We are travelling over these next few days, visiting friends all over Texas. A highlight of the past few days was meeting our newest cousin Isaac. Isaac, welcome to Texas. Peter was excited to see a Tesla sedan, and I have no pictures of him with Isaac which explains the last photo.
I am thankful for my mother’s side of the family, all my aunts, uncles, and cousins who have continually been interested in this life we are living, both overseas and in the U.S. They have continually demonstrated to us what it means to be a family. Thank you for spending time with us this past weekend. We are honored to be part of the family.
People press on through hard and even scary things. Some friends of ours in Honduras were robbed twice in their first two days in their new country. And yet they persevere, because they know that God will carry them through hardships, and it is for a reason that he brought them to Honduras. You can read the whole post here. Below is an excerpt.
This is why we are here.People are in need. And the thing that they need most is the best thing we are able to share. Jesus.I have been forgiven much. And for this, I am able to forgive and even love those that sin against me.
We went earlier this week to see my father and the Reid family in Edmond, Oklahoma. Robert and Amy Reid are great friends from high school and graduate school respectively. I like to take credit for getting them together, but they are both such attractive people they would have found each other anyway. Robert owns a printing company with his brother and parents, and Amy is a physical therapist. Between the two of them and their kids they make a great difference in so many lives, just as they make a great difference in our lives. I have repeatedly called them with little notice over the years and they have offered us a place to stay in their home. Robert makes about three times the amount of food we are able to eat at every meal, and we always leave stuffed and happy. They have been great friends to our family and great supporters of us over the years. I cannot help but brag on how great they are, and what a privilege it continues to be to count them as friends. Unfortunately, I did not take a picture of them when we were at their house, but I did take some pictures of a restaurant called Pops which has almost every type of Soda you could hope to find. It is located in Arcadia, OK where my Dad lives. The kids think it is a lot of fun, and to be completely honest, so do I.
I am glad to see that the Wright family has arrived to Peru. This is the first wave of Wrights who will be arriving to Curahuasi to serve at Diospi Suyana Hospital. We will see you guys in three weeks. Read this from the Diospi Suyana Hospital website.
The Wright family from Memphis, Tennessee
Dr. Stephen Wright will start his new job at the Diospi Suyana Dental Clinic this upcoming Monday. Yesterday, the American dentist tested one of the five chairs. No one seems afraid of visiting a dental clinic – even surrounded by drills and syringes, his wife Finley and their kids John Paul and Matthew seem extremely comfortable. We wish the Wright family a good start and are looking forward to working with them for at least two years!
Tonight we spent a great evening with what is called the TK group. It is a group of men and women who share a dinner and then listen to a sermon by Tim Keller. Then they discuss its significance. They had honored us in the past by allowing us to share what we are going to do in Peru, and tonight they let us share about our experiences of the past year learning Spanish in Costa Rica. What a privilege! And they honored us by letting us ramble on about ourselves. It is a shame that so often when you want to talk about God and what he is doing, how often you just end up talking about yourself, your own emotions, your own failures, and your own thoughts. It is so easy to be self-centered. Yet this patient group listened to us as we tried to share what God had taught us over the past year, and what we hope God will do with us in the future. It is a great group of people, and we are thankful for all of you who have believed in us and honored us over the past year by praying for us, sending us cards and encouragement, and supporting us financially. We cannot express what you all mean to us.
Thank you and gracias.
Our kids cannot wait to get on the playground you see below. They have spent the past year walking from playground to playground in our barrio in San Jose. You might say they are playground experts . . . experts of the type of playgrounds most of us adults had when we were kids, not the big constructions we have for kids now in the US. Playgrounds have come a long ways and in my opinion they look more interesting today, but when we go to the park, what my kids end up liking the most are simple monkey bars, swings, slides. Or they run to the edges of the field to climb trees or explore the creek, and they ignore what has been made by the public engineers. There is a moral or parable in there somewhere, but I cannot quite find it tonight. From the Diospi Suyana website get a look at the playground they have made outside for the kids as they wait for the parents or siblings to see the doctor.
The hospital playground
When we realized that the wooden play structures weren’t safe anymore, Michael Friedermann and his crew replaced them with new ones made out of metal and thus less prone to be affected by the Curahuasi weather.
The playground has two swings, a seesaw, a climbing structure and slide. This playground is the perfect place for our young patients who are not looking forward to either the long wait or the doctor’s visit. And fortunately, there haven’t been any accidents on playground so far, even when the old wooden swing set collapsed.
After one year of study, laughter, tears, and sweat we made it through a year of language training. This group went to eat at Chili’s to celebrate the evening of the day of graduation. It was also the night before we left to come back to the United States (yes, crazy when you are packing everything you own for an early morning departure the next day). And yes, it does seem a bit crazy to eat at Chili’s the day before returning to the US, but over half of this group was moving on to their field of mission, and not returning home. We had a great night, and as I have been too busy back in the States to sit down and think through a graduation post, I thought I could share a picture of a group of people that I will not ever forget. These people have been with us through a lot of ups and downs, and their friendships anchored in the love of God have carried us a great year of learning Spanish. They have inspired us. They are headed all over Latin America, and I cannot wait to see how God uses all of them.