Monday, May 30, 2005

Yesterday I was trying to talk God into sending be back to the U.S. I told him that I could take my computer and management skills and make a good salary, and then give a large portion of that salary to missions. Couldn't I make an impact through the money that I give? Would that not be a bigger benefit to missions and His kingdom? Better that I make the money and give most to missions, than someone else who will just keep it for himself. Could I not be a great blessing to the Sonshine Center and the staff here through my giving?

I had a strong feeling of not wanting to live in a third world country. I miss the comforts, security, cleanliness, etc. of the States. I miss my American home. I find that I am getting frustrated with my Filipino home. We are leaving for the States in July. We return to the Philippines in September. I am afraid that I will not want to return.

Later that day, God reminded me of a few things. We had a great last day of Camp with the street kids of Iloilo. I saw one of the kids, boben, singing and worshipping with all his heart. I saw him raising his hands, and singing with his whole heart, crying out to God, "Here I am to worship, here I am to bow down, here I am to say that you're my God." I was reminded that it is not enough for me just to read and hear about missions. It is not enough for me to read about kids like Boben in someone's newsletter or website. It is not enough for me to hear about these things when missionaries come to speak at church. These things I must see with my own eyes. I can't just read about it, I have to do it.

Through all the frustrations and challenges of living away from the comforts and security of life in the U.S., I still need to be here. As much as I would love to be a sender, the Lord has called me to GO. So what else can I do? He said GO. I must go.

Humility.

I know this is one of the reasons why the Lord brought me to the mission field, to learn humility. I see how much pride and selfishness I have. It is time to be purified of these things. It is not all about me. Through many situations and circumstances, I feel the Lord is trying to teach me to be humble, to make myself more like Christ and be of no reputation. I must take on the nature of a servant, as just He did.

This is no fun. This has not been easy. It is necessary. Please pray for me.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Dude, the Philippines is hot!

I sit here typing this, and sweat drips off my arms. Bright and early in the morning, around 8:30, when the sun is high enough, it is already 95 degrees. Coming out from under the shade the sun is like a hammer, especially in the afternoons. I take about three showers a day, to rinse the sticky, thin film of sweat off my skin. While we are used to these kinds of temperatures in the States, what we also have in the States is the constant presence of air conditioners everywhere we go--in our cars, homes, places of business, etc. Not so here in the Philippines.

We do have air conditioners in our home here in the Philippines, but honestly we hardly ever run them. Thankfully our family has gotten used to the heat. While it can get oppressive at times, especially when doing any kind of manual labor or lifting, for the most part the heat does not bother us. Even at night, we are now accustomed to sleeping with just a fan, even with the heat and humidity.

For any of you reading this who will be visiting us soon (hey Jimmy and Beth Capone!) prepare for some hot times.