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Showing posts from May, 2010

Alabama in a box.

Knowing that there is a package from my family in transit always reminds of waiting on Christmas when I was little. It usually takes about a month and my dad is about ready to burst by the time it gets here.

Each box has things that I've mentioned would be good to have. This particular box asked for a Bible, some corn starch (to make really fun gooey stuff with my kids), some vitamins for some of the children I know here and some seeds to plant in our tiny balcony garden. Aside from that I knew some other things that would be in there but the rest were surprises.

I was surprised when I opened it and found 2 of my favorite dresses, my chacos, a new really cool pair of sneakers from my sister, muffin mixes, honey roasted crunchy peanut butter, GRAVY mix and bacon...a plethora of the kind of bacon you find that's already pre-cooked. There was also some mail...an Auburn Alum brochure (sad) and a letter from my compassion child, Wilber that he signed himself!

I think I must have nea…

come Lord Jesus and take your place

Jesus, we enthrone you
we proclaim you are king
standing here, in the midst of all
we raise you with our praise

and as we worship fill the throne
Come Lord Jesus and take your place

Есүс бидний хаан минь ээ
энэ газар ирээч
хаан ширээнд залраач эзэн минь
магтаалыг хүлээн авна үү
их эзэнээ магтан дүүлцгаая
их эзэнээ өргөн хүн дэлцгээе
хаан болсон Есүс их эзэн минь
хааны сүүдлаас буднийг захираач

These are the words to my current praise song that we sing here. In Mongolian and in English.

I love the last part..."Come Lord Jesus and take your place." If only our lives could lend themselves to putting Jesus in the place He belongs. What a praise that would be to Him.

mighty rushing wind.

I don't have too many distinct memories of Pentecost before today. I mean I've always known the day and what it meant but it isn't often a widely celebrated day. The one other memory I have is from when I was a freshman at Auburn, at Sunday Night Worship for the Wesley Foundation. I remember someone cut out little tongues of fire and had them blown down from big fans in the balcony.

But yesterday--this Pentecost--was different. I started the day like this:

And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting... [acts 2.2]

Each Sunday morning I help lead Sunday School for a Kindergarten class. Our classroom is a small ger. When I woke up in the morning, I could already hear the wind. By the time we arrived at church, in our small ger, it was even stronger. You could hear the wind all around. We were sharing wooshing, violent, rushing wind sounds with the children like we imagined it was on that morning …

it lies beyond us.

It helps, now and then, to step back and take a long view. The kingdom is not only beyond our efforts, it is even beyond our vision. We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is God's work.

Nothing we do is complete, which is a way of saying that the kingdom always lies beyond us.

No statement says all that could be said.

No prayer fully expresses our faith.

No confession brings perfection.

No pastoral visit brings wholeness.

No program accomplishes the church's mission.

No set of goals and objectives includes everything.

This is what we are about.

We plant the seeds that one day will grow.

We water seeds already planted, knowing that they hold future promise.

We lay foundations that will need further development.

We provide yeast that produces far beyond our capabilities.

We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that. This enables us to do something, and to do it very well. It may be incomplete, but it is a beginn…

25 cent tour.

Please allow me to paint you a Mongolian picture.

Peace Avenue is the main road running through the city. Naturally so, when I want to go sit somewhere to read on a beautiful day like today, I need to travel this oh-so-busy road.

So imagine, this road with me. It all starts here... "I need to go to the Post Office" or "I want to look for some new white board markers" or "Let's go sit and read at Cafe Amsterdam" or any other thought that might go through your mind. 9 times out of 10, you need to go down Peace Avenue for all your desires. There are countless schools, The Wrestling Palace, The State Department Store, Sukhbaatar Square (the main square downtown), restaurants, a Louis Vuitton store (necessity, right? not for me), the main Post Office for the country, etc. You name it, it's on Peace Avenue.

Along with all these places, there is the public transportation system. Now there is the picture's center piece...the transportation system and me.…

wherever you are.

“You can never go home again, but the truth is you can never leave home, so it’s all right.” –Maya Angelou

Today, right now, this is my home. I love making places feel like home. Mongolia is my home today but I have many homes.

On another, slightly related, note, I am reading Ecclesiastes right now and I really like this:

"He has made everything beautiful in its time...I perceive that there is nothing better for [us] than to be joyful and to do good as long as [we] live." -Ecclesiastes 3:11a, 12
We need nothing more than to be joyful. We shouldn't long for other homes or places. We can learn to be present and at home wherever we are because the Lord is with us.
Home and joy are things we can take with us wherever we are.

free hugs.

Today, as I was walking downtown I ran into this group of girls in the town's square giving out free hugs.
I immediately thought of my friend, Ross, and when he had a "free hugs" day on the Concourse at Auburn, University. It was a beautiful day and a lot of fun.

I gave them a big hug and told them about my friend, Ross, and how everyone thought it was really fun and nice. The girls knew enough English to have a short conversation with me but I think they really wanted to get back to hugging.
I asked them if it was the first time they had ever done that and they said yes. They said they thought it was the first time for "free hugs" in Mongolia. Which I thought was pretty cool.
I think the most beautiful part about it is that right now is tourist season here. Starting May 1st I've seen more tourists than I've seen in the 6 months I've been here. So, whether or not they meant for their "free hugs" day to be in tourist season or not, it still w…

seedlings.

We've become quite the trash-to-treasure people here. We have a big box of milk and juice cartons, cereal boxes, egg cartons, toilet paper rolls, glass jars, tin cans and many other curious items. I'm always trying to figure out new things to make for and with my students. So, after Erin and I planted some seeds that her mom had sent us a while ago--I decided to try it out with my students. 
We used these egg cartons as seed starters. We planted some vegetables and flowers. We're going to be measuring the growth of our plants and hopefully planting them in the garden, that our church has, when they get big enough. 
Planting seeds and saving our "trash" are just some of the beautiful ways we have a blessed life, here. It's life-giving to use, grow and share things with one another. 
Life here is sweet and good. 
It is good to taste of the Lord's goodness, especially with my brothers and sisters.