I hope everyone is doing well even though these days are kind of crazy. It is so important for me to always focus on the goodness of God in the middle of the chaos. I tend to get my eyes on all the craziness in the world and probably watch too much of the news in the US! God is continuing to work in our lives and using us to further His kingdom in Honduras and I am thankful that I am here during this difficult time.
We have been released a little from the total lockdown that we had for many months. We are now allowed to go to the bank and other places every 5 days instead of 12 days as it was in the beginning. Pretty much everything is open now and the stores just make you walk through a cleaning liquid, take your temperature and require masks but otherwise we can shop as we want now. I do have days that I just suddenly feel like screaming for the frustration of not being able to take the kids out more but we thankfully have lots of land and lots of activities here at Destino to keep us busy and entertained most of the time.
We have been able to complete a lot of projects on the school that needed to be done and were able to use the extra money that we would have used on materials and food for all the students while classes are out. We are going to be able to begin classes (Lord-willing) in February and we are in the process of changing our official papers so that we will now be on the Honduran public school schedule of classes (February through November) instead of the American schedule we had before (September through May). Please pray though that the government will approve our request promptly and we won’t have to prolong school opening another month. I have been very prayerful about all of our students and their families during this pandemic — not so much for the fear of the virus but more for the lack of food and nutrition for the kids since we are not able to feed them regularly as we do when classes are in session. Thanks for your prayers for the papers to be approved. It costs about $3,000 to change the schedule (ridiculous price to pay to the government) but we have had the funds to do that so far.
Also, please continue to pray for two families in our school who have lost their mothers during the pandemic. In both cases, the kids only had their mother as their parent figure so they are dependent on others to provide for them now. We are praying that we will know of the needs as they arise and be able to help all of our students who are hurting during this time.
We plan to start double classes in February with Kindergarten having morning and afternoon sessions. This year we have the space since the classes are not overlapping but we will begin building another small building for English classes this year so that we can use the classes now being used for english in the big school building for the double classes in the future. The need is so great to not only educate the poor children around us but also to be able to bring these families into relationship with Jesus Christ so for that reason we have felt it was necessary to start two classes in each grade, gradually building up to junior high through the next 8 years. We therefore will need 60 sponsors to pray and support our new entering kindergarteners so please pray that we will have volunteers who are willing to be that person to support each of the students as they start out their education at Destino del Reino.
We have had a virus going through the house (actually two different strains of a virus with different symptoms) the past two weeks. Please pray for all of us to be well finally. When a virus hits a house of 26 people, it is pretty SCARY!! ha ha
My four oldest kids are getting nearer to the time to go to Bryan College now. They went for their visa interviews and were told that they do not need to go to the office again but just send in the renewed papers once we receive them, and they will immediately be issued the visas. I still don’t know what God’s plan has been for them to have to wait, but one day we may understand (or not) and just continue to trust that our Father always knows the best for us. Please be praying for them as they will have many new struggles with going to a new country and a foreign language and learning to adapt to college life. I get kind of stressed at times about it and can’t imagine my life and household without these precious ones but know that God is going to do great things in their lives and teach them to trust Him wholly!
Our newest members of the Destino family have arrived from Greenville, SC. Anthony and Joanna Reese and their three small children have moved to join our ministry, teaching in the school as well as working with the mothers of our students. Also Anthony is going to begin tutoring my next two potential Bryan college students on taking the ACT test so please pray for him and Josue and Jonathan to pass the exams necessary and that God will open the door for them to attend college next year as well. I know that I am asking a LOT of the Father to provide 6 tuitions next year but if that is what HE wants then he will provide. Please continue to pray that all their funds will come in and that they will be able to receive scholarships and work sufficient to cover all their needs. Right now, the Reeces are staying in our apartment while they are waiting their housing in the city so pray for that to work out soon for them to get settled in in their house there.
Thank you for all your prayers for Coki and for Baby Hannah. Hannah is now just under 4 pounds but doing very well. She is very healthy but so very tiny and is actually smaller than the baby dolls that all my girls have around the house. Coki is a great little mama and we are so glad she has come home to us and we can help her with Hannah. Coki wants to take classes this year so she can get her high school diploma and be able to enter university classes to study psychology in the future. She will make a great counselor one day and use all the lessons that God has taught her through some hard times.
Please pray for continued healing of Josue’s leg. He can now run but not jump on his leg and is still getting some physical therapy for it but it needs to heal up completely and lacks a little yet. Pray also for Blanca’s knee. She hurt it about 7 weeks ago and is getting some therapy as well for that. It is not a serious injury but needs healing.
We have had really special times during the pandemic as a family and I know God has used this time to bring all of us closer to Himself as well as more unity and support as a family. There are a lot of us but it brings me such joy to see my older kids loving on and helping the little ones. They are such special kids and I am so blessed to be their mama. Thanks for your continued prayers for us for health and for the funds to complete the projects we are working on for preparing the school and home, etc. I know that times may be difficult for some of you that have supported us in the past but we know that God is not in a financial crisis and He will provide for all His children — He is forever faithful so thanks for the prayers.
Also, thanks to all of you who have collected supplies for the school and used clothing for our kids, etc. etc. We are awaiting the arrival of the 22 huge boxes from the US and we thank those who have contributed to the collection as well as the family who paid for the shipping. Thanks for loving us and being so generous.
Love to all of you.
In His grace,