Were still alive

Greetings from Nairobi.  Yes we are still alive.  Sorry we haven’t blogged an update in awhile but life has been a little unsettled.  But as I sit here and pen this post I can say we are moving in a good direction.   Since we last posted, Anastasia is now 6 weeks old and eating, growing and pooping and sleeping.  Mommy and Daddy are trying to keep up with her with little success.   We have also been able to acquire her birth certificate and she is now an official U.S. Citizen and her passport is coming in the next few weeks.  Jeremy has been able to find a good vehicle and this week we should have the transfer complete and take possession.  I’ve also been able to get my Kenya driver licence.  (Both no small feat).  In three weeks we are due to head to our annual AIM Kenya Conference about an hour north of Nairobi.  It looks like we will have all our paperwork, doctors visits and a vehicle ready to be able to head back to the coast after our conference.  This is a HUGE deal!!!  We are excited and ready to return to the village knowing we don’t need to return to Nairobi anytime soon.  We are slowly getting adjusted to this new life of parenthood and all the joys and struggles that come with it.

Jeremy

Baby Gifts

Our world has forever been changed with the arrival of Anastasia Louise at 2:28am of September 23, 2017.

She is a precious gift from God. We have much to learn about being parents. Thankfully, we are surrounded with so many people with their love, support and encouragement. We feel this through all the messages and prayers.

Several people have asked about how to give a baby gift. You are able to give in two different ways.

1) If you want to send a card with a love gift of money so that we can purchase items here in Kenya, then mail a card to Jeremy’s parents.
Roger Hazel
109 Pineview Rd
Statesboro, GA 30461

2) If you want to send a small and light weight gift to us here in Kenya, then mail the gift to Claudia’s sister.
Kathy Hodgson
2819 Evansdale Circle
Atlanta, GA 30340
Claudia’s mom and sister will bring all the gifts with them in January when they come visit us here in Kenya. This is why the gift needs to be small and light weight to fit into their luggage. Gifts need to be to them by December 15. We do have a baby registry on Amazon.

Here is the link to go directly to Our Baby Registry:

Thank you for wanting to express your love by giving to our family of 3 now as we celebrate this precious gift from God.

With much love,

Jeremy, Claudia, and Anastasia
Ha3els in Africa

 

A typical day

I (Jeremy) thought I could you give a flavor of what a day is like here on the mission field.   The events of the day happened because I have adopted a philosophy that people are the currency in God’s economy.  In other words, people are the most important thing.  Thus, you must focus on being intentional in building relationships with those who you live around and meet.

Saturday, I awoke knowing I had a “come any time after 10 a.m.” appointment at a new friend’s house.  So, I purposefully started my 30 min walk to his house at 9 a.m.  I knew I would have a few stops along the way and those “spontaneous” stops did happen.  It allowed me to go a different way to the road, stop at neighbour’s house to greet, sit with them for a few minutes and chat.  My journey continued as I practiced my Digo greetings every chance I could. I got to the road and started to walk down the hill.  I thought ohh look I have some extra time I will talk slower as I didn’t want to arrive earlier.  Then another friend on a piki stopped and offered me a ride down the hill but I said it’s close and I need to walk.  Shortly after that I heard my name from behind.  I was perplexed as this was an area I hadn’t been to but once before.   I turned around and behold a high school boy I recognized was coming my way.  He spoke good English and so I stopped and we chatted.  You see this boy and I had played a brief soccer game back in May when we came to the area.  My American mind was conscious of the time and I knew I couldn’t talk to long or risk being late.   However, my friend did say “come any time after 10.”  So, as I continued to slow walk he joined me and we caught up on many things. We hit a bit of shade provided by a big tree and he said can we sit and chat.  I had to fight my American culture and also remember my new philosophy.  So, I said sure.  For the next 45 minutes we sat, talked and traded phone numbers at the end of our time together.  It was now 10:45 and my friend and I had made it to the driveway of my new friend’s house.   I said goodbye and made my way up the driveway.  I had no timetable on how long this visit would be and so over the next 4+ hours my new Kenya friend and I talked about everything you can think of.  We had chai, (tea with a snack).  As noon rolled around He asked if I would stay for lunch.  So, he had mama cook something for us.  I stayed until 3:30 and the visit was very good. As I left his house and started back up the road a piki piki (motorbike taxi) pulled over and I wondered why they stopped.  As I got closer I recognized that is was the pastor of the AIC church in Kwale.  He was on his way back to Kwale and stopped.  We chatted for a while and He offered to give me a ride back up the hill.  I agreed and we chatted and laughed all the way up the hill.   It was now 4 pm and I was back home.  I took the quiet time to check in on Claudia and catch up on the day.   I then needed to go for a run, pray and clear my mind so I did.  At the end of my run I stopped at the field near our house and some boys had a soccer ball so I went over and spent the next 45 minutes just playing and laughing.   By this time, it was almost sunset so I needed to go home.  My day had been long and filled with so many conversations.  Some short, some long.  Most of it random and not planned.  I believe the way God likes it most of the time.  

You see when people are the main focus you do what you can to make sure you connect.  We are here to share and bring the gospel of Jesus Christ but in order to do that we need to gain their friendship and respect.   Do you think your neighbours’ will listen to you if you don’t take time to get to know them?  They won’t. Regardless the culture you find yourself in, you must make time to put people first if you want to share Christ in an effective way.  This new mindset has transformed my view on life and I do believe I am a better person for it.  May this encourage you to have days that are filled with people and not tasks. 

Jeremy

And her name will be….

Anastasia Louise Hazel

We are happy to share with everyone what our daughter’s name will be. Like most of the names in the Bible, her name has an origin and means something.

Anastasia means resurrection.   And    Louise means renowned warrior.

So together her name means Renowned Resurrection Warrior.

How did we come to this name?

Louise is from our American family.

  • Claudia’s grandmother was Claudia Louise.
  • Jeremy’s grandmother was Barbara Louise.
  • Jeremy’s mother is Deborah Louise.

Anastasia comes indirectly from our San family in Namibia.

When we were visiting Namibia in April, we told our San family we were expecting. Tsaba, my mama and namesake, gave us a boy and girl Ju/’hoan name. This is their tradition for the grandparents of a child to give the name and not the parents. Tsaba gave us /asa for a girl. It has a click. It is the easiest of the 4 clicks but the U.S. government would not understand it for a birth certificate or future legal things. We didn’t want to complicate our daughter’s life, so we westernized it to Tasa. We pondered it for a long time and just didn’t feel it was enough. We searched and searched through other names but kept coming back to Tasa. I found that Tasa meant resurrection. Then I looked for other names that meant resurrection. This is when we found Anastasia and Tasa can be a nickname of Anastasia. It took several weeks for us to settle on Anastasia.

I did more research. I read an article about how one man presented the gospel by introducing his family and the meaning behind their names. Anastasia was his mother’s, wife’s and daughter’s name. “Anastas” is a Greek action and promise word found in 138 verses in 6 different forms in the Bible. When used as a verb, it is means to make or cause someone stand up, to raise up or to raise again; resurrection. This started with Abram when God told him to arise and walk about the land of Canaan and when God promised that everyone would be blessed through him. This is the inheritance of heaven for all who confess and believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies.” John 11:25

If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you. 1 Peter 1:3–4

But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect 1 Peter 3:15

Jeremy and I have used often 1 Peter 3:15 to describe the work God has for us here in Africa. Hope with gentleness and respect. This hope we pray will come to the San, the Digo and all the unreached people groups of the world. We have just a small part to play. Thank you to all who play their part by praying for us and faithfully giving. Please continue to pray for this pregnancy: that I will remain healthy even though I am unable to get to doctor appointments as normal and that Anastasia will be born healthy. Our little warrior is growing and active these days!