Sunday, July 19, 2009

We have NO internet connection and so that is where we've been or not been as the case may be. I have stuck my head into a hotel here and paid for 2 hours of connection but as things would go it took 1 hour  for them to assist me in getting a connection and then I am only left with about 30 minutes of battery.... thank you to everyone who was used by the Lord to send us to our field training. Without all of the hours of instuction and leadership on frustration managment I think that I would have turned a back flip ...instead I am thankful for a comfy chair, a cool place to sit and my precious 30 minutes! 

I wanted to share with you an entry that I was SO impacted by that I wrote it down to blog at my first chance. These events occured last Monday but I would love to encourage you to pray as you feel led for us as if it were today. These are only a small glimpse of our days and can be quite challenging to digest. I have also found out that a friend who is as close as a sister is expecting a baby. While I am thrilled beyond anything that she is being blessed so sweetly by the Lord it is our first "big" event to miss and I am left in tears. I can't even email her to congradulate her.My heart is truely aching ! Seriously. So, Carolyn, with all of my love I pray for you today and trust that you feel my love from all the way in Central America. My tears and aching are only because you have given me such rich friendship for the last 11+ years. My hearts desire is that many will get a glimpse into the joys , gifts and struggles of serving our Lord overseas in an honest and real way. Frienships are so valuable. Motherhood is so precious and the life of "this" missionary is anything but boring and complacent.Today my heart aches for missing out on such celebration of wonderful news.....tonight the Lord will lift me up I know ! He always does! 

Confession of a Handicap Christian
Monday was a difficult day. I am only now feeling like I can begin to move past the many bizarre things that I took in on one day alone here in Guatemala. The most horrific and difficult was leaving the market today. The streets are very crowded and you really must stay on the sidewalk unless your desire to be hit by a vehicle. So I am walking in this very crowded condition and I come to a much older man who is lying face up, mouth wide open , against a wall and hands on his waistline. I can't describe the peace on his face but as I leaned as close as I was brave enough to get there was no air being projected from his lungs. My mind was racing - this man is lying here dead and all of these people... NOT just Guatemalan people... ALL of us - we're just walking over and around him. Ashamed to say it but honest enough to admit it I completely locked up in fear. I gave him a a little boost with the toe of my sandal and there was no movement. Panicked with what do I do ... I did nothing. I walked with a heavy heart...not 100% sure that he was dead but FAR from 100 % sure that he was alive. I could use my being a white, woman, very little Spanish, etc as excuses but truthfully it was only that the hands and feet of this servant girl simply didn't respond. In shock of my new country and the sad realities that we face daily I buckled in shock that this man was most likely dead ... what in the world do I do ??? who do I tell ? There are no shops here .. no policmen.... getting a policeman could have been more dangerous for me personally. So, with my spiritual body wounded I walked on. I had been to the market and normally carry all of my things in my backpack. Today I filled by backpack and carried my jug of milk home in hand. Two miles (aprox) with back pack and a gallon of milk is draining some days. The longer /farther I walked the heavier the eyes became that just could not stop glaring at my milk. I could see it in the mothers eyes how they wished for my milk, the young teenage boy on his bike just starred at the jug as we waited for a bus to pull away and cross the street.... it went on the whole way home. I could have collapsed at the reality of my prosperity that I posessed in my one jug of milk. If only I had a bag of cups I could have stood on the corner handing out my cold milk. But I had no cup- no means of sharing my wealth. So, ashamed I lugged my milk home. At this time, it no longer felt like a 1 gal. jug of felt like 10 . Large enough for everyone to have some with no way of sharing it. The last stretch of my walk home is the only " more dangerous" part that we have. It's actually safe enough. It's just not as public and lined with trees. Anyway, an older teenage boy was passing by on his bicylce and I greeted him. I always do to the people who pass. It's my way of saying - I'm not afraid of you. I'll speak first-smile. So I did. He passed. then out of no where he is riding beside me again. A little nervous, I try to play it cool. He continues to ask personal questions. I tell him that I don't understand ( and I didn't-smile) but did get the idea of what he was saying. He asked me how old I was.... I stopped, looked him in the eye and said (in choppy Spanish) that it was not neccesary for him to know. Good bye! He continued on as I began to walk again. I repeated w/ Good bye (on the verge of a very ugly tone ) once again for the walk home bearing no possesion of the Spirit of God that lives in me.  Yes, I know God can provoke our emotions to respond correctly to the situation at hand. True. And I agree. At this point in my walk however, I had lost all love for my "enemy" and just wanted to be "home"- done with the day. How much more saddness and challenge could I take? I was just going to go home and lye down and cry for the hurt of the people we're here to serve. And then I remembered a woman I had passed just that same morning on my way to school. She was maybe 50-60 years old and carrying on her back her 20 something year old  invalid son while shaking a change jar with her
 hands. What a difficult picture she was for me. In an instant I realized that if she can carry her "handicap", her "burden" , her "load", her life as a mother of an invalid child in an underdeveloped country than so can I! the truth of the day for me was to realize that I am the crippled one. I am the grown child incapable of nothing without the aid and care of my heavenly father. ALL day long he had me on his back ! ALL DAY. He never set me down. I simply chose the harship of holding on instead of the blessing in having a ride. 
So, this is my confession. As a beliver in Jesus Christ, as a follower of the gospel, as a child of Jehovah God I missed out. I chose to see the rawness of the world instead of the righteousness of God. In his mercy I will be given a new oppportunity tommorow. By his grace I was given today! 
Much love and abundant joy for the pain of being stretched ! 

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A Day For Treats

Today was a day for being treated by the Lord. Yes, everyday is a gift but somedays it seems like the Lord throws in a brownie ! Today was one of those days! Starting off with where I left off (literally ) on our blog...we no longer have to scale our wall to get on the roof to view the volcanoe( I totally agree Tam...very cool fun), escape some of the misquitoes or sit and be quiet. WHY? because the gentleman who ownes the house that we are in sent some nice people over to build us a staircase!!!!! Scaling the wall was awesome and so is our new twisty staircase! Just one MORE thing that the Lord has extended us that we don't deserve.... 

So that was exciting but by far the greatest thing that the Lord did today was bring us our pastors daughter to Antigua !!! She is part of the World Race missions team( you should google it- incredible) and they are making their way through parts of Guatemala and I bumped into her at a YWAM coffee shop here ! So Friday night Grayson and I went to a worship time that they had and then tonight she came over to our house for DOMINOES pizza... yes, they deliver in Guatemala too only they use motorcycles instead of vehicles with little boxes on the back to keep the pizza warm and in one piece-smile- Kelly plays the guitar and sings amazingly well and so we had some praise and worship time where she and Cooper played and sang for us. We also shared some chocolate chip cookies because although we're in Guatemala..cookies are a social southern thing that just make you feel like your HOME (wherever that may be) . 

And then......drum roll..... we have (ALMOST) got a home. David paid the deposit today BUT since we are in a foreign country and things are a little different here a deposit only suggest that you interested in some cases and so we are going to see an attorney and sign papers tommorow. Signing papers with an attorney is very customery here and the owners idea. TOMMOROW I may can reveal to you our place to rest our heads for the next 3 years..we are all VERY excited and's one more thing that we don't deserve and the Lord has extended to us great favor in it. 

And as if life was not comical enough at the moment...sometimes funnier than others for sure...the man that is finishing the staircase just came to me with his ball hat over his heart and I THINK (think being the key word) I THINK he was telling me that he has hit my car - I just have to crack up!!!! Praise the LORD we didn't pay much at all for it !!!! I thought that it was a good idea to stay with a very cheap car incase it got stolen and now I will add to my list of possiblities... incase someone drives past your driveway with plenty of access to the rest of the road and drags his tires across the side of your vehicle-smile!!! 

lovin' life from a new perspective,
**** Sorry. You'll have to check back in for the photos. I can't get them to upload at the moment. And by the way, we are LOVING you leaving us comments. Keep em up. They really do give us fuel for the journey. 

Friday, July 3, 2009

I have loaded a ton of photos from our adventures so far in the month of June. These last two post of photos has taken me almost 10 hours to load so please read and enjoy like your either eating an expensive piece of chocolate or your LAST piece of chocolate for a while(smile) Just kidding about the chocolate part. I do hope that you enjoy a peak into our adventures ..... living life in awe of God's grace and mercy in Guatemala, 
The Evans

I couldn't resist taking this photo. The other day I walked out of my bedroom and Jacob was scaling the INTERIOR/EXTERIOR wall of our house. Cooper was already up on top of the roof and due to the ENORMOUS competitive side that I have ...yep, I ended up scaling it too. The same way that Jacob did. You wouldn't believe the incredible view of the volcano Aqua from up there! Very cool! 
This is David loading up his phone with pre paid minute. Very expensive and frustrating. 
This is the same "home????" that is in the photo below. Below is a photo of it in the daytim. This however is a photo of it on a Friday night rented out as a castle for a birthday party. Unbelievable ! Someone was turning 40 from the states and they rented this place for his party and everyone came dressed in midevil dress. So, if you've gotten tired of all of the "regular" birthday places and you've got a big one coming up.... why not visit us in Guatemala , rent a castle and really throw a birthday party. No blow up toys here needed !!!!!

These are some of our FH staff from the Nebaj area of Guatemala. They came into Antigua for a vacation and so we had a dessert/coffee night at our house. Very fun! 

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Same Day ...More Photos from June in Antigua

Youth Sunday at our church here in Guatemala. Yes, even Grayson was SINGING! The kids are getting involved in the youth group. Their youth pastor is on the left with the guitar and his wife is sitting down playing the bongos. Our pastor is in the suit singing. 
Cooper played the guitar and Jacob is playing the piano.
David has started what we are calling "a coffee ministry". Every morning he is taking coffee to our guards and trying to build relationships with them. There are close 25 different dilects of Spanish in Guatemala and so there is no assuming that a person speaks " regular" Spanish when you are talking to them. This morning I passed an older man on a bicycle and I said "Buenos Dias" and he answered me "Ocha" (O- chhhhhaaaaaaaa) . okay...that was different (heehee)
At our language school we celebrated a students birthday. Yes, they really do use pinatas for celebrations here ! This is the courtyard of our school. Every student is with their own teacher and our tables line around this courtyard. Beautiful isn't it! 
 This was the straw that broke the camels back so to speak with our lack of car situation. This was the LAST taxi that I put our kids into. I have no idea who this wonderful man is but his vehicle was sketchy at best. The ride to the city should have taken him about 1 hour and I think that he made it in 4o min. You can tell by the look on the kids faces that they were asking " are you kidding mom?! " They were crammed in like sardines. The photo really doesn't do the situation the humor or un- nervingness (is that a word? ) that it deserved. Anyway, the Lord provided us an 11 year old Honda van only about 3 days later. It has a small water leak in the radiator and I couldn't feel like I had been given a bigger piece of gold. This would have driven me crazy in the states but here I take GREAT JOY in loading up the car and checking for all 8 kids, backpacks, snacks, water bottles and the jug of water for the radiator. I love it ! 

And So It Continues.....

We have found the Guatemala version of Las Palmas- even more delicious than at home believe it or not. 
Las Palmas is a "by candel light " resteraunt here. Lots of ambionace.
Some days you need LOTS of team work. Jacob and I found this group of ants carrying a corn flake. We just had to crack up. There was one on each side of the flake. Somehow it makes you feel better to know that it takes 4 ants to carry a corn flake and it takes all 8 of us to do MANY things here also.
Grayson braved getting a hair cut with a salon where they spoke NO English. I was so proud of her ! 

The voting was a great success ! Thank you to everyone who lifted us up in prayer regarding this decision and for the gals that sent comments. EVERYONE was in agreement to option #2 and so staying with democrocy (and GREAT revelation from the Lord-smile) we are going with AN option #2. We are so fortunet (thanks to many prayers) that we have been put into contact with a REAL ESTATE agent here in Guatemala. He is the gentleman who found our friends home (the neighbors that we would have in opt #2). I didn't want to tell you that the North Americans in option #2 are some dear friends that the Lord has brought our way. Thier kids are our kids ages and along with one other couple who we met when the three of us get together we have a party of 27 !!!! The other couple has 10 children (actually 9 but they have one who is hanging out with them for the summer from the states ). This has been amazing to be with them. They have all been here for the exact amount of time as us and we are all "adjusting" together.We were at the home of one of the couples this past Sunday after church and both of the women prayed with me regarding finding God's perfect home and could so relate to the importance of needing it to be SOLELY from the Lord ! You definetly don't want to conguer up a great home in a new country.... the best option is always God's option and thanks to the prayers of many I believe that we are on our way. We meet with the real estate agent to check out about 4 more places (which is amazing that we have the chance to see SO MANY homes) THIS Saturday. And so it contnues.... the house hunting. I'll keep you posted. 
One other request before I get on with lots of photos for you *** Could you please pray regarding our newsletter mailout. Our internet connection is HORRIBLE. I have had the computer on for the last 4 hours waiting for a connection to type this and check email. I am really feeling awful that I cannot update our support family . I simply have only a few minutes with either a connection or very little TIME to walk to the cafe to work on it. Our kids can get away with leaving for hours and hanging out up there but it is almost impossible for me to get away at all right now. So... would you pray that I will recieve the time to work on this very BIG task ( our addresses have aparently gotten jumbled up and so it will take time to sort them out) and second that I would recieve the burden lifted from this issue. I'm just really having a hard time releasing it to the Lord. THANK YOU!!!! 
So, some photos of our time here in June . I can't believe that we are 6 days away from being in Guatemala for a month. Amazing !