Sunday, May 29, 2011

3 Years Ago

Just thought we would take a moment to look back...

Monday, May 23, 2011

Moving Out

After deciding in early May that YWAM Mountain Province would be closing its ministry center for a time, Saturday was moving day.  (YWAM Mountain Province and our family will continue to minister here.  We will continue to minister in our homes and in the community.)

Many of the students from our Student Sponsorship Ministry showed up to help with the work, and there was plenty to go around.

First everything had to be unpacked...
Delia unpacking a cabinet.

Then packed...
Josephine carrying bedding to put into a box.

Irish wrestling an unruly pile of bedding.

Or perhaps, disassembled...
Jordan and Allyza taking apart another set of bunk beds.

Lisa and the girls had some school work to do in the morning and planned to bring lunch for everyone and help in the afternoon.  About this time, she sent me a text asking how it was going.  I looked around and said it was probably better than it looked.  (It was.)
Aaaahhhhh!


Then it was time to move everything.  Fortunately, there was a neighbor nearby who was willing to lend us the aid of his truck.  Otherwise, we would be carrying everything the entire way to where we stored everything.  Since our ministry directors were out of town, we quietly stored it all in their unfinished 2nd floor.  (Well, it wasn't really very quiet and they knew we were going to put everything there before they left.)
Big Black Blessing!

The truck saved us a lot of work.  But since few houses are along the road, we still needed to carry each item to their house through the rice fields.
The path down which everything needed to be carried by hand.

The paths are somewhat narrow (like 6 inches narrow in places), so when someone is carrying a load, you need to get off the path so they can pass.  But don't step into the rice field, you'll get very muddy and damage the crop.
Step aside, please.

But since "life is school and school is life", there was a short break as nature study interrupted the move.
Cool!

Class dismissed, now back to work!
Jonathan, a truck with no wheels.

We also have a YWAM DTS outreach team coming so we took some things to another house where the team will be staying as they minister in Bontoc.
Alayna and Jil carrying a mattress.  Perhaps Jil is doing some texting also?

Everybody worked hard and much was accomplished before we stopped for dinner.
A tired group of friends.

Thanks everyone for your hard work!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Jury Duty

When a jury duty questionnaire came from home the other day, I chuckled as I responded to the question,
Round trip miles from home to court:
17,740 is a big number.


p.s.  In case you're curious, at the equator, the circumference of the earth is a little over 24,900 miles.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Unusual Packing List


Perhaps most of you reading this have never packed a couple of hula-hoops, an empty soda bottle,blindfolds, a bowling ball, and lots of rope when traveling for the day.  It isn't exactly typical travel gear - and besides, the bowling ball is heavy.  But in the hands of a highly trained professional, or even someone like me, these can be the ingredients for a great day of team building activities.

Yesterday I traveled to Nakagang, Sabangan to facilitate leadership and team building to a group of college students who are preparing to travel to several villages to present a Vacation Bible School.  Some have never staffed a Vacation Bible School and since some are from Baguio and others from area villages, most have never met each other.
We had a great time as I presented challenge after challenge and they had to come up with solutions and work as a team to overcome and implement them.  A little bit of frustration and a lot of laughter combined with a couple of handfuls of learning.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Mattress Shopping

While we were on furlough we bought an air mattress to replace the worn out foam mattress we had been sleeping on. It was so worn out that it provided little padding from the boards that make our bed. The air mattress was a nice improvement, but there is a reason that air mattresses are used for camping and occasional overnight guests: they eventually get a hole in them. When ours deflated after 6 months of use we needed to get a new mattress.

Living in Bontoc, this is not as easy as you might think. We went into every shop we thought might have mattresses. We even went into a few stores we had never been to before. In the end, this was the place we found a mattress of the right size.


It is so cramped, that if the owner is sitting at her desk, you can go up the aisle on one side then need to step out onto the street in order to go up the aisle on the other.












But even here, we would not have found a mattress if we would not have asked. I had to go with the owner up the stairs at the back of the store and look through a large stack in a dusty attic to find it.









A little plastic rope to bundle it and a mile or so walk brought our new mattress to our home. We won't need to worry about this mattress going flat or the springs wearing out because here the typical mattress is a piece of foam. We went with the deluxe model, 4 inches thick.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Toughest Place to be a Driver

We just watched the video that is linked below. It presents an insight to the situation of so many in Manila. It is viewed through the experiences of a London bus driver who accepts the challenge to drive a bus in Manila. Anybody who has ever been to Manila can understand the monstrous undertaking he is facing.

It is a long video, but it is worth the time.

By the way, we live about 13 hours north of Manila in a small mountain town.

Grace,
Tom

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Manna Principle

Being from the mid-west and having our own well, we are accustomed to having plenty of water. One thing we have been learning to modify is not only our water usage, but our expectations of water.

On occasion, we are forced to stretch these changes beyond the usual. For the past week or so, we have been working on the Manna Principle in regards to water. (Read Exodus 16 for more information.) We have had enough for each day, but never enough for two days.

The video below gives you a little glimpse into how we get water in our apartment.

video


Grace,
Tom

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Dazzled!

We recently watched the movie Les Miserables. I found the story so compelling that I decided to read the book to get a better understanding of the grace the author is trying to portray. The beginning of the book describes the character of the Bishop of D---. I was struck by the line
He did not study God; he was dazzled by Him.
Wow! Do I study God or am I dazzled by Him? Of course to study God is not bad, but why do I study? I study so I can know more. I study so I can help people understand. I study so I can teach. But when was the last time I gave myself over to being dazzled? I Corinthians 8:2 keeps going through my mind as I consider this.
The man who thinks he knows something does not yet know as he ought to know.
(I encourage you to read 1 Corinthians 8:1-3.)

This goes beyond reading. Am I dazzled at the signs and wonders around me or do I just take everything for granted? Maybe when Jesus said that the wicked ask for a miraculous sign, He was recognizing that those who love God are already dazzled because they are awake to who He is and what He is doing. Perhaps the wicked ask for a sign because they think they know something but really just don't get it.

I want to live a dazzled life!

Grace,
Tom

p.s. Because the libraries are limited here, we are glad to have a Kindle. Les Miserables is in the public domain and is one of a great number of books we were able to download to our Kindle for free.