Monthly Archives: September 2011

Guatemala Mind Dump…

A blog post feels like a very inadequate way to try to share this experience. But it’s the best tool I have at the moment.

WARNING! If you choose to continue reading just know you are entering a seriously “Messy Mind Zone”. The following is just a list of random thoughts as I attempt sift through what’s going on in my head and heart.

*There is NO way to describe the “aroma” here. Or my personal aroma after hauling lumber and working construction all day yesterday.

*I have no idea how these people keep their bodies, hair, and clothes clean living in these conditions, but they do.

*The families we have met and visited their homes are very gracious and welcoming.

*Guatemalans are small, strong and hard working. I wish you could have seen the children so happy to haul the lumber for their brand new home! I think my heart exploded a hundred times yesterday.

*I was surprised at the number of signs I was able to read in English. (If you didn’t know, this is my very first time outside the US.)

*I need someone to teach me conversational Spanish. Not how to conjugate a verb!

*I LOVE the 18 other people on our team. They are everyone AMAZING, hardworking and so compassionate. I don’t think I’ve ever been with so many super encouraging people at one time.

*Maybe I’m naive but I have not felt afraid even one time. I have a peace about being here that I know is from God.

*These children are very patient with my gringo self. (Did I mention I need to learn Spanish?)

*I now know what a “rainy season” is. Wow.

*Jose and Erin Armas have a fantastic vision and ministry to the families in Zone 18. God’s hand is so in everything they do.

*There is no vehicle emissions testing in Guatemala. Traffic is crazy. Motorcycle helmets are optional. Jose is an exceptional bus driver.

*I have seen 78 dogs but only 1 cat. (Is there significance in that?)

*True relationship is highly underrated. We should do something about that.

That is enough mind dumping for the moment. It’s time to go help serve lunch to the kids and see how the morning activities are going.

We have 2 dentists here (one from our team and one local) and for the first time the kids are getting dental care. There is so much to be thankful for.

Thank you for your prayers. Keep it up.

I’m heading out to see God…Adios. (I hope I spelled it correctly, if not – I’ll catch you later.)

Someone PLEASE find me a Spanish teacher!!!

Hope for Guatemala…We’re Here!

Just wanted to let everyone know we arrived safely! It was an amazing flight. Jose is a fantastic bus driver (but you can still pray). We spent the afternoon at the market and I realized I need to get some haggling lessons from my dad. I pretty much stink at it (I stink in other ways too after serving breakfast, cleaning up and unloading groceries.

At this time we are waiting on a truck to take us to the house we are building for one of the families from the center. Got to go. Hope to update you again soon.

Pray. Pray. And pray some more.

if you comment and don’t see it, keep checking back…

Also having trouble uploading pictures. I’ll try again through Facebook later.

This is a Test…

My super sweet family has blessed me with a wonderful birthday gift. I now have an iPad to travel with me on my trip to Guatemala. This post is a testing of my aptitude with this new technical device as well as the WordPress app. I want to make sure that I have sense enough to work this thing and use it to keep you in the loop while we are serving the kids at Hope for Guatemala.

I also want to remind you one more time how much We need your prayers as we prepare to leave and for the time we are there. We fly out Monday morning and will be returning on Saturday. So thank you for remembering us and the people we will meet next week.

God is faithful and we are all very excited!

So now I’m going to tap the Publish button and see what happens. You can start praying now…

Beautiful Outlaw: An Evening With John Eldredge

Stonecreek Church will host Beautiful Outlaw: An Evening with John Eldredge, Tuesday, October 11, 7 p.m. in the main auditorium. The event is the first stop in Eldredge’s four-city tour to celebrate the release of his new book.

Eldredge shares, “Beautiful Outlaw is a book I’ve just written about the personality of Jesus–His playful, disruptive, scandalous, dangerous, beautiful personality. There is nothing more that matters than Jesus; to have His life, His joy, His friendship, His love. To know Him is to have the greatest treasure in all worlds.”

Seating is limited and this event will sell out quickly. Tickets are $5 each. There is no childcare for this event.

Tickets for Stonecreek Church leaders and attendees may be purchased, here.

Tickets for the General Public may be purchased, here.

For more on Beautiful Outlaw, visit Ransomed Heart’s Web site, here.

Top Priority? NOT Comfort…

I made someone uncomfortable last week. It was unintentional, I assure you. I simply extended an invitation but it was clear the individual was uncomfortable.

Maybe it was the fact the invitation was unexpected. Or it could be that the invitation was unwelcomed. Maybe they were offended by the way I extended the invitation or they didn’t like my hairstyle that day. Maybe it was my coffee-breath (note to self – remember to grab a mint the next time). At any rate the object of the invitation was most definitely uncomfortable.

I don’t like to make people uncomfortable. The strong hospitality gene in my DNA seeks to make EVERYONE as comfortable as possible. But if there is one thing that God has proven to me over and over again, it’s that our comfort is not His top priority – our holiness (or our likeness to Him) is. If comfort is not at the top of God’s list, then it shouldn’t be on ours either.

I’m not saying we need to intentionally place ourselves or others in uncomfortable situations. That’s just plain crazy. But the idea of comfort or lack of discomfort should not be our main objective or focus. Sometimes the absence of comfort is God’s way of moving us from where we are to where we need to be. Sometimes it’s God’s way of showing us what we need to turn loose in order to accept what He wants to give us. And sometimes it’s His way of blessing us with a different perspective to be able to relate on a soulful level to another human being.

Whatever the reason, I’m learning to accept the uncomfortable circumstances with an open mind and heart, ready to receive the teaching from my Father that will draw me closer to Him. To understand that apart from resting in Him, there is no comfort to be found.

I’m also going to keep extending that invitation – because God is telling me not to give up. My hope and prayer is that by my diligence (however uncomfortable it is for both of us) this person will realize how much they are valued and how precious they are to God. They need to know they have a place in the Big Story.

Is there an ASK you need to make, and invitation you need to extend?

Will it be uncomfortable? Maybe.

But if God is leading you to take that risk, I guarantee it will be more uncomfortable for you not to ask than to obey.