New post from missionary Erin Mackenzie

New post from missionary Erin Mackenzie

Having a Tropical Palm Sunday

Posted: 06 Apr 2020 05:34 PM PDT

Forget printable palm branches; I’d been scouting out the neighborhood for a week to find the ideal variety!
I ushered in Holy Week with a triple header of Palm Sunday worship opportunities. 

1. A pre-recorded service from my home church in St. Louis. The sermon was all about Jesus as our Champion. We even sang A Mighty FortressHosanna (Hebrew for “save us”), then, is not only a cry for rescue from sin but also a jubilant exclamation of praise for the One whose triumph over sin, death, and the devil we will celebrate next week. 

2. A live Zoom service with my brothers and sisters from La Misión Luterana del Perú. What a delight to see some of the families I visited with a February short-term team on the screen!

3. A live house church service I joined via WhatsApp video. I forgot to take a screenshot this week!
My palm branch lives on (I threw last year’s out this morning)…

….as long as Freddy leaves it alone. Does he think I can’t see him?!?
Today, Holy Monday, is day 20 of sheltering in place. I’m realizing more and more that I have little to complain about. Whilst people are dying, my biggest beef is not being able to plan beyond the end of the current presidential edict (the Friday after Easter). Seeing friends struggle with loneliness, cabin fever, and oppressive stay-at-home orders and tracking the rapidly deteriorating situation in my passport country and elsewhere, though, is getting wearisome. My personality is such that I want to fix things, so I’ve been feeling rather powerless in the face of a virus I can do nothing about. 
Nothing except soldier on. The last verse of my Bible reading today, 1 Corinthians 15:58, seemed fitting: 
Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

I’m digging deeper into a couple of my temporary re-assignments and gaining traction on some joint projects with other short-term coordinators. It’s not my job, per se, but it’s the Lord’s work just the same, and it’s not for naught. And in between…

I tried ZOOMba…for about 30 seconds, before I remembered why I don’t do Zumba! 

I started a 1,000-piece puzzle yesterday afternoon, and I’m hooked! This was stage one of my progress. Time lapse photo sequence coming to a Facebook page or blog near you soon. Bonus points if you can spot the one edge piece I’m STILL missing. 

Easter decoration went up today! I’m also going to hard boil some eggs later this week (would you believe I’ve never done that?) and try out some fun dyeing techniques…then eat them somehow. 

And finally, I’ve stuck with the April Bible lettering challenge I embarked on with some other missionary women thus far. Here’s today’s effort. I’m contemplating how and where to display them all come May 1.

The rest of my Holy Week looks quiet. For some, it means planning for a trifecta of home-based services kicks into high gear. For me, it means I’m a little worried because I’ll have none of my regular meetings to break up my days. Daily walks will continue, though (the garden is still open from 6-8 am!), tomorrow I’m catching up with a high school friend, and I’m contemplating my first grocery run on Thursday. And there’s always, always the puzzle…I’m unofficially racing Kate & Courtney to see who can finish first!
Until next time, blessings!

P.S. Are you tired of pictures from the inside of my house yet?