We had a prep day today, getting everything ready to teach tomorrow (Thursday) through Saturday. Please pray for good communication, in particular, pray that I can understand students’ responses without having to ask them to repeat what they said. Quentin does a bit better and has “interpreted” for me at times. Same language, but different pronunciations can make for confusion — on both sides. Pray we are sensitive to the confusion caused by our accents and can read whether our students need us to slow it down a bit. Unlike Americans who will jump in with, “What, what’s that you said?” our Ethiopian friends would be hesitant to insist on clarification. Pray that the 20+ MDiv students will be engaged in and challenged by our presentation and activities. And that God would be honored through it all! 

We truly have enjoyed our time in the Addis Ababa (although we’ve only seen a small portion of it so far). We feel welcomed and safe. And there is always someone ready to help us…

… like Hareg showing me how to write my name in Amharic (the national language), 

. . .or Dr. Tamrat spending hours telling us about the long, amazing history of his beloved Ethiopia — Starting from the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon!! Look it up! Quite fascinating.

. . .or the young lady below so masterfully demonstrating the “real” way to make coffee (they are all very proud of their coffee traditions!!). Socializing around coffee is a high priority here! It really is good coffee!

. . .or the Abat Guest House chef who makes me wonderful oatmeal every morning! I know, spoiled rotten!

Oatmeal topped with peanuts and dried fruit.

Now for a few shots of life around the city that caught my eye:

 This picture captured three women in the same place dressed very differently. There doesn’t appear to be one “right” way for women to dress — except modestly.

Another thing I keep noticing is the contrast between the grand hotels and office buildings and the small huts used by poor vendors along the side of the road — all located within a few blocks of each other. Wealth and poverty side by side.

Last, but not least, just a few lambs in the middle of a busy road. No big deal!

I can’t end a post without reminding you of the battle that Ethiopian parents are in to gain the ability to teach their children in a God-centered way. It is heavy on their hearts and now on mine. Please pray!