Ballet in Burundi

by Jess Cropsey

As a parent, it’s easy to question yourself when it comes to your kids.  It’s one thing to decide that God has called me to move to Africa.  It’s another thing to make that decision for my children, knowing that doing so sends their life in a very different trajectory and also exposes them to additional risks (health, safety, etc.).  I have come to a place where I can trust God with those things (most of the time!) and am confident that this is where He wants our family to be for this season of our lives.  And, yes, my children have lots of wonderful opportunities that other kids don’t have, but part of me still wants them to have the best of both worlds -- piano lessons, sports clubs, dance classes, swimming lessons, church youth group, etc.  We do what we can in those departments, but our human resources just aren’t the same.  Me functioning as the art teacher for over half the year is a perfect example of this!  So, it brings me great joy when visitors come with a vision to minister to us and our children.  In the last few months, we’ve had some special visitors here who have done just that.  While most of them had medical spouses serving at the hospital, they shared their talents with those of us on the home front.  

Last Thursday was the first day of ballet class for the little girls.  Julie Banks (who, along with her physician husband, served with us in Kenya for 5 months) is here for two weeks and graciously brought leotards and tights for our little princesses.  The girls have been thrilled to learn some ballet moves from their beautiful and talented teacher and can’t wait until 3:00 every day!  

Several weeks ago, Rachel's brother (starting a graduate degree in music therapy) and sister-in-law Heidi supplemented our weekly music class.  

In April, Hannah Willis came prepared with several fantastic art lessons for our kids -- a major improvement from the instruction they were receiving from me!  A young teen, Nina, also put together some VBS material for our kids during her 3-week stay with us.  Around that same time, a couple came along with their grand-daughter and blessed the entire team with a generous 2-day get-away at a nice resort in Bujumbura.  It was the first time our entire team had been together outside of Kibuye since our arrival and the kids absolutely loved time at the beach, pool, and playground.

Visitors who intentionally seek out time with our kids (in conversation, playing games, etc.) are also a tremendous gift, especially since our kids have limited access to adults who speak their heart language.  These visitors are often remembered and talked about for many months afterwards.        

Thank you, visitors, for sharing your time & talents and blessing us and our children!  


Unknown said...

So sweet!

Sandy E. said...

Beautiful. Makes me want to come and visit you all. Thank you for sharing your lives via your blogposts.

Burkina Team said...

Amen. Love, love, love this!

Unknown said...

Thanks for welcoming / celebrating Julie and Logan! I know they have been excited to spend time with your crew.