Tuesday, February 21, 2012

We Made It A Year!!!

February 4th marked one year of us living in Guatemala.  There were times we didn't think we'd make it but God made a way for us and here we are.  We are not here by our own strength or understanding but by His.  Amen!

It's been an amazing year and one of the hardest, all at the same time.  I know I sound like a broken record but it is hard being away from home.  Guatemala is only a 2 hour plane ride from Miami but some days it feels like we are on the other side of the world and deeply miss the life we had in the States.  This past year we have had an overflow of love poured on us from "home" and it has made all the difference in helping us make this transition.  Not only does God full our hearts but he has used many others to love and encourage us.  We are so thankful for all the love we receive - visitors, cards, e-mails, phone calls, care packages, Christmas gifts, plane tickets, neat kids who ask for donations instead of birthday gifts to help us come home for Christmas, and friends willing to haul stuff here for us when they come to visit. 

    "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."   (NIV)  Romans 3:20-21

That has been our verse throughout our entire journey and life in Guatemala.  In my wildest dreams, I could not imagine how God would get us here and how He has provided all the days since.  I have to confess that after all He has done, situations come up and I still wonder how He will provide.  Back in October, I started thinking ahead to Christmas.  Not long after, we got a couple of e-mails asking what we wanted/needed for Christmas - it was more than we expected or could have imagined.  We wanted to make a trip home at the end of the year but lacked the funds.  In November, we got a call from some friends who told us that for their 10th birthday, instead of getting gifts at their party, they asked people to make a donation toward our travel fund!  I never imagined kids being so crazy.  :)  In December, some friends called to say they had plane tickets for us.  While in the States, most of our expenses were provided for and we were blessed with a van to get around in.  Way beyond what we imagined.

Not only are we blown away at our provision, but for others as well, over and over again.  Last month a team met a woman with a great medical need.  When they came back that day, there was an e-mail waiting from someone, who had no idea of the need,  saying that God told him to donate toward a medical need.  Last year we helped 2 families with food and this year they are covered.  School started in January so a whole other need has come to light for us.  Several kids that we know and love were going to drop out because they couldn't afford it.  From various places, the money has shown up to help them stay in school and a church gave us 2 computers that these kids can use for their homework.  The 12x12 Love Project had a Christmas campaign to raise money for houses. We started out with 9 families, hoped and prayed that they would get homes.  When all was said and done,  23 families with get homes this year.  There are several medical needs that have been provided for .  One of them was Kathy - you can read about her here.  She is doing awesome by the way.  She LOVES Chris.  Last week we went to look at some land with her mom and grandma.  We were walking and she ran up to Chris, grabbed his hand and then looked back at me and gave me a sweet little stare that said "I'm holding his hand."  So I kept my distance and let her have some time with him.  It was cute.  :)

We love the people here and the families we are connected with.  We love being able to love and serve others.  It makes up for all that we miss.  We are thankful to be here and see all that God is doing.  After a great trip to the US, we are ready for another year and all that God has for us.  He's already done come crazy stuff and it's only February.  :)