Friday, August 4, 2017

Harnessing My Inner Rachel Ray

Yesterday I was feeling a bit nostalgic and reminiscing about the time I’ve spent here in Sierra Leone. I was laughing a bit, thinking about the different roles that the Lord has put me in since arriving here.  Roles that were COMPLETELY out of my comfort zone.  An ICU nurse, who’s patient population was usually over the age of 60 turned pediatric nurse in Sierra Leone.  An ER nurse who had seen exactly one baby delivered in nursing school turned OB nurse delivering babies in high risk situations in Sierra Leone.  Single gal with role models like Amy Carmichael and Mother Teresa, ready to blaze the trail and change the world by herself, turned wife and mother in Sierra Leone. 

And perhaps, the most shocking of all…….girl who’s cooking skills are legendary for always setting the burner on high and burning most things, adding chocolate chips to African food on accident, forgetting all the dry ingredients in a desert, among other things…..turned hostess in Sierra Leone.  That’s right. Five days after arriving in Sierra Leone we started receiving guests from the States and we've had visitors every day since then.  Our last ones left a few days ago.
Pastor Randy came to teach in the Bible Institute and we snagged him to preach on Sunday as well.  

Arlene is a nurse who came to stay with us for a few weeks.  I was in the office next door and heard screaming and wailing! I ran to see what was going on and it turns out they were just doing some hands on teaching and some of the Aunties were being VERY dramatic about their "wounds."  They were in hysterics.  :)

I love having guests. I love getting to watch people see firsthand what’s going on here. I love seeing people broken by the poverty and pain, while getting excited about the possibilities. A lot of our guests are people that I know from home so it’s fun to get to work together in a different context. That being said, now time for full disclosure. It’s also stretching for me because…..I’m a terrible, horrible no good, very bad cook.  And these peoples LIVES are in my hands!!  It might be a bit dramatic, but in my mind, one bad egg and these people are puking all over the place, confined to their bed and unable to do what they came here to do. And I was the one that gave them that egg!!
Frank is an IT specialist who came to train our teachers in the use of computers.

We are a full service organization! My dad even had some dental work done while he was here!

Not only is their health a concern, but so is their general ability to eat my food and receive the nourishment that they need.  I mentioned some of my mistakes above.  That is not an exhaustive list and I’m afraid that I’ve developed somewhat of a reputation for my…eh hem….notorious dishes.  I have five or six dishes that I’ve managed to learn how to make and generally avoid catastrophe.  However some of our guests stayed for six weeks so….if you know who they are, you might want to take them out to dinner when they get home.  Take them somewhere that doesn’t serve spaghetti, pasta or rice! 

And my toddler continues to be.....a toddler
I just love the way that God takes us in our weak areas and decides that that’s exactly where he wants us to serve.  It’s SO comforting to know that he doesn’t depend on my strengths or my abilities to accomplish his purpose. Because even with my six dishes, I still overcooked desert, served the same cabbage salad Every. Single. Night and burnt things.  Rachel Ray I shall never be.  But with His help, I can be faithful. I can be faithful with the things He’s called me to and leave the results up to Him.  No doubt some people have undergone some great sanctifying work after going through the trial of my cooking. :)


  1. I have been to Sl twice and eaten more a couple of dozen meals prepared by my host, the post above is a gross exaggeration I was very well fed and shown wonderful hospitality and the love of Christ!

    1. To be fair Randy, you ate a dozen meals but.....there were a lot of repeats!!!! :)

  2. I thought you did a wonderful job of cooking when we last visited. I was so proud of you!

  3. I ate with you in Kamakwie and felt you made a valliant attempt which was quite eatible!