Monday, February 12, 2018

A call to prayer




I first learned about prayer when I was a part of YES (Youth Evangelism Service) in 1998. Intercessory prayer was a part of our discipleship training.


(the children getting prayed for at Koinonia)
Since then I feel like I've been on a learning curve. Prayer is such an important thing. It involves both speaking and listening. It involves coming face to face with our Savior, trusting that I can leave things in his hands. It changes me as I grow into deeper trusting my maker, learning more about him.



I have felt that my time in Belize is marked with a call to prayer. I don't have a lot of opportunities for ministry, I am still language learning. (along with maintaining our house and homeschooling).


We had been looking for a church. We don't have an opportunity to go every week, but it is good to fellowship beyond the church that we lead. I was looking on the map when I saw a church pretty near us. Nathanael contacted the pastor of the church, and Pastor Ed suggested meeting.



The first week we attended church I was humbled. Every week, they call the pastor and his family forward. They spend time in their service praying for their pastor, the children and when we are there us as well. They pray for us in their weekly fasting service on Thursdays.
(Dayna and Ed Perez pastors of Koinonia, at the sweetheart banquet) 

I have been able to go to the Tuesday evening prayer service. It as an honor to pray for others in the church. It is also a lesson. When I go to prayer meetings in the US, usually one person prays at a time. Here the prayer request is stated, and everyone prays at once, out loud.

(Some of our friends at Koinonia)

We know you pray for us. We love the opportunity to pray for you. Please let us know if you have a request we would love to pray for it.


(this is Pastor Ed and his family getting prayed for at Koinonia)

The last blog post I asked if anyone would like to be a part of a prayer group that would receive separate emails. We would like to give a more in-depth look at our ministry. We are hoping to send requests weekly or bi-weekly. We want to focus on the Deaf in the area, giving you a peak into their lives.  It won't be a long email, I promise :)


If you would like to receive these e-mails, please let us know. We will add you to our list.

Have a great week!!!

Spring

Saturday, February 3, 2018

A full week

Last week we had the privilege of hosting Dr Bradley Russell and his daughter Michelle.  While Nathanael preached Sunday morning, Abigail and I picked them up at the airport. It was my first time driving so far (in Belize) by myself. Thankfully these roads aren't PA roads. It's pretty much is a straight shot.

I was reminded of southern hospitality as Michelle called me "Ma'am" multiple times.



They spent their first 3 days in Belize with us. We were able to show them around the town. We ate from the street. We tried to provide them with a wide pallate: hot dogs, tostados, tacos, marquistias, and lemon grass tea.


We were able to introduce them to a lot of people who come to church. We held a dinner/game night at our house. Children mingled in between adults. Laughter prevailed. People stared at game boards or simply chatted. Nathanael helped interpret for Brad and Michelle. 

We spent 2 days doing some touristy things. It was nice to show them our little corner of Belize.  Laminai is Nathanael's favorite ruins. Brad paid for us to take the boat tour (our first time).  The wildlife is just lovely on the tour and at Laminai.  We didn't see toucans but we did see a rare bird. (You would have to ask Dr Russell as I am unsure of its name). The tour guides were helpful. We got to meet a man who became a christian because of a medical mission trip, and goes to church close to our house. 



On wednesday after visiting Old Belize, we drove to the camp (Camp Legacy), where we usually stay while working with Kids Konnect. 

The end of our week was spent working with Kids Konnect. It was nice to serve as a family. I admit Zephaniah was doing a lot more playing than serving. He met a fellow TCK who lives at the camp. They spent the day in the dirt and rain, having the time of their lives! We must have Tucker and his family to visit soon! 



The end of our first day in Silk Grass, it began to thunder and rain hard. Soon our power was out. The people in pharmacy will still distributing medications. They finished their work in the dark. I was so impressed with the stamina. I was also impressed because I didn't hear one complaint. People did their jobs as efficiently as they possibly could. I attempted to help, but felt lost. I didn't know where the medicines were while the lights were on. Without them, it was really difficult.  I let the experts do their jobs.




I was very thankful that Dr Van was along this trip. A few weeks ago I injured my elbow while working out. I have been trying to rest it, but it wasn't improving. Dr Van is a chiropractor. He took two seperate times to bring it back into alignment.



Abigail was a bit upset since we left "early". Usually we stay till Sunday and have the traditional group picture. This time we left Saturday evening. Since Nathanael was with us, he needed to return on Sunday for church.  I assured Abigail that although we weren't in the group picture, I am sure people knew we were there! 



Thanks again Kids Konnect team for what you do and for allowing us to serve along with you. It is a privilege. 

Be looking for the digital copy of our newsletter in your inboxes this week :)

Spring

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Remembering Grandma Moyer

Three days after our 2015 arrival in Orange Walk, we found ourselves greatly saddened. Our friend and supporter Glenna had passed.  It was our abrupt introduction to the things we miss while living abroad.  For Glenna, they created a google hangouts. We were able to "be there" from Belize, as was another friend in Hungary.

Two weeks ago my mother let me know that my maternal grandmother was getting weaker.  They felt her death was imminent.  My grandmother passed this past Friday.  I considered attending the funeral but plans that were made about 8 months ago prevented me from doing so.  It was a bit of a difficult week for me. Wednesday (the day of the funeral in PA) had me thinking about where I would have been, had there been an opportunity to be in PA.

It is difficult to be away at times such as these. I am aware that our lives appear exotic and fun. Currently I am just missing the chance to remember my grandmother. I was unable to attend the funeral. I can introduce you to her, and a little more about her life.



I can honestly say without her and my grandfather we may not have made it to Belize. They set an example for me at a young age. I was in second grade when my grandparents left to work in South Africa.  I imagined I would work in an African country one day. I can tell you it may happen but currently I am quite grateful for the shorter plane flight, and better availability for visits!

My grandparents also helped foster a love of books. They would give us books each year for our birthday. I treasure mine!  I have to admit that at times it felt like a "boring" gift. I am very thankful that they valued us enough to give us lasting treasures!

When I was younger, grandma used to run. I never watched her but I am in awe of her dedication. She even ran a few races!

My grandparents had a pet quail for a while. It laid tiny eggs. Their neighbor would take the eggs and make decorations out of them. I was ever amazed at how they could decorate such a tiny egg!

One of the memories I treasure the most was listening to my grandparents pray. They would sit at the table and read their morning devotions together. They would remember each of their children, grand children, and then great grandchildren in prayer. It was humbling, and encouraging at the same time.

The legacy that my grandmother left is one I admire. One can see it by simply looking at her children. I know that the hardworking, dedication and prayer come from my grandparents.  I am a third generation nurse. I am thankful to my grandmother for showing that she was able to be a nurse and a mother of 9. (Sometimes my 4 overwhelm me! )

Thank you for sharing this time with me, remembering her.  I hope you have a great week!

Spring

PS We are wanting to engage people more in prayer. If you would like to be added to that email (hopefully weekly or biweekly) list, please let us know!

Sunday, January 21, 2018

stepping into opportunity

Today was amazing. Sometimes I plan for amazing things to happen, and it's disappointing. Today there was no plan it just happened. We have a lot of Chinese immigrants here. They tend to own the bigger stores. One of our closer shops, Dickerson, has a lot of Chinese products. The other day I took pictures of some (with no English on them) and sent them to my friend. She was a missionary in China for 20 years. She translated for me. I actually didn't buy the "good tea for your health". Finding out what was in the package was nice.  I did however find some spring roll wraps.

Thus set in motion an idea. We could make spring rolls!  I was planning on me just making dinner, but Selah and Nathanael joined in, making it fun. As we listened to music, Zion danced around on 3 yoga mats. She even put on a gymnastic uniform.


All of that to say we're normal. Normal family living a normal life. Sometimes it is fun to grasp the normalness. Transitions are always hard for us. It has been feeling lately that we are on the other side of this transition. Praise the Lord! I wanted to highlight for you readers that a good portion of what we do lacks glamour. We live here. We eat, we wash our clothes, we go on walks, and buy food at the supermarket.

Of course there are out of ordinary moments to add spice to our lives!  One happened this past saturday. The story starts with meeting a YWAM participant. She actually lives in Belize with her parents. They are originally from Colombia, but have moved 8 times for her father's job. She is truly a TCK. She informed me that her parents have a Christian radio program. They like to interview people and share what God is doing.


Last Thursday Nathanael received a Whatsapp call that he didn't understand. He passed the phone to me. It was Julianna's parents. They woud be in Orange Walk on Saturday, could they come for an interview?  I have to admit when she suggested 12pm I was a bit put out. In Belize, everyone eats at 12. The culture is if someone is at your house, you feed them. I wrongly assumed they were coming at that time to have me feed them.

I mixed my favorite meal of chicken tortilla soup. As they entered, we had the table all set. They stared in disbelief. Apparently the aren't Belizean ;) They insisted on bringing something to the meal. My children all were quite pleased especially because we don't buy soda especially not coke! They also got some fruit salad to share.

I was humbled by them. What an opportunity to share and understand more about them.  Her father talked about how every country, God has brought someone into their lives to help them adjust. Both her father and younger brother speak English. Her mother is still learning and we conversed mostly in Spanish.

Here's the embarrassing part: I was asked to do an interview for the women's program!  Embarrassing because it is in my second language, and my second language still needs work. I did my best but it was lacking. Nathanael also was interviewed, him in English. It was such a great time to share our hearts and what we do.

If you would like to listen, email us and we'll let you know where you can download the link for the show.  Here is their website: http://www.unavozeneldesierto.org/

Saturday, January 13, 2018

New Years Eve Party

One can still celebrate the New Year two weeks later right?


We are thankful for those who were able to come to the party. Some people joined us from Spanish lookout.  Others are Deaf but don't go to church.  Still others live in villages far out, and Nathanael was able to take our trike and pick them up.  Some people brought their whole family.  Some came alone.  Fun was had by all, except perhaps the three children that fell asleep.




Nathanael interpreted Charlie Brown Christmas for those who came. The children handed out pop-corn





Nathanael then had a Jeopardy game involving the past lessons that he taught in Church and Bible study.





Finally we played games and ate snacks





At the last minute we headed to the park to watch fireworks.
Thanks for joining with us this 2018 to support the Deaf in Orange Walk. You are a blessing!


Happy New Year!!




Friday, January 5, 2018

Holiday preparations

Christmas wasn't our big holiday here. If you read my facebook, you would note we were invited to a party Christmas eve. The pastor of the Spanish church we've been attending invited us to his house. We felt like party poopers when we left at 10pm and some people were just arriving. I am not sure how I got on the subject, but I asked people when they were going to bed. One woman who looked about 20 years to my senior stated she didn't know when she is going to bed. I was floored.



Really I am not sure how I missed this part of the culture 2 years ago. I did know that Belizeans tend to celebrate things the night before. I remember Ben Martin being at our house Christmas eve only to be awoken by the 12am fireworks. I just was unaware that the party continues into the early morning hours!

That being said, our Christmas was quite quiet. We had family opening of presents and enjoyed a brunch.  We were thankful. We had sparkling juice. The cinnamon rolls didn't turn out the way I wanted them to (oh well)

Our big holiday was New Years eve. We invited the church, along with Deaf who don't usually come to the house.  I will highlight this next week.  :)


In preparation for the big party, we had two cookie baking sessions. One was the children's friends. It ended up being a jumble of people: our conservative Mennonite (cape dress wearing) friends, mixed with a sweet boy and his mom we meet at the park on Saturday nights.  Our Mennonite friend and I did get offered cheap cosmetic surgery in Cuba, all we have to do is get there!!


The children made cookies. Interspersed with the cookie festivities, they played games and ran outside. I was able to socialize a bit. Everyone had a good time!


The second party involved the youth.  Giving credit where credit is due, Selah did most of the coordinating. She pre-made all of the dough, icing and rolled the cookies. The 3 youth girls helped with decorating. I was left on the clean up they weren't able to accomplish. Man it is crazy how messy icing can be when it is spread everywhere!


Nathanael and Misael helped put up our temporary garage. This served in housing the food and children on New Years.  They also sampled multiple cookies.




May your New Year be blessed!

Look for a newsletter in your mailbox in the next few weeks. If you aren't on our list and want to be, e mail us and we will add you!

Blessings,

Spring

Thursday, December 28, 2017

When God does something, you just sit back to watch

I have to admit I'm a bit hesitant about posting this. We live in the tropics. Palm trees are a part of our daily landscape. Before leaving on our internship, someone made the statement that we were "going on vacation".  I really shy away from sharing anything that would seem that we are on vacation, or that our life is a vacation. Honestly I wouldn't choose this life as a vacation, but perhaps you would.




The reason I am hesitant is we took a break. It was a planned break, planned around our visa renewal. It costs us 37.00$ (bz)to leave the country as a part of Belizean law. This is why we don't frequently leave. Our visas were due to being renewed. Last time we went to Mexico, we were able to avoid our visa renewal fee by leaving and only paying the exit fee.  Unfortunately we did have to pay both fees, but it was worth the try!





Where did we go you ask? Chetumal!  Most Belizeans, especially those more north, go to Chetumal to shop. While it is distinctly Mexican, it does have some vendors from the US.

















 Our first stop was Mcdonalds.  The kids had dreamed about this for 4 months!  I joke that I only let them go to Mcdonalds while in Mexico. We don't while we are in the states, and there aren't any in Belize.  I unfortunately got something. It made me suffer later. Mcdonalds and I don't get along. Of course this was a Mexican Mcdonalds, they had a variety of salsa to put on your food.



Shopping was next on our list. We walked across the parking lot to the mall. The mall! An air conditioned place to walk and peruse the thousands of things available to buy. Not to mention the food court!

After a day of shopping, looking and exploring things in Spanish, we looked for a place to stay. Someone recommended a the hotel behind the mall. Nathanael and I navigated checking in in Spanish.  As they were in the process behind the counter, Nathanael noticed that the woman was gesturing at a cleaning lady behind us.  Nathanael asked if the cleaning lady was Deaf. "Yes" came the answer.


Nathanael conversed with her some. The next day we took her and her friends who work at the hotel out for dinner.  It was a difficult time. There were 4 languages at our table. The children conversed in English. We ordered in Spanish. Nathanael attempted a combination of ASL, and the Deaf taught him some LSM (ligua de sordomudo) the sign language in Mexico.





We were in awe!  We could not have planned to meet these Deaf people. It was simply a thing we stood back and saw God do!

We were able to connect with them via what's app and Facebook. We are thankful for what God is doing and hope that we can see the Deaf again in our next Mexico visit.

Thanks for sharing with us. We pray you have a blessed holiday season!

Spring