Friday, November 6, 2009


I read the story of Amy Carmichael about a year ago and was struck with the fact that after going to India, she never returned to her homeland again. I understand that she was caring for many children which made it difficult. But even without the children under her care, if she could have returned, it still would have been a long boat voyage. A letter from home took many weeks to arrive, making the news more like history by the time she got it.

And then I think of my life here on the mission field. If I miss my sister, I just turn on the internet. That takes about a minute to get running on a good day. Then I open Skype. I look for her name, double click, and within a few minutes, I am talking with her, face-to-face, using the web cam. She shows me the toys she is sending for Rosa for Christmas. I see my neices. Then we say goodbye, and I re-enter my world here in El Salvador.

Is this truly amazing to anyone else out there but me? Just this morning, I spoke to one of my sisters, my brother, my grandma, and my mom...all in a matter of about two hours. If I lived in the U.S., I wouldn't be able to see them all in that amount of time since they live in different cities.

Although missionaries like Mary Slessor, Hudson Taylor and Elisabeth Elliot all had the chance to visit home, it was not without extreme difficulties. What about us today? Buy an plane ticket online, an hour drive to the airport, a few hours in the air, and I am back on U.S. soil.

I think its incredible and I am so grateful that I was born in this century and not an earlier one! When put in this perspective, my life of "sacrifice" just doesn't seem like much of a sacrifice.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

An atheist's convicting declaration

I read this story about a week ago, while lying on the couch with my broken foot propped. The advantage of needing to rest is that there is lots of time to READ! I read the following, which impacted me greatly. This account is in "Created to be God's friend" by Henry Blackaby.

Blackaby tells a story about a preacher who was speaking with an atheist. The atheist explained why he was not a Christian. He said that if he truly believed, as Christians say they believe, that everyone must face eternity and give account for how they lived, and that Jesus in His death and resurrection was the only way to God, and that all who do not receive Christ's provision would die in their sins and spend eternity in hell- then, he said, he would not rest day or night from warning everyone and urging them to respond to Christ. But, he continued, when I see the way most Christians live, I am totally convinced that what they say they believe is not true.

This declaration of an atheist is quite convicting. I find myself wrapped up in the daily tasks of raising kids and maintaining a home that I tend to lose sight of eternity. My husband is good for me regarding this. He always has a sense of urgency in everything he does, with his eyes on eternal worth. After going to bed last night, we talked for almost an hour about this. Our conclusion was this: we must not turn back, press forward, and improve, with God giving us the strength.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Taco Stress

Our family loves tacos and burritoes. We eat them about once a week. I prepare Rosa's taco for her before I make my own. And every time, without fail, Rosa stresses out.

I start by spreading the beans on her tortilla. My hand is reaching for the spoon in the bowl of taco meat. And the panic begins.

"But Mommy, what about cheese? Don't forget the cheese. Oh, and the sour cream. Oh Mommy! I still need tomatoes!"

I can't believe we are going through this again. I begin giving her my normal little speech.

"Rosa, I always give you everything you need. Just be patient and you will have everything. Don't I always take care of you?"

She nods her little head. Then calms down and waits for me to finish preparing her dinner how she likes it. So the drama is over. For that day. But next week, when we eat tacos again, we will go through the same thing again. And I think, will she ever learn? Why does she doubt that I will take care of her?

And then it hits me. Don't I do the same thing with God, repeatedly? I worry and doubt Him, and He continuously meets my needs. And I breathe a sigh of relief. Then the next struggle comes, and I stress and panic all over again. He again takes care of me. This has been going on all throughout my life as a believer, which is over twenty years.

Can I be hard on my little four year old, since this is a lesson she still hasn't learned? Considering the fact that I STILL have not learned this lesson myself. This is an opportunity for me to continue teaching her. Just like God continues to teach me.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Broken Bones, Happy Hearts

In the middle of the night, I came down the stairs in the dark. I did not want to disturb my sleeping family with the lights. Misjudging the last step, I tripped and broke two bones in my foot.

I noticed something about going through struggles. Your kids will mirror your reaction to difficulties. Deciding to go to the hospital, waiting for hours, dealing with pain ... my kids were watching me and Steve's reactions to everything. I was keenly aware of this. I noticed that my son, one year old, had his thumb in his mouth almost the entire day. He was trying to cope with all that was going on around him. I did my best to remain upbeat, telling him we were "going for a race in the wheel chair" and held him tightly as we were manuevered to X-rays and doctors. He cheered up a bit, looking to my face for assurance. Kids are very smart, and pick up on so much more than we give them credit for. God gave us the grace to handle this tough situation in a way that was comforting to our kids.

What if we would have ben panic sticken or grumpy? For one thing, we would have had an upset four-year-old and screaming one-year-old at the hospital. Not only that, but it is important to think of long term affects of our attitudes. What would that have taught our kids about difficulty? "Yes, we tell you God is real. But we can not believe that He is in control of unexpected difficulties. So its okay to lose your cool since God is not in control."

To raise kids that will be adults who can cope with difficulties, we must give that example. If we show a happy heart in the midst of a trial, it is more likely they will do the same as adults (and maybe even now as children!)

Let them see, through our example, that our God is to be trusted with whatever comes our way.

Recipes: Homemade Flour Tortillas

Salvadorans love corn tortillas. Because of this, it is quite difficult to find flour tortillas anywhere (which is what we like). I've found a recipe that we like. It comes from the Bimi cookbook, called Feeding the Hungry Soul. I have altered it a little bit.

2 cups flour
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp salt
1 cup boiling water
I like to add cumin and / or garlic powder

Mix all ingredients. Roll out small balls on floured board. Fry in dry skillet till brown spots appear, turn over. I've found this recipe makes about 8 tortillas.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

What do we want for our kids?

What do we want for our kids?

My husband and I have thought a lot about the kind of parents we want to be. We heard a message by Adrian Rogers to number of years ago. It impacted us greatly. So greatly, that we often refer back to the following story. This is similiar to how Pastor Rogers worded it.

When the Israelites were close to Canaan, some of them DECIDED they did not want to go into Canaan.

"This is just fine out here. We are satisfied raising our families in the desert. Promised Land? No, thank you. We are content living in the outskirts of it."

When it was time for these families to celebrate feasts, thanking God for what he had done for them, what did these parents say to their children?

"So, dad, what exactly are we celebrating?" a quizzical child asks.
"Why, we are celebrating how God has been good to us!"
The child looks around, sees the desert, feels the heat, licks his parched lips. Then looks to the distance, where the Promised Land is.

Do you think that child was convinced that God was good to them? Or would this child prefer to go back to Egypt? I am sure Egypt looked quite appealing to that child, since he never saw what it was like to like to live in the Promised Land.

We want to live a life in the Promised Land, as God intended and full of blessing. The desert is no place for a Christian parent to live permanently. Living in the Promised Land, it is more likely that our kids will also live there. If we live mediocre lives in the desert, our little ones may do the same. Or worse, they will return to Egypt.

Live a victorious Christian life in the Promised Land. You are the best example your children will ever have.

Recipes: Alfredo Sauce

On the mission field, we do not have access to many things we love. Or the item is very expensive since it is imported. So I am learning to make some things that we love on my own. Some of the ingredients may not seem right, but I am limited as to what is available / less expensive here (for example, I use margarine and milk instead of butter and cream). My husband loves Alfredo Sauce. I have come up with a recipe that we love.

Alfredo Sauce

Half a stick of margarine
minced onion (if you like your sauce smooth, omit the onion)
1 tbsp flour
2 c milk
1 tsp salt
3 oz Parmesan cheese
garlic powder

Melt margarine on low heat. Fry onion in margarine until translucent. Slowly add 1 tbsp of flour, while stirring. After you have a thick paste, slowly add two cups of milk, little by little, stirring continuously. Do not add the milk too quickly or you will have a chunky mess! Be patient, coninuously stirring the sauce. When sauce begins to thicken, add the salt, cheese and garlic powder. Continuously stir until the sauce is nice and thick.

Purpose of this blog: More than making do

The purpose of this blog is to connect with other moms (and missionary moms, like myself) who want to do more than just "make do" while being a wife, raising kids, maintaining a happy home, and ministering to others. We have a lot of hats to wear!

One thing I pray for is that my kids will live a victorious Christian life. I want them to see their parents living in "Canaan land". If they see us living a full life in Christ and enjoying it, they are more likely to do the same. We must never be satisfied, and continuously strive to do better, in every area of life.