Monday, May 25, 2009

Days keep coming and going

Hello all! I have my own computer!!! Can you believe it?!?! I don't yet! It's not new by a long shot, but I should get at least a year out of it! It used to be my Mom's, but this last trip to the US God provided the money for my Mom to get a new one, so... here I am with the one she just happened to have as an extra. ;D

Lots of stuff has been happening in the last few days. First and formost, God is STILL good ALL THE TIME! But also, an opportunity has come for me to go to Los Mochis for a week and a half to help out at a deaf school run by some friends of ours. This has been in my thoughts and desire for serveral months now and it's exciting to finally see it happening!
We met the directors of the school about a month ago through some friends of our whose daughter works at the school full-time. We planned a trip out to visit the school and I just fell in love with it at first sight! I am sure that it won't be the easiest thing that I have ever tackled, but what is worthwhile is rarely easy! I will be leaving here (Las Glorias) on Sunday, so keep me in yor prayers!

Yesterday we had a group of "muchachas" (young ladies) over to our house to swim and have lunch with us. Most of the girls were Christians, but there was one, Julia by name, who was not. If you feel lead, please pray that God would be working in her life and bringing her into a relationship with Him.
As far as the day goes, it was very hot, but I suppose that it could have been worse. I came down with something of a cold, and today I have this lovely cough. Oh joy! :(

Today is just a run-of-the-mill day (other than the fact that I finally got my computer! YAY!). Oh yeah, I forgot, our cat had her kittens... in my brother's bed! He wasn't too happy about that! I don't personally like new-born kittens, but I supose for kittens they are fairly cute. I prefer them when they are just old enough to start jumping out of the box!

Okay, I will talk to you all later! Leave me a comment!

Friday, May 22, 2009

This is the day that the Lord has made!

You know what I just realized? I have been on this blog for more than a year and I just now realized that my blog's 1 year anniversary passed without me even being mentioned! In fact, I didn't even notice until my Mom made a comment about having a "blog carnival" for her second year anniversary... funny, all those things seemed so important just 6 months ago and now everything seems to fade in comparison to my God and His marvelous works. I am not upset about this, I think that it is the best thing that could have ever happened to me. Still, at the same time it seems weird looking at your life in retrospect.

So, for the celebration of my year (and some) old blog I will merely say this, it's been a great way to learn more! It's funny, you think that you know something, but when you sit down to write it out it's a lot harder to get your thoughts to sound right on paper. In a way you learn more by teaching than by being taught. God's showed me so much through this small corner in the great scope of the Web!

Anyway, that aside, I know that I told you all that I would post pictures of our river trip, but I lied. Well, I didn't really lie, I just decided that since my Mom already posted about it over at OUR FAMILY BLOG, I would do just as well to send you over there! So, click HERE to read her post! (ps- click on the link and at least look at the pictures, it doesn't take THAT long to load!)

This week has been rather full. I have kept busy with homework and guitar lessons and just the everyday occurences that make up life.
The guitar lessons are something that I had been promising for weeks, but that just hadn't worked out on any of the days we had planned. This week I resolved that I would try my utmost to give the lessons and, like most things that you throw yourself into, they guitar lessons got done. Interesting note: it seems that so many times we say that "we just didn't have time" or "I was just swamped" when in reality we didn't try as hard as we could have a probably should have. Like the Bible says in Col. 3:23. We should do everything as unto the Lord and not to men; that includes giving guitar lessons or, say, homework ;^D . It's one of the greatest challenges that we receive as Christians, "Do all as unto the Lord." That pretty much covers any doubts you might have about how to live a life that glorifies God!

Back to the guitar lessons though, they went great! I think that both of the women that I am teaching are learning quickly and (most importantly) have a desire to learn. I am teaching them the keys of G and D. Next week me might add C, depending on how much they practiced what I gave them!

Today we had a large group over for lunch. The main purpose of the get together was to reach out to the families of some of the boys that my Dad has been discipling. Most of their families are non-Christians, so keep them in your prayers. As Americans, a lot of the people who live here see us as "Super-Christians" or "above them", but not in a good way. It's a steriotype that we struggle every day to get rid of as it can become an obstacle when ministering to the people in our village. Through inviting people over to hang out and get to know us we hope not only to share the love of Jesus, but also to help them realize that we are people, just like them, and we care about more than just money. So if God leads, you please pray that HE would be opening doors and showering down HIS blessing in this area.

Now I think that I am ready to go take a shower and then go to bed. It's been a long day and tomorrow will be even longer!
Blessings to you all! Leave me a comment... please!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Youth Bash!

Hello again everyone! I am glad to be here again. It's been awhile, but God is still good, always has been and will continue to be! Isn't that SUCH a blessed assurance?!?!

This past week has been quite full. It was wonderful, but I must say that it was VERY tiring! Right now I am typing on the computer while literally having to hold me eyes open so that I don't fall face first onto the keys. Some of you might say, "What are you doing typing when you sould be asleep?" but that's just not who I am. If I don't write this now I will be up for an hour laying on my bed composing this post in my head... that's why it's just better to get it out of the way now!

It will probably take me a few days to get you all caught up to the present, but I hope that I will have you all filled in by the end of this week. The funny thing about blogging is that you think that you are getting caught up when, in reality, you are just barely keeping up because things keep happening! That's how I feel right now, but I don't mind. Besides, I don't really want to drop the blog. If I did that then none of you would know what was going on in my little corner of the world! So...

Camera... Lights... Action!

This Friday (the 15th) we had a group of about 30 "jovenes" (youth) come to Las Glorias from the nearby town of Los Mochis. They were here for a little more than a day and, though the focal point of their retreat was to take a time away from "life" to study the Word, we also had a great time hanging out at the beach, swimming in our pool and just getting to know one another.

We (my Dad and those of us involved with the youth at our church) took this opportunity to invite the 8 or 9 "faithful" jovenes from Boca del Rio to stay at our house over the weekend. This was the first time we had done something like this in awhile so everyone was pretty excited!

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words, so let me just post pictures and you guys can imagine all the words that I would say if I was actually telling you the story in person!

We have had a lot of people in our pool in the past, but I think that over the weekend we broke our record!

This is one of my favorite things about large groups of Christian teens; we can always get enough people together to have a worship time! The guy who shared the message (Daniel Warne, or Dan) also was an exeptionally gifted guitar player. It was really neat to have him playing with us.

The first night after we had all been down to the beach everyone headed over to our house to prepare the food. After the meal we had a bonfire and toasted mashmellows. I was so glad that God protected us from the mosquitos. As a general rule you wouldn't be able to be outside past 7pm but on Friday it was perfect!

On Friday night everyone left our house around midnight with the intention on being in bed by 1:00am. Of course, not everyone went to bed when they were supposed to!

This was the second part of the message that Dan shared. The message was in three parts of about an hour each. The main point of what Dan shared was the heart and its spiritual significance; namely, living from the heart out. Great insights! If you want to hear more leave me a comment letting me know and I'll email you about it.

Lunch prep!

This picture seemed really funny to me. These guys were trying to figure out how to get the seeds out of the limes without squeezing out the juice at the same time! The expressions on their faces was just HILARIOUS! :P

This was at the last part of the message. The guy in this picture is David and he is translating for some of the youth who came who were deaf. They came from a Christian school in Los Mochis dedicated entirely to teaching children who are deaf to be able to communicate. There were six deaf teens who came and they were all very nice. I didn't get to talk with them as much as I would have liked, but it made me REALLY want to learn sign language!

After the conference was over we all headed back to Las Glorias. Since no one really wanted to squeeze into the car for the short trip, several people rode on top! Quite Mexican, if you ask me!

This is a picture of all our youth group plus theirs. We had a fairly huge group!

All in all it was a great day and a half. The group from Los Mochis was really neat and all the kids pitched in to help with the preparation, serving and clean up of all the meals (I REALLY appreciated that!). I don't think that I learned everyone's names, but that is no surprise for me since I truly have a horrible time with learning names, more so in Spanish, though it's easier than when I first got here! Oh well, I suppose one must learn with time!

The group was an interesting mix of Americans who spoke Spanish, Mexicans who spoke English and everything in between. Never having been with a group like that it was a little confusing, but not in a bad way!

Now you are officially caught up to Saturday evening. I will be back very soon (I hope) to tell you all about our trip to the river on Sunday... but not until tomorrow... or maybe later!
Hasta entonces! (see ya)

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Dia De Los Niños (aka: Kids' Day)

Alright, I am back, and this time I have something to write about!!
It's funny, I spent all of last week doing basically nothing and then, all of a sudden, I have a day where I seem to be so busy that there isn't time even to stop and catch my breath. That was yesterday.

I have mentioned before that Mexicans are famous for there numerous holidays. It's true. I think that they have more holdiays than days in the year. Of course, not everyone celebrates all of them, but they do honor enough of them to make me wonder how any of the kids learn anything in the schools when the classes are canceled all the time!

Among the more renowned of these "celebrations" is "Dia De Los Niños", or Kids' Day. This day is set aside for, you guessed it, the kids! Just like we have Mothers' Day (btw, Happy Mothers' Day to all of you wonderful mothers who are reading this!!!!) and Fathers' Day, Mexico has a day set aside for all of the kids.

When I first learned about this particular tradition, I was quite confused. It seemed weird to me to celebrate a day for the kids when all the days seemed to already focus all the kids. But, as the saying goes "When in Rome, do as the Romans" so, as long as we are living here, we shall have a party for Kids' Day.

I have been involved with the kids's ministry for 2 years now, and in this time I have had the opportunity to help out with more parties and events for the kids then I wish to count. Once you have done a few with the same group of people you kind of fall into a pattern and it gets a lot easier and... that's funny... I was going to say less stressful, but it really doesn't ever get less stressful!!

This year, because of the Swine Flu, the government canceled all events and meetings for two weeks as a preocaution to prevent the spread of the sickness. Since we had planned the party for Kids' Day on one of those weekends, we had to postpone the event for a few weeks. My Mom and I were to be in charge of the making of the cake (a MUST at any Mexican party) so, when we were told the Friday after the government had reopened all schools and public meeting places that they needed the cake on Saturday (in other words, the very next day) we were a bit rushed to get it done. Still, I think that it turned out well. What do you think?

On Saturday my Mom and I were up early to put the finishing touches on the cake (we had stayed up till 12 the night before working on it) and then my Mom took me into town for my French class. As soon as I got out of class (3:00p.m.) we rushed back to Boca del Rio and my Mom dropped me off at the church to help with the last-minute preparations while she went home to get the cake and pick up my Dad and siblings.

The event itself went fairly well. It was very hot and the kids were unruly, but no more than usual. I think that the final count on the kids was somewhere around 110... That's a lot of kids!!!

My Mom shared a Bible story with the kids.

Mavil, Karen and I lead the kids in some fun songs.

The Piñata!!!! Another MUST at a Mexican party.

After the event was over and we had done a quick clean-up (6:50p.m.), all of the youth headed out to a prayer meeting in Los Flores (like 20 minutes from the church). The prayer meeting went great, although there were not as many youth there as we had hoped to see. I enjoyed being able to meet some new people and get to know a little better the people that I had met on previous occasions.

By the time we got back to Boca Del Rio (9:30p.m.) we were all very tired and ready to go to bed, but the day was not over! We (I say we, I should be more specific and say my brothers) finished cleaning the church and then setting up the chairs for the service the next day. When they had finished we ate at a little taco stand right in front of our church and THEN we went home. I think it was something like 11:00 or 12:00 when I finally got in bed!

This morning we had a great service and right now my Dad is making hamburgers in honor of Mothers' Day. I can't wait to eat them!!! There is more that I could share, but I think that this is enough for one post. I hope to see you all around here again and soon!
May the peace and blessing of our Lord Jesus Christ be upon you!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Food for thought

Ugh, I have been sick for a week! I detest colds and sicknesses of all kinds... but especially colds! Still, I suppose one cannot be healthy all the time; life just isn't like that!

Since I have been sick I haven't been doing much. Just hanging out in my house. I don't really know what to write about, but I figured that I might as well write as not, seeing as you all would be wondering what I have been up to.

I did do one NEW thing this week. I got a Facebook account... well, to be more honest, I have HAD a FB account, but I hadn't been on it for more than a year. Now, however, I am planning to keep in touch with all of you "facebookers"!

I have spent most of today reading Anne of Green Gables. I have always loved those books... they make me laugh uproariously, sigh longingly and even cry (once or twice ;) ). I will be sitting on our couch reading and then, suddenly, I will burst out laughing for no apparent reason. I think that my brothers think that I am insane... still, I do like the books!

It seems amazing to me how one moment can change you view on life. Waking up in the morning you look on the day with dread thinking of all the things that you would rather be doing than what you have to do, and the next you are having a marvelous time playing Twister with all your friends! One moment you feel like time drags and you aren't doing anything worthwhile and the next you are so busy doing worthwhile things that you don't have a moment to catch your breath!

I remember a little over a year ago I was going through a tough time and I kept praying to God asking for a change... I didn't really care what the change was, so long as it was a change. I was really unhappy and felt as though I wasn't doing much for God where I was. I promised God that if He was to give me something, anything, I would serve Him with all of my heart. That's when God reminded me of something. He said (not audibly, mind you, but He DID say it),
"I want to give you big challenges and even bigger dreams, but if you aren't content living for Me NOW, where you are, you will never be content in any of the places I would send you."

So, I stood up and walked on, trying to live to the best of my ability NOW, in the present, knowing that no matter where God will send me, it is enough! Isn't it so wonderful that we have a God who loves us despite of our deficiencies!!!

I am rambling, aren't I? Oh well, I suppose that's how I am... I can't help it! I do so like to just write... it's very... how could I put it... relieving. You should try it sometime. Just take a pen and piece of paper and write whatever God puts on your heart!