Wednesday, February 26, 2014

March 2013 Recap

Meme took the girls to a cooking class.  Where we got to go on a market tour and learn about traditional Oaxacan food.
March 2013 Recap

When Missionaries Come Home: Philippians 2:25-30

I am incorporating the recap of 2013 theme into the From the Word Wednesday this week.  I'm linking up with My Daily Walk, Walking Redeemed, and Tell His Story today.

Image courtesy of artur84
In late February of last year (2013) we said goodbye to the Norris Family and we still feel the deep loss.  As we passed our first year without them, often things were said such as, last year we spent this day with the Norris'.  Christmas was so sweet with them, more than one of my children mentioned it to me as we celebrated without them this year.  Our hearts ached as little things they left behind reminded us of the sweet friendship we enjoyed and the deep loss we feel.  Haden especially misses his friend, the sweet and amazing, Violet.  We have spent much time in prayer this last year, as we know God has great plans for them.  We just wish those plans would bring them close to us again.  

Having our good friends the Norris family leave is not the first time we have seen missionaries leave the field.  Some before they were even here a year.  The reasons are varied and numerous, missionary attrition is very high.  Often those returning from cross cultural work are met with questions and judgement.  Often they feel they have failed their church, their supporters and even God.  People back home have questions and it is hard to explain all they went through on the field and Americans in general are "optimistic" go-getters (just ask people from other cultures).  Talking about the difficulties is sometimes considered whining.

But here is a little snippet from the Bible my husband showed me recently.  I'll let the scriptures speak for themselves, but please note how Paul urges the church to receive the returning missionary, Epaphroditus. 

Philippians 2:25-30

25 Yet I supposed it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, and companion in labour, and fellowsoldier, but your messenger, and he that ministered to my wants. 26 For he longed after you all, and was full of heaviness, because that ye had heard that he had been sick. 27 For indeed he was sick nigh unto death: but God had mercy on him; and not on him only, but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow. 28 I sent him therefore the more carefully, that, when ye see him again, ye may rejoice, and that I may be the less sorrowful. 29 Receive him therefore in the Lord with all gladness; and hold such in reputation: 30 Because for the work of Christ he was nigh unto death, not regarding his life, to supply your lack of service toward me.
Things to remember and pray about for those you love that are serving cross culturally.

1.  No matter how much they love their new/host culture, they still miss things and people that are familiar. "He longed after you all" v. 26

2.  Missionaries are often exposed to illnesses and in some areas do not have adequate health care.  Deceases such as malaria, typhoid fever, or TB just to name a few.  These things are treatable, but they take a toll mentally and physically. "For indeed he was sick nigh unto death" v. 27

And I would just like to echo those same urgings Paul gave as we consider how to welcome soldiers back.

1.  Rejoice and celebrate their journey.  v. 28  They have been on an amazing journey, they need to share it and hear about your journey with the Lord while they were away. 

2.  Enjoy them.  v. 29  You see, while the missionary had this crazy ordeal they went through, their friends and family continued on with their lives (as they should have).  It takes effort to pause and incorporate those returning back into your circle.  They may be a little different, they may need a listening, nonjudgemental ear.  Make the effort.

3.  And finally Paul urges us to "hold such in reputation".  v. 29  I don't think I have to explain that this is the opposite of judging.  I'll leave it at that.  

And don't forget to enter to win some Oaxacan Coffee.  Just CLICK HERE.  

Monday, February 24, 2014

Oaxacan Coffee and Cup Giveaway

Oaxacan Coffee Giveaway (my first blog giveaway)! 

Update:  Giveaway over, find out who won here.

I promise to continue with the 2013 Ministry Recap very soon...think Thursday.  But today we wanted to take this opportunity to tell you a little about our area and offer you a chance to sample some of the amazing coffee they grow here in Oaxaca.

When visiting Oaxaca, you don't want to miss one of the little pueblas just outside the city.  It is an easy cab ride.  Just tell your driver you want to go to San Andres Huayapam, or even just Huayapam (wy-yah'-pam).  He will know where you want to go and will probably ask if you are going to be trying the tejate (tay-ha-tay).  This is a cool, chocolaty drink made using flowers from a special tree we are told grows only in Huayapam.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Ministry Monday Week #5: 2013 Recap

I'm so excited to be blogging again and I'm really enjoying the Ministry Monday idea.  I'm looking forward to sharing some of the new ministries we are involved in this year and updates on old ministries, but first I wanted to share a recap of last year.  So buckle your seat belts, we certainly lived up to the "wandering" part of our name.  I hope it was "purposeful" also.  

I started 2013 sleeping through the fireworks in a small, remote town sandwiched between the Caribbean Sea and the Honduran jungle.  Yep!  You read that right.  January of last year I had the opportunity to work with an OB/GYN at a remote mission hospital on the coast of Honduras.  I would like to think I was a help.  It was an amazing opportunity and experience and I did get invited back.  That has to be a good sign.  Thank you to all the staff at Hospital Loma de Luz for all the compassionate work you are doing to shine the light and love of Jesus.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Crazy February Holidays: Answers

Las Repuestas!

As Gru from Despicable Me says in an eastern Europeanish accent, "Of course, I have pins and needles that I am sitting on."  As I am sure many of you do, waiting to find out which crazy, fabulous February holidays we were celebrating last Friday.  

I have good news!  The wait is over!  All fourteen are in the pic below.  Can you find them?

Thank you Baptist Missionary Women for hosting this super fun event.  Looking forward to next year.  

Next Friday, I will be sharing part of our homeschool room makeover.  All I can say is it was cheap and the results were spectacular!  (Lots of exclamation points this post, please forgive me)

Here is the before picture...I know, almost anything would be a much needed improvement, but trust's going to be great.

See you on Monday for Ministry Monday.

What crazy holiday do you like to celebrate?  Maybe it's Star Wars Day(May 4th) or Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day(Feb 1st) or Collect Rocks Day(Sept 16th).  

Post your 'fav' in the comments below.  

Linking up:  A Mama's Story

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Promise's from God's Word: Part 3 of 3

If you have read Part One and Part Two of this series, you know that I am not only talking about God's Promises, but also the idea that some promises come with a condition or an action is needed on the part of man.  Today I wanted to consider how this applies to Psalms ninety-one.
"He that dwellth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under that shadow of the Almighty."
Oh the safety and comfort of resting under the shadow of the Almighty!  But do you see it?  In order to claim the promise, in order for the promise to manifest in our lives there is something we must do.  Here's what goes on in my head when I read Psalm 91:1.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Ministry Monday Week #4: Celebration!


Jumping up and down!  Hands in the air!  (Come on everybody now!)  Wave them everywhere!  Backflip! Backflip!  OK, maybe not a backflip, but we are so very excited we really almost could!  In our house we are doing a very unbaptist celebration dance.  We received our "temporary resident" visas permitting us to live and work in a ministering capacity legally in Mexico! 

Jump for joy with us!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Great Free Ebook

This offer has expired.

Ever wanted to take a deeper look at Psalm 23?  Here is your chance.

Today and tomorrow (Feb. 15 & 16, 2014) you can get The Heart of a Shepherd: Embracing God's Provision's for Life's Journey, for free!  

Friday, February 14, 2014

Missionary Kid Spirit Week: Crazy Holiday

Happy Valentine's Day!

Today is Crazy Holiday Day for MK Spirit Week over at Baptist Missionary Women (BMWs - get it! ;) ).  

There are so many great crazy holidays, it was impossible to pick just one.  So, we picked, just one month...February and tried to see how many crazy holidays we could fit in one picture. 

We managed fourteen crazy holidays celebrated in February.  Can you figure out which holidays we are celebrating today?  CLICK HERE to see a list of crazy February holidays and see if you can find all fourteen.  I'll post the answer sometime next week.  

Update:  A picture with the answers has been posted, simply CLICK HERE.

Linking with: Shaken Together

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Learning to Read Again: Our Story of Dyslexia

As many of you may know from a previous poston our last trip to the U.S our sweet sunshine girl was assessed for some reading difficulties she has been having.  The story of how this was provided for feels like a warm hug from above.  It amazes me how our heavenly Father watches over his little third culture kids even when their parents have no idea what is needed.

Today over at A Mama's Story I am sharing part of that story and some of the things we are beginning to learn.  CLICK HERE to continue reading about this part of our journey over at A Mama's Story.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Promises From God's Word: Part 2 of 3

Getting Off the Roller Coaster

Image courtesy of Sura Nualpradid /

Last week I shared how much comfort and encouragement I find in all the wonderful promises in God's Word.  Promises such as:  

Lo, I am with you always - Matt 28:20
I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee - Hebrews 13:5
The LORD shall fight for you - Exodus 14:14

And on, and on they go.  I also shared that some of these promises come with a call to action on our "if-then" clause if you will.  The one that struck me recently was Psalm 91,  However, I want to start with a more obvious example from Psalm chapter one and move to Psalm 91 next week.

MK Spirit Week

This week Baptist Missionary Women is hosting MK Spirit Week and MKs all over the world are joining the fun!  Yesterday was mustache day and today was crazy hair/hat day.  We didn't have time to join the fun yesterday, so we combined mustache day and crazy hair/hat day.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Ministry Monday Week #3: Simple Pleasures

Ministry Monday Week #3: Simple Pleasures

We have incredible news on the ministry front, but I think I will wait until next week to share it.  I'm going to let it settle in a little and find the right words.  

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Hooks and Setting

This week we were introduced to two interesting literature elements, hooks and settings.  The oldest two kiddos worked on writing a paper about how Mark Twain used the setting in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer to further his main reasons for writing the book.  It was challenging to think about how a setting would be used to do more than just tell a story.  I was proud of them for brain storming, outlining, and revising until they had a good paper.  

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Promises from God's Word: Part 1 of 3

I guess when I came to the mission field, I had grand ideas of all I was going to do for God. 

 Bahahaha!  ..........  Bahahaha!  

Two choices here..laugh or cry.  Read the first sentence over again and laugh with me and all the arrogant ignorance.  But God was gracious and kept us in spite of ourselves.  At least we were willing to go.  I didn't realize just staying on the mission field was going to be a ginormous task all on its own. 

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Ministry Monday Week #2: Gifts from God

Incorrect position for sleep and birth
Gifts From God

God has sent some of his most precious gifts to one of the churches here in Oaxaca.  Six of the ladies are pregnant!  I often get ask after church to check blood pressure,  check a baby's position or to explain something they didn’t understand during their doctor visit.  It has been fun to share some of the excitement of welcoming a new baby with them.