Saturday, February 16, 2008

Necessity or Luxury?

A computer...many would consider it a luxury...especially here in South Africa. Many only have a computer through work. Some have one at home, but don't have internet access; and if they do, it's usually dial-up (which is charged per minute). There are few with ADSL like we have. Schools don't require children to use a computer for school work.
Each Monday, our team meets for prayer. The other missionary family on our team was having problems with a computer, laptop, they just bought. Out of the two weeks they've had the computer, it's spent a week in the shop. And it still wasn't right. So I prayed for them as they faced the frustration of a broken computer...and their meeting with the technicians. I even thought then, it may be a "luxury" but as a missionary, it really has become a necessity.
We use it to communicate with family and friends in the States. We send out prayer updates so our prayer partners know how to pray for us. We communicate with other missionaries and our bosses! We have many forms for our organization to fill out on the computer and send in using the internet.
I think if you ask anyone in the States, computers are a necessity...but could we get along without it? Yes, we used to...a long, long, time ago. I taught computers for a couple of years while living in Virginia. I saw a student of mine about 10 years after she had been in my class. She told me she remembered me talking about the internet and how we would use it to send messages and letters to people by computers. She said she thought that was the dumbest thing she had ever heard! Now look where we are today. We hardly send letters by mail anymore. We use the mail to get packages of things we bought over the internet!
So...has the computer become a necessity? Or is it a luxury? A need? Or a want?
Well...Monday, after our prayer meeting, I came home, went over to my computer to check email. When I touched it...the screen turned blue with a large error message in white. It said to restart the computer. When I did, it wouldn't restart. A file was missing! Oh, no! I take it to the shop. The new hard drive (6 months old) has crashed! And only some of my information could be retrieved. Now I'm using my daughter's computer until I can get a new one!
My answer? A computer is definitely a could I post this message on my blog!
Janna Kay

Thursday, February 07, 2008

My Friend

My Friend, Blandinah and her son, Emmanuel

This is my friend, Blandinah. We met at her wedding! We were invited to the wedding by her husband, Pastor Aaron. They were married in a village about 4 hours from Joburg. The wedding lasted 2 days! Sunday night, after the last celebration, we gave them a lift back to Joburg. Blandinah had never been to Joburg! About an hour outside their village, she fell asleep and only woke up at her house in Joburg.

Imagine...being in a small town then waking up to a city of 9 million people! What a shock, I'm sure!

Over the first year of their marriage, Blandinah and I became good friends. She fell pregnant and our family was so excited about the baby.

But...she left Joburg to go back to the village before Emmanuel was born. In their culture, the wife returns to the village to stay with the mother-in-law in order to learn how to care for the baby! Ok...think about it...going to live with your mother-in-law...for learn about caring for babies! For some people, that is quite scary! For some, it may be more scary to go to your own mother!

Anyway...Blandinah returned to Joburg. Emmanuel was precious and we enjoyed spoiling him!

After a few months, Blandinah returned to the village. She returned to take care of her mother-in-law. Wow! I still have a hard time with that part of their culture. Didn't she need to be with her husband? Didn't he need to spend time with his son?

However, I recently found out that she was not only caring for Aaron's mother, but she was finishing high school. I am very excited for her.

She came back to Joburg during the Christmas/Summer holiday. It was good to visit and see her again.

She is leaving tomorrow to go back to the village. This is her last year of high school. After this year, if she passes all her exams, she will have her degree and will return to Joburg to stay! I am so glad she is determined to finish. I know it must be difficult having a husband and baby and needing to study. I am sure she will do well.

But I will miss my friend.

Blessings, Blandinah. I pray that the Lord will help you understand and remember the information you study and help you recall that information when you take exams.

Janna Kay

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Stress Free

I don't normally read "Fwd:Fwd" emails, but a friend sent one about reducing stress...I don't have much stress...but I thought I would read the advice it gave. I was surprised by the number of suggestions listed that have worked for me...and there were a few I need to try. I've compacted the list...thought I'd share it with you all! Blessings!
1. Pray without ceasing. Talk to God on the spot. Try to nip small problems in the bud. Don't wait until bedtime to try and pray.
2. Go to bed on time...get enough rest! Get up on time so you can start the day unrushed.
3. Say "no" to projects that won't fit into your time schedule. And, delegate tasks to capable others.
4. Allow extra time to do things and get to places. (My husband is great at this!)
5. Simplify and unclutter your life. Remember less can be more!
6. Live within your budget and don't use credit cards for ordinary purchases.
7. Eat right.
8. Carry a Bible or good book to read while waiting in line. (My husband and I hardly go anywhere without a book.)
9. Get organized so everything has its place. (I even organized a cooking when someone asks "What's for dinner?" I can tell them! It has helped me tremendously!)
10. Take your work seriously, but not yourself at all. (Ok...this I could definitely improve on.)
11. Everyday, find time to be alone.
12. Write down thoughts and inspirations. (Blogger is a great place to share those!)
13. Keep a folder of favorites Scriptures on hand.
14. Do something everyday for the "kid" in you.
15. Laugh. Then, laugh some more!
16. Make friends with godly people.
17. Talk less and listen more.
18. Be kind to unkind people. They probably need it the most.
19. Develop a forgiving attitude. Most people are doing the best they can.
20. Every night before you go to bed, think of one thing you are grateful for that you've never been grateful for before and share that with God. (This I must start doing!)

Hope this encourages you. Maybe you know of some other ways to reduce stress or simply make each day easier & better! Love to hear from you!

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Oops! I Did the Wrong "Meme!"

My mom with Joshuwa.

Well, Angie...I thought when you tagged me that it was for the same one you were tagged for! Sorry!
Now, I have to think of 20 things my mom taught me. (The other took a lot less thought!) it is: My list of 20 things my mother taught me!
1. To smile and share that smile with others.
2. To enjoy having people in my home.
3. To be involved in church wherever Jesus leads.
4. To drink coffee black!
5. When it comes to cooking, to clean up as you go!
6. To read my Bible through (although I didn't do it in a year; it took 3!)
7. To enjoy being short.
8. To LOVE shopping!
9. To love working with youth.
10. To appreciate and learn sign language.
11. To be a Baylor Bear!
12. To find joy in life.
13. To treasure my family.
14. To enjoy crafting.
15. To love reading.
16. To love "murder mysteries."
17. To be dependable.
18. To praise my kids.
19. To support my husband.
20. To love the Lord, Jesus!
Thanks, Mom! I love you!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Ouch! I've Been Tagged doesn't hurt at all to be tagged! Who wants to be next?

Four jobs I've had:
1. Working in the payroll dept. for American General Insurance Corp. (now AIG)
2. Teaching Math in Texas (grades 8 & 9)
3. Teaching Math & Computers in VA & NC (grades 6, 7, & 8)
4. Missionary in South Africa
Four places I've lived:
1. Houston, TX
2. Ft. Worth, TX
3. Durham, NC
4. Joburg, South Africa
Four movies I've watched over and over:
1. You've Got Mail
2. Ever After
3. Pride & Prejudice
4. Flicka
Four Shows I watch:
1. 24
2. Animal Cops Houston
3. How Do I Look?
4. Clean House
(Except for 24, these shows are on South African satellite TV)
Four Places I've been:
1. NYC
2. Mexico
3. Zimbabwe
4. Cape Town, SA
Four people who email me regularly:
1. Barbara Myers (our cluster prayer advocate & I'm team prayer advocate)
2. Mom
3. Angie Lechner
4. Wanda Andrews
(I do IM regularly with others like my dad, my brother, Bronnie, friends from NC, and Kurt...yes...that way I don't have to go all the way outside to his office!)
Four favorite things to eat:
1. Mexican food
2. Chocolate chip cookies
3. Popcorn
4. Pineapple (You can get it with chili powder at the market!)
Four things I look forward to this year:
1. Riding Ivy (my pony)
2. Family coming to visit us in SA
3. Holiday at Moolmanshoek (& horse riding every day!)
4. Losing 4 more kgs (8.8 lbs) - I had gained way too much weight in America last year!