New Website!

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Thankful Throwback Thursdays

As we look forward towards our next assignment in Northern Argentina, we are looking back with gratitude for all that God did through the ministry in Honduras!

Over the next several months, I’ll update this post each Thursday with one of my favorite blog posts from the past 9 years!

Click on each photo to read full story.

It wasn’t the end…

“Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or imagine. (Ephesians 3:20). I had the grand privilege of front row seats to seeing this verse played out this week at VBS.

Do you remember the story earlier this year of getting to baptize Rachel, my sweet new sister in Christ just 5 weeks before she went to be face to face with Jesus? (That story alone is full of God’s fingerprints! Read here: shorturl.at/flxIW) But only He knew that there wasn’t a period at the end of that story, but instead an eclipse…

As I watched her 2 sons and their father release doves in the air as a symbol of hope and freedom for Rachel at her funeral, my heart broke that none of them personally knew this hope and freedom found only in Jesus.

So we prayed…and prayed…

Fast forward 3 months to The Journey’s VBS. The first morning I got a text from one whom had been praying with us, “K* is here!” He played the games and sang the songs and listened in on the teachings and did the art projects for 3 awesome days. The last 10 minutes, of the last rotation in the missions room, on the last day he came forward after I asked any of the kids if they wanted to find out how to make Jesus their best friend. We talked and prayed with a precious group of about 10 kids culminating in a prayer for Jesus to cleanse them of their sins, to become their best friend, to talk to and listen and obey Jesus everyday of their lives! As everyone filed back into the auditorium for the closing of the day, Rachel’s younger son stayed behind. “Will you baptize me, right there where you baptized my mom?”, he asked.

It took all I had within me not to jump up and down. “Buddy, I would love to! Can you tell me more about why you want to be baptized, what does that mean to you?” (Wondering if he just wanted it because he saw his mom do it.)

“Well my mom before she died talked about Jesus and my grandma talks about Jesus a lot too but it didn’t make sense until today when I prayed that prayer with you and meant it.”

“Yes! Yes, it would be my great honor to baptize you and celebrate your decision with you!”

We soon learned that he was leaving to go visit family the next morning for a month and I was leaving in 2 weeks to move indefinitely overseas. So that night, during the VBS family night, I had the great honor of celebrating baptism with him in the same place his mother was submerged and “raised to newness of life” with his grandma, older brother and dad (and the rest of the VBS kids) all cheering him on.

After he had changed into dried cloths, still barefoot, he came running up and asked to add his name to the baptism sign on the side of the baptismal tub. And where did he sign it? Directly below where his mom other had signed her name 3 months prior while she’s was still walking this earth.

**A family left straddling the “already and not-yet” of the Kingdom of God, yet tied together by the eternal thread of hope in Jesus Christ their Savior.**

Praise Jesus for being in the details! Praise Jesus for all those that made VBS possible. For those who prayed for this family with us and for his neighbor who obeyed the nudge to bring K* along with her own kids. Praise Jesus for a grandmother who dropped everything to invest in the lives of her grandkids during this challenging time. How amazing is it what we get to be used by God when we just show up for the next thing He puts in front of us!

“We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us! But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:12-13)

(Shared with K’s family permission for Jesus’ glory!)

Discipleship Summit Back in Honduras

Still processing all that God did during the discipleship summit Signs of Love hosted this past week. It was so fun to see so many of the children I taught when they were smaller, now walking into adulthood including a baptism and an engagement announcement. There are so many challenges ministering to low language deaf, so celebrating the highs are all the more sweet! Will you join me in praying for each person that attended to live out each of the elements of being a follower of Christ that we studied during our time together!

These people. This country. I will treasure them in my heart for eternity. So grateful for all God did in, around and through me over the last 10 years here. A piece of my heart and prayers will always be with our beloveds in this country of Honduras. #inHondurasasitisinheaven🙏🏼

“When we decide to go past the edge with God, I think you’ll find what we did…A bigger world, and more reason to care for it. More forgotten, ruined, beautiful people than we ever imagined existed, and more reason to hope in their redemption. A greater God, and more reason to journey with Him anywhere. 

If we are the body of Christ—and Christ came not for the healthy but the sick—we need to be fully present in the places where people are most broken.
(Mike Yankoski)

“God’s Heart for the Nations” study

I am so grateful for each of these people (and those not pictured) that contributed to this study the last 2 months as we studied God’s Heart for the Nations. I learned so much as the Holy Spirit spoke through each of you in our discussions. What an amazing God we serve who’s heart is for all tribes, tounges and nations to know Him personally! #totheendsoftheearth#untilthewholeworldhears #radical

Divine Appointments

Wess Stafford (President of Compassion International) said, “Every child you encounter is a divine appointment.” We have had some pretty special “divine appointments” lately as we have had the opportunity to share about the ministry of Signs of Love in schools and churches, with kindergartners all the way to high schoolers. 

The younger students have loved meeting Risa (my “deaf” Honduran puppet), reading “Enrique Speaks with His Hands” (a true story about one of the deaf children in the ministry), learning sign language, and playing charades (practice communicating without their voice). 

The older students learned about the reality of many deaf in developing nations that don’t even know their own name and the many names that God gives us as His children. 

We pray that these encounters will plant seeds in their hearts for missions and the deaf community that will bloom into generosity and compassion towards others as they grow up.

“We will never know the impact this side of eternity.”

Do you ever have those themes God just keeps reminding you of again and again? 

Well He reminded me, yet again, that every moment with every person matters!

I selfishly tend to be hesitant to jump into friendships. With my iterate life, especially during covid, “We’ll only be here a few months” I thought, “No need to get involved.” 

After more than a “few months” passed we realized that we might be here awhile 😬 . I can’t begin to think about all the amazing people God has blessed my life with here in Florida that I might have missed out on. I am so grateful for so many of you that I have gotten to know during this time. 

Even as we have an official date of moving, and the number of weeks to invest in a new friendship would be less than 20, I am reminded, yet again, that just a moment can make a difference, why am I so slow to learn? 

Outside the disciples that walked with Jesus everyday during His 3 year earthly ministry, most of Jesus’ encounters were just moments with people, and yet it complete changed their lives!

If we are going to do what Jesus did, we have to be intentional with every person we interact with. 

Remember that cool story I shared about God’s attention to details in allowing me to meet and baptize sweet Rachel that was just 7 days out of the hospital from brain surgery? (If not, read here.)

“She been unconscious for days and it does’t look good.” Rachel’s grandmother (the one that worked with the deaf) called to let me know. The next several days were filled with a lot of uncertainty and tears until she she was finally released into Jesus’ arms. 

At her baptism February 16th, as I submerged her under the waters as a symbol I said, “Buried into death with Jesus.” And as she came up out of those waters I said, “Raised to walk in newness of life.” The newness of life then was with her new walk with Jesus in this life. But I never thought that the time for her to walk that out into eternity would come so soon. 

Less than 6 weeks later, I was sharing this story with her friends and family as they gathered together to celebrate her life on the beach. They remember her infectious smile, her huge heart, and the light she brought to everyone’s life.

Life is made up of a million little moments, the sum of which we will never know the impact of this side of eternity. I pray that God would help me make every moment count.

“So let our wounded love now bear witness
to this hope: that even such deep and heaving sorrows as these will be redeemed, and all these tears we weep, will fall as seeds that will one day blossom into bright, eternal things.”

(“Every Moment Holy, Vol. 2”)