Sunday, December 25, 2011


This morning, I was washing up some pots and pans that the dishwasher couldn't handle and as I stood at the sink, with hot water running, I was thinking of my dear friend, Sukai. I was wondering this morning how she and James and their children were celebrating. Across the globe, my friends are at the close of Christmas day, just as we begin ours. I can only come up with gratitude for the lessons that the Tembo family have taught me. Start with what you have. Give to others. Love deeply. We take so very much for granted on our side of the ocean. Like running water. That's hot. I've so much to learn.

I'm thankful for every reminder. Even when it hurts.

There won't be snow in Africa this Christmas time.
The greatest gift they'll get this year is life.
Where nothing ever grows.
No rain or rivers flow.
Do they know it's Christmas time at all?

This song just pinches my heart...because the statistics have become faces and the faces are those of ones we Dorothea, Joshua and Eva.

One of the biggest realizations I had while in Africa and upon my return was how we give out of our excess, and we evaluate our ability to give based on those parameters. In Africa, many give out of their incredibly limited resources and the only evaluation they base it on is need...whose is greater, whose survival depends on it. Even in our attempts to pare down the gift giving and re-prioritize Christmas...we still are excessive. I just keep reminding myself that the greatest gift we're giving our kids this year was not under the's across the ocean, a long bus ride and a muddy dirt road into a shanty town filled with familiar faces and open arms, singing and tears, children and old women...and I can not wait.

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