Tuesday, February 24, 2009

God's Calling vs. Our Desires

"Lord, I give up all my own plans and purposes, all my own desires and hopes, and accept Thy will for my life. I give myself, my life, my all utterly to Thee to be Thine forever. Fill me and seal me with Thy Holy Spirit. Use me as Thou wilt, work out Thy whole will in my life at any cost, now and forever." ~Elisabeth Elliot~

This is a quote from Elisabeth Elliot, the wife of martyred missionary, Jim Elliot. Jim Elliot's famous quote is my favorite, "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose."

As soon to be full-time missionaries we realize that we are giving up a lot, but what we give up is less of a cost than our Savior gave up for us. He gave his very life for us so that we can gain a life that we cannot lose. In following Christ, who gave up everything, how we can anything but give up our desires, our possessions, and our everything in order to follow Him in the calling He has placed on us.

Although some may not understand this calling, I choose to give up my plans and purposes, my own desires and hopes, and accept His will for my life, wherever that may lead me. I have found that as I give up my desires for the things this world says are important and follow His calling, then His calling becomes my desire and the things of this world become less important.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Pictures From Around the House

We received some more pictures today from the streets near the house. This one is on the roof looking toward Esperanza Viva (the youth home). The tall buildings in the distance are the grain towers. If you get lost, all you have to do is find the grain towers and walk toward them because the youth home is the next street over.

This is a picture looking into the back yard.

Another view from on top of the roof. It shows the gas tank.

This is the tinaco or the water tank. This is where all the water pressure comes from. You have a pump that pumps water up to the tinaco then the pressure is from the downward fall.

This is the street looking right from the house.

This is the street looking left from the house.

The kids are very excited about seeing the house we will live in, especially Erin. We look forward to being able to do things with the kids and staff in the big back yard. That will be so awesome!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Our House in Mexico

We got news today that the house we were looking at is going to work well for us. We got all of our questions answered on it and they will be getting all the paperwork to fax to us for our signatures. This is really getting exciting!!

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Sunday, February 15, 2009

Exciting News and the Next Step in Our Move

Today we received some pictures of a house that Juana found for us to check out. Juana is a staff member at Esperanza Viva in Mexico. She has been given the job of looking for a place for us. She sent us a bunch of pictures which I will share if we choose that house. For now I am just showing the front of the house. It looks like it would fit our family well and the price is right. It is a two story house with three bedrooms, one and a half baths and it has a yard. One of the things it has that not all houses have are closets in the bedrooms. That is a big plus! Also it has a complete kitchen with cabinets. That is also something that is not an automatic. The landlord is willing to work with us on the price for the rent. Erin is very excited about the house and loves the pictures. She wants this one. We first need to find out exactly where it is and how close to walking distance from the youth home it is. We also need to know if we can get high speed Internet there. One thing we really want to be able to do while we are in Mexico is to keep in contact with all of you here. We want to be able to keep you updated on what we are doing and how God is working. So having Internet access is very important. I will pass on more pictures as soon as we decide if we are taking this house or not. Please keep us in prayer as we try to make a decision on our housing and check back soon.

Erin's First Gymnastics Meet

Today was an exciting day for Erin. She had her first gymnastics meet and she did a great job. Here is Erin, her coach Donita and her friend Janina. Erin and Janina are the only level 4 gymnasts at our gym.

Janina's mom did their hair yesterday so that it would stay out of their eyes. It came out really cute.

Warm ups.

Erin's first event was the uneven bars. During warm ups on the bars she was having a very hard time. Donita even had to help her up on to the bar and she wasn't doing any of her skills on her own without help. But she suprised everyone during the actual meet and received an 8.650.

Next was the beam. Again in pratice this week she was very shaky on the beam and was falling off a lot. But when she got on during the meet, she was quite steady and did great receiving an 8.850. It was so awesome to watch her come through on it after all her hard work in practice.

The next event was floor. She enjoys floor the most. Until last week though she was having a hard time because she couldn't get her round off back hand spring. Well, she got in the middle of the week and she did it at the meet also. Her score on floor was 8.70.

The last event was vault. It is hard to get pictures of vault because they go so fast. Her vault score was 8.850.

For her first meet ever, she did very well. Her all around score was 34.60. Awesome!
After the meet, Jim said she could do the next meet also. So, she has her next meet on Saturday, February 28th. That will be all the meets she does since there are no more lined up before we move. We are glad she was at least able to do these two while she is here.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Prayer Request

We are requesting prayer. For the last two weeks, I have been having sharp pains off and on in my pelvic area. I went in after a week of them and saw a doctor. He ran blood tests and ordered an ultrasound. I stopped having so much pain so I didn't call to make the appointment right away. Well, on Sunday night (Feb. 8) I had about a half hour of severe pain so I called the next morning and they got me in that day (Feb. 9) for the ultra sound. I had a follow up with my doctor today and it seems that I have a 3.7 cm cyst on my left ovary. This cyst has some blood in it. It is possible that the cyst may have leaked some of that blood which could have caused my severe pain on Sunday night. That could mean that the cyst is resolving itself. That would be good. I will have a repeat ultrasound in five weeks and we are praying that by then, it will have shrunk and no further action will be needed. If it has not shrunk but has grown, surgery may be required. We are in need of prayer because we are supposed to leave town on April 13th or 14th and this could really affect that. That is less then nine weeks away. Satan would like nothing better than to discourage us and mess up our plans. But, we have a God who heals and He is in control of our move to Mexico. He is the one who has called us and He is the one who knows all the circumstances surrounding that move. So, please pray that everything will follow in His plans. Thank you for your prayers.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Saying Good-Bye to Patches

With our upcoming move to Mexico, there are some very hard things we have needed to do. One of those came today when we said good-bye to our cat, Patches. We have had him for 13 years but we cannot take him to Mexico with us. So, I brought him to the Humane Society today. They have actually been adopting out many older cats recently and they said he seemed like a very nice, calm cat so they shouldn't have a problem finding a good home for him. I was very glad to hear that. It was very hard to take him there and we have all shed a few tears but it was one of the things we needed to do in preparation. We pray that Patches finds a good home and finds one quickly.

Erin's Gymnastics

Next weekend, Erin has her first gymnastics meet. She is a bit nervous but she made some new progress yesterday. She got her front hip circle. For those that don't know what that is, she goes forward around the bar and circles all the way around. She has been working on this for quite some time. It is quite difficult. She is excited and scared about her first meet. We'll let you know how things go.

How they are growing...

The grand children came over again yesterday. Of course at this point, I will most likely be taking pictures every time I see them since there are very few weeks left. We leave in just nine weeks.

Dylan in his cowboy hat. He was so cute. He came in his cowboy hat, cowboy boots and an cowboy overcoat.

After trying over and over again, I could not get one picture with Preston and Brooklyn looking at me together.

Erin is holding Victory. Kristen said he was 11 lbs. 9 oz. yesterday. He is certainly growing quickly. She said that Preston is only 22 lbs. so he is catching up quickly. Can you see the smile?

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Continuing to Prepare

Time seems to be flying by faster than we can believe. As you can see from our ticker, we have two months and one week left. We did just find out that our dear friend that is going to have us speak for a group of people from her church is going to be able to have us come a little later that last week so you can add a couple days onto the end of that ticker which is good. We now plan on being in Sacramento by Friday the 17th. We may stop a day or two in Shasta on the way down so we will still leave the beginning of that week.

Lately we have been continuing to sort through things and put things into storage. It is a tedious job but it needs to be done. We have also been taking time to visit with friends and family. Relationships at this time are very important since time is short. My mother-in-law and some friends are planning an open house on Sunday, April 5th for anyone who wants to come by and say hi and good-bye. I will give more details on that in the near future.

The other thing I continue to do is study my Spanish. Below is a picture of Elisa Miller, my tutor and myself. She has graciously given of her time and experience to help me and I am making progress. I have been trying to watch some movies in Spanish and I have children's books from the library in Spanish also. Every little bit helps and the more I know before we leave, the better.

Please continue to keep us in your prayers as we continue in these last months of preparation. There is so much work to be done and so little time left.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

New Pictures of Our Grandchildren

I think I got my first pictures with Victory's eyes open wide so there is now proof that he has eyes.

Preston loves his new brother and gives him kisses. It is so cute!

Grandma is pretty fond of him also.

Here's Brooklyn just being happy.

Dylan discovered that Grandma has Playmobils and he really likes them. He played with them the whole time he was over and immediately asked about them the next time he came.