Leaving home, and coming home.

We are back in the school groove, and beginning our third school year with ABC Christian Academy! It is truly amazing to us to look back over our time here and see how the Lord has been working. When we first arrived I remember looking around and wondering if I would ever truly feel at ‘home’ here. There are still so many times that I face cultural discomfort and many times that I still long for familiar views…but it is also amazing to see how the Lord truly has given us a love for this country. Stepping off the plane a few weeks ago truly felt in a way like coming home.

After spending some time in the States over the summer, this last trip back to Malawi was a memorable one for sure! Due to the arrival of our sweet, newest nephew Benjamin, Norah and I did the long 36 hour trip solo! Benjamin arrived on August 9th, so Norah and I stayed back to meet him (albeit briefly!), but Dan had to head back to Malawi about a week earlier. Although I was apprehensive about the long flight alone with a newly walking, and very busy, toddler…I definitely didn’t want to miss holding that sweet baby by only a few days!

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Meeting Benjamin!

Getting on the plane for our long flight, I couldn’t help but wonder if I was crazy…and was very unsure of what the next 14 hours would look like! It is times like this that I am so thankful for the community of prayer warriors that we have surrounding us. I told Dan when I got off the plane that I could honestly feel people praying peace over me.

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Norah gearing up for the flight.

If you have ever met Norah, you know that while she is the sweetest little thing ever…she is a very busy little girl! She is not much for cuddling or sitting still, so I was envisioning 14 hours of walking up and down the aisles of the plane, telling her every two steps not to grab the feet of strangers…and certainly not to try and eat their toes! (Yes, that has happened on flights before). But this time around, she was like a different girl! She was happy and chatty with the people around us, and she was so snuggly! She literally just sat on my lap for several hours while we sang songs, ate snacks and looked at books. She slept like a champ, and she loved airplane food! For a flight that I had sort of been dreading…it actually felt shorter than many of our other flights. I was so thankful for our community in those moments. So if you were praying, THANK YOU!

Now we are back in Lilongwe, and are settling into the rhythms of a new school year. Norah is walking all over the place…eating every leaf and plant that she can get her hands on, which is making me want to get a book on African plants so I can quickly be sure she hasn’t eaten anything poisonous! She loves playing in the dirt and rocks, and conveniently it is dry season in Malawi right now…so dirt abounds. Dan is back at teaching 5th grade, and also World History to 9th and 10th graders. It will be a busy year for him at the Academy, but he is looking forward to continuing to grow as a teacher.

We are thankful to have so many ‘Homes’ in our lives…and right now we are especially feeling thankful that coming back to Lilongwe feels like coming home. We are loving reconnecting with friends after our short time in the States, and have been blessed to have many conversations dreaming about what this upcoming year may hold for ourselves and those around us.

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