Thursday, October 29, 2009

Nica Sign Language

I want to teach you a little Nica sign language. Everyone participate with me. Take your right arm and hold it close to the side of your body. Form a fist with your hand. Now, only bending your elbow, pump your forearm and fist up and down like you are trying to hammer something with your fist. You are doing great! Now do it faster. Congratulations, you have just successfully signed "I have diarrhea"! We hope you never have to use this sign when you come to visit us in Nica :)
-Jeff

Monday, October 26, 2009

2 Feet, Worlds Apart

As we progress in our mental, physical, spiritual and emotional preparation for our hopeful departure to Nica in the Summer of 2010, we often feel out of place in our current "world OR home". We have one foot here in the U.S. ...that is deeply rooted AND we are stepping out in faith to Nica with the other foot. Our experience, feelings, emotions are sometimes impossible to describe to others--even among other devoted Christians. However, someone wiser than us pointed out that as believers in this earthly home, we are all out place...we all have one foot in this world and one foot in another...because we are designed for ETERNITY with God...this home is merely temporary. One day will have both feet firmly planted FOREVER in Heaven and we'll be able to kick off our shoes and celebrate God's Glory for eternity.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Can we hang ornaments on a mango tree?

Some random thoughts as the Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons approach:
~I am reminded that this may be our last Thanksgiving and Christmas on American soil for several years.
~I am a bit stuck on the whole Christmas tree thing. Should we shop the post Christmas sales (which actually happen before Christmas, go figure.) for a little artifical tree that can fit in a suitcase? What about all the ornaments? And lights?
~There is a balance of thought between what is sentimental, eternal, traditional and comfortable.
~I wonder if we can use a palm tree or a mango tree...how will the snowflake ornaments look on a tropical tree???

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Learning through Fear

A few days ago, I was at a park waiting for a family that scheduled a photoshoot (by the way they got their dates wrong and didn't show...but God had a lesson to learn that was more than just the lesson of patience and understanding). I was by myself, it was late in the afternoon, it isn't the safest park in the area...so I was trying to look purposeful and keep my distance from others. I saw three men walking toward me. I had my big camera hanging around my neck, my equipment backpack on my shoulder and my heavy tripod on the other shoulder...not easy things to run with if I had to (oh!...the things a paranoid, 5 foot woman thinks). I made eye contact with the men and smiled. One of the men stepped toward me and handed me a disposable camera. Hmmm. OK. They motioned for me to take a picture. I noticed their ethnicity (is that the correct PC term?). I asked, Espanol? They shook their heads 'yes' (okay, Si). I counted "en espanol" and snapped the photo. They motioned again, "uno mas?" I asked (ooo, I remembered some spanish, wooHOO!). They nodded yes. I finished snapping and winding the camera. They laughingly said, Muchos Gracias. I over pronounciated, "De Nada". They laughed (I'm sure they laughed more later at my horrendous Spanish). I smiled to myself.

It is moments like these that I realize that through fear and awkwardness...lessons can be learned. Today it was a language lesson: I will only learn the language if I am willing to fight the fear and try. I am sure that once in Nicaragua, I will experience many more moments like these. May I remember who my Protector is and trust that fear shouldn't stop me from taking an opportunity to learn.

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Irony of the Weather

As some may know from Facebook, every year, we have a "contest" of sorts to see how long we can make it before we turn the heat on in the fall. It is always amazing how it can go from ugly hot to frigid cold in a span of weeks...sometimes days it seems. So as we sit and shiver (I have a horrible competitive spirit)...I have to laugh at the irony that it is likely that this time next year we will have no need for this twisted contest. There are two seasons in Nicaragua--Dry Hot and Wet Hot. So...how can we bottle up the cool, crisp, fall air and bring a little of it with us to Nicaragua? Another lesson in "this is the day the Lord has made, let us be glad and rejoice in it [cold OR hot!]."

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Bethany's TOP 3 Problems with Becoming a Missionary

1. I do NOT know how to drive a car with manual transmission (that's all they have in Nica.).

2. My hair does NOT cooperate with me when it is humid, which it is ALL YEAR LONG in Nica. (although, the electrical plugs are the same as the US...so my flat iron should work.)

3. A clothes line...how do you use that?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Our First Letter is Coming!

We are putting the final touches on our first official CVM prayer letter...and then it'll go to print...and arrive in your mailbox! Aren't you SO EXCITED! So when that letter arrives...don't put it in the "to read sometime in the next century pile" or the recycling bin...OPEN IT UP!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Little Steps Forward

We officially have been accepted as long term service candidates with Christian Veterinary Mission!! We are getting things ready. Prayer Card picture (thanks to Libby of Libby Portraits), Brochures, Prayer letters, Address lists....not to mention getting our house "sellable" (power washing, painting, landscaping)!!! It is all very EXCITING (and sometimes we'd like to swap out the word EXCITING for CRAZY!) We will try to update our blog more often, especially as things start happening.