A New School Year, Jordanian Refugees and The Windy City

Posted on October 20, 2009

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The seasons change so quickly in Spokane and we are reminded that time does not stand still. Already a new school year has begun and midterms are just around the corner. Many things have taken place since this last post, so we’ll try to touch on each them without being too verbose.

1.) On July 21, we celebrated our One Year Anniversary. A few weeks before we had been able to take a trip to the Olympic Peninsula (see previous post). We are so thankful for the year of marriage that God has given to us. Though there have been challenges in learning to resolve conflict, and how to communicate well, these minor things have been eclipsed by the joy of living daily life together. Being married truly is a journey of looking not only to our own interests, but also to the interests of the other. In dying to my own desires, a unity and joy much more beautiful is born.

On our anniversary, we dressed up in the same attire we wore at our wedding and went to Manito Park for a picnic of deli food from Huckleberries.


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2.) Moody Aviation recently began a new school year, which means new students entered into the hanger, and the graduating class made their leave for wherever God is calling them next. To see the graduating class move on is bittersweet. There is great joy in knowing that they have been trained well and are now equipped to be used around the world, and yet there is also sadness to see them go, especially with the maintenance specialist students, whom John has worked very closely with for the past year. At this point, the school year has been underway for almost three months, new students are flying for the first time and Moody Aviation is in full swing. The Our Ministry page on our website explains more about our involvement at Moody.

2009 Graduating Class

 

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3.) In August we made some new friends. Naimah and Haidar are refugees from Jordan who were recently placed in Spokane. One day when Clarissa was getting into her car, she was approached by a woman in full hijab, who, with very limited English language skills, communicated that she needed quarters for laundry and wants help learning English. We were delighted by the answer to specific prayer. Recently we had been praying that God would give us insight in who we should be serving. We moved into this neighborhood because of the diversity, poverty and proximity to downtown, with the desire to be servants to those around us (and quickly found that it was not very easy to step out and make friends with people who are different from you). Getting to know Naimah and Haidar has been a blessing. They are very devout Muslims and we have been learning a lot about Islamic practices and cultural norms. In September, Clarissa and a few other girls put on a baby shower for Naimah, and recently Naimah gave birth to their first child, a baby boy they named Muhammad. It has been both a challenge and a great joy to figure out how to serve them.

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4.) At the end of September, we took a trip to the Chicago area. Our purposes were two-fold. First, we wanted to attend the wedding reception of one of John’s best friends who was recently married in Spain. Second, we hoped to connect with some of the people that John knew from living in the area for 10+ years. We planned three African Dessert Nights that people graciously offered to host for us in their homes and sent out postcards to over 50 people inviting them to come and hear about aviation ministry and how we are involved. Though we were discouraged that not many people were able to come, we know that there were many people who wanted to be there and were unable to attend. Now, we are gearing up to host some African Desserts in our apartment here in Spokane. Other highlights of our trip to the Chicago area (this being Claire’s first trip there) were getting to walk around downtown Chicago, going up in the Hancock building, eating authentic Chicago Deep Dish at Gino’s Pizza, seeing Moody Chicago and visiting the Lincoln Park Zoo.

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