I would have kept going with the blog title, but I don't know to spell anything in German without google, and it is too late to look anything up because I'm leaving for two weeks in the morning and haven't packed yet.
The whole family is off to Thailand - I'm there for a week of ServLife meetings and a week of the beach, while Amy and Vusi get two weeks of beach time. Of course, we live across the street from the beach, but our beach is crazy cold, so this is a treat. The 14 hour plane trip, 6 hour layover, and 2 hour plane trip after that might not be a treat, but the result is. Wish us well.
I rarely blog from home, so who knows if I'll blog from the road. To keep you occupied, watch this video every day until I return. :)
As I continue cleaning out my "should blog this" folder, I noticed quite a few interesting ideas on the general theme of Jesus/People Who Like Jesus/Things People Say About Jesus, etc. Here are a handful of Jesus-related shoulda bloggeds...
Rev. Jin Mingri peered out from the pulpit and delivered an unusual appeal: "Please leave," the 39-year-old pastor commanded his followers, who were packed, standing-room-only on a Sunday afternoon, into a converted office space in China's capital. "We don't have enough seats for the others who want to come, so, please, only stay for one service a day."
There you go - six links worth clicking if you're interested in Jesus-related topics. Each worthy of a long-winded blog post that never happened. :)
When one blogs as sporadically as I do, one is bound to have tons of ideas for blog posts that never made it online. Lucky you, I've decided to post again - but the cheap and easy way by clearing out my blog idea folder. It is a very big folder that only grows and never shrinks... here is one small step toward the shrink.
A short article on controversial "slum tourism" in Kenya. This hits us as well - we don't take visitors to the shacks, slums, and townships "just to look." Well meaning, kind hearted, caring people want to see what it looks like in the informal settlements, but it's hard to find a way to let them know that it isn't cool to drive through and look at poverty. Another dilemma.
I found the rejesus "Faces of Jesus" gallery fascinating, which led me to plan to explore the rejesus site. Turns out I never did that, although I was interested enough to plan to do it and then blog about it. So maybe someone out there will figure out what rejesus is all about and let me know. Thanks.
Seriously, that didn't make a dent in my "want to blog about" pile. And that pile doesn't even include actual original ideas, which is a whole separate pile that I keep avoiding because you'll all be mad at me when you find out what I really think. :)
Which leads to this question - did anyone actually read anything linked in this post? If so, what? And why did you choose that link? I'd love to know, because I'd like some help rethinking this blog. Until then, I'll just keep digging through that folder of old ideas that never made the cut.
It has been a month and seven days since my last post on this lonely blog. In case you were wondering, based on my last post, I'm actually back from Zimbabwe. Have been for a while.
A lot has happened in a month and seven days. Speaking of Zimbabwe, there is a new "unity government" with power shared between Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF party that has been in government since 1980 and the two factions of the MDC. The MDC party(ies) holds an extra seat in Cabinet and the majority in Parliament, but no one believes Mugabe is down and out. We are hopeful that a new era has begun in Zimbabwe, but in any case, this welcome news is just the beginning of long road toward recovery. Keep up with Zimbabwe here.
On the home front, we've been busy with preparing for new business skills training, this time with a local partner. The sponsorships and Kids' Clubs in South Africa are on track, again, with local churches involved, and we're busy planning another Umzimba African Missional Theology Conference for July... yes, led, taught, and developed by local pastors and leaders. In South Africa, they say "local is lekker," and we believe that's true. Whatever we can do to empower and equip local churches to lead the way toward growing churches and sustainable development, we will do.
ServLife is growing. We have new staff in Indianapolis HQ supporting us and a new West Coast coordinator. This is exciting, and we are off to Thailand next week for a time of team building and strategic planning with ServLife team members from Asia and the USA.
Vusi is growing too. Seriously, he's the world's biggest and cutest baby. We can't believe how blessed we are to be his parents. He is a great gift, and we love him like crazy. Don't know if it will be before we get back from Thailand, but I'll post some pictures. You'll agree - he's off-the-charts cute.
And my parents are in town. To prove it, I'm posting a picture of my Mom that I took on my cell phone. Mostly, I'm just posting that to get her back for nagging about my lack of blogging. Love you Mom! Great to have them around, just hanging out, getting to know Vusi (and spoiling him, of course!), and helping out. They've been to all the tourist hot spots before, so this has been a great trip for Gram and Pop to spend time with their newest grandson.
Finally, I'm a little unsure about the direction this blog should take in the future. It has gotten pretty stale of late, with a few personal updates, a few ministry updates, and lots of links to information about Africa that you probably didn't read. Hmmm... this question is still rumbling around in my brain, so stay tuned.
Thanks to both of you, dear readers, for sticking around. We'll see if we can't spruce this blog up in the coming months. :)