Thursday, August 25, 2011

#42 When life gives you mud puddles....


 For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace:
the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing,
and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Isaiah 55:12

As I looked at this verse and did a little background study on it, Isaiah is talking to the Jews concerning their captivity in Babylon. However if we take this verse to another aspect, we could compare it to the feelings and relief that wash over a soul that has made a commitment to our Lord. They have been freed from their "bondage" of sin. They can go out with joy and a feeling of peace, being relieved of their baggage of sin and having their life cleansed with the blood of Jesus Christ. May your lives be filled with the joy and peace that only comes from a life cleansed in the blood of our precious Savior.
Albert y Miriam
We have just come through several days of revival meetings and I have been blessed and challenged by the messages. The first couple nights I didn't get too much out of the message due to trying to keep rowdy children sitting quietly. Albert & Miriam Struhbar and their family, as well as Miriam's sister Johana came to share the Word with us. Albert & Miriam are from KusilĂ­, Nicaragua. Kusili is beyond Waslala. It was a blessing to spend time with another Christian family and fellowship together. It definitely was a good experience for some of us women, as Miriam only speaks Spanish. But it was good for us and I even learned some new words :) The attendance was pretty good each night and someone new showed up almost every night.
*Playing Golf with the neighbor girls

*My mud-splattered friends and I

The picture above has quite the story! I decided to do something special for the young girls from my girls' class, so we invited them out to the "farm" for a sleepover. We decided to do it this past Friday night, as the guys had went camping. I told them I would come pick them up around 5:30pm and take them back to the house. I went out to LP to pick each of them up. It had been raining most of the afternoon and I was kinda worried about getting into LP. I couldn't figure out how to lock in the hubs, but the road didn't seem bad when I entered LP, so I wasn't too worried anymore. I picked up all the girls and headed back out the way I had come. To make a long story short, we arrived at the mud hole I feared the worst and as we entered the truck so nicely slid to the side and got stuck ;( The girls all jumped out and said they would push. They pushed me front...they pushed me back....front....back....front....back... We thought we were getting somewhere then it would slide the other way and we were stuck...again. We tried calling Leonardo, but their one phone was turned off and as I dialed the 2nd number, I lost cellphone service and was not able to find it again. Alvarado came along and tried to help us as well, but we just weren't having much luck. Finally I asked him if he would be willing to bike out to Don Pedro and see if there was a tractor available to come and pull us out. He left and it started pouring and there was nowhere for all these wet, muddy girls to take refuge, so we huddled together. I knew Laura would be getting worried, but there was no way to contact her, because I couldn't seem to find cellphone service. The girls said "let's try pushing one more time" So back into the truck I climbed all muddy and wet, and we tried but to no avail. And as the story goes, our knight in a blue raincoat arrived on his white horse......He looked at us and kinda grinned, but asked if there was somewhere to tie a rope. He doubled up his 3/4" rope  and hooked it on the front of the truck.....and then tied it to the horse's TAIL!!! The girls all lined up along the back of the truck and when he said "ya" they pushed...I slowly left out the clutch and the horse pulled us.......right out of that mud puddle! I think everyone cheered. We unhooked the rope and the horse and his rider rode off into the dark night and this "gringa" and her group of girls praised the Lord and jumped onto and into the truck and headed for the house. As we were arriving we met Laura  walking towards us. She had decided to go to the neighbors to see if they would be willing to take her to LP, as she was sure we were stuck. We arrived home an hour late...tired, wet, hungry, but thankful. The next day the girls washed the truck after breakfast. We all had a great time together and made many great memories!
*Magdalena, Lanita Hess, and Deynaire

girls and I
*Mireyda, myself, Deynaire, and Katherin

Yaritza and Krista
*Krista Bowman and Yaritza

Cleaning the truck
*Cleaning the truck after its thrilling experience

The pictures above were just a few of the many pictures that I have from the sleepover that i had with the girls. 


On Saturday we were invited to the birthday party of Amy, the daughter of Hector & Iris. I was reminded once again why I don't like Nicaraguan birthday parties. They always play loud, beating music. Amy is pictured above with her father and a great-uncle. Hector and Iris used to live just down the farm lane, but have moved out to another farm where he is working.

Since the beginning of the month, three young ladies have joined the staff here in Nicaragua. Lanita Hess-PA and Krista Bowman-VA will be moving into the El Terrero house once they finish language school and Carmen Diem-SC will be moving into the girls' house in Leon. Please pray for these young ladies as they adjust to the culture, climate, and language here. Krista and Lanita are both pictured in this email.

Also pray for me as I prepare to leave and move back to PA. I fly out of Nicaragua on September 13th at 1:00PM. 

Until later, God bless! Andrea

Thursday, August 4, 2011

#41 Time is Flying By

The Cross Still Stands!
The winds of change still blow through history's pages. Each day reveals a world that's not the same. Thrones and powers rise and fall.
Bondage reigns then freedom calls, but for every generation Calvary still remains.

The Cross still stands - an invitation to the lost; a reminder of the cost we will never owe again.
The Cross still stands as a token of God's grace. Love's masterpiece will never be erased; the Cross still stands.

Written by Daryl Petersheim & sung by Garment of Praise

As I stood on the beach the other night and looked out across the water seeing the force that God has put in the ocean and seeing this cross standing there, remaining strong against the force of the water; I was reminded of the Cross that still stands for all of the world. That Cross has stood firm for more than 2000 years, even amidst many people's attempt to remove it and its influences from this world. If the Lord tarries yet a while longer, we as Christians know that the Cross will still remain strong. What are we doing to share the the blessing of this "cross"with those who we meet from day to day? With our eyes fixed on this Cross and the Savior who died for us on this Cross, we will be victorious.
Water students
The last month has flown by way too fast. The WATER students arrived on June 28 to spend the next 4 weeks with us. We received 4 students here at OBMM in Nicaragua. Here in El Tererro/La Palmerita area Levi Fisher from PA and Amy Freeman from Ontario spent the time with us. (They are picture on the right in the picture above) Ryan Skrivseth from SC and Kendra Horst from IN  (pictured to the left) stayed in Leon. For me, it was great to have a young lady in the house with me once again. And somehow it seems like unique situations always seem to find their way into your life when the WATER students are here. There were some minor truck issues - the exhaust come loose from the manifold and the windshield stop working. So for the next several days we drove around in a loud truck and cleared the windshield by attaching a rope to each wiper. It proved to be quite the experience and it took team work to keep the windshield clean amidst pouring rain.
playing with the children                          moving day
 We spent quite a bit of time in La Palmerita visiting people and just catching up on all their lives. One day we left the house at 9:00 and did not come home till 5:00. The main schedule for the day was to have the 3 regular Bible studies. Aside from that we wanted to do some visiting. During each class, Amy spent time with the children while I studied with the mother. We were able to visit a number of ladies that we hadn't seen for a while, which was so much of a blessing. We were also blessed by helping a young mother moved her meager belongings from one house to another. I was really touched after we had moved the things when the lady came to me with tears in her eyes and said "I can't pay you, but I know God will pay you" It was wonderful to be used of God in that way and to be able to minister to that family.
VBS                          VBS 2
Another special event we try to do each year with the WATER students is have a 1-day Vacation Bible School with the children in different communities. This year we decided to do it with the children of LA Palmerita and the ones from Delmar and Joel's neighborhood. This year for something different, the Leon staff planned the day in La Palmerita and the LP staff planned the day in Leon. The young people from Leon had a theme of "You Are Special" and they used Max Lucado's one storybook about Punchinello and his desire to have more and more. However the more he got, the more dissatisfied his became. As Eli told him, the Lord is also trying to tell each ones of us that we are special just as we are. We didn't really have a theme for our day, but it was also another great day. We acted out Zaccheus, Abraham and Isaac, and The Wise Man and the Foolish Man. There was a nice turnout at each location and we praise the Lord for the opportunity to share His love to those that came out to each activity.
We also took a trip to Waslala with the WATER students. I was looking forward to going, knowing that this will probably be the last time I would be able to go before I returned to the States in September. It proved to be a very memorable trip - one that won't easily be forgotten. There were a few of us that had been to Waslala before and knew the way or so we thought. To make a long story short, we made a wrong turn and drove for about an hour and half before we stopped and asked someone. However we were able to get some really beautiful pictures. Pablo's were not around this time, so we had the privilege of spending time with Alvino & Edna Miller and their family. 
Alvino giving a nature lesson
They showed us around Waslala and took us out to Kusili. We stopped at Pablo's to see his snakes and monkeys. I had a little fellow, Zambo who insisted on following me around and hanging on me. We then headed out of town, stopping first at Marcos's house to see his brother-in-laws making "gelatinas." Marcos is Alvino's son that is married to Karla, a native Nicaraguan. They lived in Waslala but at the current time are in the States. His wife's family lives in their home there and continue to make "gelatina - jellos" to sell to the people in Waslala. From there we went to see Pablo's birds at the Laguna's place beside the Jicaral church. We then went out to Kusili to Steven & Daisy's for lunch. While we waited on lunch we went down to the river and rode on Timo's cable swing that he made to cross the river. We spent some time with Daisy before heading back to Waslala. On the way back, we stopped at Jonathan's and hiked back to the waterfall. It was quite an experience with me sitting in the mud more than once. Alvino also showed us the cocoa trees that Jonathan has there. He broke one open and showed it to us (pictured above). It was a great time and I enjoyed it so much. 
Dentist visit
Just a little picture for you - I'm pleased to introduce you to a Nicaraguan dentist office. For less the $15, I was  able to have a tooth filled.
Amy and I
One of the few pictures that Amy and I have together.

Thank you for all your prayers! Andrea

PS: For those of you who may have wonder what happened to me and why you haven't heard lately. Well it is because my computer has been having issues and I have to borrow a computer to type emails.