Monday, November 22, 2010

Sometimes you don't choose your ministry

When I first saw this frighteningly sketchy unfinished school chapel building 2 years ago, I said to a teammate, “wow, I'm sure glad I'm not responsible for that building!”
Now, through a series of events and one change of heart, I find myself the sole design professional responsible for presenting an analysis and course of action to the school board. How did this happen?

The eyesore – I mean, chapel - is on the campus of the neighborhood school, where our son Jonathan attends Kindergarten. EMI came to be involved in this project when our office was recently challenged to be more involved in our community, ministering to the needs of our immediate neighbors rather than heeding only the call of far-flung ministries around East Africa. We took our first step in this direction when we partnered with the local police in the design of a police post down the street from the office.

Originally I let my own pride inhibit me from even considering extending a hand to the school. It's a risky project! Are we willing to own that project and stake our (and my) reputation on it? Thankfully my colleague helped remind me that we aren't doing these projects for ourselves – they're for others. And we're not meant to honor ourselves in them – we're meant to honor our Father. I thank God for that reminder and pray that I can humbly own this chapel project and do my best for Him.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Start Your Day with Prayer

One of the best things about my work with EMI is that we start our days with prayer. Every morning we gather under this gazebo and read a portion of scripture, collect our thoughts and prayer requests, and pray. It is surprising how powerfully this focuses our work on our Father, binds us together in unity, and empowers our ministry.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Trampoline : 1, Jonathan : 0

"What happened to your arm, buddy?"

"My Dad kicked me off the trampoline."

It is true, and Phil felt terrible. He was attempting a front flip, but rather than landing it, his feet ended up horizontal, kicking Jonathan with just enough force to knock him off balance...and off the 4 foot trampoline to the concrete step below.

A trip to the clinic for x-rays confirmed that his wrist was fractured. The total bill for Dr's consult, x-rays, and cast was about $37. Nice. We were able to email pictures of Jonathan's x-rays to Phil's Dad who is an orthopedic surgeon working in Kenya (Tenwek Hospital). He informed us that it was a very minor fracture and that 2 weeks in cast was plenty.

Jonathan really loved getting the x-ray pictures of his arm (his bedtime prayer that night was that he would be able to get another one really soon), and in spite of the discomfort, I think he secretly liked all the attention and the novelty of having a broken arm. And as a side note: you will be happy to know that Phil has now totally mastered the front flip.