Sunday, May 20, 2007

Free At Last!

Well, I knew this day would come eventually, but it is still hard to believe that it is already come and gone. Two Saturdays ago I graduated from Dallas Seminary with a Master's degree; however, I am still uncertain as to what exactly I have mastered. Nevertheless, I am happy to have completed my course of study (I think my wife is even happier than I am).

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Missing Guatemala and My Dad

One of the many beautiful places in Guatemala. This is on a mountain overlooking Antigua.

The summer of 2004 was such a significant time in my life. It was the beginning of one the most difficult times in my life as well as the beginning of one of the most special times in my life. My dad was battling terminal cancer while I was serving with Buckner Orphan Care International in Guatemala. While my dad fought the cancer that would eventually take his life, I spent my days loving on some very precious children who did not know what it meant to have a father or mother who loved them. I held little Jacob (Hacobo) who did not have a name until I gave him one. I played with Roxana as she ran around the orphanage with her beautiful smile and enthusiasm. And back home my dad fought. He fought hard! In fact, he fought hard right up until the very end. My dad went to be with the Lord on May 11, 2005. Some days it seems like it was just yesterday that he and I were talking about fishing and John Wayne and other days it seems as though he has been gone for so long. I remember traveling to see my dad soon after my return from Guatemala. He had lost all of his hair due to radiation and chemotherapy. He seemed so thin, so fragile. He had to use a walker in order to get around and needed help getting up and down from a chair. But despite all of that he still listened intently as I shared with him about my precious little ones in Guatemala. Sweet Checha, who called me his mom. Catherine the little girl with the cleft palate. I am so thankful I was able to share my summer with my dad through photos and stories. You see, I wasn't sure I would get to see my dad again when I left for Guatemala. But the Lord is good. He sustained my dad while I was away and He sustained me. This week marks the two year anniversary of my dad's passing and almost the three year mark of when I left for the beautiful country of Guatemala. I miss Guatemala. I miss my dad.

Checha taking a little nap.
This little boy brought so much joy to me and others!

Hacobo just after having his head shaved to help prevent lice.
He was approximately 6-8wks old when I met him. I would spend hours holding him and caring for him. I would have adopted him on the spot if I could have.

Roxana! Doesn't she have the cutest smile? It's contagious!

Unfortunately I do not have a picture of my dad available to post. I will have to scan one and then add it here!

Friday, May 04, 2007

Ekklesia Weekend

This weekend Daniel and I are teaching a class on Community at our church! We are both excited about this opportunity. Here is the cool art work our pastor and friend, Brent, created for the class. Please be praying for us and for those who will attend.

Led by Ethos partners Daniel and Gloria Cooley, this weekend will explore the essential role of community in the life of the Christian. We will unpack themes in Scripture concerning the nature and purpose of community as it relates to God, His people, and ultimately our own lives. In a world that prizes individualism, the Church desperately needs to proclaim community as a value to be nurtured not simply a spiritual commodity available for purchase.