Emily does not know that I am writing this update. In recent months she has been the lead writer and primary filter for any of my stories. Apparently I am not as funny nor as seemly as I think I am. (She has vetoed some hilarious content- ask me about it later).
Editorial disagreements notwithstanding, I have taken it upon myself to hijack this newsletter for the sole purposes of demonstrating how the ladies in my life are growing and thriving in Ethiopia. Emily would not approve of such attention, but I cannot contain my joy.
What follows are not systematic lists nor are they exclusive traits– merely biased fragments from an thankful insider.
- Steam rolling out of the bathroom and the smell of the morning’s brew, she is the first to greet a new day.
- Gripping the trucker-like wheel of our 27-year-old diesel-clacking van brimming with neighborhood children, she leans into the crazy adventure of another drive to school.
- Planning the success of others in her Bingham Academy room, she stretches the meaning of the word “part-time.”
- Circle after circle on evening walks– the reports of anonymous children, growing as readers leap into our conversations.
- Rarely finishing a movie because there is always baking, walking, visiting, planning, and of course READING to be done.
- Responding to stress she reaches for her Bible more often than her Kleenex.
- Quick claps and a bright bounce at the lighting of a Yankee Candle or the sound of a James Taylor Christmas song.
- My sole complaint is the pace at which she exercises. I can barely keep up with this high-altitude runner.
“Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Pr 31:29
PRAY FOR EMILY: That she finishes strong at Bingham Academy. Also that she is able to find a Reading Specialist position near Lancaster, PA for next year.
- an organizational genius, she has everything in it’s proper place–one of the few who can itemize our craft closet.
- peering at her purple watch, she announces the time– we must not be late.
- with the confidence of a leader she is the first to go in, out, up, down, and through just about anything (unless that “through” is the shower curtain. Her sisters should have that honor first).
- an aspiring baker, one of my dress shirts has been cut, sewn, and repurposed into a homemade apron.
- her “why” questions are not whiny requests but inquiries of a girl hungry to know more.
- belting out worship songs on Sunday morning with the best of them.
- quick to pray, eager to obey, and unashamed of her faith.
- never too cool for a hug and still at home in my lap.
“Sing to the LORD a new song; sing to the LORD, all the earth.” Ps 96:1
- an explosion of creativity- a trail of markers, glue, scrap paper, string, tape, and beads lead us to her current workspace.
- a blossoming sense of humor and ever quickening wit keep dinner from being boring.
- the inventor of backyard mint perfume.
- like her older sister the “why” questions are meaningful and at times heart-wrenching – “Why is that beggar a beggar?”
- part-time choreographer and impromptu play producer we are frequently treated to her latest creation.
- a climber of all things tall from trees to daddies.
- quick to remind us if we have forgotten a bedside prayer or good night kiss.
“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Is 46:10
- Morning till night, from pillow to pillow, she explodes through her day in high gear.
- neither dining room chairs, nor bathtubs, nor the blankets on the bed can contain her.
- there need not be music for one to dance.
- contorting her face to elastic shapes of impossibility, her emotions are evident to all.
- running back to the house for spare change, a bread run is quickly redefined as an opportunity to love others.
- there need not be a reason for one to skip and hop.
- liberal with her candy, she is the year round Santa of the neighborhood.
- “Who will pray for dinner?” I ask. “Ooooh- Me Me Me” she exclaims.
“The LORD your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.” Ze. 3:17
Pray for the Girls: That they grow into young women who love God and others with excellence. For their transition back to the States and all it involves this coming summer.