There are days.

We’re tying up the loose ends of our break between school years, and time has been slippery-quick again. If I keep in mind that these weeks are just a soft blink, an exhale, then it feels okay that we’re calling it a wrap.

Since late July, we’ve had extra time to visit students and schools in the valley. Talk slow hours with our Kijabe neighbors. Chip away at a hill of work/dorm/school projects. Write.


Todd spent the past week in Central African Republic. The kids and I did sleepovers with every stray blanket pulled to the living room, partly because I am no doubt a Super Fun Mom, and also I don’t sleep well when Todd’s gone. Put me in a room with people I need to protect and I’m somehow braver by necessity.

A few weeks back, our Kenyan friend Joseph asked Todd if we were headed anywhere fun over break. Mombasa, maybe, or the Mara—those two are common rest spots. When Todd laughed and said he was going to CAR, Joseph put a hand on Todd’s shoulder. “CAR? Are you sure you want to go there?” It was just a few words, a parcel of honest syllables, but the translation was clear: My brother, you are losing your mind.

Maybe so.


CAR is a landslide of pain these days, bombings and executions and rogue militias exacting their own versions of justice. The capital city is a heap of burnt rubble patrolled by peacekeeping troops, blood on everyone’s hands. It’s hard to draw clear lines between victim and hero and terrorizer—everyone stands neck-deep in grief and starvation, life crumbling to dust around them.

Some of the attackers claim to be Christians, others Muslims. It makes my insides ache, but still I have to think there’s a place for the grace and redemption of Jesus here.

Todd was in Zemio, a sleepy village bordering DRC. A large group of Mbororo live there, semi-nomadic cattle herders slowly working their way east. They value family and children and everything beautiful. They are our neighbors, and I hope someday our friends.


It’s true that the violence needs to settle if we ever stand a hope of living in CAR, but more than this, people are suffering in huge, impossible ways. Please pray for the Central African Republic, for the Seleka and the Anti-Balaka and the LRA. For President Samba-Panza and the UN peacekeeping force and every unnamed refugee slipping scared between the fault lines.

It seems like too much from where I stand, but God is bigger still. Come move among us. Heal this land. Your love and peace and life and kingdom come.

Author: nic

saved by grace.

7 thoughts

  1. Nic,
    I think of you often. When I read of the violence online. When I pull a boutique bow from the drawer. When I sit down to mend or take a stitch. When I see my kids growing taller and coming off the bus…I remember your back to school posts too. Praying for you all from a far!!!!


  2. Oh Nic,

    So glad to have a word from you. Praying for protection over your people and some fun tucked here and there too.

    Those dresses are AMAZING.




  3. I held my breath while reading of the conditions people are living in in those areas. It’s sometimes easy to get caught up in the here and now of where I am – I want to be reminded of others who are waiting for a glimpse of God’s love. Prayers for you as you take it and for them as they receive it.


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