sambatra

[sam-ba-chra] blessed to be happy|happy to be blessed

a gift from the Malagasy

Tanya and I have been here in Madagascar for three months now.  As in all aspects of life, it has been a journey.  Eight weeks of Malagasy language training, a month of travels to visit volunteer placement sites, a quick trip to the States to meet the new YAGM volunteers, and of course our own adjustment to living in a new place.  There have been countless ways that I have seen God at work, what a blessing it has been to experience.  The Malagasy people have such a passion to offer us, and all visitors, with an experience of culture.  Malagasy always ask, “Ahoana no fahitanao an’ Madagasikara?”  [How do you see Madagascar?]  I have discovered Madagascar is not to only see with my eyes, but how to see, feel understand, know, and experience with my whole being.  And the passion of the Malagasy is to continue to offer us a deeper experience and understanding of their unique culture.

No matter where we find ourselves, or who we meet, we are offered a true Malagasy experience.  Maybe through a meal, showing us how to wash clothes, teaching us words and phrases, teaching us how to plant/grow/harvest rice, or in our most recent experience, how to harvest peanuts; the Malagasy want to share themselves unceasingly by offering us a glimpse of what it means to live here in Madagascar.  I have found that the foundation of what it means to be Malagasy is simple: relationship.

We are blessed to be happy and happy to be blessed, sambatra!

-Austin

…and here for your continued viewing pleasure, a video of our most recent gift of Malagasy experience:

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15 thoughts on “a gift from the Malagasy

  1. Bwhaahhawhawhaha… 1:59 “Yes, it’s your peanuts!”

  2. Anonymous on said:

    Ahhhh….the peanut farmers! GREAT video! Love ya bunches (of peanuts!) pop

  3. Edith Propst on said:

    Some friends at St. James asked me just yesterday how you guys are doing so I loved reading this post to be reinforced about how blessed you are to be living among the Malagasy! And picking peanuts! Do you think they would like them boiled like we do in the South? Nothing better!! Love to you both! Aunt E

  4. Elizaabeth Kearney on said:

    And, actually, picking peanuts is a skill you can use back here in NC!

  5. Anonymous on said:

    Awesome video. I miss you two so much. I miss living abroad. You are two lucky ducks.

  6. Anonymous on said:

    Awesome video. I miss you two so much. I miss living abroad. You are two lucky ducks. -Charlene

  7. YEAH BUDDY!!!

    When I was watching the video I couldn’t help wonder if you made yourselves some boiled peanuts! Every time I think of peanuts I always think about when you shared your thing of boiled peanuts.

    Love to you all!

  8. Anonymous on said:

    We had peanut M and Ms for you tonight Tanya. At Lutheridge and seeing Liz every day. Think from reading your post that Madagascar is like Alaska, not a place but a state of mind. So glad you are happy, and we know both of you are serving the Lord to your max. God Bless love-you both, Jerry and Wanda

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