Having two kids far away overseas is a little harder than I expected. When they're away at college, I can still call whenever I want to on the cell phone, send emails and get a pretty quick answer, check up with what they are doing on Facebook, etc. But the difficulty of communicating to and from Iraq / Ethiopia is quite different. Alex has been in Iraq since February, and will be there until next spring. We only get to talk via Skype ( free internet video phone ) once every couple of weeks. He called Wednesday and the connection was very slow, causing about a 20 second delay between when I spoke and when he heard me, so we resorted to using the Skype instant messager and typing out our conversation. I still got to see him, though, and he looks good, but tired ( it was after midnight there ). He is frustrated by some things, but couldn't really talk about them. There is a lot he can't really tell us ... security concerns, you know.
Sarah is spending the month of June in Ethiopia. She arrived in Addis Ababa on Sunday, and sent an email right away. But that is the last we've heard from her. Yesterday, I did email the American program manager at the house where she is staying, and got a reply that everything is fine. But the internet connection there is unreliable and power outages are common. Hopefully she'll be able to get through over the weekend.
I want to know what they are doing. I long for pictures, details... c'mon people, this is the Information Age! I am totally spoiled by being able to find out just about anything I want at a moment's notice via the internet or cell phone. But that just isn't happening with these two.
So... that leaves me right where I'm supposed to be, I guess, and that is on my knees. I pray for their safety, for their health, for friends to encourage them, for emotional strength and spiritual growth, for God to show himself to them in big ways and little ways every day.