'shine your eyes’ is a phrase that I picked up in liberia, west africa. it means to open your eyes and see the Truth. this is my hope for people everywhere, myself included, that we will continually be transformed to see and be the ideals God has set forth as the Kingdom. the book of isaiah says it this way:

'see, a king will reign in righteousness and rulers will rule with justice. each man will be like a shelter from the wind and a refuge from the storm, like streams of water in the desert and the shadow of a great rock in a thirsty land. then the eyes of those who see will no longer be closed, and the ears of those who hear will listen. the mind of the rash will understand, and the stammering tongue will be fluent and clear.’ isaiah 32:1-4

currently this is taking shape in my life working with bahamas habitat. we are working to provide aviation support to bahamas methodist habitat, a hurricane relief/sub-standard housing repair organization based in the bahamas. know that we would love for you to come spend some time with us as we take part in all the beautiful ways that God is loving His creation.

in the words of mother teresa, “pray for me that i not loosen my grip on the hands of Jesus even under the guise of ministering to the poor.” and i pray that in all that you do, whether coming to the bahamas, serving in haiti or celebrating life in your part of the world that you will simply love and come and see all that God has for us. let this place be a place of celebration and conversation for us to greater understand life with one another.

‘and because of our faith, He has brought us into this place of highest privilege where we now stand. and we confidently and joyfully look forward to actually becoming all that God has in mind for us to be.’ –romans 5:2



junk junk junkanoo!

the american contingency of bmh minus abe met in albany, ga to head back to the states.  we flew back in the cherokee that they had flown up a few days after i went back to the states.  the flight was fun and laid back.  it was a fun realization when i didn't feel compelled to take pictures crossing the water between florida and the bahamas.  we made it fine and it was good to be back, no doubt.

kp got married the weekend after i left for the states.  vonia, his wife, has 3 kids living with her.  all 5 are now living in the apartment above my room and the urick's space.  it's a really fun arrangement and it means that we get to be neighbors with all the people in this family who are great.  love it.  i wish that everyone will come and see everything and meet everyone.

i'm thankful to be here and here for a solid time.  coming in october and leaving in both november and december interrupts life a good bit in a place when people don't travel a whole lot.  settling in for the new year has caused us as an organization to start having good conversation about how we will live and work together.  good things are happening and i'm excited for the good things that will come when we are operating fluidly.

new years eve we had a spaghetti dinner and a righteous dance party at abe's house.  it was super spontaneous and turned 0ut to be really fun when we all got into it.  just in time for the countdown to the new year to begin, we got to the beach house which is a restaurant that had a band for the night.  they had fireworks and a lot of people...we brought lots too, about 13 of us piled into our 15 passenger van with only 2 seats (unless we stuff the adirondack chairs in for comfort).

we got in around 130 am and were back up again at 445 for sunrise at surfer's beach again.  the sun came, but we didn't see it because of the clouds.  we napped after eating pancakes and bacon that matt made us at 4 am (ridiculous) for a few hours.  we stayed through the morning and played in the waves and frisbee.  at one point there were about 13 surfers in the water and more people than i've ever seen there.

all the different cultures on this small island are amazing, really.  and how everyone gets along, too.  there's this small community of surfers and visiting surfers all ages, mostly older.  surf by day and play or listen to music by night.  then you have the church community, and the tourist community..everyone seems to have their niche or at least their identity.  then there's the love to not categorize each other that i think will always be a good struggle.  napping in the afternoon, we prepared for junkanoo in harbor island, or briland as it's affectionally known.

junkanoo started at "6" and that's when we got there.  i think besides the vendors, we were in the first batch to arrive for the festival.  junkanoo was built up in my head as this parade similar to the parades in china with the crazy multiple person dragons with a bahamian bent.  there's competitions and each settlement has a junkanoo crew.  last night was briland's junkanoo with kids.  these kids were so good!!  they were good but honestly...this whole thing was a little anti-climatic.  they didn't start marching until 945.  whew.  the time was spent well all hanging out and walking the docks.  shoot.  let me tell about that.  these boats are beyond description.  a smudge would be noticed on these multi-million dollar yachts, deep-sea fishing boats..some fishing boats had 4 300 hp engines on the back.  this island is where all the celebrities come when they say they're coming to the bahamas.  it's about an hour north of jc where we live.  we also watched them get ready for the parade.  they had barrels, like gasoline barrels, covered in goatskin that had to be warmed up by a bonfire.  the costumes are super colorful and paper mache.  these kids were so good!  they had these coordinated dances, with these crazy headdresses following them and a full band including the goatskin drums.  they did great..but really, it only lasted about 20 minutes.  whew.  lots o waiting.  but really, it was fun all us together and seeing this big tradition in the bahamas.

the airplane has a little trouble with the magneto and we won't be flying it until we take care of the issue.  but we have lots to look forward too as we all go at the new year.  we are getting in our groove as an organization.  our first volunteers of the year come in just a few weeks!

the verse that's been in my head is philippeans 1:9: 'so this is my prayer: that you love will flourish and that you will not only love much but love well.  learn to love appropriately.'  i hope we love well this year in all that we do.

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