Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Getting antsy

Feathery ant wings,
trapped outside the house
Thursday, October 27.2016 
There's buzzing. Something is flying around my bedroom. I peek to see what it is. The lizards who roam the walls have stopped chirping as it's getting light out (5am).

The bug's buzz and the morning light wakes me even after a short night. I keep a sleeping mask on the shelf beside the bed but forgot to put it on yesterday.

A 1" flying ant zooms around and finally lands on the dangling pull of the ceiling fan. I grab a hand towel from the bathroom and smash the ant to the ground. And then I hit it thrice to make sure it's not moving, pick it up with a kleenex, and toss it into the garbage.

As rainy season kicks in, the flying ants come en masse (by the hundreds or thousands), landing against walls, on ledges, and above the doors. They also find any cracks into the house.

Our Thursday walk has been canceled - the aging members are less willing to slide around the slippery clay trails. Many of them have broken or sprained hands or feet in the past. I'm sad because I love our walks. Now it's sunny out, though it may be pouring by mid-morning.

One guest pads around his room upstairs, getting ready to fly back to Singapore. At 7am, the gardener rings the gate bell. He'll work the day at our house and the neighbor's. Today he's climbing 3 kinds of trees, harvesting nagnka (jackfruit), betel nuts and leaves (which get steamed), and hundreds of avocados next door, if they're ripe.

Taking a stroll with neighbor Jez, I notice a sprawling zucchini plant on a wild hedge behind our homes. Looking more closely, it's plain to see that various helpers have been picking the flowers to eat - I ask mine to make sure they leave some flowers so we can have vegetables as well. The locals often harvest plants in the yards without mentioning it to us - we have to keep our eyes open to see what is ripe. (We share of course: today, one huge jackfruit will go to Jez, one to us, and one split between helpers. Each jackfruit makes 4-5 family-sized meals. Cooked Sunda-style, it tastes like pulled pork.)

The other guest (Pieter) sleeps in and then takes the dog for a run. Our house is about as quiet as one can find and it's a blessing to share it with travelers and friends. Pieter's getting to the know the city through appointments with our friends and connections. So far, he loves it - though not yet as much as we do.

Dear friends Sumathi and Augustine
W flies back in today - he's got a 13-hour flight to Taiwan from Vancouver with a decent layover, a flight to Jakarta, a bus ride to Bandung, and an Uber home. He'll be tired when he gets here, but the trip is pretty efficient = under 30 hours door to door. Travel is exhausting so we are always glad to get home.

Sorting files on my computer, I flip through photo memories. I'm missing Sumathi and Augustine, true friends in Cambridge (UK), Singapore, and here. Prayers appreciated for Augustine, now battling cancer in India.

Read more:
*Thus says the Lord, “I remember the devotion of your youth, your love as a bride, how you followed me in the wilderness, in a land not sown.” Jeremiah 2:2 ESV

*All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord's Supper), and to prayer. A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord's Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity—all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved. Acts 2:42-47 NLT

*Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.

This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 1 John 4: 7-11 NIV

*Let us hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who has promised is faithful. Hebrews 10:23 ESV
Moravian Prayer: As the days and years edge on, help us, Lord, to not be weary and to not faint. Let our zeal for you never run dry. Daily renew us by the power of your Spirit. Let us by your power and strength finish the race. Amen.

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