December 07, 2010 by nktaube
It's a little hard to believe that we are just one month away from moving our family to Quito, Ecuador. We'll be starting over with new jobs to learn, new friends to be made, and a new home to put together ... in a different country. The anticipated transition is still to come, but we've come a long way already:
July '09: We were on vacation with my sister and brother-in-law in Panama the day we heard we had been accepted to work with International Teams in Ecuador.
April '10: More than halfway through the training and funding process but still not sure when our leave date might be.
Dec '10: A family of three leaving for Ecuador Jan. 10, 2011
October 29, 2009 by nktaube
It was a great day in so many unexpected ways. We went to bed Friday night knowing it was going to be a full-blown schedule and we would end the day tired. We did end the day tired, but we also ended the day feeling really blessed.
We had a great morning coffee date with someone who I've just gotten to know recently. Their faith and exposure to worldwide ministry is pretty new. It was such a delight to sit with them and just have them be genuinely excited about the path Nate & I are headed down. I'm excited to continue to get to know them.
The next mini-blessing came as an unexpected (read: we got lost) detour through downtown Glen Ellyn. Though I'm usually extremely anxious about being late to places, I was so enamored with the beauty of God's creation of Fall colors all around us that I couldn't help but be calm and glad that we were a little late. It was a fun moment just the two of us as we exclaimed over deep reds, pure yellow, and even bright fuschia. We also exclaimed over the gi-grande-normous homes that boasted these trees but that has always been a favorite past time.
We spent our afternoon meeting with someone Nate has known a number of years. Everything about the hours with him was a total blessing. He did photography for us for ministry purposes - something he offered freely that we had no idea he even did. After the photo session, he came together with us over coffee and just delved into our lives. We left feeling astounded and grateful for the time with him. We came to this meeting asking for one thing and we feel like we left with our hands brimming with more than we ever could have asked to receive. Definitely a God encounter, particularly when we felt like he really spoke into our lives in a meaningful way.
God has really been expanding our hearts and our thinking about this "initial phase" of the journey that we are on. It's exciting to watch and leaves me full of expectation for how much He is going to grow our faith and develop us in this time.
October 03, 2009 by nktaube
Wednesday I started my second support group for teen girls at an alternative high school. It is literally my favorite part of my job currently. I love the girls and I love the energy I get from spending an hour trying to manage some pretty fabulous discussions. This time around the group has grown to 15 girls (too many!). Word spread after the first round so we also have a waitlist of seven more who will start on the spring semester track. It’s fun to know the girls are reacting to the group and feeling that it does serve a unique purpose for them.
One of the things I love most about this group is how much of their lives the girls bring to the room. Their stories are tough, but for them it’s just a part of life. They struggle to trust others just like any other group, but I notice how much more quickly and easily these girls disclose. It brings into awareness how much less honest and how much more guarded most Christians are about their own hurts and messes. Many of these girls were probably not given an expectation of perfection that is so often tied in with a Christian upbringing and in some ways they are far better off for it. Their honesty charms me and I love them for it.
Of course, on a lighter note, teen girls tend to be more honest about everything. After introductions with the group one girl raised her hand and asked permission to ask me a question. Sure, I replied. She asked, “Are you pregnant,” and I responded affirmatively. All the girls got really excited as this girl said, “I thought so. I knew you didn’t have that STOMACH before. I wasn’t gonna ask because I thought maybe you be fatter but then I just did it anyway.”
September 15, 2009 by nktaube
Nate and I are almost halfway through our this first round of training. As anticipated, days are long, sitting time is long, and there's not a whole lot of room for personal space or time. Still, it's been a good first half to the week.
I really enjoyed meeting the president of IT and getting to interact with him. He had some words to say that I needed to hear. At times I feel overwhelmed and scared with what a major decision this is. And it often feels like I have too much control over my life, too much responsibility, and too much room to make some big mistakes. It stops me mid-morning or in the middle of the night and I have to evaluate, "What are we doing? Have I really made a good decision?" But Scott really spoke into each of us how God has ordained so many different things to come together for us to get here and that we wouldn't have our seats in these chairs without a powerful purpose. It gave me a real sense of peace ... at least for the moment. I know I'll have many more stops and gasps along the way.
I also really enjoyed the time that was set aside to hear each of our life stories and how God has been interwoven in each of those. It struck me as pretty important for this group to know that about me in a more personal way than simple words on a page. They will become one of my primary support systems. I enjoyed, in preparing for this exercise, the emphasis that was placed on our "life story" and not just a moment in time when we made a decision. I think speaking some of my own experiences aloud, weaving them together in new ways, and having others witness that was meaningful to me.