Who are we reflecting?

We had just finished our last class of the morning for this year at one of the schools. It was the grade 6 class, and our last chance to share the Word of God with them ever at this school because exams start in a week or so. Although the children who are sponsored we will see again for different events between now and the end of this year, it will not be in a classroom setting. In February these students will begin high school should they decide to go.

Dale prayed over them before we left their classroom one last time. As we were leaving their teacher spoke up and admonished her students to show a little respect. Some of the children were talking while Dale was praying. They were distracted and not really listening. She basically told them that if they don’t have respect for God then they are not going to have respect for anybody. She went on to say that the way they were behaving was a reflection of their parents. Ouch!

I got to thinking about this… The Bible tells us in Genesis 1 that we were made in God’s image. So what are we reflecting to the people around us? Our family. Our neighbours. The taxi driver or motorcyclist who cuts us off in traffic. The clerk at Walmart. The people that we work with. Do they see someone who exhibits the fruit of the Spirit? Do they see someone who is patient, kind and good…or do they see the opposite? Someone who is easily angered, impatient, and mean? Could we like Paul, say to those around us “ And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ”..?( I Corinthians 11:1)

I think we have all heard the saying that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree and it’s true. I see traits in myself that I see in my parents…not all of them are negative mind you, but honestly speaking I am not sure I would want people to follow me around and imitate me all the time. I have some bad habits that at least one of my kids have picked up on. For example… growling when I am annoyed or frustrated at certain circumstances. I was a bit floored the first time I heard my daughter do that and was about to reprimand her for the bad attitude when I realized…that’s me!! I am working on not doing that but some habits are tough to break.  But all joking aside; should our lives not be a reflection of what is on the inside? And if Christ is in us, should others not see him in us? Whose image are we reflecting?

 

Ephesians 5:1 The Message Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behaviour from their parents.

Romans 8:29a For he knew all about us before we were born and he destined us from the beginning to share the likeness of his Son..

Proverbs 27:19 NLT As a face is reflected in water, so the heart reflects the real person.

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Lesson from a broken lamp

I have been participating in a fun photo challenge on Instagram where each day there is a different photo prompt. Today’s was black and white. So I took a photo of a lamp in our home and shared it. It sits on a table in front of a window in our office.

We are still in the throes of rainy season. It has seemed a lot worse this year for some reason. A couple of times now there have been strong winds that have knocked the lamp over and off the table. The last time, Dale looked at it and said that it was completely broken and that he wouldn’t be able to fix it. There was no way the shade would snap or twist back onto the base. We thought we would have to throw it out…disappointing because that had been a special purchase that we had saved for.

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However Dale had an idea. He took a couple of clothespins and was able to re-attach the flimsy lamp shade to by clamping it to the base… good as new. You can’t tell by looking at it that is broken.

 
I was thinking about that today when I went out for my walk, how at times our lives are like that. Storms and winds come and knock us down, and things happen that break us. Financially. Emotionally. Spiritually. We may feel beyond repair. But them God lovingly puts us back together again. Like those clothespins on our lamp, God is the only one who can hold us together when those winds come. He is the only one who keeps us together when we have fallen apart.  And we all feel like that at times.

It is actually a good reminder for me  because lately I have been in a bit of a funk. I am not even sure if that is the correct word. Basically it’s just been a season where I have felt fragile, discouraged and at times a little lonely. I can’t really pinpoint it to any one thing per se, but maybe a culmination of stuff. In recent months there has been a lot of change, loss and trauma in our lives and I haven’t felt like doing much of things I used to really enjoy…writing being one of them. We recently moved and while we love the new, smaller place and community, and being able to walk to Walmart…the few neighbors we have don’t venture outside much. Although they do honk and wave if we are out walking the dog…so that is a start I guess!

Psalm 119 :107 I have suffered much, O Lord; restore my life again as you promised.

Psalm 14:3 He heals the wounds of every shattered heart.

Jeremiah 17:14 God, pick up the pieces and put me back together again. You are my praise!

Psalm 119:116 Lord, sustain me as you promised, that I may live! Don’t let my hope be crushed. Sustain me and I will be rescued. Then I will meditate continually on your decrees.

 

I Thessalonians 5:18 And in the midst of everything be always giving thanks, for this is God’s perfect plan for you in Christ Jesus.

Staying Connected…

The other day we were teaching at one of our schools when Dale went to use his phone and noticed that battery was almost drained. Apparently it had not been charging overnight. It was basically useless. What good is a phone if the battery is dead?

 

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Our lives are like that. We need to take the time each day to stay connected to our source of power, to be filled and recharged and stay connected to Him. He is our source of power. How he wants to have relationship with us. I was reading this verse the other day and this verse sort of jumped out at me, even though I have read this Psalm multiple times.

 
Psalm 27:8 My heart has heard you say, “Come and talk with me.” And my heart responds, “Lord, I am coming.”

 
But sometimes we get busy and our quiet time gets pushed aside or put on a back burner or something we do eventually when or if we have time. I have noticed in my own life that when I get out of my normal routine, like for instance summer when I can sleep in a little or when we have an extra busy week that I don’t spend as much time as I once did because of all things I need to get done that day or my busy schedule.

 
Lisa Whittle says in her book,” I want God.” “In the everyday moving stream of life, even we who love God the very most get swept up the rushing current of jobs, parenting, school, carpool, laundry, vacations, and yes even ministries. As we are numbly floating at a swift pace, it is only the occasional debris—a scary health diagnosis, a relationship wound, an injustice on the TV news—which obstructs us long enough to notice that we haven’t talked to God or paid much attention to Him in quite a while and man, now we could sure use His help moving forward. We want Him to please hurry and get us unstuck so we can keep up with our to -do list. We act like children, stomping our feet and carrying on when He doesn’t hurry as fast as we think He should. And we wonder, lying in bed at night, staring at the ceiling fan, why God seems to like everyone else better. Our selfishness blinds us to what has become of us as we have drifted down the stream of life: We have turned into the Isrealites. And God, who has been the always- faithful Father to us (Psalm 86:15) mourns and weeps that we have moved away from Him to the point that our love has become divided, tarnished, forgotten. He won’t stop being faithful, nor will He stop loving, but He will still grieve.”

 
We have an enemy who will conveniently make sure that we stay busy and don’t have time to charge our spiritual battery because he doesn’t want us to be effective. He was us to be powerless and unconnected with our batteries drained. How can we withstand when the enemy attacks us…and he will… if we are unconnected? If we don’t plug in to our source of power, we will be powerless. Vulnerable.

 
1 Peter 5:8, 9a Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him and be strong in your faith.

 
John 15:4 Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot bear fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.

 
Even Jesus spent time alone with His father. His cousin, John the Baptist had just been beheaded. He tried getting away, to be alone but the crowd followed him and instead of just sending them away, he had compassion on them and healed those who were sick and then later that day fed 5000 men, not including all the women and children. I am sure he would have been tired and weary and heavy hearted. Yet, He knew where to go to be filled. He knew where to go to find strength.

 
Mathew 14:23 After sending them home, he went up to the hills by himself to pray. Night fell when he was there alone.

 
So, I close this by encouraging you to find that time each day to stay connected to Him. Don’t let your spiritual battery drain. Don’t let the distractions of every day get in the way of spending time with the One who loves you and wants to spend time with you. The One who wants you to remain connected to Him.

 
John 15:5b For apart from me, you can do nothing.

Goodbye house, goodbye community…

This past Saturday, Dale and I took four car loads of stuff over to the new house. Also during the week we made three more trips.  You don’t think you have a lot of stuff until you have to move!  But today is our actual moving day. The day when we move our furniture and other random odds and ends out of the home we have been blessed to live in for more than five years. But since our two boys are in Canada and it’s just the three of us now, we no longer need such a large home. We’ve made a lot of wonderful memories here. Our kids have spent their teen years here. It’s the longest we’ve lived in any house.

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This home has been a huge blessing. I  love this house and I will miss it. A lot. I will list the many things I will miss. However, I was thinking of all the things I won’t miss about living in this location. I could only think of four and most are traffic related.

  1. The noise of the traffic when I am trying to sleep. Elisa has said however, that the noise lulls her to sleep.
  2. Getting out of the driveway is a pain and very stressful at times. It’s a busy road and cars come around the corner super fast. You have to watch three directions…left, right and infront of you, and get across the road while trying to get the gate to shut with the tempormental remote. We have had many close calls.
  3. When walking our dog after dinner, it is really difficult to cross the road to get into the community across from us and back again because there is so much traffic.
  4. I don’t mind people going through my garbage. It’s a normal occurance here, and I am used to it. If someone needs something I am tossing out…I’m cool with that. By all means, please take it if you can use it/sell it. However, what I don’t like is when someones sorts through the garbage and tosses what they don’t want on the ground, outside the bin. That happens often.

What I am going to miss about living here.

  1. My neighbours. We have been blessed with great neighbours that we get along well with. And we all have schnauzers so that doesn’t hurt. Four houses =7 schnauzers.
  2. Monte Verde…the community with the mountainous view that I walk in across the road. I almost get emotional when I think of this one. Over the last five years I have gotten to know so many wonderful people who live there. I have loved talking with them and getting to know them. I’ve been sharing with some of them that we are moving out of the neighborhood and have had goodbye hugs and surpisingly there have been a few tears.  One lady kept saying to my dog in her broken english..”Goodbye Abby….Goodbye.”  I’ll miss the guards who work there, and the sweet, and lame guard dog Ranger who always limps his way over for a pat.  It will be weird when they are no longer a part of my everyday life, my routine. 

  3.  Sitting on our balcony. Enjoying the spectacular view. Fireworks at random times throughout the year. Devotions in the morning. Sleeping on the balcony on Christmas Eve. Church services in the distance. The sound of their worship carries and at times. And then there is the odd concert at the stadium that we can hear from this home. 

  4.  The fruit truck down the street I will miss walking to. The fresh fruit that is so delicious and not badly priced… pineapples for a little over a dollar and creamy avocados that are about three for a dollar. However, I’ll never forget  the one time Ben walked down there and they tried charging him the equivalent of four dollars for one mango! He asked the man if that was the gringo price and the guy just grinned.
  5. Walking to the pulperia whenever I run out of eggs or something else. ( They sell pretty much everything…even mascara!) I have enjoyed being able to purchase just one egg for 3lps if that is all I need. I’ll miss the women who work there too. Like a lot. They have always been so kind and honest and nice to talk with. I remember one time they owed Dale 3 lps in change and Dale walked away with out it. That’s only about fifteen cents. The next time I was there they took 3 lps off what I was buying. “Because I am an honest woman” she explained.
  6. I will miss our landlords. God truly blessed us in this area who a couple who have been amazing. Sweet and gracious. We felt a bond with them from the first time we met them, seeing as they had been to Stratford Ontario…the last place we lived in before moving here. We consider them friends.

There are many things I will miss and it is going to be hard to leave these things  that have been such a part of my daily life here behind.  At the same time, I am looking forward to making new memories in the new place and a new community to settle into.

A tale of two houses

For the last few weeks we have been packing and selling some of our things and giving other stuff away. We are moving. We are still going to be in the same city but on the other side of it. Closer to where we work. Closer to the team house/office. (A three minute drive!) And close to the airport. However, we are not going to the house we originally thought we were going to.

 

There is a neighbourhood in the city called Portal del Bosque that we had wanted to be in. It is safe. We know a number of other missionaries that live there and we even found a house on the same street as at least two other missionary families! I was looking forward to walking with some of the ladies I know who live there. It was difficult to find much of anything in that area within our budget but the landlord of this house agreed to come down in price a little. It was a house a third of the size of the house we have lived in since moving here more than five years ago. But we were ok with that because we wanted to downsize anyway. It didn’t have the view that was so important to Dale, but it did have a nice sized back yard, perfect for the dog, and it had a fire pit! Compromise.

We could easily see ourselves living there even though it was so much smaller than what we are used to. With two of our kids now in Canada we no longer need the spacious home we have now. I was picturing in my mind how I would arrange my kitchen in the limited cupboard space and what dishes would I need to part with or make do without.
Yet it seemed every time we were to sign the contract, something kept coming up. The landlord there kept asking for one more document, one more thing, one more hoop to jump through or so it seemed. We’d be all prepared to sign when something would inevitably come up. It was frustrating. I remember one night telling Dale that I didn’t think we were going to get that house. It was just a feeling in my gut, a sense that for whatever reason the owner of the house didn’t want us to have it, and we would not be moving there. Even though he or she had not even met us and even though we were going to be finally signing the contract in two days. I didn’t think it would actually happen because something always came up. It was down to the last minute…as we had to be out of here the end of the month.

 

However, we had been praying that if this house in Portal del Bosque was not for us, that God would find another house for us. We later found out in chatting with our current landlady here (whom we have been so blessed with) that the owner there was apprehensive to rent to us because we were North American and he/she had only ever rented to Hondurans.
It was a few minutes after learning this information, that our real estate agent friend called. She seemed excited and wanted us to see another house the next day. (Sunday). We were to sign on the house in Portal del Bosque on Monday! Sunday morning rolled around and we met up with Jackie and we drove to a new house in a newer area, just around the corner from the Schools of Hope team house.  We loved it! We noticed how the neighbourhood was also very secure and there are not a lot of neighbours, so it sort of felt like country living. The best part….it had a view…something Dale has wanted all along and something he was sacrificing to move to the other house. And I love the kitchen! While it is still much smaller than the house we’ve always lived in since moving to Honduras, it is larger than the one at Portal del Bosque, and the same price. Ironically, we actually would have room for some of the stuff we sold. But we are ok with less stuff anyway, so it’s all good.  We signed the contract  a couple days later and move in officially in less than a week. However this morning we are going to be taking a few loads of smaller stuff over in our car…ministry stuff, some kitchen things etc. The furniture will go on Thursday.
So all along God had another plan different than ours…and his plan is always better than ours and always right on time.

 

 

 

The accident and the delays.

I originally wrote this for We are his daughters but have added a little because some things have transpired since I first wrote it. So, I guess this is the extended version. 🙂

A few days ago, Dale and I had a rather busy day of running around and doing errands. For some reason doing errands takes way longer than what you would normally anticipate here in Honduras. Our first errand was at the bank, where we needed a letter, (constancia) stating how long we have had our bank account here for the house we are going to be moving to. That alone took an hour and a half. Then we had to go to Elisa’s school, the team house and we had a few other things to accomplish.
Finally after being away from home since early that morning we made our way home a little after 3 in the afternoon. Suddenly Dale exclaimed, “Oh my goodness! That truck!” I turned and looked out his window in time to see a transport truck speeding, and evidently coming right at us. But at that moment he veered to the left and sailed over the median and into the oncoming traffic. The truck hit a man on a motorbike who went flying through the air and crumbled like a rag doll on the ground before it landed in the ditch on the other side. It was horrific. I don’t know that I will ever be able to shake the memory of that day from my mind. (Since then Dale and I have been a little more on edge while in traffic. I catch myself bracing myself a lot.)
We pulled over, as did a lot of other people. All of us were in a state of shock. I couldn’t stop crying. Dale was trembling. The paper said it was mechanical failure. The breaks had failed. Two people died that day, and it is a miracle that more people were not killed. It’s a busy highway and realistically more cars or busses should have been in the path of that truck. But  Praise God, they weren’t.
Another thing is….a few seconds more and it could have been Dale and I that were taken out. He was so close to us. But at the last moment the truck flew over the median. We were going around a curve in the road and there was no way the truck could have made it. At one point Dale looked at me and said, “That could have been us.” And it’s so true. We clearly saw the Lord’s protection in that moment. It was a very close call.I am and always will be thankful for his protection and his hand upon our lives that day.
Psalm 27:1 The Lord is my light and salvation—so why should I be afraid. The Lord is my fortress protecting me from danger, so why should I tremble?
We never know when our time will come. Things can happen so fast. In the blink of an eye, things can suddenly change. Unexpected things can and do happen. Certain events can change the course of our lives. Only God knows the number of our days, and when he will say our time on earth is done. It’s so important to be ready, to know where we are going should our time on earth come to a sudden and unexpected end.
A few of days ago, we were driving back from the school we were teaching at. We had not left immediately because some of our staff had stopped by to chat, so we lingered outside the school for a little while. Eventually we left and were on our way back home. We had our translator Dannyel to drop off and then our friend Rossy who teaches the Semillitas course. However There was major traffic. No one seemed to be moving. We had heard earlier that there would be paros that day and sure enough. In the distance we could see the black smoke billowing ahead and all traffic was being prevented from getting through. Some university students were protesting again by burning tires. Cars were being re-routed.

Eventually we were on our way and dropped Dannyel off, only to be held up again in more traffic. We were not able to get through to drop Rossy off at the usual drop off place. It was so stressful because we were all tired and all any of us wanted to do was to get home but we couldn’t because of all the hold ups and sitting in traffic not moving for so long.

Sometimes things happen that are out of our control. Happens a lot here.

We thought it was another protest, because often times they can be spread throughout the city, but yet we later read in the paper that a bus driver had been gunned down by someone getting onto the bus. Because of that, they shut the street down and were not letting anyone through. However had traffic been moving along at the normal pace, or if we had left the school right away instead of stopping to talk, maybe we would have heard the gun shots and been caught in the chaos and fear that must have ensued. God knew that, and while being stuck in traffic and not going anywhere is not fun and something that is super annoying, very often there is a reason.  Maybe it’s construction, maybe it’s an accident, or maybe it’s a protest, or maybe something else is going down. And maybe we will never know what that reason is.  For none of us are guaranteed tomorrow.

And as my friend Linda commented on my status one day; maybe when we get to heaven God will show us how many times his hand diverted danger from our path.
James 4:14 How do you know that your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone.

Unexpected things..

My friend Kathy blogged today about frustrating things that have been happening that are out of her control. It is something I have also been thinking about because it seems like it’s been happening a lot lately. Those unexpected things that we don’t plan for or take into account. Those things we are not prepared for. We have that word Flexi-juice here for a reason.
Here are a few unexpected things that have happened in our lives recently.
1. I went to get my eyes tested. It’s been a couple years since my last eye exam, and I knew I needed new glasses. My glasses are badly scratched, and I don’t see out of them as well as I once did. Not only that but they are glasses meant for a guy. Not that you can tell by looking at them, but I wanted something fun and pretty. The problem was, due to lots of construction going on in the area, this place was not easy to get to. It was like an obstacle course. There were lots of twists and turns, back roads and dirt alleys. Even with directions we managed to get messed up. The clinic was in a dangerous area and we didn’t know where we were. We could see the big blue building in the distance, but were very lost! It was beyond frustrating and had my blood boiling. I was stressed. Upset. I wanted the test that day because the missionaries who run the clinic were leaving to move back to the States the following week. We were ready to give up and go home but finally we made it….an hour late. I really, really dislike being late for things. I always have, ever since I was a kid. I would rather show up early for something than inconvenience someone by my lateness.  In my one eye, the prescription has drastically changed. “Not normal,” I was told. So much so that I was not given the prescription. I now have to get my blood tested for high blood sugar. Unexpected news. I haven’t gone because something always comes up and when I could have actually gone, when I actually I had time, I forgot.
2. The last night that the Evans family were in Honduras, before they moved home to Canada, we planned to go to the team house for a potluck dinner and games. I made a delicious summery chickpea salad and a chocolate swirl bundt cake. However, we never made it. Due to the taxis and buses blocking the roads to protest the increase in gas prices and other unfair taxes, we were stuck in traffic for over five hours. Unreal. Not moving. Not even a little bit. Everyone just parked their vehicle on the road and waited. Finally when they opened the roads, it was too late. We just turned around, stopped and got gas and went home. It was frustrating, annoying, and very disappointing. We didn’t get to say goodbye one last time. That made us so sad. But again, it was out of control. It didn’t do a bit of good to fly off the handle, yell at the taxi drivers, or sit there and fume about the situation, because there was literally nothing that could be done about it. Absolutely nothing. We didn’t go hungry though. We polished off the chickpea salad we had brought for the meal and had a piece of cake.
3. We were supposed to have a team arrive today. ( Sunday) However due to technical difficulties their flight was re -routed or something and now they are not arriving until tomorrow. This throws a wrench into our well organized schedule and menu. It’s a disappointment to us and especially our director Kathy, as it is her home church and she’s really excited for them to come. However, once again, it’s a situation beyond our control. There’s nothing that can be done about it. So why stress about things that we have no control over?

4. On Sundays morning I have felt kind of lost since the bilingual church we were attending and enjoyed so much decided to take a sabatical til the end of the year. I really miss going.  We were not always able to attend every Sunday but we went most of the time and as often as we could. I miss the worship and the Word. While I understand the reasoning behind it, it’s still a change we didn’t see coming.

5. We have been house hunting. We have loved and enjoyed the house we live in now.  It’s been a huge blessing to us with the most amazing view and a community across the road where I can walk in.   So many wonderful memories have been made here. But with two of our children now in Canada, we no longer need such a large home. Even though we will truly miss it. We  found a house in the neighborhood we like, close to the area we work in and the team house. It’s in a safe area. It’s about half the size of this house, but, sadly has no view. It does however have a large back yard with a fire pit. There’s room to garden…something Dale enjoys.  It’s perfect for entertaining and perfect for our little schnauzer. There were some things we asked for…a clothesline, some kind of storage space and the landlord had apparently said sure those things could be added, and the rent would not increase. So,we gave our notice here and began selling pieces of furniture that would not fit in the new place.  However, the house we thought we were going to more or less fell through.  Because the house with half the space but a big back yard went up significantly in price.  So now it’s back to house hunting. Thankfully our landlady here is letting us stay on and told Dale she was happy we were staying a little longer.

Matthew 6:34 So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
Proverbs 16:9 We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.

Five years…

Yesterday was our fifth anniversary in Honduras. For some reason it feels like a lot longer….a lifetime ago.  There are times I feel like I have always lived here.   I thought it would be fun to look back on my very first post written in Honduras. I wrote it exactly five years ago today when everything was brand new.  We had literally just got off the plane and jumped right into life here. I remember back then, the very things that used to drive me crazy have now become the norm.

https://cjruttan.wordpress.com/2013/07/19/our-home-is-in-honduras/

So much has changed in the last five years.  God has been so good. He’s been faithful. Things may change, but he never does. I am so glad that we didn’t give up or throw in the towel despite how we may have felt like it earlier on.

When we first arrived in Honduras we were a family of five. All three of our children were here. Now two of them are grown and settling into life in Canada. Ben begins Bible school in the fall.  He seems to be adjusting well. I look forward to seeing where life takes him as he strives to put God first in his life. Jake continues to work full time, plays on the worship team at his church and make music in his spare time. He is super talented and we are super proud of him! Elisa will be going into her senior year in September.

Five years ago we were in three schools..and now we are in fifteen. Ten of those schools are being taught by our amazingly talented Honduran team.  I absolutley love to see how our team has grown. God has brought us some amazing people to work alongside. They all love Jesus and have hearts to serve Him. Here is a photo of our staff….altough actually we are missing a few..Rossy, Dannyel, Julio, Beckett…

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Many of you will remember that Randy and Judy Lundrigan began this ministry. They poured their heart and souls into it, loved on people, planted the seeds and watered. And things have grown and flourished because of their faithfulness.

Kathy Mizen is now the director and she does an amazing job leading the team and has a real heart for people and especially for the children to come to know Jesus and continue their education and to succeed. She began a tutoring program this year for the sponsored kids wo are struggling in their classes and it’s going great.

 

Five years ago, SOH had 75 Child Care Plus sponsored students. We now have over 230! Thank you for sponsoring our children!

 

 

 

This past year, SOH began installing water filters into the homes in the Buena Vista area under the direction of Mike Evans.  This month, SOH will have installed 200 filters! This is amazing because our goal was to install 100 filters by the end of the year, and that goal has pretty much doubled, and it’s only July.  Now these homes will not only have clean drinking water for their family but they also hear about the Living water..Jesus.

 

 

 

Lastly, we have been honoured in our fifth year to have the Evans family from British Columbia join us.  They move back to Canada on Friday. They have been such an incredible blessing to us, to our team and to the people in the Buena Vista area. Trisha helped Kathy in the office, getting the finances in order and she also trained up one our Honduran staff to take over when she leaves.  Mike oversaw the water filtration project and other community projects. For example, the stairs outside of  Mary Flakes school. Now the children no longer have to walk down the rocky mountain side to get to school.  Both Mike and Trisha came to Honduras with a willingness to help wherever needed. They have gentle spirits and humble hearts.  Even the kids when they are not in school, will help where ever needed. They have lived very simply while they were here and didn’t buy a lot of un nessesary stuff.  Most of whatever furniture they had while they were here, Mike fashioned from pallets. It’s amazing what you can manage to live without.   I love how their three children have so quickly adusted to life here and how their little girl has really come out of her shell. We are truly going to miss them and are sad to see them go.

 

 

Believe in Faith

Here is a post written by our director Kathy about some exciting things in our ministry.

Kathy's Adventures

Most of you may know that our ministry has been successfully moving along with our water filtration project this year. For the past year, the Evans family has joined us to help make this happen. Mike, Trisha and their 3 kids moved here last August to join our Schools of Hope family.

evans.jpgMike’s main focus as Project Manager was to move our filtration project forward and train up his replacement before he left. He has successfully done this and we are excited to see how God continues to move in the communities that are in desperate need of safe, clean drinking water.
Trisha’s main focus was to help me organize our finances and train up one of our staff to assist me in managing it. She has successfully done that! Of course, I’d be lying if I didn’t say I wanted them to stay. They have been a HUGE blessing…

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The thirsty ones..

Psalms 63:1 O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my souls thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.

One of the highlights this week was the day we handed out Bibles to 97 teachers. It was an emotional day to say the least!  These are the schools that Dale and I are not teaching Bible classes in, but that are receiving classes from our Honduran staff. Along with the Bible they received a daily reading guide to read to their students. Inside the guide are themes and scriptures for the entire school year.  The response was absolutely overwhelming.  These teachers were so happy and so thankful! I wish you could be there to see how their faces lit up. They couldn’t stop smiling.  I know it is not really fair to compare Canada to Honduras. But it’s so different here. One cannot help but think about how different the response would be there if teachers were to be given Bibles to read to their students along with a reading plan. First of all, it wouldn’t be allowed. Here in Honduras, for now anyway, the doors are wide open. Although I have heard more than one time this week, that things are slowly shifting.

There was one teacher that was so overcome with emotion that she began to cry.  She explained to us that  before she went on maternity leave she had been reading to the children from the Bible, usually a proverb. Then she would explain the meaning, and they would write or draw pictures in their journals of what they had learned. She told us that while she was on maternity leave, the lady filling in for her did not continue what she began. She was heartbroken to discover that while she was away, the journals remained untouched, unopened.  “For forty days, my babies did not hear the Word of God!”  That day was her first day back to teaching and she was sad that she had forgotten her Bible at home. Then we showed up with a Bible for her to read in the classroom and she couldn’t stop the tears. She knew God heard the cry of her heart. She knew He cared about her and her desire for her students to learn from the Word. We watched a few  children gather around her desk as once again was able to share from the Bible.

Several teachers told how much they appreciate the Bible classes and have even said that they have seen a change in their classroom since the Bible classes began. They are making a difference.  We’ve had many schools request that we come more often but with fifteen schools that is just not financially possible at this time. These kids are hungry and thirsty for more of the Word. The children love it when their Bible teachers come! I firmly believe that the change is because God’s truth is being planted in their heart and when that happens, there can’t help but be a change.

Psalm 119:11 I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.

 

 

We were able to hand out the Bibles the other day because of another ministry here in Honduras called Here I am ministries. They graciously donated all of the Bibles and the guides for these teachers. I love it that we can partner with other ministries, and I love it that God’s Word is in the classrooms.

2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture is inspired by God, and is useful to teach us what is wrong in our lives . It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.