Family comes to visit

Life in Honduras is different than Canada. A lot different. It can be hard. There are things to consider that we never had to worry about or think about when in Canada. I think the hardest part of being here is the absence of family. They are no longer a half hour drive away like they were when we lived in Stratford. We have been here ten months. And while the time has flown by rather quickly, ten months is a long time not to have seen your family, not to have hugged them or shared a meal together.

When my parents told me they were coming to visit, I was happy and surprised. Having never flown out of Canada or the US, they were worried about how they would fare once they arrived in Honduras, where everyone spoke in Spanish. I knew they would be fine. The airport here is tiny. All they had to do was follow the crowd once the flight landed.

It was a Mother´s day I will always remember. The day my family came to Honduras. To see them again and hug them after so long was such a blessing.
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They stayed for twelve days.
During which time they were able to see where our kids attend school. They also got to visit all of the schools that we are in, teaching the gospel and with the feeding program. They even got to feed the children. That alone for my dad was the highlight of this trip.
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My mom was able to attend the ladies bible study with me and she really enjoyed it. After which I took her to the mall and treated her to her very first pedicure.

We took them up to the Jesus statue and they saw the beautiful view of the city.
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We also went to a little touristy town called Valle de Angeles. There is a leather shop there where they make shoes and purses on site. I had been saving my allowance for a long time so that I could purchase my mom a new purse from there for Mother´s day.
It was here in Valle, over mango granitas that a scrawny, haggared looking old woman tried selling us an empty coke bottle for a dollar. She approached others as well with a hopeful expression on her face. There was a band near by that began to play and this little old lady began to dance for all she was worth. In one way it was funny. Her moves were hilarious. On the other hand it was sad. Heartbreaking. She was trying to earn some money and she was creating a show of her own and many people stopped to take her photo or video her. It was clear she was either drunk or high on glue or something. When the music ended she sat down under the counter at Expresso Americano, slumped over and exhuasted. My heart went out to her.

We were also robbed while my parents are here. Not the greatest timing. Ten months here and no incidents, but yet three days into my parents visit, we are broken into. We are still in awe at the Lord´s protection and how no one heard anything that night.
My parents and brother were able to see the construction of bars on our windows that began immediately following the break in. It´s a sad but necessary reality of life in Honduras.

One day my brother came up to the schools on our teaching day. Some of the young boys were fascinated by his bald head. They were rubbing it and told him he had a beautiful head and beautiful eyes.
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This was the day my parents decided to stay home. When we came back home, exhausted from teaching in the school all day, my mom had made an amazing dinner. She is such a great cook and it was a blessng to enjoy her cooking one more time. And a blessing not to have to cook!

My parents and brother also came along with us two Thursday´s in a row to the home group that we go to every week. My dad really enjoyed these meetings and later told me that it was the best small group he had ever been too!

My dad especially enjoyed sitting out on our balcony and the view he had each evening. He told me that he would love to take that view back to Canada with him.
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Twelve days went by quickly. Too fast. There was more that I wanted to show them, more of life in Honduras I wanted them to experience. I didn´t want to say goodbye at the airport when the time came for them to go home. I don´t know when I will see them again. The reality is….atleast another year. When we came home from the airport the tears flowed. Goodbyes are so hard.
I recall the excitement of knowing they were actually coming. The waiting for that day to arrive. Then it arrives and almost as quickly as it is here, it has passd and only a memory. I loved having my family here. I loved having them experience life in Honduras as we know it.

Robbed!

The day began like any other week day. My alarm went off at 5am. I woke up my children and put the dog outside to do his business. Then I walked into the office. Dale had mentioned the night before that he thought Reuben had peed in the office but he was too exhausted to do anything about it at the time. I thought I would get it cleaned up right away, but I didn’t see any pee on the floor.  I did however notice that the office window was wide open; the screen shoved aside. I remember thinking to myself, “who would do that?”  Actually I am pretty sure I voiced it out loud. I closed the screen and went down stairs to make my coffee.

Once my coffee was ready I sat down with my bible and devotional book for some coffee with Jesus. 🙂

Around 5:45 I thought I would quickly check my email. When I went to sit down at my lap top…It was gone! I glanced over at Dale’s desk and to my shock, his was gone too!  It was then that the horrible realization hit me that we had been robbed. That explained the open window. I woke Dale up and I don’t think he believed me at first. He kept saying “It has to be a joke” 

After the kids went to school and after our run at the Villa Olimpica, I sent our landlord a text and told him about what had happened the night before. He responded right away and was at our home within minutes.

He was looking out our office window while tears streamed down his face. I felt bad for him. I kept saying “we are ok. It’s just stuff”  He would say, “I am not doing ok. This shouldn’t have happened” He was really shaken.  In looking out that upstairs window we figured out how they got in…where the security of our home had been breached.

Not long after, workers were there and by the end of the day, bars were installed on the office window. They have been here all morning today as well installing more bars and razor wire in an area around our home that had none and essentially gave the intruder easy access.

The incredible thing about all this is that we slept through it. The office is next to our bedroom. Being the light sleeper that I am, I should  have heard the screen open. I should have heard whoever it was walking on the roof next door. Not only that, but the dog wakes up at the slightest sound and barks like a crazy dog. He didn’t stir once during the night.

Last night I was remembering back to when I first woke up that day at 5am. My ears had been clogged with wax!  No wonder I didn’t hear a sound. I truly believe that God allowed my ears to be clogged and for Reuben to fall into a deep sleep so that we would hear nothing. Who knows what would have happened if I woke up and went out to confront them, thinking it was one of the kids up in the middle of the night or something.

While I have not shed any tears over this, I am a little sad the my lap top is gone as all our photos were on there as well as my favorite work out dvd. There is that feeling of being violated and the question of  “what if they come back?”   However, we have a sweet landlord who is doing what he can to amp up the security of what was already a safe place…but an area he may have over looked.

 It blows me away when I think of it how we all slept though someone entering into our home and taking what didn’t belong to them. They are just things and things can be replaced.  I am amazed at how at peace I feel when I should be shaken. God is good!  He works in the coolest ways. Plugged ears and all!

 

 

Psalm 91

Those who live in the shelter of the Most High
    will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
This I declare about the Lord:
He alone is my refuge, my place of safety;
    he is my God, and I trust him.
For he will rescue you from every trap
    and protect you from deadly disease.
He will cover you with his feathers.
    He will shelter you with his wings.
    His faithful promises are your armor and protection.
Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night,
    nor the arrow that flies in the day.
Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness,
    nor the disaster that strikes at midday.
Though a thousand fall at your side,
    though ten thousand are dying around you,
    these evils will not touch you.
Just open your eyes,
    and see how the wicked are punished.

If you make the Lord your refuge,
    if you make the Most High your shelter,
10 no evil will conquer you;
    no plague will come near your home.
11 For he will order his angels
    to protect you wherever you go.
12 They will hold you up with their hands
    so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.
13 You will trample upon lions and cobras;
    you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet!

14 The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me.
    I will protect those who trust in my name.
15 When they call on me, I will answer;
    I will be with them in trouble.
    I will rescue and honor them.
16 I will reward them with a long life
    and give them my salvation.”

 

Team Lakemount

Last week, we had another team working alongside us; Lakemount church from Grimsby Ontario.

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Since we moved here last July, we have had the honour of having four teams come down here to Honduras. No two teams are alike, but they do have one thing in common…they have all been incredible!

Team Lakemount was no exception. They were very in tune spiritually. If they sensed God was speaking they did not hesitate to speak into someone’s life or lay hands on them and pray. Or change things up if they sensed the Lord was changing the direction of things. We saw prophecies and miracles of healing.

While they were here, rainy season began. Oh, did the heavens open up and pour with torrential rain like I have never seen before. While rain is good for a dry, parched land, it can wreak havoc and have a negative impact as well.  Many of these homes in the mountains have dirt floors and no basement.  Can you picture the damage all that rain water flowing into these homes does?  There is no septic system and all the water and sewage fills the streets and flows into their homes creating a mucky mess.

In one home we visited there was a woman in distress. She was very ill. Although her stomach was very bloated, she had been unable to keep any food down for four months. She had constant pain.

Her home too, had been affected by the rain and she asked for help. Team members did what they could in shovelling out the mud from what had once been a dirt floor and smoothed it out for her. Seriously though, how does one possibly ever shovel mud off a dirt floor?  And what happens when the next rain falls? Her situation was pretty bleak.

Some members of the team gathered around this woman and prayed for her to be healed. She later told us that her pain was gone! Healed!  Delivered! Behind her on her bed lay an open bible. When asked if she knew Jesus, her face lit up and she answered “yes!”

It made me really appreciate all that I have. We are so blessed. I thought of how often I fuss about dirty foot prints on my floor, and complain about how hard it is to keep white tiles clean. I’ve never had to deal with a dirt floor becoming wet and thick with mud several inches deep. I’ve never known the hardships the precious people in the areas in face day after day. Many of these people have such a real and strong faith in the Lord. They have a joy and vibrancy that can only come from Him.

Another time I saw a miracle of healing happen right before my eyes. God made uneven legs even, and I witnessed it! God is good and He still heals today!

The work team painted the kinder building of one the schools. Unfortunately, the rain came a short while after and washed the paint off. So the next day, they painted again.

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Some of the men and women stood in the ditch filled with garbage, mud and sewage and shovelled it out. They worked so hard with servant hearts, so willing to do whatever needed to be done, no matter how filthy the job.

There was also ministry in the schools, with songs, and a craft.  They played with them, hung out with  and interacted with them. The kids love it when Canadians come! This team had “flexi juice” which is needed here because things do not always go according the plan. Sometimes plans change.

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God sent the right people at the right time. Like all the teams that have come before, God used them to impact lives here in Honduras. Not only that, but God used someone on that team to speak into my kids lives. The words she said to each of them were “spot on” to where they are right now in their personal journey in Honduras as third culture kids.  It was like the voice of God speaking words that acted like a healing balm to their hearts. In that moment they knew that God cared about them and what they were feeling. They knew that they mattered to God. Mattered enough that God would speak to them with a message just for them. Dale and I were so thankful to the Lord, that this young woman allowed God to use her to speak his words to our kids. It was exactly what they needed to hear and what our heart was for each of them.

I want to close with a quote from someone on the team as best as I can remember it anyway!

“I thought I was going to change Honduras……Honduras changed me.”