Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Learning, Struggling, Advice?

 So much seems to happen between my chances to write a post I don't know what to write.  Like life in most places, highs and lows.  And like most times, not spending good time in the Bible and praying in the morning makes the day much more difficult.

   I think I'll write this post asking for your thoughts, suggestions, advice, and godly counsel.  We have a responsibility to be a good example and to teach good principles to those around us, especially the young ones who are beginning to develop their ways. 

   Kids want to play.  That's normal.  But there is also a time to work, and here there is much work we have to do.  Half the time the older boys are good examples in working, and the other half the time lead the younger ones in sitting around.  They speak the younger ones' language and are of the same culture, so they relate and look up to them more.  I am the odd ball for trying to motivate to work if nobody wants to.  I won't scold, though sometimes I think I might be bordering that.  I don't like that.  

   I also don't like begging or cheer leading.  I too often get complaining and murmuring, in which I respond,  "Do you not like living here at the lake?  You want to go live at Bamboo School?  We work here or we work at Bamboo School."  They like living here, and so do I.  If we don't take good care of what's been given to us, it will be taken away from us.  That seems to be my only motivation for them.

   Today I was thinking about the talents and gifts we are given, some more than others.  We are only responsible for using what we've been given.  Jesus said that he who hides what he's been given, even what he has will be taken away.  Use it or lose it.  That's a good lesson we need to learn here I think.  There is always the free will and consequences that come from bad choices.  That is not under my control, unless I think of consequences to implement.  Then I need to be sure I'm doing so fairly at the right times. 

   I'm still trying to figure out what I'm suppose to be learning here.  How to lead and be a good example?  Not harsh.  Someone recently told me leading by example only goes so far.  Not sure what to do here.
I just know I want to do things right and be a good example, make a difference for good.  Above all love. 

  Many times, like yesterday though, I'm very proud of them for how hard they work.  Maybe they deserve a day off after how hard they worked yesterday.  I'm sure there is much I need to learn in all this, not just teach.

  So any suggestions on getting them to work when it's time to work?  To get them to clean when it's time to clean?  Everyday I'm telling them the same things over again.  They don't like it and neither do I.  I have someone translate about working smart and not hard, about just doing what you know you need to do without being told.

   How about destroying or stealing?  What kind of consequences could be implemented?  They love to play soccer.   It's good exercise and fun.  I would hate to take that away for a time, but is something they really enjoy.  I don't want to be an "authoritarian" bad guy.  I just want to do what's best for everybody.

   I hope this post is not complaining, just looking for growth in my life and to be effective where I'm at.   Maybe by being transparent someone else will learn with me.  Thank you for any thoughts, advice, and prayers. 

 Building a stone stairway.


  1. Hello my dear friend!
    I am so happy to hear of your struggles. Confused? I think your probably not because you know me enough by know to know it means something. ha!

    Often when we spend time and energy trying to steer and lead others, we find ourselves taken from the task at hand. The only person that we can control or change is ourselves.

    I offer you this:

    Be a man of few words for a time. Focus on the task that needs to be done and don't ask for anyone's help. Don't try to convince them or lecture them or try to motivate them. Just work from your heart as if you are all alone (because if you were all alone, you would still be helping). The children all know that you are there and working for them, to help them. This, they know in their hearts. When they see you working quietly, for them, they will start to join you and make that internal choice to help the man helping them.

    call it a hunch.

    I love you Chad! You are such an incredible inspiration. Keep taking on new struggles only to overcome them. You are an awesome work of God! Don't ever forget that.

  2. Thank you Ray. That was/is my "hunch" too. That method sure does take perseverance when you are working alone, and you feel it's your responsibility that they work. I got to the point of frustration this last week when I wrote this post and realized the consequences are on our own choices, and God does see everything and is patient and rewards us for our diligence.

    Well an older boy here reported to MomoCat yesterday that 4 of the boys out here only want to play. So she made them come back to Bamboo School and swapped them for 4 others who have a better work ethic, and are younger! Plus a 5th one that wanted to stay with his play friends. So we have 5 new boys on our team out here. I see this as such a blessing. Consequences come, and it is good that we learn when the price is small. Discipline is important, but touchy being a stranger.

    Also yesterday, MomoCat shared good ideas to help us connect and do things for the community. So I'm feeling very good God hears our prayers and is always there.

    Thank you Ray. God is so good!
    Love you too brother!

  3. God has certainly blessed you Chad for many many years with the friendship you have with Ray! I am so grateful to God for my friends and know their limitless value in our lives. I know both of you have blessed each other and this warms a mother's heart. Thank you Jesus for giving us great friends!

  4. Hi Hon!

    I'm a wee bit of a Jodi-come-lately but wanted to respond anyway. I agree with both Ray and Momo-Cat. I'm so glad she swapped out the kids who didn't want to work. Consequences, as unpleasant as they may be, are really the only way to learn. We humans have a tendency to take the easiest way and become unmotivated (I certainly know that). We can learn easy or we can learn hard - almost everybody I've ever heard of seems to have to learn hard. The kids who had to leave were given the gift and opportunity to learn. This is so important for them - if they didn't learn it in this smaller way with you and Momo-cat and your group, they very well may have to learn it in a harsher way elsewhere. If/when they come out to the lake again or receive some other opportunity, they will hopefully remember.

    It sounds like you're having both challenges and joys, Chad. I'm so glad for you and impressed with you. Go ahead and take that alone time, some every day. Some of us need that more than others and there's nothing wrong with that. And just as community and solitude need to be balanced, so also do work and play. Go ahead and have play every day, too. You all deserve it.

    Love you,

    1. Thank you so very much Aunty Jodi! your words touch my heart.

  5. Oh, P.S, forgot - the sky on that topmost picture is stupendous!!! The beauty is almost overwhelming.