As we continue to learn lingala this helpful phrase pops up from time to time. It means Where are you going or where did you go? I am sure many of you are asking that same question. Wegners, okei wapi? Even across the miles I am hearing that question being asked of us.
Well it’s been over a year since we “went” to the Congo and even since we “went” to Impfondo. God has blessed us with a good adjustment in this first year and it’s been neat to see how he has strengthened not only our relationship with Him but with each other as well. But we have each “gone” in other ways as well.
Anna went back to school with the kids in October (the Congolese school year is October through June) and things are going pretty well. The courses are a little harder for both Ian and Isabelle but they are hanging in there. Caleb told me that his first day of school was “amazing” and he still enjoys doing it a lot. Anna has also gone a lot with various short term visitors to make sure they are feeling welcomed and have what they need to adjust to life here in Impfondo.
Isabelle goes to play with some girls of our nursing supervisor here and is using her French and picking up lingala pretty well.
Ian went up in a tree almost a month ago and then had a nasty fall that resulted in a mild concussion and a broken arm (we think since we don’t have xray in town right now) and now a cast for the arm.
I’ve been going to the hospital a lot and continued to get pulled and stretched both in my medical knowledge and in my faith. We continue to do the best we have with what we have. We continually need more nurses to carry the load for us and that is about to get worse when a couple of people who have been helping us out this year return to the states in December. We are also struggling to get official government approval to open our nursing school. There is a lot of duplication in the bureaucracy and so we get conflicting reports as to our prognosis and timing of the opening.
Also our family just went to Brazzaville for a bit of a vacation and to pick up Anna’s brother, John, from the airport. He is coming to spend a month with us.
But the prhase “okei wapi” makes me think of something more poignant as well.
Recently we had a child who came in pretty sick. He had malaria in his brain, was having seizures and was unresponsive. Despite all our efforts the child died. As the wailing began I picked out a question that the mom was screaming. Okei wapi, my child, okei wapi? Where did you go my child where did you go?
Even in the midst of my own pain and frustration I caught that phrase and the more it resonated in my mind the more I thought that the question is a pretty good one. Where am I going now? Am I going further from God or closer to God? Since the child was in a coma when he came in and I am not sure if he has heard what God has done for him I am not sure where he went either. I know at least where I am going when I die. How about you? How about your neighbors?
We hope all of you are going in the right direction as we enter Christmas season. We invite you to continue to pray for us.
Praise God for his protection in our lives
Praise God for the gift of His Son.
Pray for nurses for the hospital. We need more, and for the strength for the ones we have
Pray for a Congolese friend for Ian
Pray for traveling safety.
Thanks again for all everyone is doing to aid God’s work here in Impfondo.