I love that Praise Song with the lines...Strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord, as we Wait upon the Lord, as we WAIT upon the Lord...This song has been in my head for the past week. I know the Lord put it in my head, because that is right where we are...WAITING.
Mark started his Last DTS semester this week. So hard to believe that this "crazy life change decision" is coming to an end and possibly resulting in an even Crazier life change.
I like Plans. I like to be in control. I knew where I wanted to go to college when I graduated high school, what I wanted to major in, and when I graduated what I wanted to do. I even knew that I was going to marry Mark WAY before he knew he wanted to marry me. Not that I was a slave to my plans, God had other avenues for us that in hindsight were absolutely perfect, although I definitely didn't think that at the time.
I want to know where in the world we will be, what we will be doing, what our family will look like. This Waiting game is so hard, but strangely empowering. We have to rely on Him to direct our paths...there is no way I can control our plans, which is a good thing.
Monday, August 17, 2009
Every year when I return from Guatemala, I say that "this year was my favorite." This year was no different. I can say without a doubt that this year was the most special. Mark and I are now Padrinos (Godparents). I met Gabbi when she was 17 in 2005. She was tender-hearted, shy, and absolutely beautiful. She became pregnant that year and had a son in 2006 named Alan. She was at camp with Alan that next summer and was in my sister in law's group. I didn't go to Guatemala in 2007, due to Ryann, but thought of her often during the week Mark was there.In 2008, I was so happy to see her. She and her son were in my group and she was pregnant with her second child, a girl, due on my birthday. She called the father of this baby her husband and they seemed to be doing really well, attending the adult Bible study during the evenings of camp. They were a family, and it made my heart happy that this baby, Gabbi,and Alan were going to be taken care of. Gabbi had her baby Girl, Sharon, in October. Her "husband" left her 2 months later, for a 17 year old girl in the village. Gabbi and kids had to move in with her parents. Mark went and saw Gabbi, and reported to me how she looked like a different girl...tired, tiny, and broken. When I got to Guatemala, I found her and gave her a lot of Ryann's clothes. She immediately took off Sharon's dirty onesie and dressed her in Ryann's frilly red Christmas dress...in the middle of July...love it. Gabbi smiled, which was so nice to see. I had the opportunity to talk with her at length that evening with a translator and told her how sorry I was, etc. I was crying, she was crying, the translator was crying. The next night, Gabbi, her mother, and the same translator came over to me and told me they wanted to talk. They told me they would like me and Mark to be Sharon's godparents. The wise translator told me I probably would need to talk with Julio, the pastor, just to make sure we all understood what that title meant culturally. I grabbed Mark, and we all went to talk to Julio. Julio explained to them that being from the States wouldn't allow us to do some of the things godparents would do in Guatemala, etc. He then asked Gabbi what her expectations were for us as godparents. She answered, "I don't have any specific expectations, I just want them to love my child, and to think she is special" Of course, our answer was YES! We then told her that we already love both of her children and that we pray for them everday...lots of tears and hugs were exchanged. If you think about it, please lift up the Augustine family in prayer. Gabbi is a believer, please pray that she sees herself as a daughter of Christ, and that she would find her total self-worth and significance in HIM alone.
This is Anayeli. She was on my team in 2008 and is a firecracker, 100% full of spunk. Her father passed away 2 weeks ago due to an alcohol-related car accident. Please pray for Anayeli, her mother, and her siblings. Life is going to change for this family. Pray for strength and a peace that passes all understanding. Please pray that her mother will run to Christ for rest. Please pray that this family will find rest and peace in the Shadow of the Almighty.
Guatemala was awesome. Campemento Esperanza was a success,all thanks to God. This was the first year that we had a separate camp for the teenagers of this village and they appeared to absolutely love it, as did I. I love teen girls and my team of 15 year olds were so precious,funny, and typical..teenagers are the same no matter the country, and I love them. When I come back from a trip like this, it is so hard to describe to people. Yes, it is beautiful, amazing, humbling, challenging, insert many more adjectives...these words seem so trite to what it really is...This experience is a gift of God, and that is sometimes hard to describe with mere words.
Here are some camp pictures from the week
Saturday, August 1, 2009
Ryann had a big time without us around last week. Thank you, Lamb family for taking care of homegirl. I know she had such a great time! Thanks, Conni, for these awesome pics of Ryann hanging with one of her favorite people, cousin Blake!!