamonkoli would line up for hours at the wells waiting for their turn to fill their bright yellow jerrycans. They have really suffered. 

In town, with my big water tank perched on top of my roof ready to collect water every second the city has it turned on, I really have had nothing to complain about. Yes, we’ve had days that water ran out and bathing became a luxury instead of routine, but on the whole we’ve done fine. It’s the heat that’s been the biggest challenge.

After weeks and weeks of praying, today Jesus sent the rain! …..exactly 2 minutes after Henry started removing one of two flat tires I had woken up to find. He hadn’t even finished removing the bolts and the water started pouring down. Talk about emotional roller coaster. It went something like this…. YES!!!!! RAIN!!! WAIT! WHAT?? RAIN??? Right now??? Jesus I know I’ve been begging for weeks, but couldn’t You just wait 5 more minutes. That’s it. 5. minutes. Just enough for him to get the tire switched out. Then you can open up the heavens and let it pour away! 

But the rains continued to come, and servant that he is, Henry continued to work. Drops darkening the back of his shirt while I stood covered and dry on the veranda. It was a humbling moment. Watching as Henry insisted on finishing helping me, whether or not he got soaked. Which of course he did. For my benefit. For my blessing. So that I could soak up the blessing of rain while at the same time being graciously served and cared for. It was really beautiful! 

In fact the beauty of those moments and actions helped carry me through the next 2 hours of waiting and watching the ‘tire people’ painstakingly remove every tire, check, repair, and refill them before putting them on again. All while I did my best to ignore the stares, dodge the proposals, and breathe through the stifling humidity. 

Such an African day!! Difficulties and blessings all jumbled up together in a way that kept me looking for Jesus in each moment. Seeking to praise Him for the good and the bad alike. Because He is good!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

When Mere Words Failed

The room had fallen completely still, the stillness of intense attention and interest. It was one of those God moments. When you know completely that the Holy Spirit is present and impacting hearts. When you know the words coming out of your mouth aren't coming from your own mind, but the mind of Christ alive in you. Jesus' presence was palpable.

It was during our weekly Bible study and most of my teachers were hearing the term 'propitiation' for the first time. Propitiation. The working out of God's wrath on someone or something other than the deserving person.

For centuries, this was seen in the appeasing of God's wrath through the constant stream of sacrificed animals. However, those offerings were only a faint shadow of the true and final sacrifice: the Lamb of God. That dark and beautiful day when the enormity of God's anger for every sinful act, word, and thought of God's people throughout the centuries was poured out on the head of the Perfect God-Man, Jesus. When He suffered one of the most excruciating deaths known to man, so that every trembling heart was given confidence to come before God with joy and not fear. Their relationship with Him made perfectly whole and unhindered because of that agonizing and wonderful act.

Simple words are not enough to convey the weight of that truth. That day, simple words failed me. But as I tripped and stumbled through trying to explain and make clear this precious truth of Scripture, God showed up. Understanding began to shine in their eyes, and as I scanned their faces, I was amazed to find tears pouring down the face of one of my teachers. This teacher who for 2 1/2 years has been one of the most unreadable, seemingly untouchable people I have worked with. Whose stance has mostly been arms crossed than arms wide open. That teacher who generally demands proof for my every statement. The one I thought I might never get past her mind to her heart. That teacher sat before me, tears falling fast as she diligently wiped them away with her handkerchief, and I was amazed.

I was amazed at the power and goodness of Jesus to speak to hearts. And His goodness in allowing me to take part. I am nothing without Him: just a fumbling, desperate girl. But because of His power and kindness towards me, I can take part in His work of touching hearts. I can watch Him do miracles that I couldn't even think to request. What an incredible gift! What a precious privilege!

Friday, February 20, 2015

A Love that Changes

Everyday I go to teach in the afternoon. Each day as my car comes close to the school, children start dashing for the fence, pressing their faces close and shouting my name… Teecha Melan! Teecha Melan!







I drive through the gate, carefully navigating the lumpy ground, running children, construction workers, and materials for the new building. 





It’s a bit nerve wracking. Don’t get me wrong, I love my children’s enthusiasm, but I do wish it was a bit further away from my tires :) As soon as I park, a multitude of faces and hands and feet gather around eagerly anticipating the moment I get out of the car and they can finally greet, touch, and hug me. It’s beautifully overwhelming each time. I very selfishly hope and pray it doesn’t get old for them, because it’ll never get old for me! 




Each one is hungry for my attention and eager for my affection. And I’m amazed how much I love each of them. And how much that love has changed me these past years. 

Before coming to Africa (and really even still!) I’ve had a great aversion to dirtiness. Not necessarily clutter, but filth. In fact, I remember not being very old before going to the park wasn’t quite worth the smell and feel of dirt on my hands and legs afterwards. I’d beg Mom for a handiwipe just as soon as I got in the car, desperate to get clean. So God put me in Africa. HA! There’s a certain level of peace you have to make with the dirt in general, and the realization that everything can be washed helps. But in general you still won’t find me getting dirty intentionally. Unless…. it’s  with my kids. 

Yesterday as we were acting out the story in Leviticus of Aaron bringing a sheep for Moses to slaughter as a sacrifice, my P1 students begged me to be the sheep. So down on my knees I went, choosing not to mind the sand grinding into my skin or the clinging of the bit of posho that was spilled at lunch. How they laughed! “You see Teecha Melan!” “You see the way she is making like a sheep!” 

And as that class was my first of the day, I proceed from class to class the rest of the afternoon with the vestiges of dirt and posho that refused to be brushed away with just my hand. And I didn’t mind. Because let me tell you, those kids remembered which animal Aaron brought to be sacrificed. And they aren’t likely to forget anytime soon! :) 

For them, I would choose to get dirty. For them, I would choose to use the outhouse. For them, I’m happy to have my hair (head and arm!) pulled, my legs bruised, my glasses scratched, and my body weary each evening. They are so worth it!!! 

Monday, February 16, 2015

Just Being Kids

My kids were in rare form the other day....












But then again, they tell me I was too.....



Monday, February 9, 2015

Le-vee-tee-cas

I don’t remember the last time I went in detail through Leviticus (or as they pronounce it, Le-vee-tee-cas), but I’m guessing it was probably in college. But I can tell you for sure the last time my teachers and students at Genesis were taught through Leviticus: never. Until now. And let me tell you, it’s a daunting task. My mind is constantly searching for a new story, a new illustration, a new truth that will bring the light of understanding to their eyes. 

During our first Bible study with the teachers, we were mostly discussing whether there was any value in studying Leviticus at all. If we no longer keep all the rules and regulations of the law, what is the point in studying it at all? Their initial answer? Because maybe we should be keeping the law and doing things like the Israelites did. But a quick perusal of the laws on skin infections in Leviticus 13 had all of them reconsidering that idea. :) Leading them into the understanding that as we study Leviticus, we gain a better understanding of who God is, what He values, and a fuller picture of His perfect salvation plan for the nations was truly incredible. Watching at least bits of understanding start to surface is always one of my most precious joys here. 

The following week as we talked about the 5 sacrifices detailed in Leviticus 1-7, we discussed mercy and justice, and how it would have been impossible for God to be both just and merciful without transferring the shame, guilt, and punishment onto the sacrificial animal. The truth is that the death of Jesus hardly makes any sense at all without understanding the system of atonement put in place in the Old Testament. These teachers and children have not ever really been exposed to these principles before, and my heart yearns for them to have a more complete understanding of the God they claim to know. 

At the same time, my own faith is being strengthen and stretched. It’s truly incredible how detailed our God is. Not even the most minute detail escapes His attention. I so easily get caught up in struggling through life and ministry here, that I forget how enormous my God is, and how intricate His attention. My third water outage this week hasn’t escaped His notice. Or my mispronunciation of “Aaron” (which the kids failed to understand at first). He knows when I worry about the funny noises coming from the back of my car, and listens as I scold the irresponsible boda drivers. He watches as I copy coloring pages, and smiles as I make funny faces at my kids. It is not only the things I consider significant that He also pays heed to. It’s every.single.detail. Leviticus showed the Israelites how to live and worship down to the tiniest aspect of their lives. And now it reminds me that I too can be worshipping in the everyday. the trivial. the mundane. Whether feeding my puppy, lesson planning, scrubbing the dirt off my feet, preparing learning aids, or lighting candles, I can rejoice that my God and Friend is present and involved. He cares so much. He has done everything just to be with me. 

So I’m thrilled to be studying and teaching Leviticus right now. Definitely also terrified in some moments, but so excited to see how Jesus will work in me and each of my 11 teachers and 85 students!