Today is our last day of lectures in the SSC Nigeria! This has been a really different experience from other schools I've worked with because Martijn and I have done most of the teaching. We didn't have the budget to fly in speakers, and those who were willing to pay their own way were discouraged from coming by the security situation. We had some speakers over skype, and this week we have had two local guest speakers, one who teaches research at the University of Jos and the other who works in advocacy and media with The Stefanos Foundation.
As I look back on the past nine weeks, I really see God's faithfulness to us and our students. Teaching so much material while leading a school and homeschooling has been...a lot. Yet I've had strength and energy to do everything I needed to. On top of all that, I finished my book yesterday! A literary agent was hosting a contest on her blog, and the prize is something I have dreamed of and drooled over, but cannot afford. I knew I would regret it if I didn't enter, and somehow I pulled it off!
So, my book is done (for now anyway, I would like to have a few people read it and do a final edit before I submit to agents), my teaching is done, and now all that is left is to oversee the students' final projects over the next two weeks and to plan the final exam and graduation.
I'm also really proud of my students. When I gave them their books and syllabus, many of them said they couldn't possibly keep up with all the work. We pushed them. I'm of the philosophy that anything worthwhile is worth working hard for. They have had to learn time management, but all the students have kept up with their assignments, and every week their work improves. God has also been faithful to them with their finances. Earlier this week the students needed to have 75% of their fees in to continue in the school. It looked like half the class would be sent home! Money started to come in, but still I had to send two students off of the campus. The next day, however, their fees were paid in full and every student is back in class! Some are still unsure where the last 25% of their fees will come from, but we believe God will help them bring it to completion.
We have just three weeks left in Africa! I have mixed feelings about leaving. There are some things I definitely won't miss, like the bombs and the blackouts and the water pressure (or lack thereof). I'm so looking forward to seeing family in Belgium, and especially to be back in Colorado. My stepfather is losing his battle with cancer, and my heart aches to be with my mom right now. At the same time, I still love this place and the people. There is nothing as fulfilling as being in the center of God's will. We've seen his hand on this school and these students, and especially on us throughout this time!
We are letters from Christ, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.