Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thankful for what?

Our new born son may not remember this day, but I'm going to remind him when he's older. He will be forever thankful to his parents for the procedure we had performed on him. Braxton was circumcised today. Now you might ask why would he be thankful to us for that. Well in this culture a boy is circumcised generally between the ages of 8-12. Yes that's right. You will definitely remember at that age. You get a beautiful prince costume that you wear and when the procedure is done people stop by and put money under your pillow. It really is a huge ceremony. Well the funny thing about today is we left the hospital with a souvenir. The nurse handed me a tube with the foreskin from his circumcision. I didn't know what to say. So I said thanks. What memories were made on our first Thanksgiving here. Hope all of you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Most of you may know by now, but here are the details in case you haven't heard.
Braxton Emre Reinhardt was born on NOV. 19TH, at 5:40 in the evening. he was 9lbs. and 19.5 inches long. I have more admiration for my wife now more than ever. After seeing the pain of labor, I was especially grateful God chose to let women have babies. It was an amazing thing. We feel so blessed. Click on the link to view an album we started for him. We will be updating it regularly, so you might want to save the link. See more of Braxton.

Having this son really made me stop and think about my Savior, Jesus Christ. He was a baby boy just like our baby boy. He went through everything our boy will go through. Why? Because He loved us. Amazing love, isn't it?

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Turkish Sign Language

I met with some of the deaf guys that I wrote about yesterday. Three of them came and we went to a cafe, drank cay and tried to communicate. They showed me a lot of signs. By the end of our 2 hours together my brain was fried. I thought it was interesting that the sign for Christian is to, "use your pointer finger and move it in a circular motion around your face and then do the sign of the cross like the Catholics do." Again whether in spoken or unspoken language the term "Christian" in this country is synonymous with Catholicism. These guys have a very hard time getting a job because no one wants to hire a deaf person. Two of the men lost their hearing when they were very young. One when he was three months old and the other when he was one year old. In both of their cases they said it was from a high fever that they lost their hearing. One of the young men is actually 11th in the country in long distance running. He ran 5000 meters in fifteen minutes. That's just over three miles. I had a great time getting to know these guys and trying to learn unspoken Turkish. Lord willing we will meet at least once a week, and they will teach me their language.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Second Chances

It's been an interesting couple of days. Saturday I was coming back from my friends apartment which I am taking care of. I was sitting on the metro when a couple entered. I thought I'd be nice so I moved across the aisle to another seat and let them sit by each other. Well it so happened that the lady sitting beside me was speaking English. I struck up a conversation and long story short she is a director at a well known English learning center. She told me to stop in some time and apply and she would see what she could do. I found that very interesting. Now the same day just minutes later I got on the bus to our house. There was one seat available. I promptly took my seat. Seconds later I noticed the three girls around me were signing. Now this struck me as very interesting. I was thinking to myself, "How can I communicate with them?" I wanted to tell them about my wife who knows American Sign Language. Well I blew that chance. I asked God to give me another chance. Today I got a second chance. I was sitting on a bench after my language lessons in a busy part of the city. Five young men walk by me and they are signing. I said, "I'm going to talk with them. I don't know how, but I'm going to." I called my wife and asked her to tell me how I could sign, "I know sign language." Now granted Turkish sign language is totally different than American Sign Language, but it was worth a shot. So I waited until they came out of the store and I just went for it. I signed my signs and they just looked at me. I figured this is how it would go. So I noticed one of the guys sign to his friend that I wanted something. His friend turned up his hearing aid. So anyway we were able to set up a meeting tomorrow and I learned a few Turkish signs. I thank God for this second chance. I had a chance two days ago and I blew it, but God is so gracious. We will see what God wants to do with this.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Vision and Boldness

This past week I was able to attend a Turkish Bible study. This was very exciting for me as I have been trying to get involved with Turkish believers. Mere typing is not enough to convey my enthusiasm but it will have to do. So in the Bible study they are studying the book of Romans. We went through chapter four and then had a time of prayer. While the man who leads the Bible study was praying he asked God to give the Turkish believers a vision for their own country. Many believers here struggle with the boldness to openly proclaim their new faith. Could it be that they struggle because men and women working here have not cast a vision or shown boldness? I don't know. I know men and women here who have a vision and show boldness in sharing Christ. I know it is far different to preach to someone and it's another thing to live it. I know that these are things people need to see in us before they will be willing to follow. If we are in love with Jesus, vision and boldness will be represented in our lives, because Christ is living through us.