I promised I'd get back to blogging when we got 'to the field', and I apologize for the delay in getting started! Since our internet access is spotty right now, I started writing blog posts on the computer to post later. So I have a couple ready to go, but they are from a while ago! Still, they will give you more insight into our days here. This post focuses on our very FIRST day here...which in some ways still feels like yesterday and in other ways feels like ages ago! However I'm taking advantage of some uninterrupted time at "the office" so I can take care of a few computer/internet related items...including this! Sorry there aren't any pics...I haven't gone through all our suitcases enough yet to find my USB cord for the camera. There will be pics soon! (PS - even if you don't read the whole thing, scroll down to the bottom for some current prayer requests. THANKS!)
8/9/2011 - 10:55 pm
Here I sit, the only one awake in the house. Even the dog is completely passed out! Believe me, I understand! My body and mind are EXHAUSTED! But yet I can’t shut off the mind part. So many thoughts running through my head!!! So I decided to just write them down, all stream-of-consciousness-like. Follow along if you like...
Right now I’m thinking God has handed me a blessing in what looks like a curse. He’s done that before. See, the house we are staying in for this next month apparently is located within the zone in Hatillo, PR where there is no good T-Mobile 4G service. (Postscript: We later learned there is no 4G service by T-Mobile on this part of the island...) And the 4G service is what we need to run our internet wi-fi. So since there is no 4G service here at the house, there is also no internet. The curse side of that is that we are a CONNECTED family. And I’m not referring to ‘emotionally connected’, though that is true too. No, I’m referring to ELECTRONICALLY connected. We have big fans back home too (okay, they are mostly relatives and best friends, but still...), and we like to keep people in the loop.
So had this house been in an area to receive 4G service, I guarantee I would be mindlessly surfing Facebook, putting up a status update first, then commenting on a few friends posts or pictures and FB-stalking some others. I might go on to read some CNN headlines before drifting off to sleep. What wouldn’t happen would be this, me writing down my thoughts and experiences. That is not to say that mindlessly surfing Facebook is bad...I think it can be JUST what the doctor ordered on a mind-numbing day. But something that I moan about from time to time is how I have no time to just write like I wish I did. I go on and on about how one of my goals is to write books and do freelance writing, but belabor how I have no time. Maybe I actually DO have time, but I use it unproductively. (I can envision that my husband will be nodding his head in agreement when he reads this...you were right honey!) I have a feeling God is going to teach me some lessons through this turn of events...and though it feels a bit uncomfortable right now, I know they’ll be good ones.
Speaking of learning from the Lord, the loss of wi-fi internet connection isn’t the only way I believe that God is going to be working on me. See, this house that we are staying in for the next month I truly believe was given to us by the Lord. That’s a whole different story in itself. However, upon arriving there were several things that made me remember that reality is often much different than perception! This house is turning out to be much more, ahem, ‘rustic’ than I had originally expected. Part of that is definitely my fault. I forgot to check the online ad thoroughly enough to see that there was no washer or dryer available. There isn’t, which will probably be a little bit of a headache in itself, but I’m trying to keep a good perspective. It could be worse! If we were becoming missionaries in the bush in Africa, there’d likely be no air conditioning, no washer/dryer, no electricity, maybe even no floor or window screens! Yes, it could be worse. Keep perspective! (meanwhile I bought some laundry detergent and a clothesline and clothespins to try and wash some of the stuff at home to limit the amount of time I spend in a laundromat over the next month!).
Meanwhile, looking on the bright side of things, our day of travel went PRECISELY as expected, with no issues. Everything went SO smoothly! I’m so thankful for that because there were many areas where there could have been difficulties, stress and headaches. And there were none. And the kids kept good attitudes and were in good spirits the entire day, despite the early morning and jostling tons of bags through security. Then there is dear PJ, who made his first trip on an airplane...one that included two flights, nearly triple the distance (than a direct flight would have been), and one layover. And he arrived in San Juan, PR safe and sound and super duper excited to see us!
Thank you Lord for your blessings. Even the ones that might initially seem like a curse! Help us keep perspective in all things!
CURRENT PRAYER REQUESTS:
**If you follow us on FB, you may know that we've been searching for a house that suits our family needs and budget. And though we had thought we had found "the one", it wasn't coming together. BUT we didn't want to give up hope, and so we wrote a letter to the owners, and dropped it off and spoke with them a bit last week. We got news LAST NIGHT, that they'd like to meet with us tomorrow to discuss us renting their house! Though nothing is for-sure right now, it certainly sounds promising. Pray for the meeting - we'll be meeting them tomorrow (Monday, Aug. 29th around 4:00 pm). PS - if you don't follow us on FB, go here and click to 'Like' our family ministry page!
**PRAISE - we got a car! It is a 1999 blue Honda CR-V. We were thankful to find it. It runs well, has been well taken care of in and out and the cost was HALF of our max budget for the car. This allows us to put the overage into a savings for any car needs and/or the purchase of a new car down the road. Pray this car serves our family well for at least the next couple years with no major problems.
**We've begun some planning and preparation for ministry plans and programs that will kick-off in September. Our ministry schedule will start with outreach and community connection and build into regular programs over time. Pray for meaningful connections in the communities where we will serve and with the volunteers we will be serving with.
**It's amazing how much more Spanish we are speaking and understanding now than we were when we first landed a few weeks ago. But we still have a long way to go. Robert and I are working to set up weekly Spanish tutoring with some local connections to help us build our fluency. Pray for opportunities to work out for us both to pursue individual Spanish tutoring.
**Praise & Prayer - our kids are truly amazing. They are so flexible and have handled all the transition with such ease...it continues to amaze me. We are thankful that there are kids in our temporary neighborhood that our kids have connected with. Pray for Aaliyah and her family - the neighbors to our left. Pray also for Alexsi and his family - our neighbors to the right. And pray for Juancho, Laura and Angie - for health and continued endurance amidst all the transition.
**Yesterday we had the opportunity to connect with a gal who lives in our neighborhood. Her name is Jaditza and she is clearly going through a difficult time in life. Pray for her and the struggles she is going through...pray especially that she will seek after God with her life. We had some great conversations with her about spiritual things. There is an openness, but yet some resistance as well. We hope to connect with Jaditza again in the near future.
**Pray for the people along the East Coast now being affected by Hurricane Irene. We experienced her power one week ago today and were thankful that the amount of damage was minimal. We pray for those who are experiencing her power right now, and for protection and quick recovery for damaged areas.
THANK YOU! We love you all!