"In each life there comes at least one moment which, if recognized and seized, transforms the course of that life forever." -Steve Shadrach (The God Ask).
Part 1 of 3 (Originally posted May 15, 2018)
I posted this quote a few weeks ago when I felt overwhelmed with excitement about what the Lord has been working in our lives here in Guatemala and I finally feel ready and able to share the blessings and changes happening in our lives. But before sharing our news I feel that I need to give some background information so you can see the full beauty of the Lord’s work in our lives. I will try to be brief but those who know me know that one of my spiritual gifts (wink) is being very detailed and wordy in my storytelling and usually my husband kicks me under the table when I get lost in the details. Bear with me everyone as I write this story in three parts.
Many of you know some or most of our story beginning when Phil and I met here in Guatemala in 2001, the 12 years we spent teaching and raising our children in Castle Rock, Washington, to our call back to Guatemala in 2015, with our two children, to open an orphanage and to serve the Lord.
We loved the comfortable life we had created in Castle Rock and our kids were happy. Fulfilling teaching jobs, sports, and maintaining our 2 acre property kept us busy, but slowly we both began to feel that the Lord was calling us to live a bigger life, one that was more about serving Him and others and less about us and our comfort levels. As you may know, Phil and I are not spring chickens, and we were scared to leave our solid jobs, medical insurance, and retirement packages when we were already past the mid-life point. Since we are both very strong-willed and rarely agreed on such minor things as which movie to watch, we knew this change was coming from the Lord as we was working on both of our hearts. I had recently read, “Kisses From Katie”, which both inspired and depressed me as I was left wondering how this young woman was so brave and I was not.
But we thought the Lord was calling us to Nicaragua (we had recently met a family serving in Nicaragua and I had watched a compelling episode of House Hunters International) so Phil took a vision trip there, we sold our house and started making plans. On January 1, 2015 we received a call that changed our path. The call was from a church in Hood River, Oregon, and they wanted to contract us to open an orphanage (hogar) for children in Guatemala. I said no, we are going to Nicaragua. I said Guatemala can be Plan B, but we are going to Nicaragua. I said we can go to Hood River, and meet with the church, but we are going to Nicaragua. So on the way to Hood River, we passed a reader board outside of a small church that said, “God doesn’t have a Plan B”. Wow. Okay, Lord, message received. Not only did the Lord provide an amazing opportunity for us to work in orphan care but he also provided the financial means to do so, since the church offered a small salary thus saving us from the uncomfortable task of raising support, something dreaded by most missionaries as it requires asking people to give money to support the work we do for the Lord. It seemed perfect.
So on July 1st, 2015, after having sold most of our personal belongings we left our beloved community and moved with our two children, and 12 suitcases, back to Guatemala to open an orphanage.