October 16th, 2008: Arrived in Ethiopia. The Plane ride was glorious. I thought I would get sick, but it was good on the score. There take off’s and landings were really fun. And climbing up into the sky, going layer by layer through the clouds and watching the landscape fade away beneath you, was exhilarating. There was a whole new world that I had never seen, above the clouds: a world of mountains of snow, icebergs and glaciers, drifting through a never-ending mist. It was astoundingly beautiful.
I really liked Detroit, or at least the part I saw (I have doubts about the rest of the city). The airport was huge, and even though we had two hours to kill, we didn’t come remotely close to fully exploring it. Amsterdam was beautiful from the air. Hopefully I can get some good pictures on the way back. It was highly industrial, while at the same time agricultural. There were pastures of sheep or cattle in the middle of the city. There were windmills to. The airport was neat, but our layover was short, and we didn’t get much explored. On the way from the airport we met two beggar girls. The complained to me of hunger. I didn’t have anything to give them. I had everything I thought I needed: American greenbacks, US passport; but I had nothing that would have been of any use to them.
Oct. 17th, ‘08: slept well. Breakfast was good.
More or less befriended the dog. She’s a puppy of a rather soft brown with off-white front legs. Joe told me that they’re training her not to bite, so I’m keeping that in mind. I’m trying to befriend the horse, but it’s a whole lot harder to get to.
There’ s an Ethiopian doing yard work here today (he’ the guard). I tried talking to him, but he only spoke broken English (and I haven’t come anywhere like near that far in Ethiopian!) we appear to have a mutual misunderstanding.
I read from Psalm 139 this morning. “Whither should I go from Thy Spirit?….Even there shall Thy hand lead me.” I found it to be a huge comfort, as well as a good reminder, at this time.
The birds here are gorgeous!
An eventful afternoon. Went to the PTI, and listened to Mr Chuck teach on the Doctrine of Salvation. Most of the Ethiopians seemed to respond really well. There was prayer and singing too. They do those things much differently than we, but throughout it my primary thought was that this was worship, even though it’s different.
There is great poverty here, but as we saw at the PTI, there is great spiritual hope. This could rightly be called a land of opportunity.
After PTI, I did some reading, walked to the store with Malachi, Chris, Rob and Zane, then the five CCC people (myself included) Joe and Joseph went out to eat together.
Oct. 18th, ‘08: woke up two or three times this morning. I hear Ethiopians singing all morning. They sound like a never ending chorus of shofars. Mr Anthony came and talked to me about the bodily and emotional adjustments one feels on going to a time zone and climate. “But,” he said. “just remember that no matter where you are, Christ doesn’t change.”
I wanted to write more of what I thought and felt while here. But everything is kinda hard to put into words: this whole place is kind of over whelming. However, I will try to pick up the pace soon.
I went well drilling with Joe, Chris, Rob, and Zane today. I got to more of the Ethiopian countryside on the drive there. It is so beautiful, with it’s lush green mountains, it’s green fields and pastures, it’s forests, that make the whole country look like a great fertile checkerboard.
I have experienced so much of God’s creation on this trip: the world above the clouds, the Netherlands, and now Ethiopia. It’s such a reminder that, no what land we’re in, no matter the poverty, and sickness, we serve the all-powerful and unchanging God.