True Sacrifice of Being a Missionary

The true sacrifice of being a missionary is not the food, learning a new language and culture, not having hot water, or any other minor inconveniance one may be able to conjure up. The true sacrifice of being a missionary, as Bro. Don Triplett said tonight before he prayed over our Christmas dinner, is seperation; seperation from family. Yesterday and today have been a little tough but as Bro. Don said those words I looked around at the other missionary's sitting around with me, seperated from their families, and I could completely understand the sacrifice and know that it is totally worth it. Luke 14:26 "If you want to be my follower you must love me more than your own father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters- yes, more than your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple."


Christmas Eve

Today started off like any ordinary day. I went outside to sit in the sun and read my Bible and drink my coffee. My family headed to Texas to my grandparent's for the holidays. It is somewhat bleak being away from family during this time. However, I am happy to be able to experience Christmas in the country that God has put on my heart for such a long time. Christmas Eve is the day when they celebrate "Christmas" here in El Salvador and from what I understand all Latin America countries do the same. Fireworks are a huge part of this holiday...which have been going off non stop for atleast the last week. There is a service at church around 3:00 and then afterward I am going over to the Triplett's where we will be having a Christmas party for the children in our neighborhood. Tradition here is that you stay up all night and do fireworks to bring in Christmas day. Kind of like New Year's Eve.


All American's Must Be Blondes


This morning while I was helping out at the Club Castillo Christmas party I was standing next to Liz Triplett, which is the daughter of the Missionary's here. Next to Liz was her mom, and another Missionary Associate. All three of them have blonde hair. A few of the little girl's came up to talk to us and they asked if we were all from the United States. Then they turned to ask me if I dyed my hair because it wasn't blonde. I thought it was really funny that they thought all American's must have blonde hair.
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Legal to Drive Until 2012

Yesterday I went along with some other Missionary's to get our driver's license. You can drive with your license from the United States for two months legally and I was about at that. Plus, two weeks ago when I was flagged down by the police and I didn't have my Salvadoran license he really gave me a hard time. The process went faster than expected. We started at 8:30 am at the Women's Hospital to get our blood taken because they require your blood type to be on the license and they want to check for AIDS. Then we had to go get our NIT card which is some type of card with a number that you have to have to purchase a home, sign a contract, get a driver's license. Then we went back to the clinic to get our blood results and then were finally able to get our Driver's License with no hang ups. So now I have four cards that I need to have with me at all times. My residency card, NIT card, card that proves I bought my vehicle, and Driver's license.


Christmas Season


Ever since Thanksgiving my life has been somewhat of a blur. Last week was the Guardian's Camp, which was so much fun and God really touched many kids there. The camp ended Saturday morning and at 3:00 was the Master's Commission graduation. It was a little bit emotional because some of my students are going back to their own countries such as Honduras and Nicarauga. It is also really awsome to think that these Master Commission student's are the next preachers, teachers, and missionary's and I have been able to have a small part in that.
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God Always Sees Us Through

I have received awsome news from head missionary's Don and Terri Triplett. All the money has been raised for the Dream Center and next week the land will be purchased. When I received the news the first thing that popped into my head was an Andrae Crouch song that says, "I've got confidence, God is going to see me through, No matter what the case may be, I know He is going to fix it for me." This is another testimony that gives all glory to God because it seemed impossible but the Lord provided, as He always does.


Putting my Truck to Use

It worked out well that I have a pick-up truck or it would have been very difficult to get the materials that we needed for the games we are doing with the kids next week. I went all over downtown San Salvador, which is to dangerous to go without a National. We went to all kinds of different types of places looking for certain types of materials. We went to many stores that make shoes. You go in and there are just the sole's of shoes on the wall and bags of buckles and tons of different types of plastic, foam, and such to make shoes. We were looking for something like a thick foam type material for a certain game so that is why we went to these type places. It was really neat because I have never been to stores like that. I always enjoy going downtown because I don't get to go that often and it is so interesting.


Stories from the Streets

The child on the street
With matted hair
And dirty feet
Juggling oranges or limes
Begging for just a dime

Abuelita on the corner
No one to look after her
She's at home but feels like a foreigner
Wearing the same clothes everyday
Looking for someone to take her cares away

Carlos de la calle
Begging for another drink
Wasting away on the inside
Doesn't care if he dies
As he stumbles down the street

Twelve year old boy missing his mom and dad
Abandoned for the United States
Angry at the world around
Ends up with a gun in hand
Proving loyality to his new found friends


Preperations Have Begun

Next week is a week long Guardians Camp. So yesterday and today we had a leader's campamento to prepare for next week. I am on the crew that is helping with all the games. At the lake there is a 7 station, team building, area that is used but has been taken over by brush and shrubs. So starting at 7 this morning until about 3:30 we cleared out the mountainside with the only tools being a machete, pick-axe, and rake. I certainly do not mind hard labor but I like to be warned that I was going to be doing that all day in the jungle because I would not have worn shorts. We did get it all cleared out but I didn't escape quite a few blisters on both hands and my body is already sore. Some of the guys were teasing me saying it was my first time to ever do anything like that. It kind of irritates me because they truly believe because I am from the U.S. that I have never had to work.