Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Workshop Update (Email Update)

Short Version – see quotes below: (See also pictures at the bottom!)

I don’t even know where to begin. Maybe a few quotes from the workshop will help…

“I learned that we shouldn’t go into villages and say, ‘I’m here to preach to you in the name of Jesus,’ we should say, ‘I have a story to tell you, do you want to hear it?’” (comment by a village woman who hasn’t ever been to the city before, or attended any kind of ‘religious/formal’ meeting)

“When she leaves, what will we do? How will we keep this going?” (comment made by a local leader, in reference to continuing the storying workshops, in spite of the fact that Robin and I are leaving). The discussion led into them deciding to have more storying workshops among themselves in the four main areas where they live.

“I don’t want to, but I feel like I can leave Kahan now. You are here to carry on the work.” (me- sharing with the participants the joy and encouragement that they are to me- to see them excited to carry on the work even after we leave…wow).

Overall, the workshop was a huge success. Even saying that, I feel like I’m containing all that God did in just a few words that don’t really do it justice. He really blew me away with how well everything went- from logistics, to communicating with the participants, to their overall energetic attitude about stories.

I walked home from the workshop on the second day watching the beautiful sunset behind the mountains, and tears came to my eyes. I realized that while there is still a ton of work to be done among the Kahani people, perhaps the work I came here to do over the past two years is really starting to pay off. That is, getting the tool of storying into the hands of those who will use it, not just this month- but for the rest of their lives. I realized how strangely wonderful it felt to realize I might not be needed anymore, or perhaps not in the same capacity.

I kept wondering how it was that things went so smoothly and even better than planned. Another quote can help me out here:

“Right now there are probably about 100 people praying for you, and this workshop!” (me- sharing with the participants that people all the way in America are praying for them specifically!)

I can’t tell you how much I felt your prayers. The past few weeks have been physically, emotionally and sometimes spiritually draining and I knew that even though I had a lot of excitement for the workshop, I was going to need some extra strength to get through it. I have to say that at the end of both days I felt energized just by watching Him do His stuff. And the power behind that was YOUR PRAYERS. Wow. How can I thank you enough?

To Him be the Glory,

~ Elizabeth

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