21 June 2013

And We All Bleed

There is a moment when your son turns bright red and starts to choke while you're sitting in front of him, about to have a panic attack, and he suddenly throws up an entire meal's worth of avocado and grapes - green, thick, and entirely disgusting  - then he gives you his biggest and most charming smile.


Being back in the Seattle area is difficult.

Real difficult.

It is difficult to no longer be in such a little tight knit bubble of fierce community where missionaries are plentiful and encouraging. It is difficult to not spend our days together as a family. It is difficult to be on Pacific Standard Time once more. It is difficult to not have time specified for things other than work. It is difficult to begin writing support letters and create pledge cards. It is difficult to explain why being home is difficult.

50+ year old films are my cure for what ails.Well, that, and Syria.

"And all is relative, relative. Everything is relative, yes it is.
It's all about the way we receive it, how much we believe it, depending on the life you lead - if you lead it. Compare it to yourself, compare to someone else - you care. If you took the drugs in your closet, the cash in your wallet, the color of your skin in your blood and how you got it. Compare it to yourself, compare to someone else - you care." Relative, Gavin Degraw

We had a rough night at the Dullanty home - sleep eludes. So this morning, driving to work, when I heard on the radio that this was happening, I very quickly dissolved into tears. Haven't we proven already that all war does is create a body count? Picking sides like this was a dodge ball game in primary school. It makes me physically ill that we never learn.

And you could argue that we're helping.

But who exactly are we helping? Because we certainly aren't helping the millions of Syrian refugees fleeing the country. We are not helping these children, these parents, these families. We are not helping anyone or anything but our own agenda. And it hurts. It hurts our image as a nation, it hurts our relationships with others, it hurts our world, and most importantly, it hurts these displaced people.

I don't know that I will ever understand why we are more concerned with patriotism than humanity.

... I wish I had a more positive note to end on. But my mind is preoccupied and my heart it heavy. So perhaps I will just leave you will the hope we all have.

"Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of nations.
No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and His servants will worship. They will see His face and His name will be on be on their foreheads. And night will be no more. They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be our light and They will reign forever and ever." Revelation 22:1-5

17 June 2013


Three strings rolled together: Father, Son, Spirit.
Tied at the wrist, a blessing given to one another.
Culturally Thai, bonded in Christ
What a gift,
What a gift.

Marko finds the sweetest ways to affirm who I am. And I am grateful. Rory has a gift of making you laugh just when you're maddest at him. We are beautiful and I thank God for the bonds of our sweet family. "A threefold cord is not easily broken." Another strand can only strengthen what has been given to us.

And I am reminded, each day more and more, that our family is not only three. But millions and billions of brothers and sisters around the world. Connected not by our blood, but by our humanity. Our humanity.

Being back is difficult. But I have my darling family, of three and of the world. And I have these strings to remind me.

"I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember Your wonders."
Psalms 77:11

14 June 2013

Speak to Me In The Light of The Dawn

I wish I had been better about blogging because at this point? There is just too much to tell.

I'm really not sure where to start.

"She is clothed in strength and dignity; she can laugh at days to come." Proverb 31:25

I don't know about that whole strength and dignity bit - but I can certainly laugh. These days? It's pretty much all I can do. Like today, today we spent a copious amount, probably too much, on going to Detroit to be commissioned. And it makes me physically ill. Do we absolutely have to be there, standing on stage when they call our names? ... not technically. So why pay? Because it's important. Because when we say we are in the process of becoming long term missionaries, we are serious. Because serving communion to the thousands of people there representing their churches means something. And we want to be a part of that something.

Yah, I drank the ECC koolaid. And I liked it.

Chicago grows on your soul like ivy on so many of the beautiful brick buildings here. Slowly, but intentionally, it creeps along the edges of your spirit until it is suddenly covering a rather alarming portion of your heart. And you realize, that while you were trying to rid yourself of the ivy, it has actually made the structure more beautiful than before. Yes. That is what Chicago is like.

For instance, Sunday. Sunday we went to a beautiful church that is renting their building from a different church (who has service on Saturday), and that church is genuinely multi-ethnic and multi-generational with a strong presence in the community. One of our mission classmates runs their "warming house" which provides a meal for the homeless community and a place for them to "warm" - the cleverness abounds. But there is no need for cleverness when the work is good. And the work is good. So good.


- read the sign above the shop door on Devon. Beautiful. "Can I kiss your baby?" The muslim man asked Marko as Rory slept against his chest. Beautiful. What a beautiful gesture of God's signature on the world. You see, we had this afternoon where we were supposed to wander along Devon St. between California and Western - and while I understood the reasoning behind the task, I mostly just found myself burried in Islamic bookstores. The Arabic, the Urdu, the Pashto - scribble me in ecstasy! Oh, but to know even one. Someday I will conquer you, middle-eastern scripts of beauty.

I'm not going to lie, I fully expected to go to Chicago and hate it. Mark and I were going to spend two miserable weeks listening to people spout off dogmatic nonsense about how Christians are supposed to look. Heyyy, look at that, judgement comes from all kinds of corners (like me). It wasn't. I loved it. It was hard and Mark and I miscommunicated and there were tears and the days were so long and so many new places and two entire seminary courses over the course of two weeks and Rory has four teeth now instead of just two and grew another two freaking inches... but it was wonderful.

"Till I only dwell in thee."

I am covered in henna and my hair is wild. Bracelets of wooden beads adorn my wrists and there is matte on my lips. Oh the joy. My son sleeps long hours in my arms and my own eyes are heavy. The music that plays convicts and saves my soul so many times. There are things to be done around the house, bags to unpack, new books to find homes for. Maps line the walls and scripture lines my palm.

"Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to care for orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unsustained from the world." James 1:27

Are you sure it's not to judge everyone I meet, James? Because I'm pretty sure it is... - don't worry, my sarcasm is lost on many a wandering soul. But seriously, this is a good Word. We met some truly amazing people these last two weeks, so many of whom embodied this scripture. I can't even begin to tell you about them all, but it was so wonderful to be with so many like-minded people. It is hard to find others with international hearts in this, our tiny corner of the world. And yet, the work begins here.

Photo: mia familia <3


I will save exactly what it means for another blog post, but it is coming! And we are eager.