Yesterday was one of the biggest holidays that is celebrated here in Senegal. Building up to the day we gradually saw more and more shepherds in our area with their flocks of sheep. Every family purchases a sheep to eat on this day. We were invited to eat with 3 different families and tried to make an appearance at all of them. Let me tell you a little of what our day involved.
- Early in the morning digging took place outside our house.
- Later the Sheep was slaughtered with many rituals involved.
- Mutton was prepared for breakfast lunch and dinner as each family had a whole sheep to eat and there is little or no refrigeration here.
- The remains were buried in the ground
- Fancy clothes everywhere
- Every invitation we got to eat was followed by “Yes” (obligatory here) “But only a little as we are eating all day long”
- We ate 4 lunches all on the floor, with our hands, desperately avoiding the internal organ
- We attempted to leave the kids at home, but were only successful 3 of the 4 times we tried
- Our cultural lesson…when Joel stops eating, so must I
- Meals were followed by tea and socializing, then off we went to the next house
- Now I am desperately searching for recipes for leftover mutton as we brought a lot home with us as well
It was a long day, but once again I was encouraged by how many connections and relationships we have developed. It is days like this that we are encouraged by how far we have come, but also well aware of how far we still have to go. We also greatly value opportunities like this that often open doors to share what we believe.
Our neighbors and friends are all helping us find a new house as they don’t want us to move too far away. We are just continuing to pray for wisdom as we hunt for a new home.