Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
When I got home from Honduras, I found out that my refrigerator that had been on its last coil for quite sometime, finally went to a cooler land. Unfortunately it took it's sister appliance. the washing machine, when it died. So last week I was looking at appliances. I found some great deals at Lowe's and the people were really helpful. They brought my washer right away, but there was to be a delay in the refrigerator as it had to come from the warehouse. It was a good deal so I decided to delay buying groceries, and eat at Mom's until it came in. Still a wonderful deal of homecooked meals was in my future and no grocery shopping.
Also when I arrived home from the hills, I found out that my insulation around my duct work for the heating and air system was exposed, causing a condensation process that affected my flooring and one of my walls. My girls who are attending college closed my room up when I am gone, so the moisture kind of steamed my room, flooring and walls. One part of the flooring in the hall is so bad that I am thankful I have strong carpet. I called a repairman and the first one said $80.00 just to look at it. Then the second guy was kind and came in and told me what was going on. The heating and air guy said that animals in the neighborhood tend to destroy the insulation when it becomes old, because they can either stay cooler or warmer. He said the insurance company might pay for it. So today I was waiting for the insurance adjuster and the refrigerator guy.
I unloaded the refrigerator and had been defrosting the coils for days. The fan was not circulating the cool air and so the freezer would freezer and the bottom would not be cool, but with the cool weather I decided to leave the condiments in the fridge. I got all that cleaned out and on the counter. Then the insurance adjuster said that he was coming to check out the damage. I thought great, I still have time to go and work on a project in Moultrie and Mom and I could still see the grandkids and get back home to have the weekily eat out with my younger brother and his wife. It was a great plan.
The refrigerator folks called and said they couldn't come today. So I said "Okay" and I loaded up the frig with the stuff I had set on the counter. Then the insurance adjuster came and said there might be a slight chance that I would get a settlement but because it wasn't a leak and it was condensation, I probably wouldn't get a settlement. I know I had already spent money on my appliances, and I had no idea what all of this damage was going to cost. I was discouraged but after he left I just prayed that God would take care of me and show me what to do.
So I decided to call my Mom for some sympathy. Since I am a multi tasker at heart, I decided while I was milking sympathy from my mom I would fix my sofa. I was going to replace a strut that had fallen out. So while I was on the phone and adjusting a coil, a coil that I was not touching dislodge from the sofa snapped around without touching the side of my head and the point of it hit me in the lip. It was like I had been shot. I told my mom, "Hold on I think I have a problem". At first it looked like a superficial wound and a scrape and then it start bleeding...a lot.
Because I was waiting to go to the grocery store I was out of napkins, tissue, etc. Because I had defrosted my refrigerator, I had no ice. So my mom calls me back and tells me to put a damp teabag on it, which I did. It was hygenic and felt good. I was trying to thank the Lord that renegade spring didn't stick me in the eye or didn't break my tooth off, but discouragement began creeping up on me. I was considering a butterfly bandage and some triple antibiotic cream in lieu of going to the doctor, but I finally just called the doctor and got an appointment.
I was glad they could work me in, but while I was there they had an office full of folks. Because I didn't have an appointment I had to wait, which was okay with me. People started talking to me about why they were there. I told them why I was there so they wouldn't think I was a victim in a abusive family situation. I probably should have kept quiet and let them feel sorry for me, because in telling my story, I just looked stupid.
The women started sharing and most of them had a problem with cancer. They had been in multiple surgeries, chemo therapy, taking meds that cost them $7000.00 a shot. All of them sitting and nodding in unison about having the same "journey", they called it. They had lost hair, weight,money, husbands, and jobs. They have basically used all of their money on trying to cure the cells that were taking charge over their bodies.
The other things I noticed that they had in common were their smiles. They laughed when they talked about how large their arms swelled, and when they passed out from the side effects of the chemo, scaring the liver out of all who were around, the joys and trials of wigs, and hair coming back in with color and curl. They smiled and laughed as they shared their journeys.
Now I tell you I had been pretty disheartened when I got there. I went in for my procedure and four stitches later, my lip now looks like botox gone bad. I have a bandage the size of a tab that marks important documents. I asked about scarring and she said, It will look bad for a couple of months and then it will begin to fade. This is not what I wanted to hear. I paid my co-pay and walked to my car, telling myself not to cry about this. As I sat down in my car, I remembered those heroic women with whom I had been seated. I know they were in His Hall of Fame. They were praising God for keeping them safe, helping them through the pain, trials, and the bills. I had my bills covered, pain was covered, my lip also has a cover. I might not can smile right now because of swelling, but I can praise Him. He has been good to me today.
I read a scripture that spoke to me and so I shared it with my Mom yesterday. God is pretty savvy to send you a message of hope before you need one. We always think it is for someone else when He knows we will need to claim it for our own. Psalms 107 1: Give thanks to the Lord for he is good. He faithful love endures forever. 4: some wandered in the desert lost and homeless, hungry and thirsty ,they nearly died, "Lord help!" they cried in their trouble and he rescued them from their distress. He led them straight to safety to a city where they could live. He satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.
10 Some sat in darkness and deepest gloom, But they cried "Lord help" and he saved them from distress 14 He led them out of darkness and deepest gloom.
The list goes on and on and covers health, wealth, rebellion, and in that pslams they call for help and God shows up and leads them out or saves them from every stressful situation when they cry unto Him, and each time it repeats, telling us to praise the Lord for his great love and for all his wonderful deeds. At the end of the psalm it says : Those who are wise will take all this to heart; they will see in our history the faithful love of the Lord.
I want to be wise and take it to heart and remember my history of what God has done for me. According to this pslam He will lead me out of whatever circumstance in life I find myself . Please continue to pray for me and my healing in every area of my life. Blessings, the Punctured but Praising Honduran MOM
Sunday, October 24, 2010
The next day we had a meeting with the people of Inguanis. We drove about an hour to get to their neck of the woods. It was so beautiful there. They don't get much company because the roads are almost impassable and the mayor brought us down to see if we could help them some how. Because they are so inaccessible they don't get many missionaries down in that area to bring medical teams, or evangelistic teams. My group was Me, Don Chilo, our foreman, Pastor Flavio, the new youth pastor that is meeting at our church with about 70 young people, and some boys from the youth group that are combing the mountains to reach people for Christ. The people are sweet humble people who live truly at the end of the road.
They need a vegetable crop that they could grow at the school and at their homes. I suggested, collards plants and turnips, which would be a great source of iron. Butterbeans, which don't die off at frost because there is no frost here. They just keep growing. So I will be looking for ideas, from anybody who knows about small row crop farming.
Please be prayin for our mission. I will be home in the States for a month. Pray for the girls and Haley, Ben and Mr. Joe, who will be here in my absence. Blessings, the Goat Buying Honduran MOM, who has Gone where not many missionaries have gone before. It was so cool! (I have tons of photos of this area, it was so gorgeous, but I couldn't get them out of my camera. When I get home hopefully one of my "techy" friends can show me and I will post more at a later date. )
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Thursday started out with a bang. Haley knocked on my door and said that something was wrong with the baby pig. We had a new mama pig that decided she didn't like the littlest one and started puncturing her runt with her teeth. We took it away from her and have been feeding it a bottle. The runt was living in the chicken brooder so it could keep warm but somehow in the night it found a way out and that night our temperature dropped. He was freezing. So I got the girls to get some warm water mixed with sugar and then massaged the little one until he showed some signs of life. He is on formula and is doing fine now.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
I took the money and I bought a big shiny, silver looking refrigerator. This particular refrigerator had a promotional and it came with a new TV. We needed something for the little ones to watch Baby Einstein, and other educational videos in the kitchen, while the big girls are schooling up top. I just hope our two lady workers, don't get hypnotized by Baby Einstein.
I also bought a microwave for the central kitchen, a electric can opener, a rice cooker, a waffle iron.
For my house I bought a stove, and washer and dryer. We have to keep the laundry room behind the kitchen locked because sometimes the older girls wanted to do all their laundry in the same load. It caused our machines to break down and they stayed in a constant state of "broken". All the girls that are 12 and older must do their own laundry at the pila, which is like a cement washboard. They hang it on the line and if the weather is bad and raining they get to put them in the dryer. Unfortunately, one of the new house moms put clothes that were still dripping from rain water into the dryer. It has not been the same. With the new machines at my house we can keep a better handle on the condition of the clothes and the clothes handler before we wash or dry them. Thankfully we got the ones in the laundry room repaired last week and Sylvia our worker is still using them.
While we were getting ready for this huge blessing, We decided to go ahead and move the refrigerator. Our refrigerator came from I know not where. It was a used refrigerator when it was purchase with a little rust on the door. After its service to our kitchen with the airy moist nights the little rust grew into a lot. It looked like a refrigerator that had been on the deck of a fish bait store on the gulf coast after a few hurricane seasons. When we moved it away from the wall, we saw a frightened rodent scurry away, and a whole lot of stuff that had accumulated under the refrigerator. The floors get swept and mopped at least 4 times a day. I have no idea how that quantity of dirt and debris got under our fridge. I was so thankful that we moved it before the appliance store delivered the items.
We got busy cleaning that up and when we did it looked so much better that it drew our attention to the wall that was behind the refrigerator. It was a mess. The stove is close by and so all the steam and grease apparently blew behind the fridge and dust and other things that had been spilled down the back was attached to the stone wall. So we jumped on cleaning that. We mixed laundry soap, hot water and who know what else Sylvia put in there but when I got back with the ajax from my house, she had a broom and a bucket scubbing the hound out of the walls and Dina was scooping up the rinse water with a dust pan and another broom. I was thinking the delivery guys will be here any minute. While I was doing some cleaning on the stove, because it started to look bad against the cleaness of the washed walls, Dina started scrubbing the walls of the other side of the bar. We know had everything in a royal upheaval. I was mortified at how much stuff we were having to scrub. How did we not see this before?
Well, while scrubbing away, I got to thinking about how that refrigerator was like life in general. You have this body and because of the elements of life you begin to show some cosmetic problems. No matter how much cream and special cleanser you put on the exterior, it is the "elements" are always working against you. but thankfully you are still working pretty well inside. You are doing what you are supposed to be doing. Then things inside where people can't see start being affected and breaking down and you are not keeping things as cool as you used to, not working at your full potential.
Then right in the middle of waxing philosophically eloquent, God started working on my thought process. I don't know about you but I try to pray and read my Word and maintain my spiritual life , and even though I am attending to it on a daily basis I am not checking for the crud that blows my direction and gets stuck underneath where I don't bother to check, and before you know it, rats are trying to build a home and eventually will get in the motor and shut you down.
This week I had a revelation that I needed to get over myself. The next revelation was, who cares what is in my wallet, I need to find out what is under my fridge! The third revelation is that I don't get on my knees anymore unless it is something huge I need to pray about.
God brings something new in and you move the old out, but when you move it out, you start noticing other things that are just not up to snuff either. You start cleaning on one area and are feeling pretty good about it and that just makes another part look even more needy. All the while you are frantically wondering who is going to come in and see what trying to scoop up off the floor! Which brings me to my first revelation which was to get over myself . Who really cares but God. I want to have the courage and the time to look underneath and bring in The Health Inspector to keep a check on my condition. The only One who really cares, is the Lord, and He does not condemn me or shake His head in disgust. He knows my name and my frame.
I know that the Word says that in Him things are new every morning. If we can focus on the new things, it would shine a light on the things that really need to go. That being the case, if we really took time, He would probably mention that we needed to check under the fridge, for those things hidden even from ourselves. Sometimes when I know He is trying to get me to take a "look see", I am so busy getting things cooked up that are really good things and will bless other people and by the time I finally get out of the kitchen, that I don't bother to look because I am too tired. But you know if I would do that third revelation about kneeling before Him from time to time, I would get a glimpse of what is building up under my fridge.
Anyway, I thank the folks who donated all the lovely appliances to us. They are wonderful. The girls were so thrilled and excited over every item. Everybody including the men and lady workers felt like it was an early Christmas. I thank the Lord that He still working on me. Blessings, the Honduran Mom with a New Look.
Saturday, October 2, 2010
I noticed the middle of this week that water was pouring out from under the corner of the outside wall of the kitchen. I thought it was a broken pipe but it was a spring that had decided to come up right in that area. I could put my fist in the hole that the spring had made. The workers we nonchalant about it. They said, "It is a spring". So I got to looking around and there are many of these springs over our farm right now! That is the reason for the areas of saturated muddy/grassy blotched up places all over our farm. It looks like the beginning of a bog. It happens to be in a high traffic area, the kitchen and the barn the others are close to the animal shelters. So we sludge through the mud getting from point to point and the water from the spring is pouring out like a opened spigot. The water table from beneath has met the water table from all the rain and so now we have these springs. I am told they will eventually disappear when it get dryer. It is supposed to rain tomorrow.
Now our circumstances are not desireable, but there is a neighboring aldea in the next mountain that have a problem that is more severe. They have lost their homes because these springs have come up in the middle of their dirt floor houses. They melted the adobe and their houses fell in. Fourteen families in all have this situation going on. I have been told that 2 of the 14 homes are totaled. The others will be able to move back in a make repairs, but it will be a while. Meantime, they are living at a local school. School has been closed because the children couldn't get to class.
Please pray for these 70 people who are homeless. We are hoping to carry some supplies into them this week.
One of our girls that had graduated out of the farm about 4 years ago had her baby this past week. She had the baby within 3 hours of arriving at the hospital. She called me early that morning and said that she had been visiting her family in a remote area close to the El Salvadorian border. Her pains began and she asked her dad to find a 4x4. He finally found a friend who had a 4x4, but he would only carry her half way. She called me to please bring her papers to the hospital so that they would admit her.
I caught a ride with Chilo in the bus . He was going to take the girls to school. Normally the girls walk to school, but it was raining and the entrance was covered in extremely soft mud. The bus bogged down in the entrance into our farm. We couldn't open the bus doors, so the girls had to bail out the back. I felt like I was directing paratrooper operation, telling them to "Jump".
Chilo did get the bus out of the mud. Before that happened, we got out and started walking towards the school. The school teachers drove up and I asked if there was school today. They said that there was but the only students that came were ours. so they were going to cancel classes. We loaded the girls back onto the bus. I asked them if they knew if the buses were running and they said the local mayor has suspended buses from traveling the roads for now. The roads are destroyed. The ruts are 2 to 3 ft deep in some places and the buses are scraping the bottom as well as some of the smaller cars and trucks. The teachers had just come from La Esperanza where I was headed, and they told me the horror stories about the roads. Chilo drove me into Yamaranguila and dropped me off, and I got my umbrella out to wait for a 4x4 to pass by. The teachers came by thankfully and let me get inside. What a blessing! I told them what was going on and so they said they wanted to help and they would carry us directly to the hospital. It was raining hard at this point.
We found her standing where the father's friend had left her in the middle of the road, in a light weight black car coat holding a borrowed umbrella and she was crying. As she got into the cab of the truck. I was sitting in the back and I wanted to just hold her. I remembered back to an earlier time when she came to live with us at Project Talitha Cumi. Her mother had died and her 3 sisters who still live here came to the farm first . She came later because she had been living with her grandmother for years. She told me yesterday, that she had been told that when North Americans get Honduran children they strip their skin off and cook them and eat them. When we picked her up years ago she had her face hidden in the crook of her arm and crying like a crazy person. She cried for about 3 days. I guess because we didn't break out the big stew pot to cook her in she finally calmed down.
She left our farm about 3 1/2 years ago. We tried different technical training schools, but she just didn't have it on her mind to study. So we had gotten her an apartment and a job and she was busting to be on her own which is a normal thing for an eighteen year old girl. She had found herself a boyfriend this past year , and a respectable job and it seemed like it was going to work out for her. Sadly though, there was a problem like so many young people experience, and she was alone. She has been working part time these last two months at the farm to be able to provide for some of the things she wanted to buy for her baby.
We got her to the hospital at 9 am and she had the baby at 11:48 They made her take a freezing cold shower afterward and was going to do the same for the newborn baby and she said she would take care of it when she got home. We had to wait until 4 pm to be able to see her and the baby. I waited most the day with the dad. I read a book, sent facebook messages from my Blackberry, hoping we could get in sooner to see the baby.
After we saw the Mom and baby I grabbed a taxi to get us to the exit of the town hoping to catch a ride. A red pick up truck stopped at the corner where people who have missed the bus usually stand hoping to catch a ride in the back of a pickup truck. I was about to ask where was he going when he got out of the truck. His head was shaved and had a squint in one eye when he talked. He was seriously spooky looking. Seeing a shaved head around here is very "sketchy". So I didn't pursue my hitch hiking ways. I decided to go get some french fries and called a friend to come and help me to get home.
I hired a truck the next day to take me over the bad roads to get me to the bank, grocery store, the feed store, and the last stop was the hospital. We got her and the baby checked out and loaded into the truck. We slipped and slided all the way out of La Esperanza until we got to a point in the road where traffic had stopped. A large blue bus had bottomed out. None of the passengers wanted to get out of the bus because it could mean that they would be walking in the mud that was the consistency of chocolate pudding. So they refused to lighten the load. The line behind us kept getting longer. About 40 men got out of their vehicles and started scavaging rocks to place under the wheels of the bus. It was wonderful to see how much could be done when everyone worked together.
They were almost finished getting the bus in a position to get it out of the mud when a red 4x4 truck broke through the line of patient motorists and drove over to the right side of the bus. As it was passing by everybody couldn't believe he was going to complicate an already strained situation. He cruised by and then slowly slid off into the ditch. All the men who had been working through their arms up in frustration and set up a cheer of sarcasm "Uh huh good job" to the impatient truck driver. They were almost giddy about what happened.
I will have to confess that Corinthians 13 was not on my mind at that moment. I was in agreement with the others. We were all trying to get home for one reason or another and this guy hindered the work that was going on. Ben , the new intern, gave a devotion the other day about Corinthians 13. I told the girls when ever anyone was acting unloving manner unlike Cor. 13 tells us to do, we were allowed to say "Corinthians 13" to that person to remind them that they are not abiding in love. Well, I found I had to say it to myself.
I felt really good about going to pick up the mother and baby and doing all the good works of getting her to hospital and all that entailed. I was really feeling kind of good about myself and then, boom, I get convicted once again. I should have had some compassion on the guy in the red truck when the other people refused to help him, but I confess I did not. I have so far to go.
So after an hour the bus finally cleared the ruts, and was out. The new mom and I were freezing because Don Chilo and the owner of the car were in the front with the windows down because they didn't want to miss any of the carnival type atmosphere that began to take place around the bus.
We finally got home and unloaded the truck. The owner was a different kind of guy who wore a gold plated chain and big medallion with a big gold tone looking watch. He didn't talk much at all. I asked him where he went to Church and Chilo answered for him, "He doesn't go anywhere, but he is a canidate". I found out later that he has a problem with alcohol and the reason he was letting Chilo drive his truck is because he legally could not. I thought that was pretty nice. He was different but he needs God and he knew it. The most reaction that he had the total day with everything going on was that he was amazed at the groceries we buy per week. I told him that because we have 27 girls and some staff that eat with us it ends up being about 34 people at each meal. While we were loading up he kept saying incredously "More?" So it took us a while to unload because there were a lot of supplies and it was raining.
I was thankful for the man who lets us rent his truck for the day, and that mother and the baby are doing well ,and for the girls who have been really helpful and trying to be quiet. They are not used to babies being around. Mother and baby will be here for 2 weeks and then she moves to Teg. to be with her aunt who is going to help her with the baby while she gets a job. Pray for her plans to come together. Pray that I will not think more highly of myself and really walk with everyone, not just the folks I know, in a Corinthians 13 kind of way. Blessings, the Hitchhiking No Longer, Honduran MOM
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Off we go!
Ben and girls waiting on the parade