Final thoughts before we head to Canada…

Tonight is Elisa’s last night in Honduras, the country where she has spent one third of her life ..six years! Her room is pretty much emptied out. Last week we sold her desk and dresser, and all that remains are her bed and a bookshelf with a few stray items that most likely will wind up in the garbage can.  Her entire life and memories packed in two fifty pound hockey bags on her bedroom floor.  How the years have flown by. How can it be that her time in this beautiful country has come to an end?

I overheard her on the phone the other night chatting with her friend Juli that she is nervous and doesn’t know how to relate to white girls and she is also nervous about adjusting to life in Canada. She said to me a few minutes ago “I don’t want to leave.”

But tomorrow we are doing exactly that as we fly out and head back to our other home for an extended period of time. It will be a much needed time to refresh and recharge our batteries.  For the first time that I remember,  I am actually looking forward to leaving Honduras for a while. Usually I kind of dread it it. For various reasons I have been finding my self stressed and frazzled and dealing with anxiety like never before.  I have lost a lot of sleep, sometimes only getting a couple hours sleep a night. I will go to bed exhausted at the end of the day and then once my head hits the pillow, sleep eludes me.  Sometimes I just can’t shut my thoughts off. It’s so frustrating.  It hasn’t been the recent unrest in Honduras so much, although that hasn’t helped matters any and I will share more on this soon.  There are other reasons, like losing Elisa as she leaves and worrying about how she will make it on her own in Canada. I have worried about our sons as well. And I have worried about how our dog will do when we are in Canada..even though I know she will be well cared for.  And then there are a lot of what ifs and worrying about things that I really have no control over. I do know to leave things with the Lord and I honestly do try to pray and just beg for his help in this because I hate feeling l this way…and hate that I haven’t been able to get out of this funk and find myself worrying about the same things all over again.  It’s a viscious cycle of releasing it to God and then taking it back.

As far as the unrest in Honduras goes..I am not sure how many have been following the news or how much is even on the news in the States and Canada, but things here have not been so peaceful for the last couple months. We try to be a little cautious with how much information we put on social media because we don’t want people to be alarmed or afraid for us.  First of all, we are safe and we don’t feel like we are in any danger. However a lot of people have not been happy for a while now and have been exercising their right to protest. People are tired of their voices not being heard. They want peace. They want justice.They want an end to corruption.  Sometimes these things do start out as peaceful but they can quickly get out of hand when others  join in and cause havoc.  There have been riots and roads have been completely blocked at times. We stay informed through other missionaries and usually know of which areas to avoid. It has affected us and our ministry because it has meant not teaching our bible classes at times because schools have been closed. There was one day last week that we were able to go in and teach.  We were headed back home when our translator informed us of a text he had recieved that there was no gasoline in the city.  We drove around to nine gas stations and all of them had their entrance blocked off with orange pileons. No gas! Thankfully Dale was able to find a station the following morning that had received gas over night and although he had to wait in line almost an hour and a half, he was able to fill the car with gas. Honestly there have been times where it has felt like the entire nation is falling apart.

Recently we were chatting with one of the security guards to our community. And he was sharing his thoughts on Honduras being a country without hope. He counted them off on his hand..”There’s no education, no healthcare, no money…problems with transportation..” He shared that only in Christ is there any hope for Honduras.

So while I am happy and looking forward to head back to Canada for a spell…I am also feeling sad to leave. I feel broken for the people who live in this country that God has called us to and I am heartbroken for the country that is the home of our heart.

Will you please pray for Honduras? Pray for peace and justice and for God to bring healing to this land.

65311425_10156986732021049_8889851187617071104_n

Psalm 46

God, you’re such a safe and powerful place to find refuge!
You’re a proven help in time of trouble—
more than enough and always available whenever I need you.
So we will never fear
even if every structure of support[b] were to crumble away.
We will not fear even when the earth quakes and shakes,
moving mountains and casting them into the sea.
For the raging roar of stormy winds and crashing waves
cannot erode our faith in you.
Pause in his presence
God has a constantly flowing river whose sparkling streams
bring joy and delight to his people.
His river flows right through the city of God Most High,
into his holy dwelling places.[c]
 God is in the midst of his city,[d] secure and never shaken.
At daybreak his help will be seen with the appearing of the dawn.
 When the nations are in uproar with their tottering kingdoms,
God simply raises his voice
and the earth begins to disintegrate before him.
 Here he comes!
The Commander!
The mighty Lord of Angel Armies is on our side.
The God of Jacob fights for us!
Pause in his presence
Everyone look!
Come and see the breathtaking wonders of our God.
For he brings both ruin and revival.
He’s the one who makes conflicts end
throughout the earth,
breaking and burning every weapon of war.
 Surrender your anxiety![e]
Be silent and stop your striving and you will see that I am God.
I am the God above all the nations,
and I will be exalted throughout the whole earth.
 Here he stands!
The Commander!
The mighty Lord of Angel Armies is on our side!
The God of Jacob fights for us!

The graduate…

 

 

 

 

Today is Elisa’s graduation day. The day where she will walk down the aisle in her cap and gown and receive her diploma. We are so proud of her and all that she has accomplished. She has made huge strides since the discouraging early days when she was diagnosed with ADD and dyslexia. She could have given up in frustration and thrown in the towel.  But you know…she didn’t let a diagnosis stop her from achieving her goals or determine who she was. Even though at times people would make mean comments about the ADD that would have her in tears.  I think most of the time she didn’t even think about it.  She was able to rise above. Since those days she has overcome a lot of challenges that have come her way through determination, courage and strength.

 

And now the moment has finally here. Highschool is behind her.  Already there have been many goodbyes. School friends, church family and friends who have already left for the States. So many lasts.  It hardly seems possible that this chapter of her life is coming to a close.   Soon she will also be boarding a plane and bidding the beautiful country of Honduras Adios. It will be saying goodbye to the country that has been her home and the country where she has spent her entire teen years. She will need to find a new normal, a new routine in Canada and rediscover the culture and norms. Or even how to act like a Canadian.  She is the last chick to leave the nest. Life will certainly be different around here without her and a lot quieter and maybe even a little boring. Those of you who know her, know that she is a young lady full of LIFE, who loves to Read more

The bright side of getting old..

The first time it happend was not long after we moved here almost six years ago. We were wating to pay at the grocery store when an employee told me to go into the line meant for pregnant women or elderly rather than waiting in the line we were in. Then it began to happen all the time. At first my initial thought was that they thought I was pregnant and I remember feeling kind of bad and thinking I must look fat or something if they think I am pregnant. I remember telling them ..that it was ok, I am not going to have a baby I don’t need to be in that line.  Sometimes I would go in that line if they insisted because maybe Dale was waiting in the car or I was in a hurry and had other places I needed to be and if I could get out the store quicker, I would go (and still do if asked) in the shorter line.

Then there was the time I was sitting in a car and we were purchasing tickets to enter a provincial park.  I glanced at the ticket the young girl handed me through the window and noticed the words tercera edad.  Wait….what!? Tercera edad! I am not elderly! I think it was at that moment that it dawned on me that people did not think I was pregnant when they insisted I go into those lanes…..they thought I was old!! My self confidence kind of took a dive.  I don’t know why the realization didn’t hit me sooner.  Because let’s face it…I am not young anymore. The truth is that I have been married longer than most of these employess have been alive!  And while I certainly am not elderly, I am not a teenager or even a young adult. I am practically 50.

One time I was purchasing a coffee at the coffee shop. I was told it would be one price but when I went to pay, the price was signifigantly lower. When I asked why, I was told it was because of my discount. And sure enough it was assumed I was tercera edad. I had to sign the receipt with my id number.

Then there was the time at the Pricesmart. The store only had a couple lines open and each of the lines were long. One person appeared to buying for a team or maybe a store and I only had a couple items. A young lady opened up the tercera edad lane and motioned for me to come over. So I gratefully went. Soon after another lady followed with her cart load of stuff and stood behind me. The cashier told her she needed to get back into the another lane. She informed her that she opened the lane only for me because I am tercera edad.

The most recent was when we went to the movies to see Avenger. Dale asked me why my ticket was so much cheaper. I looked at it and sure enough…tercera edad!

61984583_10156937726786049_5451704780265095168_n

There have been many other instances when things like this have happened and one thing I have learned is not to let it get to me.  It used to.  At one time I would be upset and offended,  but now it doesn’t really bother me. I just kind of laugh and roll with it...because afterall who doesn’t like a discount?  Also it is a respect thing. Hondurans respect their elders, often giving  them preferencial treatment. While I have never gone to the front of the line in the grocery store or bank while others are already waiting in line…there are those that do because seniors receive preferencial treatment. I had someone tell me something a few years ago that made me feel a little better… and that is that Hondurans don’t know how to tell the age of North Americans..and it makes sense because I know I don’t know how to tell the age of alot of Hondurans either!

Then something happened yesterday.  A friend apporached me at church telling me that her five year old son Noah had asked her, “Where’s Mr Silly pants?” She asked him who Mr Silly pants was…and he pointed at me and said “Her dad!” Totally made my day!

61662309_10156937726871049_8522004006266994688_n

Psalms 71:17, 18 O God, you have taught me from my earliest childhood, and I constantly tell others about the wonderful things you do. 18. Now that I am old and gray, do not abandon me, O God. Let me proclaim your power to this new generation, your mighty miracles to all who come after me.