Monday, January 18, 2010

Episode One: And Into the New Year

Greetings to all my faithful readers! After a wonderfully blessed and extremely full holiday season, I am back to tell it all! Since there is so much to share and I would like, finally, to be able to post pictures as well, I am going to try your patience a little and tell the whole story of these last weeks over a series of posts. You know, like those stories that you sometimes find in newspapers that make you wait till the next edition to find out whether or not the hero makes it out of the death trap… though, of course, I doubt my story will be so suspenseful nor quite so interesting, yet I will still attempt to render my tale pleasant to all those inclined to read it!
Anyhoo, let’s start at the beginning!!!!

The last time I wrote, Christmas was almost upon us and everyone was busily making presents, hiding finished presents and preparing for the arrival of our friends from Tucson, AZ. Well, I am extremely pleased to say that our friends arrived safely and without too many troubles along to way. I say not too many because they did end up making the 13 hour trip in 20 hours…. But that is not a story I am inclined to tell as of right now *winks and smiles*. Suffice to say that they got in around 2 o’clock the morning of the 24th.

The next day (or should I say later on that same day) being Christmas Eve was spent in a happy buzz of activity as everyone hurriedly finished wrapping and stashing presents and then sat down to spend time catching up with our friends. That evening we went over to our church for our somewhat-traditional, annual Christmas Eve dinner. We arrived at about 4pm with every intention of being back at our house by 10pm, but one thing after another happened…
We played games…

Worshipped together…

Broke bread together…
And we were so content just to be there and fellowship with the brethren that by the time we had a chance to look at a clock it was 12:30am and definitely past our hoped for time of departure!

NAVIDAD (Christmas Day)

Christmas morning was exceedingly nice. I have so many fond memories of that time in the morning… the younger kids’ eyes gleaming excitedly, having, of course been up for at least an hour waiting for the clock to strike 7 to be able to sing the good morning song to Mom and Dad, they themselves looking happy but a little disheveled still rubbing the sleep from their eyes. I for many years now, though just as excited as my siblings, in an attempt to appear mature, sit passively by, smiling on. This Christmas brought back all the same pictures, though adding to them something more in the joy that everyone had in such abundance. I have seen before – having fallen into the trap numerous times – how discontented one can be when the main focus of the holiday is to receive…yet when all that becomes insignificant, the true joy of giving and of receiving comes.

These were my gifts to my siblings. I think that they had fun with them… aside from the fact that they were continually setting them down and getting them hopelessly tangled!

This year, amongst the comings and goings of friends and family and the brotherly discussions over our traditional Christmas brunch I felt truly blessed beyond compare! Praise God!

The rest of the week passed very quickly. With our friends we had an excursion to downtown Guasave... that was a long day, but fun!
We organized and put on our annual New Year’s Eve couples’ dinner for the village…

This was neat in that it gave our friends a chance to really get to sit down and talk to some of the people from our village. The younger people on the team (myself included) had the chance to serve at the party. It was a little bit stressful, as all things of the like are want to be, but all in all I believe that it served as a blessing to the people, believer and unbeliever alike, of Boca del Rio.

We went to a migrant worker camp which ended up being a real blessing to us and to the people…

I appears that we (well, God through us) might have planted our first church… it was pretty amazing the way the gospel was received there. Please keep us in your prayers!

At the end of the week, on Friday January 1, 2010 to be precise, our friends left and along with them my Dad and… I! And that, dear readers, is where I will leave off!