As I am on my way to the United States today I am also celebrating one year of life in the Dominican Republic.
I thought about it about a week ago. I knew October 6th was really close to the date that I came into the country but I was not exactly sure so I went back and looked and it just happens to the exact same day.
I want to personally thank all of you that have prayed for me this year and more importantly prayed for our ministry here in the Dominican Republic.
God has blessed me with everything I needed to be able to be in service for him this year.
I have learned so much in one year but probably the biggest thing I have learned is that although so much can happen in just one year, one year is not that long in the grand scheme of things. In one year you can get close to many people but the people that need it most and that are really looking for quality time will need so much more than one year.
I am so excited about the future here. We have some amazing things going on and something really awesome about to unveil in the form of a intensive discipling program. I am also blessed to be at peace with what God wants from me. I am not always sure what that is but I am okay with it.
Some highlights from the year:
October 2009- I finally made it here after much prayer.
October 2009- Revamping the Children’s Home
November 2009- Jean Carlos moves into my house.
December 2009- First group Norm and I lead
December 2009- First new Children’s Home employee
December 2009- I get back in touch with Antonio
January 2010- Earthquake sets of craziness on the Hispaniola Island
February 2010- Earthquake relief in full throttle. Many visitors come in to help with intention of Haiti relief but also brought a huge relief to our missionaries also.
March 2010- Two amazing spring break groups
April 2010- Evan & Rachel Aldridge and Ronald &Rosi Mena join our team
May 2010- Interns come to Dominican Republic
May 2010- Brother, Trent, gets married
June 2010- Norm and I lead summer program with help of all missionaries and interns
June 2010- Best friends, Brittney and Greg get married
July 2010- Summer continues with continued interest in supporting Manna’s new vision
August 2010- A time of reflection on where we are going
September 2010- The start of a new discipling ministry
September 2010- Advisory Board comes in for AMAZING weekend
October 2010- Team heads to World Mission Workshop.
Wow. I have had an amazing year. I am not going to lie, it was not always easy. In fact it was very hard many many times, but God got me thru it and He was with me the whole way holding my hand, letting me know that I could do it and yes I can keep moving forward.
Those were some highlights but here are some of the biggest blessings that came my way last year.
1. The Spring Break groups were awesome. I was totally not spiritually prepared for them to come in but they lifted me up.
2.Jean Carlos and Antonio have to be the biggest ministry blessing I have seen put in my life this past year. I love those boys so much and pray for them everyday.
3. Evan and Rachel coming was something unexpected when I first moved here but I have absolutely enjoyed them being here and working with them.
4. The assurance that I am doing as God has called me to do.
5. The times of peace that come my way every once in a while that really encourage me to know that I am at home.
Again, I am so grateful to all of you that have prayed for me and have been there with me this past year. I do not know how many more year long blog updates I will have but I pray that I just listen to God’s call and plan for my life.
I do not even know what to say. I have been in this place for a year now and the time has flown by. I am so grateful that you were there holding my hand and even carrying me when I did not even know I needed to be carried.
God, I know a year is not that much time but I have seen how quickly things can go very sour and I pray that you continue to move among us and send your Holy Spirit down on this team as you already have.
Keep us in the palm of your hand.
I love you everyday.