Cheryl found some work in Washington DC for at least 3 weeks. That's gonna keep us going through August. She's a trooper for carrying the load right now while I wait patiently (as much as this Type A man can) on the LORD's direction. As soon as I can tie up some loose ends with our home I'll make a decision to go support Cheryl any way I can and look for work elsewhere.
New doors opened to maybe rent our house. That could lighten a load. Thanks to my son, Casey, and his wife, Kim, for holding down the fort while we've been gone. That took worries away. No need for two vehicles so my truck's up for sale.
There are many people in more dire struggles than this. I am truly blessed beyond measure. HE has promised to take care of us but I need to keep listening and walking through the doors HE provides.
I got a great report after my physical. Doctor said I am "as healthy as a horse". I hope it's a thoroughbred.
Cheryl has received an indication that she might be able to work in DC for an additional six weeks. Praise GOD for HIS provisions.
After pulling into Point Mallard in Decatur, AL, we were referred to a diesel mechanic expert at Direct, Inc off I-65 at exit 334. Rob listened to my explanation of the problem and diagnosed a sensor problem that he could fix the next morning. Bring it on in and we'll have you out in no time. That goes along with "check's in the mail".
The next morning he found out they we didn't have a sensor and that the problem was air flow restriction that is usually associated with radiator problems. Four hours later he uncovered a totally clogged radiator (seem above) and cooling system. It'll take a least another day to clean it up and get it back together. Might as well put a new water pump on it while it's opened up.
This gave us time to visit with my cousin that revealed he had just been told that day he has prostate cancer. And this after battling colon cancer, diabetes and a new pace maker. Now I know why GOD had us stopped here for a while. Pray for him and his wife as they struggle to handle total disability and a new season.
After waiting another day for the air filter to arrive, we pull out and our pocket books are much lighter. But it was either pay me now or pay me later. Thanks to Rob at Direct for getting it handled.
We arrived back in Germantown to open our mail and discover that my job was definitely cut and there was no chance of retaining my teaching position. Next chapter or season in life. Hang on it's gonna be a wild ride.
We made a quick stop through Memphis to pick up additional supplies and try to diagnose an overheating problem with the RV. Seems the problem is just a poor guage. Whew !
Next stop is Rock Island, TN. We are trying to plant seeds at various locations that we had not planned. Here we found a couple that had experienced drug addictions and recoveries. But had they found the true recovery source. They danced around the subject of God many times by referencing their church attendance. We invited them to a supper and gospel sing in order to share a little deeper but they never showed up. Keep praying that GOD will draw them to HIM.
Off to our next stop at Point Mallard. I had kinfolk near there that had gone through some difficult medical problems. Let's see how we can encourage them.
RV still acting up and trying to overheat. We had to stop twice going over Mt Eagle. There's a problem here that's gotta get looked at.
We finished up our commitment at West Liberty and headed west. Here is the view we got traveling through the Kentucky hillsWe have tried to make connections to Oklahoma in order to help. The latest word we got was delay at this time because there was plenty of help and many people were insured. We should be patient and see what future help we could provide.
With that in mind we took a couple of days to refresh. My daughter is having a baby shower in Poplar Bluff, MO. That's where 'Ol Dad (Pops) needs to be. We were able to share our testimony with the campground owner and scatter seeds in many directions. We did get to make a quick stop (there's no such thing) at Lambert's where we caught a couple of throw'd rolls and they had to carry me out in a wheel barrel (pix to follow another time).
Our leadership for Habitat building is RV Care-A-Vaners. Here is an insight into their work. This link shows the various building sites that are in need of volunteers.
Speaking of disaster response builds, I have to commend the first team into West Liberty, Ky., this spring. Most of the team members were graduates of our Disaster Response course in Americus that had ended just days before their build in West Liberty. They managed to convince the county to put in 12 RV sites at the fairgrounds in West Liberty immediately. I never saw county government move so fast! The county picked up the cost and promised the RV Care-A-Vanners could use the sites free of charge as long as we have a presence in West Liberty. Our own Care-A-Vanners installed the electricity to each site. In support of that build, the RV Care-A-Vanner Program has installed a phone and DSL line at the fairgrounds since cell service is so poor there. West Liberty was hit by a tornado in 2011 that destroyed 500 housing units. We are making a difference there, so check the build list and sign up for those West Liberty builds.
As we left you last year we were just getting off the bus at home. Now we're boarding again.
Our apologies for being REALLY late in getting this letter out to ya'll. You will understand as you read. During previous summer mission trips GOD has directed us to do our work in the Dominican Republic, Honduras and Guatemala. This year the Lord has laid it upon our hearts to take care of “Jerusalem” or as we say the good old USA. We believe that this is due to several disasters that have touched our country. Tornados in Kentucky, Missouri, Alabama and Hurricane Sandy have left many families in disarray. These areas need manpower for damage assessment, construction, spiritual counseling and much prayer as they go through the recovery stages. NOW we have received confirmation from Habitat for Humanity (HFH) that we are to go to West Liberty, KY first. We will be notified later as to our next specific location. Bureaucracy plays a big part in how fast or often we receive our instructions to travel to the next location. We have to wait ! Imagine that in the USA.
We have taken special training through the Salvation Army and Hope Force Int’l to work with these people. Our work could entail all of the areas listed. We are going to reach out to these people by listening to their stories and direct them to the true hope (Jesus Christ) that they need. This is a great opportunity to come along side these people in the name of Jesus and tell them how much God loves them and cares for them.
Just as in our past trips we were required to supply our complete finances; this adventure will be no different. Our living arrangements will be camping style. We will cook and carry our meals each day to the work site. One of our largest expenses will be fuel to get to the areas and daily transportation to the work sites. We are projecting to be gone for 50 days and our budget is $ 4350 (includes camp sites, food & transportation). We would like to raise an additional $ 800 to buy building supplies that may be needed at the specific site.
We continue to identify ourselves with the name “Starfish International” a subsidiary of Logos International Ministry Association recognized by the IRS as a 501 C3 charitable organization. This is a charitable contribution and tax deductible. If GOD allows you to help financially, please make checks to L.I.M.A. (Logos International Ministry Association).
Most importantly; bathe us in prayer ! Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands upon us; yes, establish the work of our hands! Psalm 90:17
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.” 1 John 5:14-15
Our initial prayer requests are as follows:
1. Our preparation for the trip (including finances and supplies)
2. Maintenance and safety of our vehicles as we travel to the sites
3. Our oneness as a couple, before, during and returning
4. Preparation of the hearts of the lost, even before we arrive, that they would be receptive to the gospel
5. Our possible work sites in West Liberty, KY and Atlantic City, NJ
6. Our willingness to respond to the needs within all cultures that GOD places before us
Trying to conclude the loose ends prior to departure is not easy. The everyday responsibilities continue whether we are here or not. Emotional ties and unanswered questions always loom.
Harry got us to the airport and all went smoothly through inspections. Cheryl was only 7 pounds overweight (I mean the bag, not her but the luggage). You guys know what I meant and this sluggish thinking is part of the difficulty in leaving any mission.
As the boy in the Starfish story says "I may not be able to save them all but I helped that one !" But there are so many more needs to be met.
Whoa ! Check out what we found when we got home.
IF YOU HAVE FOLLOWED THESE BLOGS FOR ANY PART OF THE JOURNEY, PLEASE LET US KNOW. WE NEED TO KNOW, IF THERE WAS A VALUE.
We left out for Chimaltenango today(with the help of Pastor Alfrado serving as taxi) to fellowship with Pastor Victoriano and Iglesia Canaan Bautista.
We carried him some Bibles to help with the church plant with the Chorti up in Nearar.
No sooner had we got there than Cheryl got put to work. I identified one of the pastor's sons as having an allergic reaction. I called for Cheryl and we immediately got him some meds. Seems he was whelped up all over his body from a reaction to something. After this whirlwind entrance, they told us his daughter was sick. My resident nurse investigated and got her on some antibiotic. Now, how about some supper. Pastor refused to let us go plan to return to the capitol on Sunday. He said he had a clinic and needed help on Monday. Oh well, that's what we came for. Pastor Victoriano and his wife, Christianna, are great hosts and have an unbelievable love for missions.
Sunday's church consisted of all of us going to Canaan Bautista at 9am. From there I went with the pastor on a 1.5hr drive to Chichicastenango to train a new set of officers for that church. It was 40* up there. In Guatemala, no way, yes way. Got back to Canaan Bautista at 7pm to find out that the girls had been there ALL day except for a brief hour for lunch. When these people have services to fill in for the pastor, they go all out. Remind us to tell you about Americano Jim and his exploits with the satellite tracking devices.
Monday found us in an isolated dirt-poor area of the city where some gringos from the states were holding a clinic for optical, medical, dental and pharmaceutical. It was being operated by some folks from Alabama and Arkansas. They were doing a great job for these local people. Turns out they were short a nurse and yes, Cheryl got to use her experience again. The pharmacy was manned by a Ted and Linda. They bought and brought all the meds that were being used for the people. Thank you.Back to capitol again(with the help of Pastor Alfrado serving as taxi, again).
Today we were able to catch a little rest and work on the week 4 newsletter. Snooze.
We are only 6 days away from returning home.
I can't believe I'm saying this but "there's so much more work to be done". We've not even scratched the surface yet.
Headed out to get Bibles for the new believers with Carlos. We got all the Bible and a study on the book of John. All were delivered to Liga de Vida Nueva.
Copies of Guatemalan sign language (LSG) were made for further study.
Homemade tamales were our lunch.