Sunday, February 2, 2014

2014 - Weeks 3 & 4 Photo 'n Prayer Review

Week 3

Sunday afternoon hike with the girls and Super Tobi!
PRAISE that we are so blessed to live in a beautiful country with a beautiful people!
(Minus the ticks!)

Family evening winds down.
PRAY for the Beard family! Life is challenging with four children.
Even more so on the mission field!

Dunia, on the left, receives instruction from Ilsy on storing the soccer uniforms.
We've hired this young adult to help with laundry. It is a blessing to hire young
people involved with RO4Y to deepen our influence and bless them financially.
Plus, it frees Ilsy & Lucinda to fulfill their gifts/roles at the Ranch.
PRAY for us as we seek to employ/disciple young men and women at the Ranch.
We are specifically asking that God would provide someone to assist Oscar with the work of maintaining the new property / landscaper and someone to help with the animals.

Waiting at Immigration to renew our residency cards.
So, funny story. 
We arrive mid-afternoon at Immigration to accomplish two tasks:
One - renew our four Honduran ID cards & two - pick up Poema's new ID card.
Upon our arrival, we are told that the machine isn't working, so we can purchase the cards and return at a later date to pick them up with receipt in hand. We purchase the cards and confirm our next step when the representative says, "Well, since you're traveling with the whole family. Let me take your photos and fingerprints so everyone doesn't have to return." We go through this step and the lady says, "Well, let me see what I can do about getting your cards printed." 15 minutes later, 10 minutes before the offices close, we depart with our four renewed ID cards! So, make sure to bring cute kids to immigration!
(We had to return a few weeks later for Poema's ID).

PRAISE God for His faithfulness... in all the details.

"Mobile Art"
You see a lot driving in Honduras, but this was a first for us.

Adobe bricks made in preparation for  the construction of our new home.
PRAISE for progress at the new property!
PRAY for Wayne Goranson (Marillyn's father) and Jose de la Paz (Oscar's Uncle),
as they collaborate on the various construction projects.
PRAY also for God's timing on a Bible study with the young men near the new property.

Tobias surveys the graded land & location of our new home.

Ilsy helps Mare with the Artisan Crafts trade school class;
a new role for her as she transitions out of her job in the local kindergarten.
PRAY for Ilsy as she raises her daughter, Lissye, and serves at RO4Y.

Kitchen Discipleship:
You know your child isn't a little girl anymore when she wields a knife & dices tomatoes!

Oscar prays with the U-12 boys after their devotional and before their game.
They placed 3rd out of five teams and advanced out of the semi-finals
with a 2 - 1 victory to reach the finals for the second year in a row.
PRAISE God for this unique ministry to the young men of Ojojona.

Nothing is too big for Tobi's mouth!

Tabi strikes a pose as Tobi crashes the girls first sleep-over with Karen!
PRAY for the Beard kids as they grow up as "3rd-culture kids":
North American in appearance, but more Honduran in culture.
I'm excited for God's plan for these bi-lingual children.

Week 4

Taller CDP student, Yahaira, passes on her knowledge of rolling paper-beads
to some new students in the trade school: Jessica & Tania.
PRAY for the students as we've started a mandatory Bible study reading program.
We are reading up to half a chapter of significant sections of scripture, like John 3:1-13 or Ephesians 2:1-10. We are asking the students to read the passage daily, copy the verse that impacts them the most and write a question about the passage. Our desire is to generate a desire to read the Bible daily and to really discuss/understand what we are reading! So, far so good!

Our friends, Mario & Norma Fernandez, from one of our supporting churches in the US, visited the Ranch for a day.
The Fernandez's are Hondurans, but have lived in suburban Chicago for years. They host a prayer group for Rancho Oasis in their fellowship, so it was special that they got to actually visit the Ranch!

PRAY that more supporters will be able to visit the Ranch and catch the vision God has for our community and join in His plan.

A bad, extra smokey, traditional Honduran stove located in the kitchen of the existing home on the new property.
We plan on fixing this to bless the current caretakers and prep for our arrival.
PRAY for us as we determine the needs of the new property, prioritize them and divide them between local labor and short-term mission teams coming to serve with us.

"Basking in the Son"
Oscar shares from the word with the U-14 boys soccer team.

PRAISE for God's faithfulness through Oscar and the futbol ministry.

I am so blessed to share how Oscar and I have come into the roles that God had for us with the soccer team.  This year, Oscar continued his role as team chaplain, but also took the reigns as "head coach." My role shifted to team administrator (attendance, discipline, equipment, etc). The U-14 boys struggled at the start of the season with only one victory and one tie in the first five games. I feared that we would repeat last years season and struggle to get the boys to even show up for games! God had a different plan.

Not only did all 20+ boys continue to show up for games, we went 2 - 2- 1 in the final five games of the season and actually were contenders to place third and advance to the semi-final game. (We technically placed 5th out of six teams, even though we were tied with the fourth place team for points, they had a higher positive goal differential.)

But, more important then the final points, the team's character developed. We learned perseverance, discipline and a strong work ethic. Individual players learned lessons in humility, selflessness and encouragement. 

One example is Jonathan, a fifteen-year-old teen from Ojojona with no father in the picture. Despite being the second highest goal scorer on the team and team captain he was benched the last game because he was constantly chewing out his teammates at their every mistake. Once he left the field, his teammates worked together and came back from a 0 - 1 loss in the first half to win 4 - 1. After the game, Jonathan humbly looked at Oscar and said, "You were right." Lesson learned!

Finishing is better than starting. Patience is better than pride.
Ecclesiastes 7:8 (NLT)

Youth assistant coach, Jose Miguel, helps load the boys in a delivery truck after a victorious day of soccer.

The Girl's Bible study's mural interpretation of John 1:1-4

In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.He existed in the beginning with God.God created everything through him, and nothing was created except through him.The Word gave life to everything that was created, and his life brought light to everyone.
John 1:1-4 (NLT)

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