Thursday, September 13, 2012

Living on a Prayer

Oh! We’re Half-way there?

3 months (and one week) into my internship. 3 months to go. How strange is that?
For my HNGR mid-internship assessment I had to answer a bunch of questions like “What have you done? What have you learned? How have you grown? What are you goals for the rest of your time? Etc. ”

It was hard to know where to start. Here's a bit of what I've been able to do, by God's grace:

I was able to teach these guys ESL and photography in Phnom Penh...

...and found them facebook stalking me when they were supposed to be out taking photos for a class assignment...

I taught these guys in Kandal...

This is what happened when I told them to do English skits about a day in the life of World Relief and take photos of the skits...

I've become part of a family. They're pretty awesome. 
And part of a church. Yeah...I'm singing in the choir. My host-dad is pastor at the church, and a few WR staff members go there, but I'm the only foreigner, so I stick out sometimes. 
I go on trips on the field to other provinces to gather stories about the people and programs...

Like Hope for Cambodia's Children in Phnom Penh...

Teenager Education in Kandal Province...

Adult Education and cell groups in Kampong Cham...

...and Moringa Agriculture Education in Pursat. 

I've met a lot of beautiful people, and heard their amazing stories. 

 Transportation has always been a bit of an adventure...

...And so has the food. 

What have I learned? Well, lots of little things, like:
1. how to pull of the wings and barbs of a roasted cricket so it doesn’t get caught in your throat when you eat it
2. how to sit on the back of a moto without falling off and how to weave gracefully (ha!) through Phnom Penh traffic

3. How to lock and unlock rusty padlocks through a hole in a gate

4. The importance of ducking every time I enter the house so I don’t bang my head on the ceiling or door.
5. How to cook some Khmer food at home

6. How to communicate with lots of hand gestures and one-word sentences

7. How to be a big sister.

I’ve grown to love a new culture and city and people. I've seen the beauty of this country

And the majesty in this capital city.

I've seen desolate conditions

But also how people are working to bring hope

I've made wonderful friends at work and home and in my Bible study group. 
I’ve learned how much I can do and how little I can do. 
Before coming, I was bracing myself for spiritual warfare, but despite the challenges and questions along the way, I have felt overwhelmed by God's powerful, unconditional love.
Even amid sad, painful, hopeless settings, I'm learning about his amazing love and grace. 
I am learning what true hope is, and am still working through what justice really is.
I am learning the importance of truth, and what that means in this journalistic context. 
I am growing into a more thankful person, I think, and trying to have a mindset that continually looks to God, whether to praise or to question.
 I have fallen many times, but each time I stand back up, I learn something new about the path I am walking on, and the lamp unto my feet.  

As far as goals go, Work: I would love to be able to finish all of these projects for work and for school and be able to produce some quality writing and documentation through them. Language: My church always has a time at the beginning for people to share little testimonies. People always urge me to share something, but even if I had something to say, and was brave enough to stand up there, my Khmer language would fail me. But I want to get to a point in my lessons when I can no longer use that as an excuse. I also would love to be able to do interviews in Khmer, but that might be a stretch.

Life: I hope that I am able to stay fully engaged in this place, especially once my time starts coming to an end, rather than just checking out and looking towards the next new thing. I want to keep working on making roots here, even though every time I put a root down, it gives me both joy and pain at knowing that I have to leave again. I want to love strongly, to continue to feel things deeply rather than becoming apathetic and comfortably numb. I hope to be more open to God in these coming months, listening to His call with obedience and passion. 

And I do want to be living on a prayer--conversing with God with every single breath I take, giving glory to Him through every activity and decision. 

1 comment:

  1. (A) You are in the church choir??!!
    (B) I love your midget bike.
    (C) I LOVE the picture of you with your little bro and sis. :)