I have been in town since Friday afternoon, and I thought it would be time for an in-country update!
(I am 7 hours ahead of AR, by the way)
I am so in love with the Czech Republic... it is wonderful to be back! I am currently renting a room from the dorms of a "Bible School" here in town. While there are still a few students also living here, they are finishing up their semester and will be moving out later this week. The location of this building is wonderful: right behind me is a beautiful park, and in front of the building is a quiet, peaceful courtyard. I feel like I live in a quiet part of town, but it is only a two minute walk to Dolní náměstí ("lower square") and two minutes farther is Horní náměstí ("upper square"--also the main square).
I just got my public transportation pass yesterday, but I have been walking a lot since I have been here. All of the walking on cobblestones has been a little rough on my ankle (I injured it last summer), but I think it is growing stronger. In addition, I think that the extra foot-transportation has caused me to lose a little weight... in spite of the fact that my diet largely consists of rohlík (bread/rolls), smažený sýr (fried cheese), brambory (potatoes), and kofola ("Coke"-like drink)!
I've also been feeling really tired. Yesterday I took a one-hour nap then slept for 10 hours straight. This might partially be from jet lag, but the missionaries here were telling me that learning a new language can really wear you out. Most of the Czech words I previously knew have come back quickly, and I am trying to learn new words and phrases as much as possible. However, much of the time I don't get translations while the Czech people are having conversations. While listening, I am constantly trying to figure out what they are saying--while I do catch a few words here and there, my brain gets tuckered out from trying to translate all of the time.
On a much lighter note: God is so faithful! It has been such a blessing to be with the church here, and they really are taking care of me. I have been spending quite a bit of time with the pastor and one of the youth leaders. I have also had a great opportunity to reconnect with many of the youth I met last summer, and have plans to visit with a couple of them throughout this next week.
- Pray that the students will be open to building a deeper relationship with me (both the Christians and non-Christians). My desire is to really invest in the youth here.
- Pray that my time will be spent wisely--I have quite a bit of free time in my schedule, which leaves me open to hang-out time possibilities. I want to really make sure that I'm not wasting this time away.
- Pray for my relationships with the Czech church, that the spirit of God that unites us will also provide us unity as His church. I also want to avoid doing things that are culturally offensive.
Thank-you so much for your prayers and encouraging emails! I am thankful for all of you, my brothers and sisters in Christ.