We are in Kenya for a youth camp, and today is New Year’s Eve. In fact, in 10 minutes, it will be 2012 here.
Like most moms, I pack my purse with everything but the kitchen sink when I travel. I want to be prepared for all situations. My kids, on the other hand, think about nothing in advance.
So, today, we decided to go into town and find the used clothing market to get some of the things they need, since it’s so much cooler here. Karis needed a couple of long sleeve shirts and some jeans that actually fit her. Kylie needed some jeans, also, since her legs and feet are gaining on mine at a rapidly increasing pace. And Caleb needed some socks because his feet have been freezing, and a belt for the new jeans I bought him last week in the clothing market where I live in Uganda.
This was one of the largest used clothing markets I had ever seen. Aisle upon aisle of clothes EVERYWHERE. I didn’t know where to start, but thankfully, we had hitched a ride to town with some friends in their car, and the lady we were with was a pretty confident shopper, so she led the way.
Back to my “everything but the kitchen sink.” My purse is my backpack. My dad gave it to me before we left America, and it can carry a ton.
In it is three card games that I carry because we do a lot of “waiting” for things in Africa, and card games are always a good entertainment.
I ALWAYS carry kleenexes and allergy medicine (if you know me at all), and today I had ibuprofen, nose spray, and a ziplock full of bandaids (because Caleb is my son). Also along the lines of “health care,” I also have a jar of Mentholatum, two chapsticks, and some wonderful Mary Kay lip gloss.
I also have the book I am trying to finish so I can turn it back into the resource center in Nairobi. And since I love to read, I have my Kindle (yeah!), my Bible (which my Dad gave me back in 1989, and it has 20+ years worth of notes in it), and my devotional, Jesus Calling.
Of course, there is the standard wallet with my TX driver’s license, Uganda driver’s license, debit cards, store cards, etc.
I also like to dream up blogs. So I’ve been carrying around my “prison notebook” recently, because it has all the ladies prayer requests and the fun things I hear and see there, and when I have some time, I like to write out some blogs.
Two other favorite things are my ipod and my camera. You might think my backpack is pretty heavy. And you would be right.
When I fly, my computer is in there, too, so it can really be back-breaking at times.
With MANY people around the clothing market today, some joker popped the lock on our friend’s car, grabbed my backpack and took off…and no one saw a thing. My "pen pocket" had been open, so my plethora of writing utensils (also a weakness of mine), had all spilled out, so that is all I have left.
I don’t know what it is about Kenya. In Uganda, that guy would have been chased and beaten by a mob, but here…"no one saw a thing."
The first things I remembered were my Kindle and my ipod, and I was sad, but not distraught. As things came to me, I was a little overwhelmed, but when I remembered my Bible, I broke down in tears.
My three sweet children started crying, too. Caleb looked at me with his chin quivering, and said, “But Mommy, God still loves you.”
I told them that God tells us in His Word to give thanks for all things, so even though I didn’t know why this had happened, He did, and I needed to be okay with that.
The only other thing that Caleb reminded me about later that night was the glo-sticks I had brought them for New Year’s. They were in the bag, too.
I told you I carry everything.
I’ve been pondering all the many notes, underlines, thoughts, and insights God has given me over the past 20 years, and it breaks my heart to have lost all that. I have a small photographic memory, so I could also tell you where on a page a verse was found, etc. I was so comfortable with that friend, and now I’ll have to make a new one.
You can join me in praying for the person that has my Bible. He/she was created by God, too, and I can only hope that he or someone else will benefit from the Word like I have.
This is kind of sad New Year’s for me in that respect, but I am reminded I have a faith that can never be stolen. Jesus is still on His throne, and He has many more new insights to share with me in the years to come, and I will look at His Word with fresh eyes in 2012 (whenever I can get a new Bible sent).
“Our God is greater, our God is stronger. God, You are higher than any other!
Our God is healer, awesome in power, our God, our God.”
Happy New Year’s!!!