Monthly Archives: March 2013

Cambo Part3.

january18/friday/day 40/Kampot

had a beautiful bicycle ride past rice fields, cows grazing, and children heading to school this morning. emily and I rode to fetch breakfast (bread, rice donuts, apples and bananas) for the team. house visits this morning went great, one woman, Sui, said her leg felt better after we prayed. she walked around on it for a bit and then exclaimed “Thank you, Jesus!”. so encouraging to see. played guitar, read Hosea, and then watched an amazing sunset while having a one on one with Gabriela. I just love hearing about what God is doing in my girl’s lives. mashed potatoes for dinner, and bible study to end off this wonderful blessed day!

House visit with Sui

House visit with Sui

jan31/wednesday/day 53/kampot

early morning teaching again (7am). the tuk tuk wouldnt start so Vuhty (our contact)had to take me on his motorbike, which is definitely  my favourite mode of transportation. told my grade 7 classes that today is my last day with them, and ended both classes with a round of hangman. I am gonna miss 7E&F so much! I have never enjoyed teaching english anywhere as much as I have these past couple weeks.


My grade 7 class


Having my portrait drawn

feb 13/wednesday/day66/airport

Jesus thank you for your grace. thank you for the gift of living two months of my life in beautiful cambodia. thank you for entrusting me with ten girls, and for teaching me through each of them. thank you for setting up this whole outreach for us. thank you for the salvations, the healings, the joy we got to see you bring.


it feels like the day after Christmas, after so much build up and anticipation the day came and passed. presents were exchanged, family was visited and a feast was enjoyed. you received some of what you asked for, but not everything. there were some disappointments but the blessings and joy overshadowed them all. and then, with one sleep the day is over, gone, complete. a new days arises with the the sun in the east, you wake up with a sigh and longing in your chest for more. for something more, for a replica experience, for more time. but reality sets and so does the truth- we have another year to go. in the same way it hits you, outreach has come and gone for the sixth time and I miss it already.


and so the chapter ends.



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Cambodia Part 2

day 25/thursday/january 3/kampong cham

went and splurged a whopping 50 cents and got our nails painted at a little salon down the street. met a young woman there who was very excited to practice her english on us. she kept telling us that she wished she had more money so she could buy us presents. people are so incredibly giving here, and very community oriented. i love that relatives either live together or beside each other. how they say anything that is on their mind, nothing is awkward to them.

after lunch I read Esther and then we went back to Jimpa’s house and the boys worked on putting up the foundation for her new house. Jimpa is a paralyzed widow whose little house was very unstable so we have been helping the pastor build her and her son a new one.

Putting the walls up

Putting the walls up


All the neighborhood kids loved to come watch us build. Floors done!

then six of us girls went to this sweet old lady’s house for a visit. at 87 she had a hunchback and weighed about the same in pounds. but don’t let her frailness fool you, this woman loves to pinch! and not cute little hello pinches but full on grab as much skin as possible and twist pinches. she was just so full of life! she told us a string of amusing lies about being engaged, getting married in a month and how she was going to wear a sexy little outfit for her honeymoon. she was cracking us all right up. we just hung out in her little bamboo house for a while, prayed for her, then promised to visit again. as we were about to leave it was brought to our attention that a little girl had a really bad burn on her butt from falling on a fire yesterday. it looked awful, about five inches across and the skin was peeling off and yellow underneath. Emily and Gabriela went back to the church and got our medical kit and went back and cleaned the girl’s wound. it’s amazing how a little medical attention can be such a huge blessing to a family in a village. taught english after dinner, then played cards and went to bed at 9:40.


Visiting with “The Pincher”

day 34/ saturday/january 12/ kampong cham

our last full day in kampong cham.  after lunch we went back to Jimpa’s house to say goodbye. it was exciting to see her new home almost complete, it was all up except the roof, which the pastor will finish in the next few days. we prayed for Jimpa and her son one last time, and then after she told us how she had been praying to Jesus before we came because she was lonely, and how happy she was that we came and helped build her house and hung out with her. as she was talking her son came over and sat in her lap and asked us if we saw the stars last night. apparently they were very bright!  my heart broke as i  pictured him and his mom sleeping side by side on the floor in their new little home without a roof, staring up at the night sky, and though in what i would consider extreme poverty, being thankful for the stars above his head. what different worlds we live in! sometimes in rough locations i have to remind myself that Jesus is so very worthy of the small price i pay by eating not so great food or sleeping on a hard floor. but these locations are simply the reality for so many people. this is their life and this is all they have ever known. moments like these when i am reminded how blessed I am to have two loving parents and always a roof over my head make me praise God, but also wonder- why me? hearing Jimpa tell us that God answered her prayers by sending us to her is an amazing reminder that God cares for all of his children, including the widow in the middle of Cambodia. and just as i consider myself to be incredibly blessed with a family and home in Canada, this woman praises God in the same way for providing for her every need. what i look on and see as poverty (such as her 12 by 15′ bamboo roofless house!), she sees as blessing. God truly does hear the cries of the widows and the orphans, just as he has said. it is a blessing to watch his promises unfold and to get to be a part of them!


Jimpa’s new house still under construction. Doesn’t look like much to us, but to her it means the world!


beautiful Jimpa and her son

Beautiful Jimpa and her son


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Cambodia Part 1.

excerpts from my journal:

day 6/saturday/dec 15/Phnom Penh

made banana pancakes for breaky. then we went to the genocide museum and killing fields, it was a lot and also somehow not enough to take in. it doesn’t seem real that this happened when my mom was graduating from highschool. the photos, the skulls, the facts in front of you make it real, but looking around at these people on the streets, in the market, i would have never guessed such horrors had ever occurred in this country. soo many skulls, too many…all real people with their own stories. maybe it will become more real when Pastor Keat (our contact) shares his story with us. i couldn’t help but notice the abundance of butterflies flying over the mass grave sights, as if God was reminding us that there is always new life and hope.

memorial at the killing fields

memorial at the killing fields

day 12/monday/dec21/Phnom Penh

chapel in the a.m. the kids from a couple of my english classes performed different songs and skits and i felt like a proud momma watching them up there. it has been awesome staying at this school for two weeks because you actually get to build somewhat of a relationship with the kids. after chapel we cleaned it, went to the Christmas party in our class for twenty minutes than quickly got changed and left for “the island” to do irrigation. it finally felt like outreach, bumping along a dirt road in a hot van in a rural was a lot of fun getting to work with our hands and help out Pastor Keat. we spent a good 4 hours fitting blue pipes together in the churches mango grove. Pastor Keat blessed us all with cokes- its crazy how much you can appreciate a small gift like that when you have been working all day. made it home just in time to shower before our evening english class/christmas party.


enjoying our cokes


the irrigation system


Our last class with our older english students.

day15/monday/dec 24/Siem Reap

temple tours! woke up at 4 am! aaah, so early. left at 4:30, was dark and freezing cold on the tuk tuks. watched the sunrise at Angkor Wat, so incredibly beautiful. went to like 5 more temples including the one from Tomb Raider with the overgrown tree roots all over the place. lost Clay for a good two hours. some of the girls rode elephants but i lost my park ticket so they wouldn’t let me ride one, pretty bummed. an amazing Christmas eve altogether.


angkor wat 2

Angkor Wat

ta prhom

Ta Prohm


Ta Prohm

day 21/sunday/dec 30/Siem Reap-Kampong Cham

so today was a little cray cray, first our bus driver said he wouldn’t be passing the bridge that Uee (our next contact) told us to get off at. Uee kept telling us to give the phone to the bus driver (as he is driving) so he could talk to him, but my cell kept loosing signal. finally it seemed like they had sorted something out and Uee told us to just ride all the way to Phnom Penh and he would meet us there with a van. six hours into the ride the bus pulls over at a bridge and tells us it’s time for us to get off. we follow orders and get off. the bus pulls away and we are standing on the side of the road with our luggage, completely bewildered. we cross the street and hang out at a small shop, call Uee tell him we are by some bridge and then sit and wait for an hour and a half for him to come get us. the lady at the shop was very nice and brought us flattened cardboard boxes to sit on. i pulled out the guitar and played some worship as a crowd of people gathered to watch the travelling white parade.

Killing time

Killing time

once Uee came it was another hour and a half to Ampil, a beautiful drive out into the boonies. its super old school out here, complete with horse drawn carts, cows being herded down the streets, and kids playing jump rope in front of their houses. our new home is a tree fort! i love it! it’s actually a church but way up on stilts.hard floors to sleep on but i piled up some blankets to sleep on and hopefully that does the trick. early to bed tonight. thank you jesus for a pillow to rest my head on. tomorrow i turn 26. weird.


our new home. girls inside, boys on the deck!


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In like a lion.


So here we are. The second of March. Rain is pouring down, much like it has been all day. I wear slippers and drink coffee to ward of the chills. Chocolate smartie pecan oatmeal cookies are in the oven and I stare at this screen content as can be. Coming home is always just that- coming home. Even with an empty house, I am happy to be here. Rain and gloom and all, I dont think the beauty of this town will ever evade me. I am forever grateful to be raised in a place such as Gibsons.

Four weeks ago I was in Cambodia, three- Thailand, two-Hawaii and one-Vancouver. To put the emotions of transitioning from place to place into words would be entirely possible, but quite lengthy. In short: One week I am teaching english in a village, sleeping on a hard wood floor and showering with a bucket of water from a trough. The next I am at a clinic on a small island in Thailand, discovering that I have lost 14lbs due to a parasite and being completely disappointed that my week of debriefing and relaxing on the beach is ruined. Then I am back in Honolulu, reunited with people I love, yet missing my students that I no longer spend 24 hours a day with. In Vancouver, I am slapped in the face wth the cold weather and joyfully watch Kaitlin (a girl from the first team I ever led) marry the man of her dreams. I spend time with friends and family and finally arrive here, home. I enjoy the comfort of a bedroom all to myself, the warmth of a fireplace, and the freedom to choose whatever I like to eat for every meal today.

In Cambodia there were days when I missed home, and just as often there are days here when I miss outreach. Take last night for example, I can’t transport back to Cambodia so instead I watch Lara Croft Tomb Raider  (enduring the outdated CGI)  in order to see Ta Phrom and Angkor Wat. My heart is warmed as I hear the Cambodians call out “moi, bi, by” or “1, 2,3” in a scene.  The adventure seeker in me thinks my life is as fulfilling as they come, but the traditional homebody side of me sometimes grows tired of the plane rides and instability of it all.

What keeps me steady is really truly simply Jesus. They say it takes missionaries four years to really accept where they are. Four years to steady your heart and get over culture shock. Four years to realize that this really is your life. I just broke the 4.5 year mark of being on staff in Ywam and  reaching this point has not been easy. This past year I have wrestled with and questioned why I am doing this, more so than any time previously. But I know that I am chosen for this task and for such a time as this. All of the doubts and anxieties come down to my trust in the Lord. Over this past school God has really solidified in my heart how trustworthy he really is. How faithful he always always is. Some key verses I find the Lord reminding me of are: “The LORD is exalted, for he dwells on high; he will fill Zion with justice and righteousness, and he will be the stability of your times…” -Isaiah 33:6 and “Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.” “-John 14:23.

Life moves quickly. How encouraging it is to know that wherever I go, wherever I may lay my head at night, Father, Son and Holy Spirit have made their home with me. They continue to be the stability of my times.

In the next few days I will be sharing some entries from my Cambo journal, so stay tuned!

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