my heart is so, so busy

After a delightful night’s sleep (fell into bed at 9:00), I woke up at 4:30 and couldn’t go back to sleep. So, I spent some sweet time talking to God and reliving our first full day in Cambodia and composing blog posts in my head. (It’s 6:15am on Wednesday here–12 hours ahead of those of you on EST.)

I feel such a burden–not a bad burden, a good one. Just a heavy weight of seeing and hearing and feeling so much and wanting so badly to share it with all of you. Much of it is hard, but much of it is so good, so redemptive, so full of hope and promise and awe of our amazing, loving God who cares so deeply for the people he created.

I envision themed posts where I delve deeply and eloquently into people’s stories and various aspects of life in Cambodia. In reality, you’ll probably get a smattering of thoughts and feelings, raw and rambling, and you’ll have to pick out the nuggets and digest them on your own. I’m asking God for his grace as I write, that he’ll give me words, that I can somehow communicate even a small percentage of what’s going on in my mind and heart.

I hope to share lots of pictures too. So thankful for Gabe’s gift and praying for a strong internet connection that allows him to upload as many sights and scenes as he can for you to see.

After I blogged yesterday…

Oh goodness. Ava just woke up with a bellyache, and after holding her in bed for 20 minutes or so while she cried and I cried and prayed for God to heal her, she said she needed to throw up and made it safely to the toilet. She says she feels better and wants to go on with our day. Bless her heart. Please pray that she stays healthy (that all of us do). My heart aches for sick babies who don’t have a mama to hold them and clean water to drink and brush their teeth with. Oh God, have mercy.

I kind of just lost my whole train of thought…

Oh, yesterday. After I blogged, we ate breakfast and showered and got together all the stuff we brought from home for our friend Yvonne (coconut m&m’s, apple corer, head lamp, personal items) and then met her, Veasna and Panha for lunch at a Khmer restaurant. It was kind of fancy with cushioned seats on the floor. Veasna ordered for us, and we ate Khmer-style (help yourself to all the dishes in front of you). Something something sour pork, a vegetable dish, yellow chicken curry, and a popular green and sour Khmer soup.

Then we took a tuk-tuk tour of Phnom Penh (including watching Veasna in action teaching Kids’ Club at a park near Wat Phnom) before dropping Yvonne off at her apartment and heading to the orphanage with Panha.

Melt my heart at the sight of my little blondies (with streaks of green and purple) running around and giggling with those sweet precious kiddos we love and miss so much. Hope to have pictures for you soon, because we got some good ones.

Off to spend the day at the Boys’ Center. Talk about some heart-wrenching stories all mixed in with hope. Yvonne and Panha shared some things yesterday that made me want to run back to America and go door-to-door begging for spare dollars and change so that these boys and their families can thrive and know Jesus.

I’ll have an opportunity soon for you to help in a small way with a huge impact. Praise God for the internet.

Good-bye for now! Praising and thanking God for your faithful prayers.

9 thoughts on “my heart is so, so busy

  1. joyce

    As I was reading your blog post I had Casting Crowns ‘I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day’ playing in the background. Peace on Earth sung by a choir of children…so perfect.

    I will pray for your health. So thankful your heart is full and spilling over.

  2. Morgan Nameth

    i’ll be stalking you for the next few weeks….just wanted to put that out there…..
    sooooo happy you guys are in Cambodia! Praise Jesus!

  3. Amanda

    So glad you are there safely!! May the Lord continue to direct your every step and give you wisdom/visions of how to help those you feel such a passion for. May the Lord put a hedge of protection around you and your family and shield you from any sickness– Put your spiritual clothes(armor) on daily!
    Love–the Pride fam

  4. janelle

    The blood of JESUS over Ava, Livi, Nina, Marla, Gabe….the blood of JESUS for the orphans, the boys, may YOU alone, YOU alone be glorified….in the name of JESUS.

  5. ali

    Thank you a million times over for being our eyes and ears over there. And thank you, Lord, for giving Marla the words to help us better understand this country that I know you love.

  6. ellen

    wow – I understand sick kids in strange places — Lindsey and I threw up together in Haiti — praying for the Blood of Jesus to cover you all – also struggle with the desire to give everything to these poor in need countries — and juggle the scripture that says the poor will always be with us. I know your heart will expand exponentially while you are there –

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