Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Kosovo: Chapter 7, Scene 3 A Friend...and Then Some

I’ve written much on my blog about the nationals here in Kosovo. Most of my local contacts daily are with Albanian Kosovars, though I have met a few Serbians and a couple of Roma people. I have shared how gracious and good these people are to me. From the bus drivers and people at my local market, to the teachers at my school and the leaders of my church, the Kosovars are precious to me.

So today I decided to share with you some insight on another group of people I love and adore: the internationals. Although by definition I suppose most would call this group, expats (ex, a prefix meaning “out of” and patria, meaning “home country”) I hear my Kosovar friends refer to us as internationals.

My friend Jill is ALWAYS busy...
But never too busy to help a
anyone in need.
We are a community. I work with several Americans, a Scotsman, and a German. I go to church with a lovely group of Brits, Americans, and Dutch. We are all here for different reasons. And all for the same purpose: to serve. But what I find most incredible is the way serving here takes on new meaning.

I have to go to the doctor every three months. My friend, Jill drops everything to take me. She doesn’t fit me into her day, she plans her day around me. “Just tell me when you need to be there,” she says.

And there’s Kelsie, who learned I had a cold and offered me
Christopher likes to eat out and so do I
Great one for trying new places!
medicine. It was okay, I already had some from the last time I had a cold in the fall. That was the day the Erskin’s walked to another friend’s house to get Nyquil for me.

When the people who usually drive me to church were out of town, Janette offered to pick me up. Christopher is known to notice when I’m working hard, so he’ll suggest we go for dinner. Not to mention he knows all the songs to the musical Oklahoma! Gordon listens to me and encourages me. And Grace always seems open to give me a lift if she has a car available or to do anything I might need like shopping for a fancy dress! (If you missed that one, CLICK HERE. It was hilarious.)  

Grace is always there for me...and everyone else.
What a giving spirit this girl has! 
Maureen went out of her way to pick up a paper cutter for me for a project I wanted to do for school. And she loaned me a portable heater during the winter when I was still trying to figure out my heating system in the apartment. She and Dustin kept me busy and entertained during the winter break.

Paul and Angela open their home to me for dinner and coffee anytime I like. And they share their sweet little one with me, reminding me of my own small grandchildren in America. And Annie always has a smile and a hug for me at school…reminding me of my older grands.
Annie always has a ready smile and a big hug.
Those came naturally with her serving heart.

I could go on and on. People who find themselves living abroad form a close community quickly. They share and give fully, without reservation. Selflessly and seamlessly. They are givers, not takers. They love serving the Kosovars. They love serving each other. And I love these people.

So what do I give back? I don’t know. I’m not sure I could ever do for them all that they have done for me. They make me feel like God’s favorite child.

My youngest daughter once pointed out we serve an “and then some God.” He always gives us what we need…and then some. I knew moving to southeastern Europe would have challenges. I knew I would need a friend or two here. I prayed about it. And God provided. He gave me what I needed…and then some.

Join me in Kosova (the Albanian pronunciation for Kosovo) in Southeastern Europe. Each week I share my experiences. Leave your comments and questions below. I’ll try to address each as best I can. And if you don't want to miss a post, simply add your email address in the box on the right where it says "Follow by email." 



  1. I’m so grateful you are surrounded by so many incredible people! God is good.

    1. As my friend, Claudia says...He's do good at His job!


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