Friday, December 29, 2006

Luke 10:1-2

"The harvest is plentiful...

...but the workers are FEW."

One day as Dave was out and about on the motorcycle, he came across this scene. A vast field lay before him of sugar cane ready to be cut and harvested. As he gazed across the field he noticed about 5 local workers out at the front of the field working diligently to cut the sugar cane. Immediately Luke 10:2 came to him and he was reminded how great the harvest is, and truly how few the workers are. As I looked at the pictures, first of all of the huge harvest of the sugar cane, and then studied the picture of the workers in the field; I began to think of how sometimes we can look at the harvest of lost souls all around us and think,"But can we possibly bring in this harvest that you have before us? There are so many!" I am sure as these few workers were standing before this large field on the first day of harvesting, they asked the same question,"How can I do this?" How do we bring in the harvest? The same way these workers are cutting the sugar cane....ONE AT A TIME. I know that these workers will not rush into this field and start chopping away, their only goal to just bring it in. No...these workers have to take precaution on how they cut. Cut too high...and you lose some of your harvest. They do not want to damage the harvest they are working so hard to bring in. It is nearly impossible...with a simple machete in tackle more than one stalk at a time. I am sure they would love to cut down about 10 at a time...but that is not possible with the lack of macninery. One at a time.....
Yes...this is what the Lord is reminding us of as we get geared up and focused on what our goals are for 2007! ONE AT A TIME LORD!! Just bring us one soul that needs you...and that is hungry for you...and let that one soul go out and find one more that needs you. You have all heard the saying...each one reach one! This not only applies to where we are here in Costa Rica. This is for those of you at the grocery store. Sometimes we can get lost in looking at the vast harvest before us...and instead of looking at reaching one at a time...we see how big it is and do not reach any. Believe me...I have been there. So we ask that you continue to keep us in prayer as we reach the harvest of Costa Rica...ONE AT A TIME! We pray that your 2007 is blessed and that everything you put your hands to will prosper. HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Feliz Navidad!!

Merry Christmas everyone !! We just wanted to take the oppurtunity to say that we love you and appreciate you all so much. We pray that your Christmas is blessed with all the wonders of this season. Thank you all for your love, prayers and support throughout this year.
I thought you might enjoy seeing our "white" Christmas. We took the kids to the beach today...the first time any of us have ever been swimming for Christmas Eve! We had such a good time. I have to tell you....Hannah has progressed so much from the time that we arrived in Costa Rica. She has gone from not wanting to step a foot in the boogieboarding!! The kids also enjoyed making sand angels too! Hope your Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are special for you! We love you all and miss you.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Bible Studies Begin

Matthew 28 tells us to GO and MAKE DISCIPLES. Two months ago the first part of that verse was accomplished; now we are beginning the second phase! Three weeks ago we started having Bible studies in our home on Sunday evenings every week. We have ranged from having noone come to having 5 adults and 3 children here! We are thankful for each one that God has placed in our midst. As we continue to show forth the love that God has for His people here, we trust that the Lord will continue to bring the people. The families that God has brought to us are hungry for the things of God and desire to learn more. We ask you to continue to keep us in prayer as well as the ones we have begun ministering to. We know it is only by God's grace and His wisdom that we will be able to accomplish the task He has before us. We look for oppurtinities daily to reach the people in our community. We do not want to pass up an encounter that He has set before us;for this reason, we covet your prayers! Thank you so much for your prayers and your support for this ministry. We ask God to continue to pour out the blessings He has for you and your family!

Saturday, November 11, 2006

What's new

I thought I would update everyone on what the latest happenings are in Costa Rica. While I was gone to the States for my dad's memorial service, Davi was home with the children. He was able to begin meeting several people that are in our area and are interested in learning more about the Lord. Praise God! One particular family he met on the beach, they are a young couple with an 8 month old baby. We spent the day with them last Sunday at the beach just having a fun family day together. They are a very sweet couple. William works at a hotel that is very close to us and has a desire to learn English. He knows that we want to further our Spanish and has offered to help us with Spanish if we will in turn help him learn English. This sounds like a great trade. So last Monday we were able to sit with him and converse alot in Spanish. We found out he was raised Jehovah Witness but he has many questions! We are praying for him and for his wife, Evelyn. One thing that helped open the door to speak with them is they are from Nicaragua and have lived here for 5 months. We look forward to sharing more with him and his family in the future. Please keep them in your prayers.

We have noticed a few challenges we did not have in Nicaragua. In Nicaragua, many things were easily accesible; banking, shopping at grocery stores, shopping at the market,etc. The main challenge we have faced is the shopping issue. Because we live in a beach community the prices here are pretty outrageous for Costa Rica.In our neighborhood, we have a few little Mom and Pop grocery stores we buy necessities at, but even they can be pretty expensive. We have found out that even most of the locals do not shop here. So we found out about a great market that is 25 miles away. Now 25 miles may not seem far if you are going across town, it may take you a half hour more or less. Here in Costa Rica that 25 miles by bus takes 2 hours when you figure in the stops the bus has to make and not to mention the many, many potholes that have to be avoided! So, last Saturday, the whole family woke up at 5 am to catch the 6 am bus and make it to Santa Cruz by 8 am when the market opened. This market is only open on Saturday for a half day. We found a gold mine when we arrived; wonderful fruits and vegetables, great prices, and many booths to choose from!! Let me just give you one example of the difference in prices from the market to what we can get locally in our neighborhood. Dave bought one pineapple from our local grocery store that cost two dollars. When we got to the market in Santa Cruz we were able to buy 3 for two dollars! Boy...those fresh smoothies sure taste good on a hot night!! :) Another great deal we found on the streets of Santa Cruz are the vendors that just set up along the roadways. We had to get Rachel a new pair of flip flops (all those trips to the beach must have worn them out! LOL). Here, there are only souvenir type shops within about 10 miles, so Dave got her a pair on one of his outings. The flip flops alone cost $10.00! When we went to Santa Cruz we found them for $3!!! So.....we are gaining wisdom in the area of shopping!!

Although some things have been challenging, we have seen God begin to move and open doors of oppurtunities. We continue to pray for wisdom and guidance as He continues to lead and direct us in the path we are to go daily. We appreciate your prayers and I want to say a special thank you for all who prayed for me during the time following the death of my daddy. God has truely ministered His peace to me and I know it is due to the prayers of many. Thank you for all of your kind words of encouragement as well. You are all apreciated very much! May the Lord continue to bless you in all you do.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Our Pastors are such a blessing!

When we arrived in Costa Rica, our Pastors and very good friends of ours, Pastor David and Sheryl Huffman, were there to greet us and welcome us to our new home. We spent a great week with them as we were getting settled. Our Pastors truly are a blessing from the Lord for us. We are so thankful for the training, love, support, and many prayers that have been sent our way. The Lord birthed in them a vision 4 years ago...and now that vision is beginning to come to pass. Pastors...thank you for your love and support. We would not be where we are today if it were not for you pouring into our lives and loving us unconditionally. We thank God to have you in our lives and we pray that the Lord will always bless you in everything you put your hands to.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

In the arms of Jesus!!

I wanted to update everyone on my dad. I found out yesterday that my daddy went home to be with Jesus yesterday afternoon. I rejoice...because I know that my dad is in the arms of Jesus and has perfect peace and no more pain and suffering. All of the goals my dad set for himself were met before he passed away. One of his desires was to see us in Costa Rica. He was able to do that. Even in the end, when things were the toughest for him, he was still encouraging me to continue on with what God wants us to do. I learned many things from my dad. One of which was no matter the circumstance that my dad was under...I never heard him complain. He always kept a good attitude with everything going on around him and accepted what hit him with grace and dignity. The last converstation I had with him was Monday evening when I called and told him how much I love him. I said, "Hi Daddy!! How are you doing?" Just like I always did...and he said with a weak, but somewhat cheerful voice, "Oh I am good!" Even in the end he would proclaim that he was doing good. Many times it was for the benefit of us around him that love him so much...he did not want us to know how bad he felt or how much he might be hurting. I am sad that he is gone...but yet I rejoice in the fact that I know he is with another wonderful Father..One that will never leave him nor forsake him...One that has given him the ultimate healing that he desperately needed...and One that will continue to give me the peace that I need. I thank God for the wonderful daddy I had...he will always be in my heart!!! I love you Daddy!!!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Journey to Costa Rica

It has been two years exactly since the first time Dave and I saw Costa Rica. Since October 12, 2004, there have been many “adventures” that have led up to the day we arrived in Costa Rica on October 11, 2006. We spent 10 days in intense missionary training in Jacksonville, Fla. Days after returning from that trip, our house was sold, and all debts paid off!! We moved into an apartment for six months, had a yard sale and sold everything we owned. A couple days after that we moved to Guatemala for 10 weeks! What a culture change…but yet an awakening to what God was calling us to. A love for the Latin people grew while there…and we learned many things to help us adjust to the culture. Upon arriving back to the States, we lived in an apartment generously donated for a month by friends of ours at our church in Tn. Then we spent 6 weeks moving from house to house and waiting for a home to open up in Jinotega, Nicaragua. In March of this year we moved to Nicaragua and spent the last 7 months there. In those 7 months, God took us through some crash courses in the Latin culture….some good…some not so good…but everything a part of His plan to prepare us for His work. We established relationships that will last a lifetime…and fell even more in love with the Latin people and the land God was preparing us for. Jinotega…you will always be in our hearts. We found that God was rapidly increasing our training time in Nicaragua….and before we knew…He had opened the doors for us to make our ultimate move! COSTA RICA!!! God is so good…in everything.
We began our move to Costa Rica the last week of Sept. when I began to pack everything up one more time. We moved in with the Pastors in Nicaragua and lived with them for 10 days. By this time, transition was just another word in our everyday vocabulary. On October 10 we left many friends and the life we knew in Nicaragua and made our way to Managua…the capital of Nicaragua. We spent the night in a hotel there to be able to wake up early the next morning and catch the 6:00 am bus to Costa Rica. One very interesting thing that happened in the hotel in Managua was the morning we woke up to leave. We awoke around 3 am…as my husband went to get Hannah out of the bed she shared with me…a tarantula came crawling out from under her and made its way across his arm to the end of the bed. We did not realize we slept with a tarantula all night!! We showed a picture to the front desk clerk and found out he was very dangerous!! Thank God for His protection!!! So this was just another…welcome to the mission field statement!!
We took the 6:00 am bus to CR and arrived around 1 pm. Our wonderful Pastors were there to welcome us to our promised land. A vision that God had placed in our Pastors 4 years ago…had finally been fulfilled! We made it to CR!!!! God is so good…did I say that already? We saw our house that He provided for us, and were just amazed at His goodness. Our house is fully furnished…right down to the littlest things that I was desiring and our children. I was making plans to buy a blender….but God had one waiting for me here. Jeremiah went to his closet and looked around and found a boogie board waiting for him to take to the beach that is so close by! God does not despise the littlest desires that we have…and may not even mention!!
We feel so at peace in our new home and our new land. Our neighbors are already beginning to accept us and God is giving us favor through them as well. We are excited about the work we will do here…but for now….it is all about showing His love to His people! We do not know everything God has for us here…but we know that His will will be accomplished here. His harvest in Costa Rica is ripe and we are ready for some picking!!!
I have to say though that throughout the last two years, as Dave and I have drawn closer to beginning our journey, my dad has drawn closer to ending his. He was diagnosed with cancer almost 2 years ago and he has had a long hard battle since that time. Just before leaving the States to move to Nicaragua, my dad was told the cancer was terminal. My heart was broken, but in my spirit I knew I had to press on to the mark of the high calling that He had called us to. In talking to my dad before our departure and when visiting with him before we left, he encouraged me to not let any of this hinder us from continuing on with what the Lord has for us. I honestly let him know that we will continue on with what God wants us to do, no matter what. I have placed my dad in God’s hands and have asked my Heavenly Father to take care of my earthly father. It has been a long hard road, but the time has begun to draw even nearer for my dad. He is beginning to experience liver failure due to the cancer. Only God knows how long he has left on this earth. But what a journey he has ahead of him, one that will take him to the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. That is the ultimate journey that we all long for…to be in the presence of our King. Daddy…I love you and appreciate you so much for accepting the call God has for us and encouraging us in it. God has blessed me with a wonderful earthly father! I ask all of you to continue to pray for him and for strength for me as well.
We love you all…and appreciate your love and support that has taken us this far. You have all been a wonderful blessing to us and we ask God to continue to pour out His blessings upon you. We look forward to letting you know about what God is doing in Costa Rica. Until then…….we remain…in HIS service!!