So, if you haven’t heard the extraordinary news yet…we got some baking powder! Our first major victory in France came shortly after our previous blog post. Thank you to the many people who gave advice, googled on our behalf, shared their own experiences and finally to our fellow South African who just saw it in the shops and bought it for us. This was a win.
Life in France has gotten much easier now that we have been here for just over a month. Our French is still awful but on the plus side we have become experts at Charades. This daily drama routine also forces others to join in. Whenever we collect the boys from school we stand across from the teachers and act something out, they in turn also act until, after several exchanges, we all smile, say, “Merci” and walk away without any idea as to what the other was trying to say. The good news is that we have a tutor who is helping us now so hopefully we can retire our modest, yet entertaining acting career before the kids graduate high school.
We are quite confident and comfortable in our area now and generally understand how most things, except for bureaucracy, work. This said, there are still many learning moments. While it is no longer a problem to keep the car on the right side of the road, I have still managed to turn onto the tram tracks thinking it was the road on more than one occasion (Olivia shouting “Tram” every time). Another learning moment was when I took the tram into the city center for a meeting which only finished late. It was 22:45 and the tram had stopped running, so I had to walk 4km to where I had parked my car and drive home.
The weather has certainly gotten colder very quickly and we are excited to see the snow on the mountains around us. This doesn’t seem to have registered with Luc yet, he still only wants to wear shorts and it generally takes 10 minutes to wrestle him into a jacket before we leave the house. It’s funny how you just know that it’s cold outside but no matter how much you try to explain it to your kids, they just don’t believe you. When he is in our heated home, looking out the window at the snow capped peaks, his current experience tells him that it’s warm. His view coming into conflict with ours. It is only when we eventually let him go out in his shorts that he suddenly has this epiphany, “oh wait, it’s freezing!” It is at that moment when he experiences the truth for the first time.
I have been spending some time in Romans 12, thinking a lot about the process of renewing our minds. Watching Luc go through this (at times frustrating) process I think about my own walk with God. There are times when it feels like my own experience doesn’t match up with His word. In those moments I easily question if what scripture says about (insert whatever) is true. Then comes that inevitable moment when my worldview gets exposed by the truth. The lie is brought into the light. When I can see for myself, “oh wait, it’s freezing!”
We are in a foreign world here in France. There is much that we love and enjoy, really enjoy. There are also things that clash with the way we see the world. It reminds me that we all - influenced by how we were raised, our culture, our friends -see the world very differently. So, who sees it rightly?
The more I ponder on this, the more I know I need to be saturated in the truth, not my truth, the truth. The process of seeing rightly means allowing my thinking to be changed and shaped by the Word. If we are to have any impact on the world we need to see the world rightly. Not through a window.
This is the journey we remain on. Little by little, day by day, step by step.
1. When I became we
2. Step on to the water
3. This little light of mine
4. Luc, I am your father
5. A light to our path
6. Next to a stranger
7. Empty cupboards and croissants
8. Musings after the monument
9. Baby steps
10. Through the window
12. Crossing the road
13. Who am I?
14. Sticks and stones
15. Lost and Found
16. A Fixed Point
17. Les Poux
18. Pain au chocolat
19. Notre Dame
20. The temple to all the gods
21. The Palace
22. Dead Emperor, living King
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