Maybe some of you are vaguely familiar with what Eric and I do to keep ourselves busy. But when someone recently asked me what our weeks look like I thought that it would also make a fun blog post! So here it is:
Sundays: Our local church, New Life Presbyterian Church, meets for Sunday school and worship on our compound. Kids start coming as early as 8 am, but the services start at 9:30. Eric and Pastor Charles Magala and sometimes Paul Magala (Charles' son who recently graduated from African Bible University) take turns leading Sunday school and preaching. Every first Sunday of the month we celebrate the Lord's Supper and share a fellowship lunch together. Then in the late afternoon we let the church kids come play for a bit and then we have a circle time with them, where we review what the sermon and Sunday school were about, Eric reads Bible stories to them, we sing together and we pray together. We also give each of the kids a sweet. It's a really fun time with all the kids. We usually have about 40-50 kids.
Mondays: Monday is Daddy's day off. It is truly a blessed time of rest after the busy weekend and before the week begins. Sometimes there are projects to do around the house. Sometimes we play games or go swimming or go hiking. But it's always a great day to be together. We don't do school on Mondays.
Tuesdays: Our week begins...like most peoples' Mondays, our Tuesdays can sometimes be crazy and have a rocky start to them, but ya know...we push through. Early Tuesday morning I meet with other missionary wives at a local restaurant for a prayer breakfast. That time has been a huge blessing! Then the kids and I begin our school week and Eric begins his week at Knox Theological College. Now that Pastor Charles Jackson is here, he and Eric will be splitting up the teaching (or maybe they will end up teaching some classes simultaneously as attendance as the college is only increasing). The courses are taught in 3 week blocks: one class, that meets 4 hours a day, for 3 weeks. Pastor Charles just wrapped up a course on Christian Ethics, so while he was teaching Eric was working in the office doing various administration and PR tasks. Now Eric is teaching a course on Old Testament prophets. Tuesday is also shopping day for me...one of my bi-weekly trips into town. And Tuesday afternoon, Eric teaches our kids PE. What a blessing it is to have Daddy doing this! He plays football (soccer) with them for a while and then opens up the compound to the neighbor kids (mostly church kids) to join in.
Wednesdays: Today is Eric's turn to meet with other missionary men in town for prayer breakfast. Again, a huge blessing! We have school at home and Daddy is usually at KTC. Often when Eric comes home, he has many people that need to see him about this, that and the other. Some days there is hardly anyone, but some days our outside banda is full of people needing him. In the afternoon, the girls have ballet class. A local missionary is teaching them and quite a number of girls. They love it! Wednesday afternoon at 5, we have church prayer time. It is mostly attended by kids, but what a huge blessing it has been. These kids have really learned to pray through prayers of Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving and Supplication. It has been encouraging too, because sometimes kids will ask for prayer that they would be more gentle or more kind and then over the months we have seen God answer those prayers. We see signs of growth in their walks with God and it is a joy to see him work!
Thursdays: Again, school for us at home and work for Daddy at KTC. Thursday is also our date day. We try really hard to go out for a meal, be it breakfast, lunch or supper...depending on what else is going on that day. It is so important for married couples to guard their marriages and strengthen them...especially on the mission field. Satan wants nothing more than to disturb our work here. Often the best way he can do that is to get into our lives via our parenting or our marriage. We find that weekly dates are a huge blessing towards keeping him out!
Fridays: Our last day of school for the week! Yay! Eric works from home as classes don't usually meet on Fridays. He is most often preparing for sermons or Sunday school, preparing class lectures, doing administration stuff, or meeting with people. In the afternoon, we have ladies Bible study with the ladies and young ladies in the church. We meet here on our compound. Right now we are studying through the book of John. I love our time together! It is such a blessing! Friday evenings we often will go out to a local restaurant for supper. For $1 per person, we can get a huge plate of rice or matoke (cooked and mashed plantains) or chapati (like a thick flour tortilla) and soup and a soda. It's cheaper than eating a "meat meal" at home! Often times, if time allows, we like to come back and watch a sermon with all the kids on line...a non-translated, English sermon. ;-)
Saturdays: Begin bright and early with Men's and young men's Bible study at 8 am. Right now, Eric and Pastor Charles are also doing deacon and elder training right after Bible study. There is often a bit of football for the boys afterwards too. Saturday is also my second bi-weekly shopping day. It is also a day for cleaning up the house, doing extra chores, etc. I also try to spend about an hour or two every Saturday working on a Bible study book that I'm writing to send out into the villages. About 2 year ago, our ladies Bible study went through the book of Philippians, I'm writing meditations to go with each of the studies that will be able to be sent out into the villages for use in their churches. Saturday afternoon is hospital visiting. Our church sends a group the local hospital, they pick a ward and then they go from bed to bed praying for each person and giving each person a bar of soap. This has been a wonderful ministry! Saturday night is family night. We have a very open compound and almost always have people around...except for family night. We ask everyone to leave (except for whoever is staying in our guest room) and have a night just with our kids. We play games or watch movies or read books. It is a highlight of the week and something the kids look forward too. A good tradition. :)
We are so thankful to God for blessing us with full weeks to serve him. It certainly is never dull around here!