Wednesday, June 30
Monday, June 28
Saturday, June 26
Thursday, June 24
Tuesday, June 22
Sunday, June 20
Thursday, June 17
* Meds ordered for the medical clinic came in Monday. Check.
* I got a phone call from Tim Hines from Honduras yesterday, our container is in Tegucigalpa and should be unloaded into the warehouse this weekend. Check.
* T-shirts arrived from Indiana today. Look GREAT. Check.
* Torch water bottles arrived. Look GREAT. Check.
* Picked up journals and song books from the printer in Jackson. Looks GREAT. Check.
* Tim ordered 2,000 Spanish Bibles. Check.
* Got a phone call from the other printer, Barnabas notes and Spanish songbooks are ready to pick up tomorrow. check.
* Send checks to Healing Hands International to pay for container; check to Barlow sports Jersey for t-shirts; check to Mid-South Solutions for water bottles; already paid for journals and songbooks; already paid for meds; already paid for dental clinic supplies. Check.
* Katie Wells, Katie Gooch, Brandon McKay (student here at Freed), Margaret and I sorted and boxed up all of the t-shirts, water bottles, and journals that are going to be mailed out Friday. Everyone should get their stuff early next week. Check. In other words, my "stressed out over my head" list is shrinking rapidly! I might even get a good night's sleep tonight.
Margaret is still collecting last minute paper work and confirming last payments. Her list is getting shorter but some of you are making life difficult for her. You just can't imagine what it is like trying to round up applications, rules sheets, Spanish release forms, photocopies of passports, photos, letters of recommendation, essays, and payments foe 160 people. And to make rooming assignments. You really don't know. If you did, you would have done all of this a long time ago and you would have made her life so much easier. Between the two of us... we are spent. Our batteries are low and the candle has been burned at both ends. But we can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and unless it is a freight train coming at us at 100 miles per hour, we are about to see the end. And at the end is where the trip begins. and for that we are very excited.
Katie Wells and Katie Gooch gave us a burst of energy that we needed! Once we get everything mailed out we have a week to just get ready for the trip. I am truly getting excited and Tim shared a lot of new ideas that our team might be able to do. New places and new faces that will make the trip refreshing and new, even for some of our long standing veterans. That makes me even more excited. I think we have a great trip planned and it will be such a joy and blessing to work in Honduras again.
I can't wait to see old friends and meet new ones. I Can't wait to see our buses and bus drivers. I can't wait to see the city; smell the diesel fumes; hearing the honking of car horns. I can't wait to look down from the Jesus statue and walk around the streets of the Valley of the Angels. I can't wait to sort beans and crank up the chainsaws and smell fresh cut wood. I can't wait to sing at evening devos with my eyes closed. I can't wait to take a shower with Honduran "hot water." I can't wait to eat beans and rice and eat fresh fruit for breakfast. I can't wait to wake up and be in the middle of a cloud passing by while we are up at the Mission House. I can't wait to stay up late talking to friends and waking up with the roosters crowing and the dogs barking. I can't wait to drink water from a bag and eat Gorditos. I can't wait to see the children with those big brown eyes. These are the things I am looking forward to. I can't wait!
13 days my friends. 13 days till we land in a very special place. If you are a first time rookie, you have to use your imagination to see what I am talking about right now. If you are a returning veteran, you have to use your imagination to SEE what I am talking about right now. It is all about perspective. Open my heart to what You know. So that I might stretch, so that I can grow. My feelings toss me to and fro. Open my heart to what You know. Open my eyes to what You see. To understand what I should be. My feelings get the best of me. Open my eyes to what You see. Open my ears to what You hear. So I can keep You very near. My feelings make it so unclear. Open my ears to what You hear.
Monday, June 14
Tuesday, June 8
Last Thursday I decided to do a final fund raiser for the work fund. Jenny Lovell got me in touch with a company out of Memphis that does all kind of promo stuff. I found a nifty 32 oz aluminum water bottle and decided to make a push to sell some before the trip. Minimum order was 96 so I was a bit nervous about it. I sent out an email letting the team know about the bottle and promptly sold over 100 bottles in less than 24 hours! So I decided to order a few more if anyone is interested. I only have about 20 and they are $10 each. I am going to predict that they will go very quickly... so if you would like to get one email me soon.
The past week has been brutal trying to get everything done before deadlines. But, unless something goes terribly wrong, everything should be done on time. The t-shirts are ordered and should be getting inked this week! The journals are in print right now and will be done early next week! The Torch song books are in print and will be done this weekend. The Barnabas note cards are in print and will be done early next week. The Spanish coloring books are in print and will be done early next week. The water bottles have been ordered and will be silk screened this weekend and back to me next Thursday.
Sunday I met with Dr. Schwartz, who lives here in Henderson and teaches at Freed-Hardeman. He has a clinic in town and has been doing medical missions for years. We met after church services Sunday night and discussed medicines that I will need to order for the medical team this summer. This has been a challenge for me for the past several weeks as we have been trying different ways to get prescription meds for the trip. However, Dr. Schwartz not only can write scripts for the meds, he can order them at wholesale prices... saving us a LOT of money. Wednesday I will finalize the med order and it will be in about a week before we leave for Honduras. I am constantly in awe of how God works.
This weekend we had a mini reunion here at school when 2 of my roommates from Freed-Hardeman were here with their wives. We had a great time wandering the campus and talking about all of the changes that have taken place since we were here. Old buildings that are gone and the 8 new buildings that are here now. Since both are businessmen we had lengthy discussions about torch and how we can position ourselves for the "next step" in our vision of growth for the next several years. They shared great ideas and fresh insight to what Torch is doing and the way we can expand our resourcing and networking. Oh, and we ate some Jack's Creek BBQ too! If you have ever been here you know what I mean... if you haven't... so sorry for you!)Margaret is almost done with the 3 way split assignments mid-way into our trip. About 45 will go to Catacamas July 6-9; 65 will go to Choluteca July 7-9; and about 50 will stay in Tegucigalpa. We are still pounding out details about what the 3 teams will be doing in their respective places, but finalizing rooming lists have to be made this week so that we can send the lists to the hotels that we will be staying at during this part of the trip. Margaret and I met with Tara (Ulmer) and Jerry Yale this evening. We discussed the work we are going to do in Catacamas and got a lot done towards that part of the trip. Tara lived in Catacamas for a year and will be the point person when we get there. I even chatted with Timeteo Estrada (in Spanish!) a few nights ago about plans for Choluteca. (thank the good Lord for Babble fish translator!!!).
So, with just 3 weeks to go, there is still a lot to be done. We are STILL missing paper work! Senor Margarita is not happy and when she is not happy.... well, you probably know the rest of that one, right? And we are waiting on a lot of money to come in. This week is the dead line for checks made out to Western hills Church of Christ. I cannot tell you how important it is to get your money in on time. It takes time for checks to be deposited. It takes more time for checks to clear and be released. It will take time to order the money so that we can withdraw cash from the bank (weird, right? I have to let the bank know a week in advance how much I am going to withdraw so that they will have enough on hand....) So I need to hear from all of you out there to find out what your plans are... we have heard from some but there are many more that we have not heard from as of now.
Next weekend I will be mailing out the t-shirts and journals (and water bottles if you ordered one). Margaret will be getting in touch with you if you are missing any paper work. Let us know if you have any questions, concerns, etc. My next posting will be the packing list and other trip information you will need. Can't wait to see everyone in Honduras, it will be here soon! Are you ready? I am. Make me a servant, Lord make me like You. For You are a servant, make me one too. Make me a servant, do what You must do... to make me a servant, Lord, make me like You.