Goer blogs

Time

By Hope on August 21, 2018 Track: Youth Development Region: Africa - North

It’s a funny thing! According to the Oxford Dictionary, time is “the indefinite continued progress of existence, events, etc. in past, present, and future regarded as a whole.” With that being said, time is measurable for us. We like to refer to things in the past, present, and future as though our memories are on a timeline. If you think about it, each day we have 1,440 minutes. That means each week we have 10,080 minutes and to go even further than that, we have approximately 43,800 minutes per month!!! YHWH has abundantly blessed me by going above and beyond my expectations. Within two... Read more

I bless the rains down in Africa

By Grace on August 16, 2018 Track: Community Development Region: Africa - North

*I know. Toto reference? so original* Remember when I told myself to not hold on to things too tightly?  What an important lesson to learn over and over again. Like last month, when the plan went out the window. More like ran out the window.  It turns out I'm skipping continents and moving over to Northeast Africa.  Plans change, but our God does not. It all somehow fits together. I sure don't have the master plan, but I know what the end looks like, and it is beautiful.  Soon, I'll be hopping on a plane to reunite with friends as we go through training together. Not long after that, we'll... Read more

Contact On The Train

By Anthony on August 12, 2018 Track: Youth Development Region: Africa - North

I would like to tell a story about something that happened where I observed in myself a stress response to something cultural. I thought I would share this personal story because I’ve recently been asked about culture shock and what it looks like here in North Africa. Just recently after leaving language class with Nick and Annie (not their real names), we walked to the Metro station and boarded the train to go home. Nick and Annie work at my school and I am starting to become good friends with them here. They both are not cousins and each identify as “Christian” although, the government... Read more

Redefining Home

By Bethany on July 24, 2018 Track: Sports Region: Africa - North

This season of support raising has resulted in a unique situation for me. In the midst of asking others to invest and join in my ministry, my family has been called to live on the East Coast, the very opposite of California. As hard as this decision was for my parents, I firmly believe that this is exactly where God wants them. It has been two weeks since I have said goodbye to my family and transitioned into couch surfing along the West Coast. The number one thing I have been told about working on the field is to be flexible. Because this is not one of my strong points, God has been growing... Read more

Pressing In

By Anthony on July 23, 2018 Track: Youth Development Region: Africa - North

Arriving here a while ago, I remember being encouraged by my language helper to jump right into language and go for it with new friends by starting to put some sentences together. Except, sometimes just introducing yourself in the language can give the impression that you can speak more then you intended. Surprisingly, I found myself being laughed and teased at a bit, being slow to speak some words. I found it can be hard to even laugh at yourself when mistakes are just too much, making it more awkward depending on the culture. When I shared some experiences with my language helper, his... Read more

Identified Christians

By Anthony on June 20, 2018 Track: Youth Development Region: Africa - North

In some countries, people must identify their newborns at birth as either Muslim or Christian. These are the only two choices. This identity is literally carried around with the person and can often determine different privileges or drawbacks throughout their life. Combine this decision with the perceptions of shame culture, how difficult might you think it is to actually be told the truth? Since arriving over two months ago, I was at first surprised at just how many identified Christians are here. It was as if everyone not observing Ramadan was Christian and everyone that seemed to be... Read more

Weightless

By Anthony on June 20, 2018 Track: Youth Development Region: Africa - North

During Ramadan, life changes more drastically here. Outwardly, cousins fast from sunrise to sunset. Everyone else, are to respect that commitment, even when it is not expected. Inwardly, it is common for cousins to believe Christians will try to tempt them to break their fast, even if it is an unintentional sip of water. Displays that lack restraint can perpetuate the perception of neglect and disregard for cousins beliefs, increasing a divide, rather than bridging it. So, why then do cousins fast? On the Metro, it is now more common to see nearly every passenger reading their Quran on their... Read more

Tropical Storms and Summer Plans

By Andrew on June 16, 2018 Track: Engineering - IT Region: Africa - North

Tropical Storms and Summer Plans   The Storm Saturday night was the first time in a long time that I was able to see lightning.  It has been a pretty dry spring season this year without much rain; but, for the first time in three years, a tropical storm came through East Africa brining with it tons of rain and thunder. The pictures you see here are from the next morning.  Streets turned into canals and poorer houses were flooded with knee deep waters. We were able to watch all of this through the security of your brick house and car, but for most here, they spent the whole night fighting back... Read more

It's Here?

By Hope on June 15, 2018 Track: Youth Development Region: Africa - North

A year ago I was walking around Swaziland hand-in-hand with laughing kiddos who had dripping ice cream cones in their hands. Seven months ago I was accepted into a program at my University that sends graduates abroad to serve globally for two years. Three months ago I made the decision to spend my two years in North Africa on the Youth Development tract. A month ago I graduated from Azusa Pacific University. One week ago I arrived in Minneapolis, Minnesota for an intensive week-long training that would equip me for raising support. Now I am back in my hometown and ready to hit the ground... Read more

So You Didn't Marry Nick Jonas

By Grace on June 13, 2018 Track: Community Development Region: Africa - North

Dear Fifteen year old Me,  Take a seat, because we’ve got a lot to catch up on. The year is 2018 and unfortunately you’re not married to Nick Jonas with two and half kids like the game of “Life” predicted.   So you just started walking with Jesus. As someone who has been on this journey for almost ten years, let me tell you that it gets better. You miraculously made it through high school and college. You learned to depend fully on Jesus and trust that He was working everything out. It turns out that staying home the first year of college and going somewhere completely different wasn't such a... Read more