Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Day 49

Hello again!

I honestly don't remember what I have told you and what I have yet to share {my brain seriously hurts}. So, I will just share for a few minutes what has been laid on my heart since I wrote last. 
First a quote that I just think everyone should hear-
 "God wants us to trust Him with abandon. He wants to show us how He works and cares for us. He wants to be our refuge."
Some nights I lay on my sleeping mat and listen to the stupid mouse and wonder why in the world God put me here. I lay there and pray for all of the people back home, for my teammates here in the Philippines and around the world and then I ask God to be my strength. But the end of every prayer always comes back to this - I can't do this without Him and He wants me to realize that. I got to talk to mom today and she told me about all of the people that are praying for me across the country. I just want to say thank you from the very bottom of my heart, it truly means the world.

Team break has been a blessing. It was much needed! There is this yearning for home that I just can't shake {the tears are beginning to come more ofter, sorry teammates!} -but I am excited to finish out this commitment that I have made. 

A few things that I think I may have forgotten to mention on the last post-

We hosted a circumcision day last Friday and Saturday-we were able to "tuli" 23 little boys. On Thursday we hiked to the Family farm-It's not what you would think. I fell three times on the way there-on the way back we carried firewood (trees) and I fell then too {just call me grace!} It is so difficult to put my experiences into one blog post because so much has happened. Plus, I don't need anyone to worry too much; some stories will be better shared once I am on American soil in just a few short weeks.

 I know this was a short post but I will leave you with a verse {look it up!}-

" Busa dili kita magtinapolan sa pagbuhat ug maayo; kay kon magpadayon kita moabot ang panahon nga makaani kita sa bunga niini." Galacia 6:9

Pray that I can focus on the needs of our village without getting distracted by thoughts of home. That God will give me strength and patience. He is a great God!

Ashley-LOVE YOU! Stay strong my love. Bring me good food so we can eat and talk on the way home! Milk and cookies would be nice haha See you soon!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Maayo ang Dios

Greetings Americanos!

I am dropping a quick note on our way to team break. I did not think that I would have access to internet for the rest of the trip but the Lord has provided and I am very thankful. Mom and Dad- I am still alive and doing well! We will be taking a team break in Davao City until Thursday. The past two weeks have flown by and I cannot believe that I have only 7 nights left in my village. I had a post all written out and I forgot to bring my journal with me, so we will see what all I can tell you in the next few minutes.

I honestly don't even know where to begin. I thought that I could never survive two weeks stranded in a remote village in the Philippines but God has been faithful once again. First, let me just say that I have been pushed to new limits-I preached this morning. Now, our church only has about 15 members but preparing something to say was a big deal for me! God is good. I have not bathed without clothes on for over two weeks now...the river is nice but it is certainly no shower. However, to get through the small inconveniences God has given us 4 prescious families that we have been discipling. We host bible studies with them many times each week. I know that they are growing and I invite you to pray for them. When we go back for our last week, I pray that they will have many questions for us and that the Lord will give us answers.

It has been difficult not to think of home but on the days that we are busy it is much easier. God has placed my team in one of the harder villages to reach on a personal level. They are afraid of us and, unlike the other people, they do not flock to us at the sight of our white skin. Going into the homes has been a very unique experience and one that I am very thankful for.

For all of you sleeping comfortably in your bed right now I will share with you my sleeping experiences...just so you can thank God for all that we have been given! Each night I sleep under a mosquito net that I share with a teammate. We have our sleeping mats in a room that is about 5x5. There are a few mice that just love our room and each night they torment me! I am terriffied. The little things keep me up for hours, right next to my face. I will not miss them. The little lizards and cockroaches are not fun either-Thank the Lord for that net.

I miss my town and my city. Memphis has been on my heart. Each night I think of the sweet babies that I had the privledge of living with the past 7 months. I miss them dearly and pray for them often. It saddens me that the conditions here are far better than what I imagine they are living in. Also, I encourage all of you to continue to pray for the Erwin family. I got word of their tragic loss. I know that a life lived for the Lord is a glorious and triumphant one and my dear brother Trey was quite the soldier for God's kingdom. I love you guys!

My sprits are good going into this last leg of the journey. I pray that God continues to work here. He has brought me through so many struggle and triumphs-highs and lows. We will be getting on a bus in a few hours to ride for 7 hours overnight. I cannot wait to share with you more of my thoughts and experiences once I get a chance to collect my thoughts. I thank you all for your unwavering prayers. I am reminded daily the power of prayer and I am thankful for people in my life who are willing to do their part and are lifting up my team. I could have never imagined spending a summer where I am-It is incredible. I held a monkey, don't worry I got pictures that will be posted as soon as I return. I miss dairy and pretty much anything that is very unhealthy (I ate frog-now that's desperate). I miss my toilet and my sink/faucet. I miss clean clothes and smelling good. Spend today thanking God for the small things. This journey has reminded me of so many things that I continually forget to be thankful for. Hug your family this morning-they are the biggest blessing of all!

I was reminded this week of a very powerful passage: Ezekiel 33:1-9
We are all watchmen. Whether you are at home or on vacation, just remember that very thing. As followers of Christ, we have been given a large task. Embrace it!

Much love and see you soon,

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