Thursday, October 30, 2008

Amazing Answer

Romans 5:3-5
"And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character, and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us."

I can say that these surely have been trying times in my life. Praise the Lord for His hope, for it truly does not disappoint.

On Monday afternoon God answered a huge prayer on mine and many of yours. I bought a truck. I had looked at it several times and taken it to the mechanic to have it checked out the week before. I had prayed for the remaining cash to come in so that I could move forward and place an offer on the table. Money came in from all kinds of people and places many of which I still don't know. (Thank you to all those anonymous donors and friends)
So here it is after almost 3 months of biking, walking, catching rides, taxis and buses a gift from God: 1999 Nissan, like a Frontier but not quite, double cab, diesel, 4x4 truck!
From Truck

I am blown away by it all and stand grateful for all that God has taught me through this time. I hope to not forget what travel and transportation is like for most of the people that I work with around the country. Also, the wonderful, visual reminder of God's protection the night of the accident all the way through to His provision of the new truck today.
From Truck

From Truck

Monday, October 27, 2008

Biking Across Nicaragua

I have mentioned a time or two that I am joining up with 19 other bikers in December in a trek across Nicaragua. It is going to be an adventure for sure. Sea to Sea Nicaragua
Step 1
finding a bike. Thankfully I was able to find a good bike here in Nicaragua from some missionaries who were heading back to the States. It was a steal. With a little investment on some newer parts I am pretty close to good running order. Meet my bike I have named her Esperanza which means Hope. Hope because the purpose of the trek is to raise money for hurricane relief on the Atlantic Coast of Nicaragua. Hope is also appropriate as I hope to be able to finish the 9 day route.
From Sea to Sea

Step 2
Training! Yep you heard that right. Aimee and Mary two of the other riders and I have been spending our weekends biking in preparation for the big ride. On Saturday we did a great little trail that I ran in a half marathon a few years back. The trail is mostly uphill and was quite muddy. Mary got stuck a few times. Surprisingly it wasn't me that got stuck. Usually it is!
Here's a pic of us just about half way up in front of a beautiful view of Manauga.
From Sea to Sea

Here is a pic from the first time we went out and did 110 Kilometers on a beach trip for the weekend. This was upon our return home. I was beat after the trip.
From Beach Bike Trip Sep 2008

Sunday, October 26, 2008


I've updated the prayer requests and praises!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Showers from Above

From blog photos
Here are puddles outside our front door

As most of you already know the rainy season is upon us here in Nicaragua. October generally is the rainiest month of the year. Alcides just told me that according to records October 2008 has been the rainiest in 64 years. Now while the rain cools things off a bit it also causes a lot of problems too.

The roads and drainage systems are not designed for so much rain and have been flooding. The drainage ditches get clogged up with so much trash and debris that the roads become rivers with hidden craters for potholes.

Rains of this type cause already leaky roofs to become even leakier. Mold, mosquitos and many other things grow substantially making life difficult for many Nicaraguans. Pray for the many Nicaraguans that are facing hard times this rainy season. May the Lord protect them as they go to and from work in crazy flooding. May He also protect their homes from flooding.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Promised Pics

Here are some pics from the run last weekend. We all look a little wet not just from sweat but it rained during a good portion of the race too. :-)

Here we are the night before the race. We were told there was a meeting to start at 6 so we showed up a little early and I guess it started at 5. It was pretty long and boring so we were glad that we showed up late

Aimee and I after the race

Laura and David Parajon joined us for the race too. They are the parents of one of my former students. It was fun to run with them.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Coming Full Circle

Pastor Franlym, Myrna and Julia

Something amazing happened last week that I want to share with you. As the news spread among friends that we were robbed I felt an overwhelming amount of love and support from so many both here and in the States. By the time I got to the house after receiving the news of the break in there were already 5 friends at the house being supportive in whatever way they could.
Alcides was in Rivas when he heard the news and must have shared it with a Pastor I know and have worked with lots this year. Pastor Franlym is an amazing pastor that I have enjoyed working with. He is a dreamer and has lots of vision for his church and his community. God has graciously allowed us to partner with his church for two teams this year.
Franlym upon hearing about my situation sent me an email that same afternoon. His email was filled with encouragement and love. He gave several verses to remind me of God’s care for His children. While I didn’t actually read it until several days later God was saving it for a moment when I needed it most. The most amazing thing that I walk away with from all this is that God is so faithful. We have worked to build a relationship with Pastor Franlym and his church. We have provided training, brought supplies and all kinds of encouragement and discipleship tools to the church and now the relationship has moved to another level. The relationship is a recipricol one. In a moment of need Franlym stepped up and used his God-given gifts to bless the people and ministry of Christ for the City.
This is fruit of the seeds that God has planted through you, and me and many others. What a beautiful picture this is of God’s faithfulness played out in the growth, challenges and lives of His children.

Here is a link to pictures from the week that The Kirk was working with Pastor Franlym's church El Nazareno in Popoyoapa.

Monday, October 6, 2008

On the Run

I have really picked up and enjoyed running since moving to Nicaragua. I started partially because I enjoy it but also because there are a lot of other ways to get a workout in consistently. There is a small group of gals that I go with a couple times a week. Amy and Myra are great and we enjoy several routes near where we live.

This weekend Myra and I participated in a 15K fun run in Matagalpa. Matagalpa is in the north of Nicaragua and is where the majority of the coffee that is exported to the world is grown. It is beautiful and much cooler than Managua. There were eight of us in all that caravanned up and enjoyed the ride. The race turned out to be a little shorter than 15K but was still breath-taking (in more ways than one ☺) We ran through a coffee farm. It was a very well organized event. We were all really impressed. Each runner got a really nice shirt and a medal.

The fun run was actually part of a larger event where 22 runners were running a double marathon! Can you believe it 50 miles. The course was difficult but I can’t imagine running 50 miles. Someday I would like to run a marathon but I am not sure if I will ever add a double marathon to my TO DO list.

I’ll add pics later. I didn’t get any on my camera so as soon as I get some from the others I’ll post them.

This is Life in Nicaragua

This past Wednesday I was in a meeting and received a phone call from my roommate Joy. It was the kind of phone call that you hope you never get but in the back of your mind know that it is always a possibility while living in Nicaragua. We had been robbed. The thieves had broken into our house through the back door. They pretty much got all of the electronics that we had in the house as well as all the cash that we had hidden in various places.

We called the police and boy oh boy was that an experience. Honestly, the way they treated us felt worse than being robbed. This left us to do some of our own detective work. We canvassed the neighborhood talking to all our neighbors and getting the word out that we would offer a reward for information leading to the recovery of some of our goods. More than anything we wanted Lori’s computer back which had all of the files for the organization she works for Manna Project International. Thankfully in the process we also found our dog Chaco who escaped during the robbery.

In the meantime we are trying to get back to some type of life as usual although we have struggled a bit with feeling insecure while we are at home. Little by little I think we are sleeping a little better at night but we could use your prayers. Please pray that we would submit our fears and worries to the Lord and not let fear overpower our thoughts and actions. Also pray that our landlord would be willing to make some necessary repairs and changes to the house to make it more secure. Of course please pray that we would be able to recover Lori’s computer.