The Beginning

I’m awake early. My mind is in complete process mode still sorting out all of the information it has taken in so far this week. It has been an incredibly overwhelming, exhausting, joy-filled, tearful, heart-swollen, God orchestrated type of week. I have been taking notes, and was prepared and planning to write this week about our time here in Honduras….what I didn’t plan for was the fact that it will take some time for me to collect myself enough to write and the fact that by the time we get home at night to the hotel and have dinner, I would fall, completely used up, into bed.

I’m sitting here in the early morning as sounds of Tegucigalpa fill our room. It’s a cool morning, and the open window feels amazing on my sticky, humid skin. I have laid here for about an hour now, listening to the sounds of the city. Motorcycles, dogs barking, beautiful birds chirping, gun shots, cars honking, music school warming up their instruments across the street, roosters calling, trash trucks…..a big difference from the quiet and silence of a morning at home.

Our team leader has decided that we would read through a book of the Bible while here, and each morning as we gather for breakfast and devotional time, we could talk about what God has brought to our attention in this certain book. The book, James! Which, struck me immediately when he said it. I just finished a Life Group that worked through the exact same book. Coincidence? Absolutely not! God doesn’t work in coincidences. I see that God was preparing me for this trip right down to the day we got here, and showed me that this was exactly where I was supposed to be.

It’s a huge leap of faith to do a mission. One of the other leaders here said she constantly has people say they want to go with a team….and out of the hundreds that say they “want” to go…only a few actually do. It takes a lot of faith to step out of your comfort zone. But I know when God has whispered a mission into your heart, you better go. And that’s how it was for us. It wasn’t out of curiosity, it was out of obedience.

So I will collect the thoughts, images, sounds, smells, and prayers in my heart and mind, and soon they will spill out on to these pages. I will tell you this, I am so thankful for my faith, I am thankful that we stepped on to the ledge, I am thankful for my team’s obedience, I am thankful for the opportunity that we had to serve. I am grateful that God said, “Paula, go and be a blessing and a servant of mine to the people of Honduras” I am grateful that I listened. I am thankful for the support we have back home. I know I will never be the same. I know my life is forever changed in ways, that I’m not quite even sure is explainable. And I know that even though I planned on coming to Honduras to work hard and be an instrument of God’s love and blessing to these people, the blessings that we have received far surpasses anything I could ever imagine.

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….And We’re Off!

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It’s Friday!  Last minute goodies have been picked up, immunizations (OUCH) have been injected, antibiotics have been picked up!  In 24 short hours we will be boarding a plane for Honduras! Today is packing day!

As this trip has been building so has my anticipation, excitement, and elation.  I am a complete wad of emotion today.  God has a way of doing that to me.  And when you know that this is exactly the will of God, and exactly where you should be beyond a shadow of a doubt…that’s got some power behind it.

I have so much fun talking with people about this trip this past week.   Here are some things I have heard….

“Ya know as American’s we have so much.  But we always want more, always….man, we have so much to be thankful for, and really need nothing more.  We really have NOTHING to complain about, do we?”

So true!

“This is going to give you such a different perspective on life, as you leave the comforts of home (which we often take for granted) and serve in this desperately poverty-stricken area.  You my friend, will never be the same.”

Counting on it!

“Be prayerful about the fact that you may feel a little guilt as you leave your job site everyday, knowing what you are doing for this sweet family (and their current situation)…as you go back to your hotel.”

So true!

“God is going to use you, Greg and your whole team, in such a huge and impactful way.”

So incredibly true!

“You will be so changed by this experience!”

Already have been!

And a quote sent to me by a sweet friend,   “No one grows up hoping someday they’ll be typical. Get back to leading that inexplicable life you were aiming for.”

As I pack, I find myself a little teary-eyed, overflowing with so much thankfulness and joy.  I am grateful that we (our team) are willing to take this incredible leap of faith together.  To reach across geographical and cultural boundaries sharing sensitivity, warmth, love, tenderness, kindness….humanity.  I am praying…

God may every single thing we do on this trip be for your glory.  May the lives of these Hondurans be forever changed by Your love, care and compassion.  And that we are the best representation of that love and compassion.  Keep our teams safe, healthy and full of endurance for this job.  And Lord, thank you for showing me so long ago, to never, ever,  take anything in my life for granted.

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A Whole Different Kind of “cosmetic bag”

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Hammer, check! Tape measure, check! Work gloves, check! Say what…..??

~Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. -Galatians 6:9

~Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.  -Hebrews 12:1

“Christ wants not nibblers of the possible, but grabbers of the impossible.” — C.T. Studd

Kind of Like The Oscars…but German

So I have been all crazy into my week.  Hurrying and busying myself with preparation for our Honduras trip this coming week, and I get a notification that I have been nominated for an award!  What?  An AWARD!! 

I was nominated for the Liebster Blog Award by the fabulous Anne at Running Unplugged.  She has a fantastic blog that I follow and love to read.  I was very surprised and honored by her nomination.

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And what, I’m sure you are wondering, is the Liebster Blog Award?  I did some looking around, searching, Googling (YES, I Googled) to find out exactly what it is.  Liebser is a German word meaning sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome. Basically, it’s a “favorite” blog site award.  The Liebster Award is given to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers.  It’s a great way to connect with other bloggers and help spread the word about newer bloggers/blogs.  A way to “pay it forward”

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Now for the fun part and the rules of this award.

  • Recognizing the awesome blogger that nominated you!
  • Write 11 things about yourself.
  • Answer the 11 questions the blogger who nominated you asked.
  • Nominate new bloggers!
  • Write 11 questions of your own for the bloggers you nominate.

    Here we go~~   Eleven Things About Me

1. I am a neat freak, like organization and hate being late to anything.  (Since being a wife and Mother I have had to pretty much give up on that last one…..ok maybe all of them, but life is so much sweeter since)

2. I am a window shopaholic and cannot go into a store for only the ONE thing I went in for to begin with.

3.  I have been a runner most of my life.  It’s my passion.  I have done 20-plus 1/2 Marathons, 2 full Marathons, Sprint Tri’s, Oly Tri and 2 Ironman Triathlons.  I plan on running until I can no longer move.

4. I always manage to see the positive in every single person I meet, regardless of the situation and circumstance.

5. Most things can be solved over a box of Swedish Fish or Hot Tamales.

6. It’s impossible for me to take only one picture when photographing something.  Kind of like eating a french fry….it is simply impossible to eat just one.

7. I love reading and at any given time, am usually reading 2-3 books at a time (sometimes more)

8. I think laughter is the most amazing sound I have ever heard….and thank goodness, because in this family there is NO LACK of it!

9. Shoes!  Enough said!

10. I may, or may not, have a slight closet video game obsession.

11. I love traveling and being exposed to different cultures.  This is a huge planet with such diversity.  I want to see and experience as much of it as I possibly can.

The 11 Things Running Unplugged Asked Me

1.  If you were Superman, what would your Kryptonite be?

~This was an easy one…definitely, without a doubt, Dark Chocolate. Absolutely irresistible!!!

2.  How many pairs of running shoes do you have?  Which is your favorite?

~Eight pairs.  My Newtons are by far my faves!

3.  If you were given 2 free plane tickets to anywhere in the world, where would you go and who would you take with you?

~Who I woud take is easy.  My best friend, and adventure seeking side-kick, Greg, the Hubster. Where would we go?  Dubai.

4.  Science Fiction or Romantic Comedy?

~ Romantic Comedy…not much of a SciFi girl.

5.  What color is your car?

~Red

6.  What is the last book you read, and did you like it?

~Last book I finished was Sensible Shoes by Sharon Garlough Brown.  I read it while in Costa Rica.  It was fantastic!  I am  currently reading Forgotten God by Francis Chan

7.  If you won the lottery you would…

~Honestly I don’t think much would change for me (us)  Pay off the only bill we have (our mortgage) Travel a little more.  Really the biggest thing would be the hundreds of ways to be able to help those in need in our community and around the world.

8.  Who is your favorite superhero?

~The Man of Steel

9.  Did you grow up in a small town/rural area, suburb/medium sized town, or in a big city?

~Small town in NorCal.

10.  What was your favorite thing to do or place to go when you were 10?  Would it still be fun if you did it today?

Probably going to the skating rink.  I loved to skate, and would meet my friends (and boys HaHa) and skate all the time.  I still think it is a blast now.  In fact when I get the chance I still go.

11.  What is one item on your bucket list?

~Take a pilgrimage on the Camino De Santiago  (actually the Hubster and I will be doing this for our 20 year anniversary in a couple short years)

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List of Bloggers I am Nominating

The Queen B

be infinite 

Project Whitespace

Jock In a Skirt

Cherelli

 My Questions For You Incredible Bloggers

1. What is your favorite book of ALL time?

2. What is a new skill or something you have learned to do recently?

3. If you could travel anywhere in the world and money wasn’t an object, where would you go and why?

4. What is your favorite sport to watch either live or on TV?

5. Three favorite hobbies?

6. One thing you hope to pass on to the next generation?

7. What is your favorite season and why?

8. Your biggest goal for this year?

9. How do you un-stress or un-complicate your life?

10. Where did you grow up and your favorite childhood memory?

11. Favorite junk food or pig-out food?

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Have fun!