As the world takes a collective pause and since I currently find myself with a little time on my hands, I thought it a good time to give you an update on our status in Honduras. At the beginning of March Brent had the opportunity to spend 10 days in the US with his family, friends, and churches. This was a very blessed time for him to share the work that God has allowed us to be apart of in Honduras. Thankfully he returned days before our world came to a halt, and borders in and out of Honduras were closed. In some ways, however, it is very frustrating as it seemed that so much momentum was being built to really push the ministry forth into the next phase. Why does it seem that we are forever having to learn that it is in God’s time not our own!
Currently, the border and schools have been closed for two weeks. All major cities throughout the country and the city and town nearest us are closed off with no entry and exit. Every business is in a mandatory shut-down for the foreseeable future. If there is an emergency or viable reason to be out there is to be only one person in a vehicle. We are attempting to keep in contact with our students and continue school work via Whatsapp. One of our volunteer teachers, Joshua, left just prior to the shut-down, and the other, Dixie, was able to secure an evacuation flight for tomorrow. We have been praying if this was the right time for Mollie and Abigail to go home as they were scheduled to move back to the states in May but have decided it is better for them to stay put and allow us the last few months to live and serve together. Our work here together is not finished.
We are safe only feeling very isolated and in many ways useless. We have found that missionaries often suffer from an intense need to perform and be constantly meeting the needs of others in order to feel we are fulfilling our calling. I’m in no way saying this is a right or healthy outlook but it is common. Currently, our ability to be present and visible and meeting physical needs cannot be what it had been. However, Brent was able yesterday to provide a rescue pack of rice, beans, and condensed milk to each family in the village. We also have been able to continue upkeep on the ranch which will provide meat, eggs, and some vegetables when the time comes that it is needed in our community. The work also is providing 10 jobs during these uncertain times.
God has frequently been reminding me of Paul’s imprisonment. Whether it was house arrest or in chains Paul spent nearly 2 1/2 years isolated with only fellow prisoners or guards and another 2 1⁄2 under house arrest. No internet, no Facebook, no email. Yet God used him, it must have been very frustrating for Paul to feel he had been given a mission and yet not feel he could fulfill it in the way he thought he should. The isolation, the idleness, the loneness, I can only imagine...and yet...we get from that time the inspired Word of God. For so long we have misused and taken out of context Philippians 4:13, we made it hallow and shallow, using it to serve our own purpose. Now it’s meaning is so much deeper, now we have a better understanding of its power to give us strength. It was in this isolation, this state of what must have felt like idleness that Paul found contentment, that Paul had strength through Christ to carry on with whatever the plans God has for him. We must all take this sweet time that the Lord, I believe in His mercy, has given to each of us to get our house in order. Clean house so to speak, and even though it is a valuable time to clean our physical home, it is even so much more necessary to make sure our spiritual house is in order. The Lord is speaking to His church, He is calling her to repentance, obedience, and steadfastness in the face of trials.
As we have been given this time may we use it to pray for our brothers and sisters around the world who are suffering from illness, financial loss, or the inability to meet their day to day needs and let us all focus our eyes upon Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith, and our blessed hope. We are keeping you in our prayers and asking you to please do the same. A few of our prayer requests:
- For the ability to understand how our calling may look different during this time, and may God provide many opportunities to provide hope to the hopeless.
- For the physical needs of our community to be met.
- For continued support while everyone is feeling the financial strain.
- Protection from illness.
- A greater love for one another.
- Greater patience being cooped up with 2 active 7 years, as well are still trying to adjust to one another and for their hurting hearts to be healed.
- That God would continue to meet our family’s needs as we learn how to navigate getting food and needed supplies.
“Consider it all joy, my brethren when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”