Monthly Archives: July 2007

The wait is over!

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Everytime I get into a car, I am sure this is the time, we’ll be in an accident. This fear reasserts itself everytime we go through one of the huge cirlces (roundabouts); and I do mean huge! Cars, buses and trucks come at you from all directions. There is no sense of personal, lane space. Assertive driving is accompanied by horn-honking and using other cars as a buffer, like a football-blocking lineman.

John, Shula and I arrived at our lunch destination, after having nearly avoided being PLOWED into by a HUGE Mercedes, when John backed up into a car (also a Mercedes) going 2 miles an hour. (My kind of accident, safe and slow with no one hurt.) I thought for sure there was going to be lots of yelling. But no, only an exasperated sigh and then a handshake as John charmed the male driver and passenger. Shula and I scurried into the house. The car and one of the workers went off to see how much it would cost to get the car fixed. In the end an agreement was made, the car will be fixed, and John can drive again and even leave the country. 🙂

The field worker let the two men know about the esl classes the school offers. They just might be two of the school’s newest students. 🙂

Shula’s birthday celebrations continue.

In this mornings class we had a surprise party for Shula. Two of the students brought cake and soda. Several brought her presents. Perhaps the most memorable one is two small bags that are meant to hold diamonds. We’ll see if John gets the hint and fills them with some lovely gems.

One student said, “too bad for you, Susan. No party or presents for you.” We agreed that I needed to come back over for my birthday. Although one student did bring me a lovely candle set. He is 18 years old, is quite a teaser and reminds me of my son. He frequently listens to music (much of it American) on his cell phone and just as frequently texts and emails his sweetheart. And studying? Not one of his favorite things to do.

Sunday Morning Musings

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I am such a blessed woman.

  • I have this opportunity to teach English to a people who live in a different culture.
  • I normally live in a place where sweat doesn’t constantly envelope my body. The men on our trip now have a bit of an understanding of what us women of a certain age go through. 🙂
  • I have a God who loves me no matter what. I can’t earn His love/favor. I can’t lose His love/favor. EVER!
  • I feel good -intestines, stomach, knee and back.
  • Prayer allows me to have an integral part of the world-wide work.
  • I love living dorm-style. There’s always someone who is up to visit with.
  • I feel so privileged to be one of God’s children

Saturday Morning Update

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Most of the crew has gone to the Dead Sea today. Many will float in the sea and soak in the mud. Then they’ll go to Mt. Nebo.

I stayed behind to finish up my salvation paper. Sydney, John and Shula also stayed behind, but for nobler reasons. They are painting the white walls of the living room/dining room guest house a straw color. If time permits they will paint the office green.

I am feeling well today -finally! Several others have been having GI issues – so prayers would be very welcome.

I had the chance to interview one of the workers yesterday. A main request is prayers against spiritual oppression. Their schedules are hectic and they see little fruit. Depression is an inevitable consequence of such a life-style.

“The battle against spiritual oppression can be won in California” commented T. “We shouldn’t feel so much oppression.”

Those comments stayed with me all night and this morning. They sacrifice so much on an ongoing basis. The least I can do is pray on a regular basis. Would you join me?

Today’s Highlights – Wednesday

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  • Spending time with Nasim, a 20 year old woman who is desparate to improve her English. She struggles with self-doubt regarding her scholastic future. Nasim wanted extra help so I asked her (yesterday) to write an essay about one of her dreams and how to accomplish it. It is evident that she worked hard on it. It is also evident that she’ll become fluent in englsih (which she speaks with an english accent). My hope and prayer is that I’ll be able to pass along some encouragment to Nasim.
  • Nezam brought the hummous, etc. Very tastey. And more importantly we are buidling a freindship bridge. Nezam is a gentle, caring woman who wants to make us feel welcome here. We do!
  • I was able to spend a few minutes praying with two Believers. I prayed in English and they prayed in Arabic. I’ll  get to see both of them at church on Sunday. I am anxious to hear how God answered our prayers of supplication.
  • Playing ping pong and “little football” with some of our teen students. I believe that Bryce has some footage on his video blog. Spoiler alert – Shula and Yanzan won all 3 games. We don’t call it foose ball because here foose means fart.  🙂
  • Shula and I were invited to visit Awatif. Hopefully we will be able to schedule a time for next week.
  • Jessica and I had a long talk about this land, the work going on here and politics. She is such an informed, but gentle speaker, it was a joy to listen, learn and “debate” with her.  

I feel so privileged to be able to be here teaching english, listening and learning. Thank you for your prayers. I still make cultural mistakes, but so far nothing too drastic.

Amazing Times in Jordan

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Shula, Sydney, Bryce and I are still up. Even though it’s 1 in the morning.

  • Sydney is talking to Shula about the benefits of donating property to the church.
  • Bryce is on the roof taking pictures of the city.
  • Shula is doing laundry.
  • I can’t sleep because class was so exciting!

John, Shula and I teach two intermediate classes every day since we are the “intellectuals.” The others do manual labor in the morning while we teach.

John is the main teacher. He is a strict teacher as he keeps requiring our students to use “full sentences.” They groan, roll their eyes and then comply with a good spirit.

Our morning class is half women and it has been so delightful to be able to develop relationships with them during our small group times. They are so eager to learn English and to learn about us. Most of the students are adults. One lady, Nezam, told me, “Suzan, do not eat breakfast because tomorrow I bring hummous, pickles and bread.” I think this dear woman is doing this because I told her I had lasagna for breakfast. 🙂

In our evening class about 1/3rd of them are high school students (on break from school). This has added a delightful energy to the class. Halfway through class we have a 15 minute break. Tonight after break Shula had to come look for her group (the youngsters) as they were all cloistered around Bryce.

Everyday we “do lunch” (taught that in class today) at one of the field worker’s home. We’ve had very American food: lasagna, enchiladas, BBQ chicken. We have dinner after we all teach. The class is from 7-9 pm. Tonight after class we ate at a local spot, Lebanini Snack. It was so exciting to see the night life of Jordan at 10 in the evening. What was so amazing is the english that is on the buildings and the western-style clothing that many people wear. And of course we also saw the traditional clothing for men and women.

I just wanted to LOOK at everything and everyone. I had to keep reminding myself to NOT look the men in the eyes. However, their are times I didn’t want to look and that’s when we are driving. The drivers (natives and American) are scary creatures. If I come home with a hert attack don’t be surprised.

Well, Bryce wants the computer and it is late.

Thanks for your prayers.

God Is In The Anti-Exterminating Business

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I turned in my Old Testament Exam on Thursday.

Studying Kings through Song of Solomon brought me to me knees more than once. I can so identify with the many miss-steps the Israelites took.

  • The many times they turned their back on the One True God and followed their own ways.
  • The many times they acted as if God was nothing more than folklore.

These books show many vivid examples of what happens when man abdicates personal responsibility and how God’s divine initiative keeps His people from exterminating themselves.        

Studying Kings through Song of Solomon brought me to me knees more than once. I am so grateful for the Love that pursued them and me while we were taking those miss-steps.

  • The many times the One True God sought to catch my attention.
  • The many times He showed He was more than enough.

Ponder the following song and allow yourself to be caught by God.

What if you’re right by Nichole Nordeman
He was just another nice guy
What if you’re right
What if it’s true
They say the cross will only make a fool of you
And what if it’s true

What if He takes His place in history
With all the prophets and the kings
Who taught us love, and came in peace
But then the story ends
What then

*But what if you’re wrong
What if there’s more
What if there’s hope you never dreamed of hoping for
What if you jump
Just close your eyes
What if the arms that catch you, catch you by surprise
What if He’s more than enough
What if it’s love

What if you dig
Way down deeper than your simple-minded friends
What if you dig
What if you find
A thousand more unanswered questions down inside
That’s all you find

What if you pick apart the logic
And begin to poke the holes
What if the crown of thorns is no more than folklore that must be told
And retold

*Repeat

‘Cause you’ve been running as fast as you can
You’ve been looking for a place you can land
For so long
But what if you’re wrong

What if you jump
Just close your eyes
What if the arms that catch you, catch you by surprise
What if He’s more than enough
What if it’s love

What if it’s love