Team Honduras

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Pulling off a Great Surprise!!!!!

Trying to keep a secret from you husband is very hard work and your KIDS too!!! Mark's sister Wendy wanted to give him a unique birthday surprise. A week or so ago she came up with the plan that she was going to fly herself and Alyssa-Lou down here to Tampa.

So, with the help of some of the staff here at Hope we worked it out that Mark was to pick up some "Special Guests" at the airport. He though in fact that he was picking up 5 ladies. He requested that I ride with him so that he would not be alone with five ladies. "So", I agreed to ride. Keeping a straight face and talking to Wendy once the plan landed and giving details of where we were going to be was challenging.....however he never had a clue.

We begin our drive through the terminal to pick up our five passengers. I quickly spotted Wendy and Lou and Mark spotted what he thought were our riders. He parked the van and jumped out to get their bags to find his sister running up with tears and a big hug.

He was in complete SHOCK....I still think that he was looking for those However, we were able to celebrate his birthday with family and had a great time just hanging out.

It still amazes me that Mark and I have been together for so long. I have been able to celebrate 15 years of birthdays with him. WOW, that is a long time. I am thankful to have such a Godly husband in my life. Happy Birthday Mark, I love you.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Prayer Request........

Hope that all is well for all of those who read this. (by the way...if you read our blog often...please click to the right where it says followers and become a follower).

Today's blog is going to be on prayer. You know the Lord has intended for us to each have a daily walk with HIM....we can greatly achieve this through prayer. I myself have many requests and I am sure that you all do as well. You know the more believers that pray for something lets the Lord know how sincere we are about the request. God wants to comfort us and take care of our needs, and while yes he knows all, he wants to hear it from us.

How many times have we said that we would pray for someone or something?...and then we might pray right away or pray for it for a few days and then.....well that is the end of it. I have to admit this myself, that sometimes we make ourselves to busy to remember things that others have asked us.

You know as Christians we have an instant connection with the Lord. We can pray and talk to Him at anytime. The unsaved do not truly understand the power of prayer or the love of our Heavenly Father, however, they are quick to turn to those who pray b/c they have seen evidence in our lives that it works.

In Psalm 86:17 it says: "Show me a token for good:that they which hate me may see it, and be ashamed:because thou, Lord, hast helped me, and comforted me.

WOW!!! What an impact we can make on others. My challenge is to you that you will sincerely pray for your brothers and sisters in Christ and that through prayer God will show others that he does comfort and help us in times of need.

I have listed below a few of the requests that we pray for daily, whether friends and family or fellow servants in the ministry or specific needs. I ask that you list a request and my readers and myself will say a prayer for the requests mentioned.

*My brother Brandon and his wife Amanda (Unspoken)

*Team Honduras and the conflicts in the country/safety of the team there

*Lalania Hall mother of 5 battling cancer /and her family

*Hope Children's Home(in need of cleaning supplies, food items etc.)

*Hilltop Church/and Pastor Jeff, Bro. Mark, Bro. Rincon, Bro. Travis,
Bro,Trevor and school staff

*Southside Bpt. Church/Pastor Nance and start of Spanish Ministry

*Ryan and Family(student at SEFWBC w/unspoken/health related

*Raising of our support for language school/ and Honduras

*Children that will be in the future home

*Missionaries around the world( we know too many to list by name so pick
ones that you might know)

*Upcoming Revival here at Hope and Revival at Hilltop.

*Mark's Aunt Linda who has brain cancer /and her husband A.L.

*Selling of friends homes: The Ferguson's, The Martin's and The Elliot's

*Speaking Engagement for future support on Nov. 8th and that we will get
many other churches to take us on.

*Mr. Marvin(retiree who works here at Hope) his son Bob w/ cancer

I believe in a loving God who can still answer prayers and is the ULTIMATE PHYSICIAN! Will you join me and many others in prayer?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Many with No Where to go......

Yesterday started Hope's bi-monthly home visit. For many there was no family to come and get them for the 3 day visit. Many of these kids have family too far away and too little funds to travel. Some don't have a physical home to go to at all and others have family members either in jail or who have totally written them off.

With that said the one great thing about being a staff member here is that (1)... you get to see them all the time and (2) also have the opportunity to step up to the plate and give them some "home time".

Last night Mark and I took in four little girls. Destiny 9, Dakota, 10, Christina 10, and Christina 9. The first three girls are sisters. They also have an older sister who is 14 and an older brother who is 13. They all had no where to go.

Taylor has made many friends here including a former resident of the home Nelly. Nelly is originally from Honduras. She has graduated from Hope Christian School and is now on staff here. Hmmmm doesn't the Lord have a fascinating way of putting people in our paths for the future. Anyway she is spending the weekend with her and well Hunter he lives with the boys in the boys dorm and just comes home long enough to get a nights sleep and then he is out again. In fact he is going with some of the boys and Mark to a USF football game tonight. Josiah well he is loved by all here and is trying his best to potty train.

Before I finish with my story I just wanted to say one thing about following the Lord's will for your life. People often choose to ignore God's calling b/c they are to selfish and do not want to give up their luxury items and way of life. Well I am here to tell you that since giving up our worldly things for the Lord we have been blessed with sooooooo much more. The Lord has given us opportunities that back home we would not have had. Now, I am not saying that everyday is easy and peachy but the Lord supplies our needs.

Okay on with the story. So we took in four little girls. The first thing they did was pack for the weekend. Then I loaded them all up and went to Wal-Mart to get some snacks and things to give them a real at home feel. Now, you all who know me well know that I love to cook, so I asked them what they wanted for dinner......You will never guess what their request was. I had to laugh.....RAMEN NOODLES....UGH.....but to them it is a comfort food that no matter who makes always taste the same. I did manage however to get them to change their minds and we had tacos instead. But, I did buy them some Ramen Noodles for We continued to walk through the store looking at almost each isle and getting something. I had a cart full of stuff and 2 kids on each side. For the first time I knew what it was like to be Lanie, Tabatha and are good friends of mine for my readers who don't know....and they have 5 kids each).

Anyway, I caught them calling me momma in the store. That is something that they don't say everyday. Here they call everyone Aunt or Uncle. But they wanted to be my daughters. They wanted to stay close and look and be interested in what I was looking at. It was very heart warming to see that they just wanted to be little girls and have a Momma who loved them.

We came home and had dinner, the girls helped prepare the food which is something that they do not normally get to do. Then we ate and they were very quick to get the kitchen back to normal. We watched a movie, put on a peel-off face mask, brushed hair and had a family devotion.

You know those of you who have kids.....even though you are with them all the sure to spend time with them and let them know that you love because there are kids here that just want to have a normal family and be a normal kid.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

One Blessing that we take for Granted.....

Once we were called to the mission field....we had the support of our friends and family behind us. It has been so far an easy transition into our new life....partly b/c we are still in the states. However, we do not have some of the same luxuries that we once had at home. I can say that we watch VERY LITTLE television now. We have no satellite, no land-line telephone and there are other things that we don't have the benefit of having....such as being able to see our family and dear friends in 20 minutes or less with the exception of Mark's parents who were 2 hours away. However, God has poured out HIS blessings on us and we are content. We do know that things will grow even harder in the months to come when we have to make yet another transition into another life changing style.

You know I am very thankful to the Lord for allowing us the opportunity to be in this ministry. Tonight, we had dinner in the girls dorm and later we spent some time in the boys dorm just hanging out. After awhile we headed back over to the girls dorm for some cake to celebrate one of the little ones birthday's today. Sitting at the table I began to chat with a young lady (she is 14). The kids who have families that they can see were preparing to go home tomorrow for a bi-monthly home visit and will return back to the home on Sunday. As we sat there I began to help her study for a History test that she had coming up. You could tell by her actions that she was kind of shocked and excited at the same time that I would sit down with her and help her in such a task as making flash cards and helping her study.

See, we take for granted the people that we have in our lives that help us out. This kids do not have the blessing of having a home like most of us have grown up in. Hope for them is a great refuge and a place of comfort. As our days get busy let us not take for granted the blessings that Gos has given to us.

I will praise thee, O Lord, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works. Psalm 9:1

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Spiritual Uplifting

The first year Mark and I were married I bought him a UNC bean bag for Christmas. I thought that it might be a great place to sit and relax and watch the games as well as play video games. However, that bean bag would become more than just a chair of relaxation. It would become a human catapult. "Yes", you heard me right. I can remember Taylor and Hunter both climbing on one end and Mark pouncing his body on the other end to watch them fly through the air. Amazingly, neither of them were ever hurt and always cried out for more. You know, they knew that daddy was bigger and if he landed on one side they would be lifted up in the air. Even at a young age they knew that the heavier the other person was the higher they would be lifted.
You know our spiritual life in no different than this same basic concept of physics. The people that you surround yourselves with will either build you up.....or they will tear you down. Living here at Hope I have noticed this a great deal in the lives of the children. The more you are true and honest with them...the more they grow and blossom. I have started writing letters once or twice a week to the children just to let them know that I am thinking of them and praying for them. It is so amazing to see how they respond to a little bit of positive attention.
When you stand back and look at your life.....who is it that influences you?......who is it that you influence?......would you call the people WISE in the eyes of God?.....would you say that you are WISE in the eyes of God?
We all need to surround ourselves with people who will encourage and help promote our spiritual growth.
Proverbs 13:20 says..."He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed."

James 1:5 says...."If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

Just a note about our family: everyone is doing well. Please keep Josiah in your prayers as he is battling his 2nd sinus infection since moving down here. Please also continue to pray for Hunter and his transition into a more independent study school setting. We also still have our house for sale in NC. This is a burden that we know the Lord will deliver us from. Right now we are also starting the process for going out on deputation and getting things rolling for language school.

Thank you so much for the dedication of our readers. It is so encouraging to see you all as followers and nice to see that you comment on our post. We love you all.

Friday, September 11, 2009

A Grandmother's Love.....

First, I would like to say that I am sorry for not blogging in awhile it has been crazy here.

This week I witnessed a grandmother's true and deep love for her granddaughter. As I sat in the room and listened to her pour her heart out at how she did not want her grandchild to end up like her parents my heart began to swell. She began to say that she was not sure if she had what it took to put her back on the right path. She was speaking of a newly turned 11 year old girl. A girl that had so much anger build up in her.

What could drive an 11 year old to so much anger. Here I am thinking, Hunter is 11 and he has issues with not cleaning up his toys or putting away his clothes. But this little girl wanted to come and go as she pleased. She is merely a child that has had a very hard life. Her grandmother began to tell her story. Her parents well they're drug addicts. In fact they used so much her mother overdosed and died three days after leaving a rehab center. Her father well he is in jail for drugs and theft. No wonder a little girl could have so much anger and pain in her heart.

That day the grandmother drove off and left "Suzie" in the care of the home here. Can you imagine how she must have felt. Well, I witnessed it first hand. Trying not to cry myself I hugged her and told her that her granddaughter was in a better place. A place where she would be loved and cared for, taught about the Lord Jesus Christ and not running the streets, getting a good education and trying to get some peace at some of the situations that she has had to face in he life. While you don't know this childs real name please pray for her. Pray that she will allow God to turn her life around so that she can try to enjoy what is left of her childhood. She has had to witness these things since she was about 5 or 6 years old. I can't imagine the things that she must have seen as she witnessed her parents High on Meth.

After reading this,
Thank God for the good parents and grandparents that you had growing up......
maybe you were like Suzie, then pray and ask God to help you be a better parent than what you had.

Please also pray that God will give Mark and I strength as these are the exact types of situations that we are going to be faced with in Honduras.

Friday, September 4, 2009

From Football Games to Potty Training....

The last few days have been very busy for us. Thursday, Taylor had a volleyball game about an hour from the house. The awesome thing is "yes" she did play...(even had some great hits) and they won 3 straight games in a row. We also have a boys team here and they won as well but it took all 5 games to have a winner.

Josiah has been showing signs that he is ready to potty train. So, we got him a potty of his own today. Please pray that this will be an easy transition for him. He understands the concept and runs straight to the bathroom when we ask him if he needs to go.

Tonight, I got to have some quality time with my Tator Bug as we went to the mall. Fun times for a tennage girl. Mark and Hunter got to go see the Tampa Bay Buc's on the 50 yard line about 2 or 3 rows back. This was thanks to someone donating the tickets to the home. They also got to take along 2 younger boys from the boys dorm here. I am sure that they had a blast...can not answer for sure due to the fact that they still have not made it home as of yet. It is nice though, we leave only about 25 minutes from the both the Buc's Stadium and the Tampa Bay Yankees Stadium.

I want to leave you with one story and thought for the night. Often times when we are living for the Lord and trying to do HIS will we feel like we are not making a difference because we do not get the results immediatley. Well, I am here to tell you that sometimes waiting is the key and the Lord sends you that encouragment and fruits of your labor when you need it. I have received 2 emails on this same subject in the last day.

A former student was riding with her grandma and the conversation came up about favorite teachers. The little girl shared that I was her favorite teacher. The grandma proceeded to ask why? She said because she is the only one who gives out hugs and kisses. While a hug and a kiss is not a treat or a toy or a peice of candy it was from the heart. She knew that I loved her and I still do. I have a special place in my heart for all of my students and remember all of their names. So, rememeber that in everything you do, YOU are touching someones life either positively or negatively. I will continue to pass on my hugs and kisses to all the children that I meet until the Lord comes back for me. HOW ARE YOU GOING TO BE REMEMBERED?

Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another. No man hath seen God at anytime. If God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us. Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit.
1 John 4:11-13
A smile is a curve that helps to set things straight.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Just another day.....

Hello, I just wanted to let everyone know that we are all great here. We are enjoying have Mark's parents here visiting with us. They have jumped right in with both feet and started working on property with us. Taylor, Hunter, and Josiah love having Nanny and Papa around again. We have been busy here as usual and not much new here.

We do however have a prayer request to mention. Last night Jimmy (my father in law) received a phone call that his cousins wife Linda that he is very close to has brain cancer. She is repeating herself and has some memory lose. Please keep her in your prayers not only for her health but for her salvation. This is a trying time for the family because they are not sure how much she will remember. Keep her children in your prayers and pray that God will give them words to say and be able to lead their mother to the Lord before this disease takes over. I was reading in my devotions that we are to share each others burdens. I know that I am sharing mine with all of you and know that you are praying because you have chosen to follow our blog. But please know that while you are helping me I am praying for my readers. If you have a request you can always post a comment to the blog or send an email. I love you all.