8 Months in Tanzania…

I’ve officially lived in Tanzania for 8 months. Thought I would celebrate the occasion with a few lists of ‘8’ for your reading pleasure. Enjoy!

8 LOVES:
1.  The HOPAC students–they are excited to learn and great fun!
2. Living so close to the ocean / beach
3. Learning a new culture and language
4. The weather (i.e. no snow!)
5. The ability to play volleyball several times a week
6. Fresh fruit all year round!
7. Diversity – I get to hang out with people from all over the world on a daily basis!
8. My puppy Amini!

8 CHALLENGES:
1. The traffic / lack of cause-and-effect thinking by Tanzanian drivers
2. Cooking for myself – it takes so much time and energy!
3. Learning a new culture and language
4. Loneliness
5.  Management of resources (money and time) – how will God most be glorified?
6.  Dealing with illness/medical issues here
7.  Balancing safety concerns and my love of life
8. Uncertainty about the future

8 THINGS I MISS:
1. My family & friends back in Indiana
2. Wallen Baptist Church / Single Minded / “Doc’s”
3. Smooth roads (without speed bumps!)
4. Family game nights (Settler’s with Mom & Hannah!)
5. Playing A-Level volleyball / Team Pineapple (having LJ, Dusty, & Will as coaches!)
6. Getting a paycheck & not depending on others generosity for my livelihood
7. Working as a team/department of English teachers at CHS
8. Singletrack mountain biking / Snowboarding / Nathan’s truck / Riding Symphony & Senorita / “Local” Apple stores

8 THINGS I DO NOT MISS:
1. Snow
2. Working 80 hours a week
3. Corn syrup (I can even drink soda here!)
4. Cold weather
5. Driving a car
6. Dark mornings until 8 a.m. (or later)
7. A/C (most people here would disagree with me!)
8. Scraping ice off of my car in the mornings

8 THINGS I’VE LEARNED
1. That I can’t do it on my own–only God sustains me
2. The grace of God “is greater far than tongue or pen could ever tell…”
3. The only rule of the road that matters is “if there’s space, fill it” (jk!)
4. To keep something on hand to eat when the power’s out
5. Language learning is both an amazing joy and huge frustration at the same time….and is a very SLOW process!
6. A smile translates into any language
7. Everyone has a story…and some people have lots and lots of stories…especially if they’ve lived in Africa for a long time!
8. Its okay to cry sometimes…even when people can see me.

8 THINGS I FEAR:
1. Not living life for the glory of God
2. Being hit or hitting someone/something while driving
3. Getting sucked into the “expat” culture and never learning Swahili
4. Never going home (What if God calls me to stay here…away from my friends and family?)
5. Getting too busy
6. Not taking time to cultivate my relationship with God
7. Not making a difference
8. Failing

8 QUESTIONS I HAVE:
1. How long will God call me here? 5 years? 10 years? 15? More? Less?
2. How long until I can converse fluently in Swahili?
3. How do I effectively live the Gospel every day?
4. How do I help my students understand that being a Christian is about life, not just Sunday mornings or school assemblies?
5. Will I lose all my friends back in Indiana because of being here?
6. Can I teach more effectively than I do? How?
7. Will my students pass their exams in May? Is there anything I can do better to help them succeed?
8. How do I invest in the lives of those around me?

8 WAYS TO PRAY FOR ME:
1. For language learning
2. Ability to say NO, even to good things, when they aren’t what God is asking of me at the time
3. For safety on the roads
4. For wisdom
5. Building relationships – students/friends/co-workers/etc.
6. Direction for the future
7. That others would see the hope of Jesus Christ through my life
8. To live “all in”… to leave it all on the field…for the glory of God

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Jessica says:

    I loved reading your ‘lists of 8’, Abby! I would miss the snow, but not having to scrape ice off of your car on a dark chilly morning would be lovely 😀
    I’ll be praying for you 🙂
    Love you and miss you!

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