Monday, August 31, 2015

Scattered: A Reed Family Update

It's time for a Reed family update and our renewed love affair with Skype.

Grenoble, France
On Wednesday I dropped Hannah off in Chicago as she left for four months to Grenoble, France on a last semester with Calvin College to finish her third major.  She will be staying with a host family, taking five classes, learning French, and hopefully enjoying the culture and the environment.  The biggest challenge for Hannah is to not try to over-achieve and to enjoy herself!  We are very excited about this opportunity that she has and hope this will be a good transitional time between a very busy four years of college to the next phase of life!  Skype will continue to play an important role in our lives as we learn to touch base with each other frequently through Skype!

Hannah leading worship on her last Sunday in town at Madison North.  They gathered around her, prayed for her, and sent her off!
Noah and his Hannah
 Noah will be starting his senior year at Calvin (!!!) and will be moving into the Knollcrest East apartments with four other guys.  Last year he as a Resident Assistant; the year before he was a Barnabas (floor chaplain), and this year he gets to just be a student!  I'm happy about that.  He has learned and developed great leadership skills, but there are times when my kids need to learn to just be!  He will be finishing his degree in International Relations and is starting to think about what happens after college.  His love is peace and reconciliation and would love to work with the UN in some way, or maybe Amnesty International or something like that.  He spent this past summer working fulltime on Calvin grounds, working with heavy machines and coming home very dirty every day!  He has a girlfriend whose name is also Hannah, which we are figuring out (mostly by "your Hannah" or "sister Hannah").  She happens to be in Honduras for this fall semester (also in her senior year) and so Noah also will be on Skype a lot!

Michael posing with a philosopher at Kings College London.
Michael continues to do his good work at Eerdman's publishing.  After watching him work for a couple of years now, I am beginning to understand the language of the authors with whom he meets, most of whom are so passionate about various and obscure aspects of the Bible and bringing new light and perspectives on the Word.  The recent time that I spent with Michael in the UK, I heard authors tell Michael how much they appreciate him - he doesn't just "want their books" but he cares about the subject and speaks very intelligently about what is needed on so many different Biblical topics.  He really helps them to shape their books and the direction to meet what Michael sees and hears is needed by the Church.  I was so proud of him as I listened and watched him interact with both well-known and lesser-known authors.  He is passionate about his work and brings that passion to each and every meeting.

As for me, I am heading out to Ghana and then to Kenya again, leaving on September 11.  (I tend to fly out on September 11 - it must be that there are cheap flights that day for some reason!)   I will be teaching Church-based Business as Mission for one week at the Presbyterian Training Center for about 75 pastors and church leaders; then I will be teaching one week in Accra with ICM Ghana for about 35 pastors.  After that, I will be flying to Kenya for a few days of meetings, and then starting an eight day Training of Trainers, with trainers coming from Egypt, Uganda, and of course Kenya.

Michael and I will also be back to Skyping for the five weeks that I'm gone; it's true that much of our relationship was built on Skype and we are happy to have it - but of course we prefer being together in person!

Update:  Our prayer partner, Mary Springer, focused in last week's blog, did pass away on Saturday, August 29.  Thanks to all of you who prayed.  We are thankful that her pain is now over and we are thankful to God for a life well lived.  We will miss her.