Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Wanla Nit, Wanla Noi - "A Little Bit Each Day"


May and A-Tom - Grade 6 Graduation

The slow and steady things of life have been impressed upon me of late.  The bigness of the little bits all collected; the successes of a long faithfulness; the measurements of what happens when you just tenaciously stay at it over the long haul.

If we're honest, I think we might all admit to feeling the temptation to want the 'big win'.  When things are important enough, we can get impatient to see the results of our efforts in obvious, immediate metrics.  Pounds off on the scale.  Big chunks off the debt.  Huge strides in improvements or developments of any sort.  Flowers shooting up into blooms all at once.

Earliest spring shoots.

But in most of life, accomplishment comes in increments, almost impossible to see happening before your eyes unless you take a longer look at what's going on.  Like children eager to line themselves up against the wall to see how tall they are now.  It's only by measuring against where you were months or even years ago that you can see where you've come.

May and Atom both graduated grade 6 this school year.  They are tall and blossoming young ladies now.  Here's May when she arrived at Hot Springs, age six, and so very, very small.  What you can't tell from the pictures is how much she has grown in confidence as well.  Her voice!  Such a timid, held back whisper, now developed into a well-spoken, articulate expression of strength.  All around the world, it's so important that we help little girls find their voice.

Similarly for A-Tom.  The coming into her own, the building of skills, the finding her own space in the world...it doesn't happen over night.

The Thai phrase for this is a colloquial blending of the word for 'day' (wan) and the phrase for 'little bit' (nit noi), becoming a lyrical wanla nit, wanla noi.  Just a little bit each day.

I am glad for these reminders.  As    the pandemic months turn to years and I am not there with them, it can feel a bit like time is frozen and nothing is happening.  

That is, if I make this only about what I can perceive.

It brings to mind a rather intriguing "quotation" from Paul in 1 Corinthians 2:9.

"'What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived' -- the things God has prepared for those who love him -- these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit."

There's good depth in exploring this text (and the Isaiah 64, 65 connection it evokes)  that I won't go into here.  But the underlying thought is that there's always a lot more going on than meets the eye...and God's got it well in hand.

This brings me again and again to places of deep gratitude for all you who take these patient steps a little bit at a time with us.  The long faithfulness of your support makes these gradual life transformations possible.  Thank you for your tenacious vision to stay at it with us.  They are growing, these precious ones.  Just a little bit every day for big, big outcomes that would not be possible otherwise.

Soon I will be making some important decisions about a time to return.  There's a lot to consider, especially now with war and air-space factoring into flight paths and transfers.  And then there's this little 'sixth wave' making its way around the world, and the growing realization that waiting until COVID has run its course isn't likely going to be a proactive strategy.

So, as always, we appreciate your prayers.  Much wisdom is needed for this, and for any and all future plans for property and financial development, and the nurturing of all our partner relationships that make any of it possible.

Blessings and strength for your own "little bit each day" endeavours!

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