We’ve been so quiet lately…

Something Michael and I have learned over the last month is that Dengue fever is a terrible thing and so is slipping a disk in your back. Michael is all better now, and I am getting better as the days go by. I have a very interesting Canadian chiropractor here. It has given me plenty of time to plan out curriculum for the building and our food production plans. Nevertheless, we have had some fun events with the kids in the midst of our illnesses. IMG_2501

We had a great little Halloween party with our kids and the kids at the BC building. They bobbed for apples, carved pumpkins (well large gourds), played other fun Halloween games (like eat a donut off a string, which I didn’t even know was a Halloween thing) and had spider pizza! The kids all had a blast, and we adults really did too. We were all laughing so hard with every activity.IMG_2432

We are excited about kindergarten graduation coming up for our little Dayana, and for Axel at the building. We’re excited to see how proud they will be and how proud we will feel of them. It has been a rough road at times, especially for Dayana. We’re so grateful they both have this opportunity.IMG_2360

To end this belated update, I want to show a beautiful picture from our feeding on the street last Friday night. We were at our final feeding spot, and I noticed a boy from a family we get to feed nearly every week wearing an interesting shirt.

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This is one of the times I think Jesus and Gandhi would agree. Gandhi says “Be the change you want to see.” I think Jesus would say, “Be the church you want to see.” Right now, there’s a disaster in the Philippines, and I have no hesitation that CURE medical missions at my home church is mobilizing to do all they can to help.

Matthew 25:34-40: Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

“Come, you who are blessed by my Father.” We are blessed to provide food for the hungry, water for the thirsty and shelter for the strangers. Remember that you are also blessed to serve and love God’s people.

Asking for help

IHNFA took the kids from us nearly a year ago now. I can’t believe it’s been that long or that now we have them back. We can hug them, kiss them and read them bedtime stories. A year ago we had no idea what might happen.

I’m so amazed by the response we had and the way God worked through the incredible mess it was. God brought the kids back to us through dozens of people.

One in particular showed up in the form of a lawyer who had a heart for our story and the injustice of it all. Lily the lawyer (has a nice ring, right?) blessed our lives with her appeals, errands and advice through the process of bringing Pamela, Arol, Jonatan, Dayana and Rosie home. Our team cannot begin to thank Lily for the miracle she performed.

We had to pay most of Lily’s payment from Breaking Chains’ general fund, which we use for various other ministry necessities. If you can help pay her bill, we would really appreciate your donation. We couldn’t have gotten the kids back without Lily and her the relentless help she gave us. Her bill was $2000 for a year’s worth of help. The result was priceless.

If you can help, please contact mail@bchonduras.org. Please consider giving any amount you can, and thank all of you for your relentless prayers and support. We have only raised about $500 so far.IMG_2099

Ain’t No Reason

Michael posted a song yesterday. So, I thought I would join in. I’ve longed enjoyed this song seen below and even more for the powerful video that is attached to it. But yesterday was the first time I had listened to this song in a location that was not inside my house. I sat outside the Breaking Chains building yesterday waiting for Michael and this song came on the ipod. For the first time I sat and listened to this song on a block where glue was regularly huffed to alleviate hunger pains. As the song continued, my eyes moved down to the next block to a brothel.

There is pain, hunger and death here. But I disagree there “ain’t no reason things are this way.” I think there are many reasons why things are this way in the world, but that is not my goal here. What I will say is that there ain’t no reason things should stay this way. As followers of Christ, we are called to live in the midst of his example, to love others. More importantly, we do not fear death as it has been overcome by his Resurrection, and one day we will all be resurrected as well. We are a resurrection people. Today, I encourage you to seek out where you can bring life and resurrection to the death and pain you see in your life. I am blessed to have so many opportunities to live the Resurrection out here in Honduras. Tonight as we will feed on the street, I will say “ain’t no reason to be hungry tonight, ain’t no reason…ain’t no reason…”

Please take a moment to enjoy this awesome video below.

Our first week

Yesterday, I sat at home taking care of a sick seven-year old. I spent most of the day cleaning, providing liquids to drink, measuring medication and reflecting while she slept. I even managed to look at houses online and get some Spanish-practice in while she slept. (That’s face paint she has rubbed on her face in the photo below, in case you’re worried!)IMG_2099

It was a tiring routine last week as we got used to being here. Michael nor I was used to waking up at 5:30am, but it’s now becoming commonplace for us. We’ve spent a lot of time doing homework, planning and making meals and shuttling the kids to school and their independence day parades. We have loved getting to love our babies and are beyond happy to be here with them.IMG_2056

Tuesday, we had a great Children’s Day with our kids and with all the kids from Breaking Chains and our growing church community. We watched Despicable Me (which by the way, the Spanish dub has a really strange voice for, well everyone, but especially Gru), and gave out stuffed animals and other little toys to all the kids. It was a wonderful and tiring day of fun for all the kiddos!IMG_2131

We have had a great time hugging and talking to everyone staying in the building and our friends on the street. We were blessed by church on Sunday and to see all the new faces there. I think it’s wonderful there are so many kids and enough moms who are willing to volunteer to teach them so that job is not passed to Michael, Amber or me. I look forward to working more with our church and furthering the spirituality of those in our building and our surrounding community. Now, off to look for a new house for us. Wish us luck!IMG_2121

Garage-sale it for a cause

We have decided to extend our ‘Garage-sale it for a cause’ event to include Friday also. So come one, come all to our garage-sale extravaganza in two weeks on August 23 and 24. We hope to have lots to choose from, and we would love to see as many of you as can make it.

We’re still looking for lots of donations if you have items you would like to garage-sale for a cause! We’re looking for furniture, books, knick-knacks, painting, posters, gently used clothing or whatever else you might have. The money we get will help us buy furniture, clothes for the kids, beds for them, a bed for us and overall provide our kids and us the household items we need. If you have something large and don’t have a truck, call us and we can come and get it. If you can part with some stylish clothing or something you don’t use much (whatever it may be), send it our way please, and we’ll ‘Garage-sale it for a cause!’ So…are you tired of me working in that phrase? Yeah, me too. I’ll stop.

You can call me at 405-371.8093 or John at 832.776.0215 if you have something you want to bring by to donate or something we could pick up. We would love to have lots of items for people to choose from to buy. So, don’t hesitate to call us; we would really appreciate it! Send me an email at michael@bchonduras.org, and I’ll send you my parents’ address in Edmond.

And then come out and make your purchases and see us before we leave! We would love to see you there.

They’re finally home

We got word today after nearly a year of waiting our babies are home.

I was driving to meet a friend about a month ago, and my phone rang. It was Amber, and she told me to pull over.

“Lily called,” she said. “We’re getting the kids back.”

I think my mouth probably dropped, and I’m pretty sure I stopped breathing for a bit. Amber explained more and said a lot of other things about Lily the lawyer, but I don’t remember much of it. She said she had no idea of the specifics or when it might happen. I hung up the phone and began to sob. We have searched for God in all of this since last October, and I finally felt him working to bring our babies home.

Amber has called at least once a week since, if not more than that to relay news from Lily. The latest came this past Friday, saying the paperwork was ready. All it needed was the judge’s signature coming Monday, and Amber could pick up Jonatan, Dayana and Rosie from the children’s home.

Arol and Pamela came to live at the house last week, after their mom decided we were the best place for them. (For those of you who don’t know, Arol and Pamela escaped from the children’s home before Christmas, and they have lived in a little house with their mom since then. We enrolled them in school, and we buy them groceries once a week and help with rent and utilities.)

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Rosie, Jonatan and Dayana getting picked up from the children’s home

With paperwork in hand, Amber arrived at the children’s home today and loaded Rosie, Dayana and Jonatan in the car to bring them home. They went to have lunch, play and talk.

John, Arol, Pamela and me

John, Arol, Pamela and me

Amber told me when she explained to them all this was permanent, Dayana started sobbing.

They’re safe. They’re with Amber and Courtney, and soon we’ll all be together again. There’s no possible way to describe the elation, relief and immense joy all of us feel now. Rosie is back with her Mama, and soon John and I will be back with our four sweet kiddos.

Praise God with us for Abba Father reigns and brought our sweet little ones home.

Courtney will take care of the kids for the next two weeks until she has to be back in the States. Then Amber will fill in for the following two weeks until September 2 when John and I can be home with Pamela, Arol, Jonatan and Dayana.

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Garage-sale fundraiser

Mark your calendars for August 24th! We’re having a garage sale at my parents’ house, and the proceeds will help us buy furniture and other household items we need – maybe even help us buy a car if we get enough money!

We’ll also sell some of John’s homemade goat cheese (it will wait in the kitchen until someone wants to make a purchase, don’t worry) and some Honduran items. Maybe even some Breaking Chains t-shirts! So, you’re coming right?

We would love for you to come out and be a part of it. Also if you have any items you would like to donate, we would love to put them toward our cause. You can just drop them by my parents or Scott Wilkerson’s house, but for details you can email me at michael@bchonduras.org.

Maybe though don’t give us anything as bad as these glasses. We probably can’t sell those. But isn’t this just the sweetest/most ornery face you ever did see?