Jessie’s – News Letter

It may be fall in North America, but it’s the rainy season in Nairobi. Today’s impressive thunderstorms alternated with scorching sunshine- everyone should come experience some high-altitude equatorial weather!

The school year has more than begun, and I’m 1/4 of the way through my first year as Director of Curriculum, Accreditation, and Professional Development at Rosslyn. I just came back from a conference where I discovered that other schools call this position Director of Teaching and Learning- much less of a mouthful! I’m consistently humbled and stretched in my new job. I feel like it’s definitely what I’m made for and definitely way beyond my capacity; I suppose that’s often the hallmark of God’s leading. Each day I’m challenged to solve problems without much of an experience base, and I feel like administration isn’t as immediately rewarding as teaching. There are lots of “aha!” moments with kids in math; there are fewer with adults who have their own jobs to do. But there are rewarding interactions, like praying with teachers in crisis or helping them think through classroom decisions. I try to keep in mind that my job is to pour into teachers so they can pour into kids, to support the school in developing its curriculum and maintaining its accreditation so that it can better serve the Church with a big C. (And when that doesn’t work to make me feel better, I still get to teach one period of Algebra. For at least 45 minutes a day, I know what I’m doing!)

Despite the challenges, I’m absolutely confident that God has placed me here in this position at this time for His own purposes, and while I might not be able to see them as readily, I still trust that they’re there. As evidence of this trust, I’ve committed to another contract at Rosslyn that’ll last through May 2014. Who knows what adventures will come in these next 2 1/2 years?

But before I jump too far ahead, I owe you a report from this past summer. I was refreshed by my visit from Anna Christensen- we had grand adventures, and it was especially kind of God to put us together while the wildfires were threatening Los Alamos. We were able to keep track of the news of our hometown together and praise God for sending rain at the right time. Soon after, the medical camp at Karura (my church) also went well. The volunteer training and coordinating that I was responsible for were very successful, and I really enjoyed working side by side with my mom that day.

One of my worries as the school year started was that I wouldn’t have friends- so many of the important people in my life here had moved back to the States. But of course it was ridiculous for me to worry. God has provided heart-friends in some of the new staff, other friendships have deepened, and I find myself having to, um, slightly prune my social life rather than long for it to grow…

On the subject of friends, I’d appreciate your prayers for a couple I’m close to who were robbed at gunpoint last weekend. Now before anyone gets too worried, know that they live in a different part of town than I do, and there are a number of reasons they were more vulnerable to attack. They’re physically fine, but please pray that God uses this event to draw them to Himself, and pray for the robbers to have repentant hearts. I’m a little shaken myself; there have been a string of robberies in my extended group of friends recently, but this was the first one with threats of violence. I trust God as always; this just reminds me of my need for protection.

So please, do pray, and join me in thanking God for…
1) A new job that’s stretching and humbling.
2) Great summer visits from Mom and Anna, especially the during fire.
3) Refreshing new friends this year.
4) My safety over the last 3 1/2 years- I’ve never had a major incident.
5) The successful medical clinic- I learned a lot by coordinating the volunteers, and God provided for me and through me.

Finally, join me in asking God for…
1) Vision for my job and understanding of how it’s God’s best for me. Please pray for me to exhibit fruit of the Spirit especially when challenged.
2) Peace and safety for my friends who were robbed (and for me).
3) Right involvement at church.
4) Students at Rosslyn come to know and live out more of God’s plans for their lives.
5) The right car at the right price- I have saved up enough money, but I still haven’t found the right vehicle.

I’d love to hear from each of you, even if it’s just a line or two on how your family is doing! I appreciate your continued prayers and friendship as I’ve been away longer and longer.


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