Today I woke up feeling pretty rested. I met the other families downstairs for breakfast then went shopping with Debb and Jeff Marquez and Sherry Kishbaugh. I got a traditional bowl and salt/pepper shakers carved from ebony, a toy for Zane, and a beautiful painted, plaster Africa box to add to the coffee set, woven coffee separater, bag, ebony nativity, and framed Coptic cross I got last week. I hope to go back later and get a few more things when my mom is here.
We ate at Metro Pizza today (again...it's the 4th time for me) next to Kaldi's Coffee, which I love. After pizza, I picked up a Carmel Macchiato, which sort of tastes like home. Then we all drove over to the transition home. Zane was in a good mood when he woke up from his afternoon nap. He says "mama" when I come get him now and he reaches for me. We played on the playground and he loved peeking through the bars as I said, "Boo!" It's a game that never gets old. Little kids remind you how funny and sweet life is. You start to enjoy things like peek-a-boo because you see how much joy it brings to them. Zane's best friend is the master of peek-a-boo. He wants to play it almost every time I see him! We're hoping to keep the two boys in contact once we move back to the states (thanks Nichols!)
I'm realizing how simple Zane is, and I really love it. He doesn't need or want to be entertained with a lot of toys and distractions. He wants me. That's it. He loves to watch people as I hold him on my hip, and he loves to focus on one thing at a time, like a balloon that he can examine for hours. I've thought a little bit about how I tend to show love by giving him things or trying to entertain him, when all he wants is my time and affection, and I wonder if God ever sees me that way. Do I try to entertain him with my religious acts, my "obligations" of church, even my prayers when all he wants is me? I think life is a lot more simple than we make it. I'm seeing in my son the importance of decluttering life and enjoying time together. When we offer Zane a toy we brought, he refuses it and reaches for a leaf on a tree. Mark and I joked that we may have a horticulturalist in the making, but I wonder if he just enjoys the things some of us overlook? I'm challenged by Zane's ability to notice, and I'm encouraged to slow down and join him.
When I left Zane today, I nearly cried. He's devastated when I leave and crying for me now. In addition, three couples had to leave their little ones today to go home to the states. One family is bringing home their baby boy, but their precious daughter who has spent the week here with them had to leave her close Ethiopian friend behind. It's sad to see families and friends separated, especially when they have spent so much time and energy to be together. It's hard to see their kids the next day when the van of Americans pulls up, and they light up in hope that their parents' flight has been delayed and they can spend one more day with them, only to walk away in disappointment when they are not there. Heartbreaking. But for them there is hope! There's a picture of a family that will be there's. There's a dream of a house and a bedroom that they can call theirs. What about the 5-6 million others in Ethiopia who have waited so long? The ones who have given up on hope? When will it be their turn?
We have so much. Our lives revolve our jobs, our houses, our cars, our favorite tv programs, and our important social lives. Yet we complain that our job is tiresome, our house is too small, our car is too old, our DVR didn't record our show, and that we have nothing to do. Why do we complain? Because our lives are meant to be poured out for others. Gluttony is self-destruction in the worst way. We all fall victim to it, yet our world is not lacking in need. Giving ourselves for the cause of Christ's work in the world is the most fulfilling, purposeful way to live. This life isn't for select few that "measure up" to God's grace, for that would be impossible. This "wealth" is for all who will call upon the name of the Lord and be saved.
"Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him?" James 2:5