Monthly Archives: June 2006

Do we ever have to go home?

I can’t believe we ever second-guessed this vacation.  We debated so much about spending the money and wanting to get home after being away for 2 weeks…now I don’t know that we can ever get on a plane again We flew into Miami Monday evening.  We missed the flight to send the team on their way to Chicago, so they spent the night in a hotel and we drove on up to West Palm Beach.  Tuesday, Wednesday, and today (Is it Thursday?  Lost track..) have been as follows:  wake up, get the kids breakfast, turn on sesame street for them as we pack for the beach, head to the beach, eat a picnic in the sand (for Jack: eat sand for the picnic), play in the ocean some more until they’re ready to nap, drive back to Chris and Julie’s, put them down, hang out just the 2 of us!!!!, go somewhere when they get up…or do whatever we feel like. 

This has been very good for us to take time to process what we learned in Brazil and to have some uninterrupted, solid family time.  The kids have been so much fun since we got here.  When they’re awake, one of them is usually on Andy’s back or wrestling him…they missed their dad. 

It is quite a shock to go from Brazil to West Palm Beach though.  Last night we went to City PLace.  It is absolutely picture-perfect.  There is not a speck of trash lying around, the streets are spotless, the buildings are immaculate, everyone is dressed to impress…and yet how deceitful.  It made me more sad than the time we spent at the orphanage.  Because while these people have “everything,” they are still so empty.  What they are working for will never satisfy them.  One day they will realize how temporary this world is.  This world is not what we work for.  While the kids at the orphanage had so very little–they were content with what they had, and they were joyful to give.  I miss the simplicity. 

I really want to keep this perspective.  We can become deceived by what seems so important, and yet keeps us from true happiness and peace.  May we focus not on the earthly, but the eternal.

Jack zonked out on the flight to Miami.

Julie…we found the lizard in your bedroom.  Made us feel right at home  ALso, what is up with your neighbor?


Fotos do Brasil

We’re here and having a good time.  It’s pretty crazy and just as hard as we anticipated juggling full-time family and full-time ministry…full-time.  But we’re all learning alot, the teens have been a huge help, and it’s good for Miles and Jack to be with tampa and amma.You can check out daily pics and thoughts at  Here are some from our “free day” at the waterfall.

“Without faith, it is impossible to please God…”

And faith implies risk. 
So these are some of the thoughts I’ve had in our preparations to leave
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.  I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not
be afraid” John 14.27. 

“Who is God besides the Lord?  And who is the Rock except our God?  It is God who arms me with strength and makes
my way perfect” Psalm 18.31-32. 

“The Lord is with you…go in the strength you have…Am I not
sending you?…I will be with you”  God’s
replies to Gideon in Judges 6.

These are some of the passages that have been running
through my mind and are enabling my feet to board that plane tomorrow.  I don’t know why this time has been the
hardest for me.  We’ve led teams before
and we’ve taken our kids before overseas, but this is the first to combine them
both.  For a week, we didn’t know what
our flight was going to look like to Brazil
(since our airline went bankrupt), but last Monday we got a new flight that
goes straight from Chicago to Sao
Paulo.  This is
even better than the ones we’d purchased—I’d like to say I trusted God the
whole time, but well, read our last post. 
It is very cool to see His provision in that, and it’s a kick in the
pants to not be anxious, but pray. 

Today is Jack’s birthday, and I’ve been enjoying him so much
today.  He climbed a bookshelf yesterday
in church, and it fell on top of him.  It’s
pretty nasty, there’s a gash right beside his eye (so grateful it wasn’t a
centimeter over…)  I made him a smoothie
today (his favorite), but when it’s over, he says, “more moonie pease.”  Jack was upset the other day, and Miles gets
disturbed too.  Andy goes “Miles, what do
you want?”  And he replied “I want to
push Jack!”  I still can’t say it without
laughing…I appreciate the honesty

Well, back to packing. 
A team just returned from overseas, and said they got fined for every
carry-on over 25 lbs. and suitcase over 50 lbs! 
Aye-karumba!  My carry-on is 25
lbs. of play-doh, crayons, books, diapers, “white bear” for Miles and “puppy”
for Jack—a pretty funny sight.

That smells like Jack’s poop.

Looks like we have some soccer players on the rise…

Getting to enjoy the fruit of his labor (not the kids, ha ha, I meant the fence he’s been working away at with every “spare” minute.)

my Mother’s Day gift–absolutely breathtaking to me.

Jack trying out his new wheels–an early birthday present

Miles snugglin’ up with Tigger

I’m putting together a site for people to check in on the trip from day to day, and it will be at  Don’t go there now–it has a bit of work to do, but check it in a few days.  It is getting down to the wire.  We still don’t have a flight from Miami to Sao Paulo, which is a big prayer request at the moment.  I’m trying not to freak out, but the airline cancelled our flight, so we need to get 28 people on another flight in a week–ok, maybe I’m freaking out.  It has been a stretching week for me.  Days can be hard enough with a 2 and 3 yr. old, let alone throw in 20 teens 24/7 and another country for a few weeks–maybe this is why people look at me like I’m nuts for doing this.  I guess the trip isn’t the hardest to me at this point as the daily stretch to walk in obedience.  I can go through the motions and do this, but I want my heart to be right.  And, in order to get my heart where it needs to be, God has to bring me to the very end of myself where I stop and cry out I cannot do this alone.  I need a Shepherd, Savior, Guide, Counselor, Comforter, and Guardian of my soul.  And His promise for His grace to be sufficient may not be on my time table–I pray and trust it will be sufficient as we’re getting on that plane June 12th, but I shouldn’t fight the work He’s doing in me to prove me weak in order that He may display His greatness.

Winona Lake had their annual art fair today, which is the first we’ve been around for it, but it was so cool.  There were tons of different booths of pottery, photos, paintings, jewelry…and Jack was most excited about the “PEOPLE!”  We didn’t know it ended at 6 pm, so we scanned it all as people were packing up.  But I look forward to next year.  This small town of Winona has a way of growing on ya…

I hear my husband is now sitting outside with a cup of coffee, so I’m going to join him.  I enjoy drinking coffee much more in the evenings now–when the kids are awake, they always seem to scam off my cup. 

By the way, that is my favorite quote of the day.  We’re all sitting around, and I said “someone’s poopy.”  Andy said “That smells like Jack’s poop.”  Oh how different our lives are…