Tuesday, June 30, 2009

So much to say

Well a lot has happened since the last time I wrote a blog. It's kinda hard to remember. Time has just seemed to fly by since we graduated from language school. So where should I begin? Well we moved to Asserí after searching just about everywhere. My parents were here to help us move and we spent some time on the east coast. It took us almost two months to feel at home but in the mean time we had to buy appliances, furniture, a car, and everything else one needs for life. We found a store that imports used appliances and got a decent deal on: a fridge, a washer, dryer, and a stove. We also bought a table with chairs, an entertainment center, and bookshelves from a place in Sarchí. We found a '90 4 runner for really cheap and are looking to sell our little blue car so I can buy a work truck.
So besides that we had our first group come to the city. They were great. My group worked on remodeling a bathroom, installing a small eve to protect the patio from rain, and we re-finished a table. It all turned out incredible. The lady that lives in the house is a great woman and really serves the people of Los Guidos. She helps single moms with sewing classes and teaches bible studies. She is also a missionary with Food For the Hungry. She is a great help to us as we begin to work where she has lived for quite a while.
The second team came and I went to the jungle with them for the first part of the trip. I always love going to the jungle but this time it was a bit different. While I love going and I love the people there was just to much going on back in the city that caused me to not enjoy it as much. When we came back to the city all of the plans had changed and we were working on a street I had never been to before in Los Guidos. It's just up from where we worked on the house but the people were all new to me. Even with all of the other complications everything went great. The kids I had with me were amazing and worked their tails off. We had some great normal work and then some extreme sights (we got to see the water company cut into a live 2" water main and then not be able to shut it off.) It was very interesting.
When the teams aren't here we have plenty to keep us going. All of our other staff members have every day commitments to teach, help at day cares, etc. But I get everything else. I have built tables, book cases, shelves, and playgrounds. Anything we need to help the ministry sites out. This next week we'll be looking at starting a large retaining wall. the work just keeps on coming!
Even with everything going on, and all that we have accomplished, the thing I am most excited about is that people are starting to know us. I have some people I can go talk to and I run into people in the streets. I have people who care that I'm here and are thankful for what we do. All of the work and everything we do is just so people can get to know us and give us a platform to show them who Christ is. It's so easy to let the work be the main thing, but the main thing is still Jesus. We are doing all of this just so HE can be known. We're just the middle man.
There are still some things that we are needing prayer about. 1st. that Jesus would draw us into Himself. That we would continue to grow in Him. 2nd. that we would find a home church. Imagine trying to find a church in a country you don't know, with no one to make recommendations, with services in a language you don't fully get, With the possibility of not having child care and having a 2-6 hour service. That's where we are. So pray. 3rd. That we would make good friends. Our neighbors are great and seem to want to be best friends, but they work a lot and there's just no time to do anything with them. We need good Christian friends. 4th. That we would find a good school for the kids but still be able to be with them enough. We don't like the idea of letting someone else parent our kids in these important years but it's necessary for them to learn spanish. 5th. That God would continue to find a place for us and SI here in Costa Rica. Although it's been close to a year we are still finding our place. We don't know what it could look like in the future because there's just so many unknowns.
Thank you all for your prayers. We are really loving it here. It's more and more feeling like home. Even with the bars and the traffic and the crazy fireworks all night long. We are continually reminded of how blessed we are to be able to serve God here. Every time I drive up the mountain to go home and see all of the beautiful lights, I can't help but say thank you Jesus. And thank you to all of you who are believing in what we're doing and giving financially. With out you... I guess God would have to find another way;)
Jesus Bless You All,
For Erin, Ella and Judah

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

We're finally reconnected!!

Thanks to everyone for hanging in there while we were without internet for awhile!  Like we've said before, things happen in Costa Rica slowly, and apparently getting hooked up for internet too.  For those who don't know, we moved ourselves into our new house at the end of April with much help from parents, Doug and Debbie, who were here visiting.  Thanks again!! In the process of unpacking we found out it could be up to a year before our internet could be hooked up at our new location.  I don't understand all the details, but needless to say, we were pretty bummed! And so was our Skyping family.  Long story short, a new company was now offering internet to our area, and after their 3 attempts to come and install it, we are finally online! Thank you Cabletica! I think Jeremy and I agree we are feeling quite cozy in our new home.  We have acquired most of the furniture that we need and have a great welcoming family next door.  Their names are Vinicio, Gabriela, and Daniel (4yrs).  They have invited us into their home to share meals, gifted us with small "welcome" gifts, and shared tamales through the gates.  Her parents own one of the first tamale factories in the nearest town to us, Aserrí.  Did I mention I  love tamales! It has been fun getting to know them and also fun for Ella and Judah to have a playmate come over and practice Spanish.  I'm sure they're not worried about the practicing Spanish part, I just enjoy watching Judah say, "Daniel, venga aquí!" Over and over he'll say it.  It means "come here" in Spanish. 
We feel like we're are now getting into the swing of things with teams beginning to come down. 
With the last team, Jeremy had 3 people helping him at a home in Los Guidos.  Our new friend Isabel teaches sewing classes in her home for young mothers as a way for them to hopefully turn around and make a living.  She also leads Bible studies in her home as well.  Jeremy's team completely redid her second bathroom that she uses for the ladies, it had many problems.  They built a new eve on her home to act as a shield from the rain for the place she teaches the sewing.  They also refinished a large table she had that she also needed for her classes.  She was extremely blessed by the team.  She told us the neighbors were watching what was going on all week and said they noticed something different compared to other "missionaries" that have come through.  I know that was a big encouragement to the team.  We're here to love the people of Costa Rica.  We're here to serve and be a blessing in what ways we know how.  It's not a big production or show.  That is what I love about SI.  Hopefully people will be encouraged by our lives and seeing our love.  We don't want this to ever be about us and what we can do.  It's Christ living in us and through us!!  
Jeremy and our teammate Cailah  will be returning from the jungle today bringing a group of young high schoolers from the states.  They've been there since last Wed.  It's kind of exciting to see the tired faces that come back, but to also hear what has impacted them the most so far.  They will have a few days with us here in the city working at the ministry sites as well.  So much going on here and it seems their is always something new to write about.  I almost forgot to mention that we purchased a second car for me, Erin, a couple of weeks ago.  It's a '90 Toyota 4runner that will be our family car.  Jeremy is still looking for a work truck because of all the tools and materials he will be hauling around.  We will then sell our ever so faithful 80's Nissan that humbles me every time I drive it. That cars been great for us.  Quick funny note, someone actually asked me once if we brought that car from California with all our things.  I just started laughing, it was hilarious!   
So after all of this, God is good! He's been faithful and is faithful!  We don't know what tomorrow holds, but we're excited!  Thanks for listening, supporting, and praying!!