“I appreciate all the thoughts and prayers. They say here that October is the worst month. Worst because its hot season. Worst because its crazy busy even when it doesn’t have to be. Worst because the slump of culture shock hits some. Worst because you’re waiting for a break and the first glimpse of that is… so… far… away.
Yes, we are melting. It’s hot. It’s busy. It’s sad making adjustments right now. But I also hate making that excuse. “It’s the worst but keep pressing through.” Sometimes that is just dumb. Why can’t we adjust, adapt, change, make it easier.
Or here’s another option:
I heard a pastor share online the other week from Psalm 22. Even in our suffering, God is enthroned by our praises. Praise when life is easy is easy. Praise in our suffering refines us and tests us. And if God is enthroned in our praise… who is enthroned in our complaints?
I want to praise.
In juggling roles and responsibilities. I want to praise.
In praying for my own pain and sadness. I want to praise.
In leading young people and preparing for classes. I want to praise.
In the hot and the inconvenient. I want to praise.
In changes and new people and drama. I want to praise.
It really is a never ending circus here. My classes are going well. The media students are impressing me weekly with their creativity and teamwork. I finally have the entire middle school in and out of my classroom throughout the week. I led a group of 20 students on a school-wide Serve Day to befriend students at the local Deaf school which started classes this month. I’ve started training for a half marathon. I work with a couple to sponsor the Class of 2023 and we are about toserve refreshments at the Fall Play.
My roommate and I have hosted many guests for dinners, small groups and traveling missionaries. A women’s small group meets at our house Wednesdays which has been an answer to rest and fellowship for many. A friend and I meet with a group of youth girls a few times a month and are joyfully seeing them open up and own their faith. Dakar Academy is preparing and praying for a large November Outreach of which I will be on a small team capturing photos and video.
And I still love Jesus so much. I’m praying into direction and areas of development and constantly find new ways to be reminded of His grace.
Thank you so much for your support.” – Caitlin Woodward, Dakar Academy, Senegal