Sunday, January 24, 2010

Crossing the Jordan

Sidenote: I started this blog two weeks ago and was unable to post it until now. It seems so appropriate to add more after the most recent events with my family. I've added more promises fulfilled in blue below.

I have the privilage of working with 15 wonderful first graders every day. We have lots of fun learning and growing together. This past week we re-enacted the crossing of the Jordan River into the promised land by the Israelites. What joyous occasion for the Israelites after waiting for 40 years in the desert. The joy of God's promise to them fulfilled!

As I reflected on some of the other promises that God has fulfilled throughout the Bible with my class I looked as bit farther at the promises He has fulfilled in my own life.

Here are just a few:
Psalm 20
1 May the LORD answer you when you are in distress;
may the name of the God of Jacob protect you.

2 May he send you help from the sanctuary
and grant you support from Zion.

3 May he remember all your sacrifices
and accept your burnt offerings.

4 May he give you the desire of your heart
and make all your plans succeed.

Verse 1: God has protected me from many close calls while driving on the roads in Nicaragua as well as from sickness that seems to plague many here.

Verse 2: He has sent help and wonderful support from family, friends and a great community of believers here in Nicaragua.

Verse 4: The desire of my heart this past year was to return to teaching and God has granted that opportunity. I am overjoyed to be able to work with a special class of first graders and learn from them.

What a great and mighty GOD I serve! Not only for his answers to prayer and promises fulfilled but also for the trials and challenges he puts us through that motivate us to move deeper into His presence.

On Sunday, January 24th I received news that my sister-in-law passed away suddenly. Doctors did not know it at the time but later discovered that she had a very rare and aggressive form of cancer. Upon receiving this news I immediately made plans to go to TX to be with my brother during this difficult time. Don and Jessilyn had just gotten married in May of 2009. While the trip was a difficult one I can say that I still say that I serve a God who fulfills his promises. Though we are often plagued with questions like: How? Why? What am I supposed to do now? There is comfort that can be found in the fulfilled promises of our Lord and the reminder they are to us that we are not alone in this life and He does not change.

These are just a few of the promises I saw in my life over the past few weeks

verse 1: HE does answer in the day of trouble. God provided great friends who helped me find the cheapest ticket to get home fast, a sub for my class, a beautiful, spontanious prayer time.

The God of Jacob did set me securely on high! There was a peace unexplainable and an assurance that God had all the details in His control.

Verse 2: Help and support from Zion! Boy oh boy was there ever. Not only physical help in preparing lesson plans from friends at 11:00pm but also financial help too. Not to mention LOADS of prayer from so many of you.

Psalm 20

5 We will shout for joy when you are victorious
and will lift up our banners in the name of our God.
May the LORD grant all your requests.

6 Now I know that the LORD saves his anointed;
he answers him from his holy heaven
with the saving power of his right hand.

7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.

It is my prayer that always boast in the name of the Lord. He truly does save his annointed. There is no doubt in my mind that He answers us with His saving right hand.

Prayer Request:

Please continue to pray for my family as we work through the grieving process.

Pray for Don, my brother, as he learns to live without the love of his life by his side.

The custody of 4 yr old Gabriel. He is Jessilyn's son and is in the middle of a very difficult situation.

I'd love to share more of what God is doing and has done so if you want more details please write.

Monday, January 4, 2010


If I were to sum up 2009 in one word it would be relationships. God has blessed me with so many great friends, family, co-workers and acquaintances. A perk of living in a "warm" culture is that people tend to be more people oriented rather than task oriented. The longer I am here in Nicaragua the more I long for those long afternoon conversations with others over coffee or a cup of Rojita (for all those cough syrup tasting soda lovers).

Since I stayed in Nicaragua this Christmas my primary objective was to visit and catch up with all of the friends I've hardly seen since the school year started. The past two weeks have been RICH in fellowship, heart to heart talks, laughter, tears and yes... coffee.

I love and cherish every moment that has been spent over my break with people. I feel refreshed and revived. What an exciting way to start out 2010.

Today I took my truck to my mechanic. Bismark is a brother from one of the churches that we work with and has been a true blessing to our base not only with his mechanic skills but also with his amazing testimony.

Last Spring Bismark's wife died suddenly. It is customary in Nicaragua that there is an all night visitation that starts pretty much right away. Family, friends, church members etc come and comfort and pray with the family and then a burial service is generally the following day. As we heard the news last year our hearts sank as we mourned the loss of a dear sister. Our prayers went out to Bismark and his sons as they grieved. As I went to the "vela" visitation and talked with Bismark I was left speechless at he gave testimony to God's power, purpose, peace and provision in the midst of this difficult challenge. I thought that I was going to give words of comfort and encouragement to a hurting brother but in turn left awestruck by the power of our great God and His testimony through Bismark's trust in Him.

Back to today... Bismark and I were chatting and I asked him how his holidays were know that they were very different for him and his boys this year. He shared that it has been difficult and that he has felt strange these past few weeks without his wife around. As we both shared tears and a prayer together Bismark gave praise to the Lord for providing a moment to talk and share what he is experiencing. He is taking comfort from the words of David in the Psalms during these days.
Psalm 77
11 I will remember the deeds of the LORD;
yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago.

12 I will meditate on all your works
and consider all your mighty deeds.

13 Your ways, O God, are holy.
What god is so great as our God?

14 You are the God who performs miracles;
you display your power among the peoples.

Please pray for God's peace and comfort to reign in Bismark's life and home.

God I thank you that you have made us relational people and that you provide people to talk to when we need it most. Thank you for always being our Rock and Provider.