Tuesday, July 1, 2014

The simple and the holy

An update from Kristy
Kristy is a Blacksburg native and U of Richmond graduate currently living in Blacksburg.

"Good morning all!

We arrived safely in Nairobi last night after the shortest layover in history-- an outright sprint as we caught our connecting flight in London (of course security saw fit to empty at least two of our backpacks as we were passing through!) Unfortunately, not all our bags caught the flight, so we will be having those delivered to the border where we hope to catch them today before crossing into Tz.

We already feel blessed by local believers who are driving us about, and another family which is letting us use their guest house...we were welcomed by chai tea and the Costa Rica/Greece game on -- which I may or may not have stayed up to watch :) it's wonderful to sleep horizontally, and have this place to snatch one last hot shower and access to wireless. By tonight we will be at City of Hope and less able to keep up with email :) There's also a cold snap here in Nairobi, so we are keeping warm. Jeans AND a skirt, thank you very much!

So tomorrow we really begin our time here in earnest. I'm excited for what is in front of us. Yesterday on the plane I watched the Secret Life of Walter Mitty for the first time (spoiler alert). It's a story about a man who had to abandon his dreams for himself in favor of supporting his widowed mother and sister. He works for Life magazine in a dark lower room, processing the photos of those who are "really out there" experiencing life. The movie follows Walter as he tries to find a photographer with a missing negative--the photographer's master work. As you might expect, Walter has many adventures "out there" in pursuit of his friend. He loses his job over the pursuit, becomes a capable mountain man, etc. He gains confidence and relational "weight", sure. But the missing negative was not some elaborate plan by the photographer to help Walter find himself--it was an honest mistake as he had slid the negative into a wallet as a gift to Walter (cute, right?), a wallet which W had thrown out in a fit of disillusionment on his journey. In the end it turns out the wallet is rescued from the kitchen trash by none other than Walter's mom, his plain Jane faithful mom. And what was the master work of this world premier photographer? A portrait of Walter himself, taken from distance as he sat outside his work puzzling over a sheet of photo negatives. That's the master work...Walter in his daily life. And that is what I've realized we are pursuing here. Tanzania is not the proverbial mountain, mission here is not about some grand plan of our making. Rather, it's to see the sacred in the daily..that the daily IS sacred.

It's how God has designed us. We are eternal souls meshed with these wonderfully humble, physical, daily lives. And as we go to humble ourselves, to embrace the daily in all it's simplicity, I think we are going to experience the holy. We will experience the image of God in those we meet and walk together with them as we study what Jesus meant when he said he brought us life to the full. It's not mountain climbing that is the full life, it's going to be found in the daily. And we lean in to seeing our God there this month.

Hope to talk to you soon :) much love!!

Kristy, for all of us"

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