Saturday, December 26, 2009

We're in PA

We arrived at Janelle's parent's house at about 1am on Christmas morning. Our flights went very well. We left Tegucigalpa about an hour later than scheduled, but still had plenty of time to make our next flight from Houston to Philly. We thank God for safety and virtually stress-free travel. (Zack only put in an emergency call to the cockpit by pushing the flight attendant call button four times while trying to "turn on his air conditioning" and we were briefly detained in customs at Houston because an immigration agent put a number 1 on our customs form instead of a 5. :)

We pray you are enjoying peace and joy while celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ, our Saviour!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


November 14th

Andy and Kimberly's 14th birthday

November 21st

6th grade graduation

We were Andy's "padrinos", which meant we escorted him to the front and signed the official register.

Entertainment included the chimes choir, the finca choir and a presentation with acrobatics.

November 27th

Thanksgiving Day (well, the day we celebrated it :)

We also recently had "Andrea's kids" over for an evening of making soft pretzels and playing games. Andrea usually had all the young adults over 18 years old over to her house every Friday, but we thought we could handle it once a month. :)

Also we're happy to report that the boys' dorms are finished and they will be moving in this week. Harlan put up the trim and helped paint. The boys also helped by sanding the dirt, cement, etc. off the floors.

We've also gone and supervised the Finca choir a couple of times as they went to Tegucigalpa to give concerts at some HSBC bank branches and events. It always gives us joy to see them doing a great job sharing about Christ's birth. Sorry, we forgot to take our camara, so no pics.

We anticipate celebrating Christ's birth here at the Finca on the 23rd and then flying to PA on the 24th. We will enjoy seeing many of you while there!

May Christ's joy and peace overwhelm each one of us as we seek His face.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


I apologize to all of you who don't see us and would love to see pictures of us and hear about what we are doing (which truthfully doesn't change too much from day to day and month to month :). I plan on posting a bunch of pictures shortly!

I wanted to share a little bit about what God's been teaching me through some very minor "pain and suffering". As I recently told the group of older girls here, I believe that God wants to teach us something through most, if not all, of the things that happen to us. But many times we are too focused on the "event" or the problem to be able to see or hear what He wants us to learn.

The things that I experienced recently each lasted about two days (or nights). Maybe because it took that long for God to really get my attention. :) I believe through all three things God wanted me to learn to have compassion for different groups of people that I may sometimes judge or wonder why they can't just "fix", put up with, or get pass the problem that they have.

First, there were two nights in a row that I woke up in the middle of the night, was completely "antsy" and could not go back to sleep. There have been other times when I've wakened during the night and God has given me something to pray about, but this was different. I could not lay still and had to get up and walk around. I believe God wanted me to learn to have compassion for people who have problems sleeping or chronic insomnia.

Second, there were two days that I had a constant painful lower back ache. It would not go away, no matter what I did. I could not stand, sit or lay comfortably. It was very difficult to be "nice" to anyone when I was constantly in pain. Once again, in praying and asking God to take it away, I believe God showed me that He wanted me to learn compassion for people who have chronic aches and pains. If it was difficult for me to withstand just two days of pain and still try to show Christ's love to those around me, I can't imagine months and and years of the same.

Lastly, there were two days when I felt very weak. It felt very difficult and overwhelming to even walk from the bottom of the hill up to our house or to keep my hands above my head long enough to wash my hair. I just felt weak and didn't feel like doing anything. I believe God wanted me to learn to have more compassion for the people that I see begging for money on the streets. It is very easy to judge them and wonder why they don't just look for some kind of job in order to earn money, but maybe they don't have the strength or the motivation to do that. Many times they don't have enough to eat and what they do get to eat probably isn't the best. I know, I know... there are some people out there who beg because it is easier than working, but even they deserve our compassion and love.

I pray that I will always remember and choose to put into practice the many things God is teaching me. It is so easy to be blessed by something we hear and learn in one moment and completely forget it in the next. I pray that each one of you would be able to see and hear God in the many things that pass through your days. May you look for what He wants to teach you in each moment of joy, pain, difficulty, peace, etc. May God bless you in all you do as you seek His will!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Well, it's been more than a year since we arrived here in Honduras. This has been the longest we've been away from PA without a visit home. It's, of course, almost impossible to truly explain how we feel about living here at La Finca. We know that God has called us to serve and help here, but that doesn't always make the day to day frustrations and stresses easier to handle. There are always moments of joy and satisfaction with small improvements in respect and attitudes from the kids and with times of positive interactions with the youth, but dealing with over 90 children is never easy and usually at least slightly overwhelming.

We want to serve with joy. We want to love each child the same and unconditionally. We want to show Jesus to all we come in contact with. We want to respond to problems and requests calmly and patiently. We want to be welcoming to all who ask.

AND we want to take personal time with God to nurture our relationship with Him. We want to take time for each other to protect our marriage. We want to take time for our children to protect our family. We want to take time by ourselves to protect our sanity!

The difficulty is how to "budget" our time, how to make sure we are following the Spirit's leading, so that we are doing God's will and not what we or others think is best.

May God's Spirit guide each one of you as you seek to find balance in your lives.