(written around May 19th or so)
It is weird to explain but we are finding so many other blessing in the midst of these trials. I am sure by our 911 prayer emails it sounds like a hopeless or miserable situation but daily we are finding joy and blessing and encouragement to be here. Although we have struggles we want to be here even though we do miss home and the comforts that came with that like income, familiar food, and even our infrastructure in the US.
If you have never left the country for an extended amount of time on a missionary budget you may not know how hard it is, but it can be rough at times. Everything is different even cooking and grocery shopping not to mention the differences when you suddenly find yourself with out much money to live on and are having to completely rely in faith on God to literally supply for your next trip to the grocery store. Plus all the sickness. The sacrifice is not with out reward though.
(this photo is from the annual celebration of when the gospel first came to Vanuatu. The local church was congregating outside)
Blessings come in at just the right time or last minute. In my prayer time yesterday (not usually as long as I want it to be since I now have 3 busy kids under 5!) I got Isaiah 51 which talks about Gods joy and gladness and constant salvation and was so encouraged. I know that Gods heart for us is Joy and Gladness and reliance on Him in all times. we are finding that in the midst of trial.
(Pierce with a baby turtle from when our friends took us to turtle bay with them)
Like yesterday for example.. I had a VERY trying day with the kids. Pierce is still sick with a stomach bug, Dahlia has these blistering sores all over that are spreading (impetigo? I think it is) and my dad was still pretty laid up with his massively infected foot...I just could not get on top of things chore wise and could not find time to sit with out someone crying or needing me or trying to diffuse a situation with the kids. So my back was tired, I was dying to read the email that had been downloaded from the internet at the base earlier by Josh but that was simply NOT GOING TO happen. But later in the day Bella finally fell asleep (after what seemed like a whole day of holding her and trying to get her back to sleep constantly), I had a great meeting with the teacher that I am working with at the preschool, and 3 yes I said 3 packages arrived for us, and Josh was finally feeling much better! We had just spent our last dollar (literally) on diapers and laundry soap and our dear friends Julie and Shannon showed up with a box of food goodies that are usually too expensive to buy like imported apples, cereal, juice, special cookies and milk as well as a few other things. What a treat!
Then we got a package from Kathy & Becca Sanderson in Alaska filled I mean filled to the brim with treats for everyone! Brand new gifts and clothes for Bella,Pierce and Dahlia as well as food treats for everyone! IT was such a blessing!! We were shocked and they sent some cash that came at JUST the right time.
And the third package came from Australia with an old staff member of Ywam that came for a visit and heard we had adopted. Mind you this is someone we had never met or spoken to they just heard about us from our friends here. She came with clothes for Bella and a two small stuffed animals and shirts for Pierce and Dahlia! What a blessing.
(this photos is a random photo as I have a VERY thin selection of photos at the moment as ALL my photos got deleted on my computer by a virus but I have to keep my blogs picture heavy to keep you reading! So read on..)
So in the middle of a trying day God reached out and through 3 different people from 3 different countrys sent us a blessing and encouragement! Then while Josh was out he ran into a friend from church and ended up spending the day with him and by the end of the day this friend offered us a car to use so we could take our parents up to see our land. That was a huge blessing as we have been here almost 4 months and that has never happened (the loan of a car). We just felt so blessed.
(Pierce & Dahlia w/ new slippers from the Carley’s in New Zealand!)
Were we still tired, still experiencing some sickness, surrounded by laundry and broke? Yes but by the end of the day we felt blessed, encouraged and strengthened. God is so good.
SO as far as sickness Josh no longer has hepatitis (PRAISE GOD!!) just a cold now, Pierce seems healthy, I have a cold and Dahlia is still suffering some kind of blistering skin infection that is causing sores., and a bad cold. Please pray for our continued healing.