In Ten Weeks

I’ve just ended my first ten weeks in the USA.

Wow.

In some ways ten weeks seems like such a short time, but in other ways it’s been forever. I’ve learned soooo much. Except for two more tests, I’m basically done with my first semester of nursing school, which is traditionally the first year of nursing school! That’s a lot of info crammed into one brain during one summer. But I should be able to draw your blood, insert and IV into your arm, put and NG tube down your nose and insert a Foley catheter and…. we’ll just stop there. We’ve been learning how to think as a nurse, how to assess, and how to hold our bladders for hours and hours on end. This is important stuff, friends!

But I think that I’ve learned much more in the non-school realm. I’ve learned a lot about people, I’ve made so many good friends in this program, and that’s a good thing because we’re stuck together for the next 15 months.

_MG_2350I’ve learned a lot about my faith, and about how powerful it is, and how desperately others need it. I’ve learned about the Love of God and how rich and measureless it is. I’ve learned that the power of truth is something to not ever be forgotten, and to always be pursued.

I’ve learned about how purposeful life lived joyfully can be. It’s glorious.

I’ve learned how precious the Word of God is, in ways I never thought I would.

I’ve learned how faithful a provider God is, and how He meets my needs in the most incredible ways, sometimes by not actually meeting my physical needs, because that’s when I really know what I need.

10 weeks. 10 full-to-bursting weeks. I wonder what the next will hold?

He is good. He is so good to me.

Pretzels in Hohhot

Lily had a hankering for pretzels. So what did my ingenious sisters (with the the help of some bigger people, I assume) do? They made soft pretzels. By hand. And Naomi took pictures…

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I’m pretty impressed – how about you?

The wonderful thing about living overseas and without access to many things, is that you’re forced to do things the hard way and the fun way. Like lasagna. Who is going to make it from total scratch, I mean, really? Are you going to make your own ricotta cheese and roll out your own noodles and make your own tomato sauce? My mom does that… (she’s amazing) but she doesn’t do it because she just loves making ricotta cheese, she does it because if she wants ricotta she’s got to make ricotta. And so, pretzels… they are something we don’t have at all in China. So, if you want them, you’ve gotta make ’em. And being forced to turn a treat into an adventure… sometimes that’s the best part of the whole delicious experience.

In other news…

Jeremy and I have this thing worked out with the car, these days, where I use it on the weekends and he gets it Tuesday-Friday so that he can drive to his classes. There’s only one street that we know of with free parking, and it’s over a mile from the nursing school. So, some mornings at around 7am my time, I give the family a call on my cell phone, and my mom picks up. Crazy, right? Here I am, jaunting about on the streets of Richmond, chatting on my cell phone to my mom in Inner Mongolia. This morning she answered her phone on her way out the door. We chatted for over half an hour as she watched the girls play games outside on a cool summer evening in Hohhot.

I love this crazy life.

(but I miss them so terribly much)

Thankfully, Naomi is bearing the role of Family Photographer incredibly well.

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Lily is busy being Lily. And she’s good at it. Jeremy and I were having a Frozen sing-a-long in the car the other day, just the two of us, because we kind of miss our little sisters a lot. (in case you were wondering, singing Frozen doesn’t really help… it kind of makes the missing-little-sister-ache worse.)

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And then Ben? He’s in Taiwan; singing, dancing, wrangling children, writing, posing, teaching… I’m not sure what he’s not doing. He just finished up and English camp with the folks he’s working with. Check out the video! Ben pops up quite a few times throughout.

And me? I’m busy studying for my final finals. Just a quiz and two tests and I’m done with this semester! It’s been an amazing semester and I’ve learned more than I thought was possible. God really has a purpose and a plan for me here and I’m loving the process of discovering His plan for me.

Sunday {7.19.2015}

” if the Lord of Glory took a towel and knelt on the floor to wash the dusty feet of His disciples… then no work, even the relentless and often messy routine of caring for squalling babies, is demeaning. To offer it up to the Lord of Glory transforms it into a holy task… It is not the business of the servant to decide which work is great, which is small, which important or unimportant — he is not greater than his master.” Elisabeth Elliot A Chance to Die

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From prayer that asks that I may be
Sheltered from the winds that beat on Thee,
From fearing when I should aspire,
From faltering when I should climb higher,
From silken self, O Captain, free
They soldier who would follow Thee.

 
From subtle love of softening things,
From easy choices, weakenings,
(Not thus are spirits fortified,
Not this way went the Crucified,)
From all that dims Thy Calvary,
O Lamb of God, deliver me.

 
Give me the love that leads the way,
The faith that nothing can dismay
The hope hope no disappointments tire
The passion that will burn like fire,
Let me not sink to be a clod:
Make me Thy fuel, Flame of God.
-Amy Carmichael

 

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“I have just put my soul as a blank into the hand of Jesus, my Redeemer, and desired Him to write on it what He pleases; I know it will be His image.” -George Whitefield

 “And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 35 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it. 36 For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? 37 For what can a man give in return for his soul? 38 For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” And he said to them, “Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the kingdom of God after it has come with power.” (Mark 8:34-9:1)
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“4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Philippians 2:4-11)

Precious Cross //Mandarin Hymn//

This is always playing on repeat, here for me.

Precious Cross…. oh, the precious cross.

The lyrics go:

Jesus Christ, I thank you
Your body was given for me
You took me out of darkness and into a kingdom of light
Now I can see again

Lord Jesus, I thank Thee
Your blood was poured out for me
Healing grace was poured out from the cross
Now I am totally free

The power of the precious cross is my life
Lord Jesus, I fall down and worship Thee
The salvation of your cross is the covenant
Your love will never change

The song is available on iTunes and if you love to have beautiful praises of Jesus playing in your home, I highly recommend this hymn. “宝贵十架”

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