Mun gode Allah

…We are thankful to God.

We are beginning to feel MUCH more settled here. The first week was rougher than we thought it would be (okay, the first couple weeks), but we are beginning to feel more at home here. We are so grateful for this change – change of heart, change of circumstances….

We are taking Hausa class right now – who knew it was a tonal language?? I’m not great at learning languages, but this adds a whole new range of language learning mistakes we can make. The class is pretty intensive – 4 hours a day, 5 days a week – and yet I still find myself stumbling over the simplest of phrases when I get a chance to use it “in real life.” It is going pretty well, though, and we are having fun learning. Chris is enjoying outshining me – he not only does well in class but does quite well carrying on conversations outside of class.

We have also begun driving – which probably sounds like less of a feat than it actually is. As one Nigerian who has been to America told us, “Driving in America is boring. Everyone follows the same rules. I can drive with my eyes closed there. Here, everyone makes up his own rules (and then they don’t even follow those!). It’s exciting.” I honestly did not think I ever be able to drive here, but I have even driven myself into town – quite a feat! With driving has come a feeling of freedom; I am not completely dependent on others to take me places– and poor Chris doesn’t feel tortured while he sits around waiting for me to finish in the market (Some things don’t change no matter what country one is in – just substitute the mall for the market and husbands can be tortured waiting for their wives in any culture….).

…Of course, getting to places is another matter. Giving directions is not as easy as it is at home – “Turn left on Main Street” becomes “Go to the Nasco junction and turn right, then follow the road to the vegetable stand and turn left. You’ll see a store that sells rubbers [that would be plastic items like basins and trash cans] – turn right, then go around a curvy road past the coal….” We literally drove around for almost two hours trying to find somewhere and were just about ready to give up when we found it.

Judah is doing really well. He is crawling up a storm (although one friend told us he looks like a wounded soldier because he just sort of drags his left leg behind him when he crawls) and smiles away. One of the missionaries told us, “Judah is the kind of baby that makes everyone want to have a baby.” We are so incredibly grateful for his good nature. He not only tolerates but seems to enjoy being passed around from person to person, regardless of whether he knows them, of whether they’re American, British, Nigerian or European.

We are grateful for each of you, too. So often have we just stopped in our tracks and said, “Wow, God is so amazing! I can’t believe He brought us here and has given us such amazing and supportive family and friends.” Thank you. Know that we are thinking of and praying for you often!

With love,
Christie (“Did I just say ‘communion’ or ‘the day after today’”?) (Seriously – a real mistake I made….)
Chris (“Is there anyone in Nigeria that Christie CAN’T outshop??”)
Judah (“NOW who’s holding me?”)

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8 thoughts on “Mun gode Allah

  1. So good to finally read your blog! The kids and I are praying for you everyday. FYI- the boys think living with all those bugs would be “cool.” God bless and peace-
    jen eldersveld

  2. Hey friends…love the blog. Very real and earthy! I am glad to hear things are settling in…it’s all a process. Give yourself grace and space, but keep after the Hausa lessons and using them in real life. Shopping is an ideal way to do it–sorry Chris!

    Love you,
    Russ

  3. I miss you guys soooooo much! I cried when I read your blog! So glad to get to hear what life is like there. Love you and praying for you daily!
    Shayna

  4. Hi C & C! I LOVE your website. Way to go! Your positive attitude is shining through. We’re so proud of you! I’m sure you’re a blessing to SO many.
    Soon there’s another family from Holland, MI coming to Jos. The Walcotts, Dan and Kathy. Kathy is a seconed cousin of mine and Dan taught B at HCHS for years. They’re going to be at the school teaching for a year. You’ll really like them…..
    Thinking of you,

  5. Hey there. Glad you cleared up the “rubber” thing 😛 Thanks for the blog. Such a good way to keep up with the family. I know it’s frustrating but thank God for the mistakes you make that are helping you learn the language. Those trial and error situations make all the difference. 4 hours is a lot to sit through and retain. I pray God blesses the experience and helps you to recall what you’re learning when you are out and about. So glad you are driving too and that you can enjoy that freedom. I love you guys very much and pray you delight in Him through all the trials and joys that come your way.

  6. Great to hear that you are doing well. I miss you all and think of you often. I’m glad there are other little boys that can make Judah laugh hysterically but also miss seeing him in action. We are still unpacking boxes here at Nyack and learning our way around. I’m sure as soon as the kids start school right after Labor Day, we’ll feel a little more settled because of a routine.

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