Sometimes I forget we live in Africa. Transplanted from Southwest Colorado to Kisumu, Kenya over 4 years ago, life here is our current “normal.” Monkeys, enormous lizards and green mambas visit our compound regularly, and I’m not surprised. Extreme poverty exists just outside our gate, and we found ways to truly help without feeling disturbing sadness. We clean water regularly, smile through police check points, sleep under mosquito nets, spend large amounts of time behind locked security fences, communicate in broken Swahili, embrace victimized mamas and vulnerable children. That’s our average day. Then there are moments I recall living in USA as if it were just yesterday... I want to drive on the other side of the road, drink a glass of tap water, devour delicious Italian food and escape the intense destitution surrounding me…
We are “inbetween” two worlds, both vastly different but each being a huge part of us.
Sometimes I imagine what it would be like to join them together - San Juan Mountains saddled up against Lake Victoria; barbecued elk with a side of ugali under swaying palms by a clear cold creek; feathery snow covering the hot, dusty Kondele slum in crystal white; friends and family of various shades, from different cultures enjoying sincere fellowship. Guess I’m imagining heaven… well, minus the ugali!
One of the biggest challenges of living “inbetween” is not the peculiar foods, new languages, diverse perspectives, or risky environment, but communicating experiences among our host country and passport country. With valid reasons, each side cannot sincerely understand our lives; some pieces will stay “just ours” regardless of how hard we try to interact.
When isolation engulfs me in toilsome conditions, I’m reminded of Jesus as He prepared to go to the cross. How many times did He tell His disciples about the journey of suffering that lay ahead? How could they really understand? His words filtered through their personal thoughts and ambitions. None understood till much later, after their “eyes were opened.” Although my trials don’t compare, I sense a longing to bond with friends when aching fills the soul.
We all go through deep difficulties that feel impossible to share. Everyone everywhere nurses those challenging paths that are “just theirs.” No amount of reaching out can bring others in, except One – the One who endured all. He offers help through it all. Walking with Jesus across unavoidable deserts, desolate of relief, can create pools for intimate healing. His presence brings sweet redemption, complete restoration. It’s a journey where Jesus belongs. He transforms loneliness to hope. He fills the "inbetween."
To our dear friends, family, prayer partners and supporters, we remain grateful for your time spent reading our updates, your listening ear tuned to Holy Spirit’s promptings, your generous hearts to remember us. May the Lord bless your kindness. As we live “inbetween,” it’s good to know we belong to a collection of people who might not fully understand our life overseas, but encourage us to pursue it.
|This African eagle make a nest in our mango tree.|
|Kitty left the green mamba without a head at our door.|
|Nyalenda slum down the road from us.|
|No more street eating.|
|Home in the slum.|
|A impromptu futbal game with locals.|
|A favorite place to just be still.|
1. That our new adoption court date - Nov. 5 - will bring victorious finalization.
2. Adoption paperwork would process quickly and travel documents will appear without unnecessary complications.
3. Ministry will transfer to the Resource Center smoothly.
4. The mamas will continue to grow spiritually, prosper in businesses and share testimonies in their communities.
5. That orphaned and abandoned children will receive good care and adoption will resume in Kenya.
6. Safety, provision and wisdom for our family.
Asante sana for your prayers, support and encouragement.
hugs from the haugers Ooo0o