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on teaching and being taught

Hello world!!

Well, it's been a long week but such an amazing one!
I think a few other team members are summarizing things we've done since arriving, so I'm going to skip those details. As a small summary, we arrived in Phnom Penh and spent two days there. The iced coffee was amazing (I really can't get over it). We visited the Killing Fields and a genocide museum. I do not have words I can express from those experiences, and so I'm not going to try. But I will say that it gives a great understanding for what the people here have gone through.

I think for today's blog, I will just enter a few parts from my journal over the past week.

– Church was very different to say the least! Children running around, the pastor speaking, keyboards and worship, tambourines, popsicles being passed around, laughter. Laughter, family, Jesus. In a treehouse sort of church. I loved it.

– Right now, I'm sitting on the bench right outside the kitchen, reading through some passages, listening to Sam try to pronounce sounds, and a lovely woman sitting next to me, singing. Birds are chirping. Dishes are being washed. It's serene here. It's so easy to overlook the barbed wire above the walls and the knowledge in the back of your mind that there are two gaurds with AK-47s.
     It is different though. At first all we saw was the joy and laughter. But as I've sat here with the woman on the bench, you can see and here a lot of pain. Quietly hurting. Her singing is not joyful. It's very sad. I glance up to see a very serious, distant look in her eyes. I kinda smiled at her, and she just stared back, completely unsmiling, and continued singing.
     Things like that happen and the barbed wire seems more obvious against the blue sky. But it also makes my heart yearn to let them know how loved and how beautiful they are.

– I am head over heels in love with one of the orphans here. To the point where some of the women have started saying "Your baby!" when I hold him. I want to bring him home with me. So, so precious.

– After sharing my testimony the other night, a woman has been trying to talk to me a lot, and told me through another woman who speaks a little English that she is so frustrated we can't speak freely. I am looking forward to continuing our relationship.

– I love love love the girl I am teaching English to one-on-one. We are the same age, and she is SO FUNNY and giggly!!!

– I am so enthusiastic about teaching a "film" class to the kids and women here…can't wait to see their creative spirits!

– Their service has been amazing. Their teaching has been fantastic. While we're teaching them English and other tasks, they have been teaching us service, Khmer, and sisterhood. I've loved interacting and living with them so much, and I am so excited to further our time together.

God's been teaching me a lot here, and not always connected with what we're teaching the women. I'm learning a lot about myself, that is for sure. That my quietness is okay, and communication is really important. While those seem to be contradictory, they really haven't been for me. And just how lovely God has made me.
I am so exctied to continue this journey.

Let's go week two(:

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