Thursday, January 7, 2010

Call before the storm

I have a cell phone plan now. It just hits me as I sit down to type this out...that is the first time I have a long term contract like this on a phone. I bring it up because yesterday I had to supervise unloading a clothing container by myself, such as Oscar had to do while I was gone to the US in November (he and his family are still in Costa Rica or Panama...probably on their way back to Honduras today as a matter of fact.) And as such that required lots of phone the customs agent, to the clothing store guys to come get clothes (since they are out, and since I needed more help) and to some other out of work blokes who needed a job. Having that phone has come in very handy already for many different aspects of the mission, like being able to talk enough with Gender about the Church in Sampedrana, the coffee harvest, current baptisms (praise God!) etc.

The actual work of getting the semi up there and getting unloaded went relatively well. We still have some issues with getting around our property with a container now that the access behind the containers to turn around is not an option...for the long term we really need to hire a backhoe to move our containers and dig out a wider curve for them...I do not envy them trying to maneuver around. As it was, with the hills and dips, the container leans quite a bit to the right when it pulls in...prayers were going up that it would not tip over...that would have been...a mess. So we ended up hoofing it quite a bit up and down the hill to unload. Fortunately however I was a little more firm that they allow us to unload during daylight hours...amazing how much that helps.

Earlier that morning I went to get the leftover clothes from Jose Luis' store for us to store in one of the containers. It is very full, so first I needed to take the clothes that Dora had sorted out as being bad (too big, too ripped, too many alcoholic or tobacco advertisements, etc.) for them to fit. I filled the entire pickup bed of the Ford in the process. I write this just to share our frustration...this load is just a small amount of what we can not use that gets thrown away. One big pickup load only represents Jose Luis' store...that is one of six stores! I shudder to think how much the actual total is. I was talking with Jorge and the Church's stores see the same thing. A sewing ministry is definitely in order, and one we hope will take flight in a year or so with another missionary coming full time to help start and administer that. Jorge commented that they have to give much of what they can not use to a business that takes apart the clothes and makes blankets or smaller clothes out of them. This that gets thrown away is actually "rescued" by the workers at the local dumping site (where I also saw they had set up a make shift couch for their very small children to sit) which they use to help them keep warm at night or make rags...they use it for something. Seeing pants that I could fit myself into one leg that went through our store though...makes me a little sad. Not just one pair...hundreds of pairs just in the last month.

I guess it is most frustrating because we see what the good clothes do for the Churches, for the people, for the ministries...that knowing bad clothes are in there as well is just a little depressing, but praise God for how much is being done through the good clothes, shoes, belts, purses and hats that come...amazing stuff.

The kids love to watch the ants work in our driveway. I took this on my cell phone...but it seems like a really good picture to me. These are huge ants as ants go, and their route to work is quite the lengthy one. The kids work in school continues to go well with them starting back after their vacation this week. I remember being bummed about vacation being over, but they wanted to go back to school. Over break Cecilia after many long talks and discussions with Valerie had Christ enter her heart right before bed! Talk about exciting around here. We read through Matthew chapter three last night and after she expressed an interest we are also talking to her about baptism. She seems too young...but her faith also seems genuine and is producing fruit. Praise God for that!

1 comment:

The Mom (Leah) said...

Praise God for Cecilia's decision. About the clothes... the last time we packed, the instructions were given verbally only once at the beginning of the day. Yet we had many come and go throughout the day who did not hear. The people back here want so much to help. They do not realize the difficulty in sending XXXL clothing. We need a way to be SURE it is weeded and not sent.