October was a pretty jam-packed month, so where do I even start? Well, the faces in the two adjacent pictures here are the many facilitators of our Intercultural Communications Course this month. They are amazing people! Not many people can teach courses on the Theology of Suffering, Dealing with Conflict Biblically, Crisis Management, and Biblical Absolutes (just to name a few more of the things that we tackled); but they did with wisdom, vulnerability, and Grace. We were blessed by them and we are better missionaries (and people!) because of them!
Jack and Linda Henderson continually blessed us with their 60+ years of marriage and missionary work. They were pioneers in every way and truly inspirational!
Serving in worship with Ethan and Ally.
We had the awesome opportunity to join an Indian congregation of believers all month long. They were gracious enough to let us fumble through our American-ness with them and to learn to be comfortable despite our cultural (and language!) differences. These two cuties started playing the drum together behind me during a worship song and stole the attention of many.
"Fieldproofing Your Marriage" was a weekly time that all the spouses looked forward to, and not just because of the coffee, tea, and treats that the Reids loaded us up with.
I think that this exercise was trying to highlight our useful and harmful personality traits during teamwork, but all Kristi will let me remember is that not only did her team beat my team, but they set a new record time for getting it done (which of course, I would be doing if I had won...).
Many of you may have already seen these momentous photos made famous by the Peacock family's blog post which was shared and shared again, but I thought that they were worth sharing one more time. If you think that you might have malaria or if you need stitches for that big gaping wound that just won't go away — Kristi and I can now take care of you!
Yes, it wasn't all intense class time, we laughed a few times at least ;)
What looks like a fun game of cards was actually a very deep intellectual discussion about learning social rules in foreign situations. In this case, Queena and I came from the same country previously and she is trying to give me some social cues without shaming me in front of the others — or something like that (and yes, I'm trying not to give away the game). Dale may or may not be making that gesture because of something I did wrong in his culture... Kristi is laughing because she is winning.
Going to new heights with new friends.
My table facilitator, Phil, teaching the kids about how they used to catch Greenbottle Pufferfish with their bare hands in Indonesia.
This was the first of many flights in a small airplane that are probably in our future. It's a good thing that we only have a family of five because this was a six-seater and neither Kristi nor myself are pilots. Nori and Banner seemed to be thrilled with the whole endeavor, but in many of the pictures Millie looks like she is praying for safety.
It was pretty cool to get to go up in a Helio Courier again. The last time that I had the chance was during a 4th-grade field trip to JAARS and it was the first time that I was ever in a plane. I think that it's safe to say that I had no idea back then what I would be doing now; funny to think about.
Banner and Millie had some great teachers at MK Station during the month, but Mr. Josh was always a favorite.
Pretty much every afternoon the kids would all gather by the "creek" (drainage ditch) by our apartments to play. It didn't take long for them to start a massive pinch pot manufacturing assembly line. They eventually developed an entire business model complete with neighborhood signs to sell their wares.
Some consumers must have complained about their pots breaking, because I noticed that a small kiln is being erected out in the lawn from spare bricks and rocks.
Photo Credits: Many thanks to Dale and Phil for so many of these great photos!!!