Saturday, November 21, 2009
What has been catching my attention mostly these past few weeks has been my parents. I have been learning and understanding what amazing, outstanding, and wonderful parents I have. While I have always believed my parents to be great and loving, this new level of realization has taken place through a better understanding of myself. As I learn more about me (which has been a lot this past 10 months); and as others recognize things about me, it has been coming more and more clear that this stems from the great upbringing I had. Just yesterday Dave, the president of SI, said to me, "you must have a great dad." So often I forget how lucky I am and was growing up. So I really want to say - Thanks mom and dad!
To all you parents who are reading this, please let this be an encouragement to never cease loving your children with everything you have. It will make all the difference in the world when they grow up and live in the world without you there 24/7 and also when they are confronted with tough situations - they will want to make you proud.
I want you to know that I have been praying for you. You help Josh and I out so much by your faithfulness to us through prayer and finances, please know that we pray for you and thank God for you.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
I am reading through the book "Crazy Love" again, which I totally recommend to anyone who hasn't read it yet, and there was a short section of the book (literally one page) and it was titled, Are you ready? The question is directed at death; are you ready for death? The story in there is very touching but aside from that it made me wonder if I am truly ready to stand before the God of this universe... the creator of me. Have I lived for Him in a way that he would be proud of? Have I really done my best in this life? When I stand before God will He be proud of me?
My challenge is that you would think about your life and where you are at... are you proud with how you've been/or not been living for God? Are you ready to stand before God as He either welcomes you home or says to you that he never knew you and sends you away?
Matthew 10:32-33 says: "Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before me Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before me, I will also disown before my Father in heaven."
Monday, November 16, 2009
Currently, we are having a men's outreach and so he is apart of that. Today was his first day working in the community and something had happened to where he had ripped a hole in his pants. A lady from the community saw the hole and told him to come to her house and she would fix his pants. And so she patched up the hole during their lunch hour. (This may not sound like a big deal but this was not where you would want a hole in your pants for the rest of the day).
I was just thinking about it and trying to learn something from his experience and I can remember how in my time here there have been many times where a complete stranger has helped me out of a difficult situation. For example, I have had a lot of flat tires on my moto and some have been a long way outside of town and would have been a long walk, but before I had even walked 1/4 mile someone (or many people) were calling me over to their house to try and patch up my bike.
One thing I am learning from the Dominican culture is how to be a Good Samaritan. When I see someone in need of help that I should try to help them to the best of my ability.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
- Josh and I have been learning and growing a lot in our relationship together. We have a whole new appreciation and understanding of each other since being here and working together - it's been really great.
- I have had a chance to bake and cook a lot! Which I love to do.
- We have become great friends with many of the other missionaries on SI staff and have some good friends outside of SI, and in the communities where we work as well.
- We've been blessed by all of our financial supports, everyone has been so awesome in remembering us here.
- We absolutely love our two dogs - Snickers (doberman) and Lucy (mutt) - and they provide a lot of entertainment
- We really enjoy our "job" here. We love that it changes from season to season and that we get to implement our own ideas and talents into it.
- I love that every morning I get to watch the sunrise and daily see the beauty of this place... it's another daily reminder of how gorgeous God is.
- Our residency process is finally started!
- I've been really tired lately, not just in the morning but throughout the entire day
- Josh and I have been experiencing spiritual warfare - which is a mixed feeling really. When we go through warfare it's really hard and exhausting but a blessing at the same time to know that we are fighting for God's kingdom.
- By now we had hoped to be further along in Spanish... we have learned quite a bit which is good, but it's still frustrating to not be where we thought we'd be.
- Language learning
- That God would continue to show us how best to invest in the semester student's lives
- For energy
- For strength to fight in the spiritual battle
- For God to fill us each day with an abundance of joy and love so that we can give that to those around us
Final thought: I have been thinking a lot of past missionaries... in Biblical times and recent history, and have been learning/remembering how God used not people who were perfect, but people who were willing. I have been learning about how "un-perfect" I am. And sometimes I am so certain that I am messing up God's plan. The great encouragement to me has been remembering that I don't change peoples hearts, but God does... all He askes of me is that I am available to Him.
On that note, I am going to go... but I wanted to let you know that Josh's and my new goal is EACH try blogging once a week... so if you check back in soon, Josh should have one posted too.
Thank you all for your love and support, both in prayer and in finances. We love and appreciate you all so much.