• Bloggers Trip,  Extensions,  Faith,  Guatemala

    Day 3: Following Upward

    After going to bed with a heavy heart the night before thinking of the horrors the children I had just played with are facing, I woke up with the renewed excitement to be apart of standing against such evilness. Another day of enjoying an incredible team of people, the opportunity to attempt Spanish, to engage with the work that makes my heart & God’s come alive, to learn more about Guatemala and to know God more. To my surprise, God had a hope-filled schedule for us to stand in contrast to yesterday. Including an opportunity to visit our sponsored child Cristian once more in his classroom where we built puzzles…

  • Bloggers Trip,  Extensions,  Faith,  Guatemala

    Day 2: Denied. Precious. Joyful.

    The slum of La Limonada began as a squatter community in a large ravine between two zones in Guatemala City. In a 1 mile long and 1/2 mile wide, somewhere between 60,000 and 100,00 people live in 10 different barrios. An address in La Limonada conveys you are zone-less, unidentified on most city maps. Everyone is afraid of you, assuming you are a thief, criminal or gang member. This was the theme of our day 2 in Guatemala. Stories of women trying to get a loan from the bank and being denied based on their address. Men searching for honest work but not hired based on their address. Women and…

  • Bloggers Trip,  Extensions,  Faith,  Fun Times,  Guatemala

    Day 1: Violence & the Aroma of Christ

    This is not the way it’s supposed to be. Today we walked around in a dangerous, gang-filled barrio. We saw the blood still on the street from yesterday’s shooting and listened to stories of heartbreak. And then we returned to internet and heard about more heartbreak from Boston. What causes people to act out in violence against other people? How can we respond? After 19 years of working with gang members, Tita pictures these fierce youth as scared children who were never given definitions for love unmingled with abuse, home separated from insecure and neighborhood un-dominated by tension. She believes in the power of love to break down these walls…

  • Bloggers Trip,  Extensions,  Faith,  Guatemala

    Guatemala Preparation

    In heart preparation for our upcoming trip to Guatemala, I have been re-reading Compassion by Henri Nouwen. This book delves into this beautiful attribute of God which led him to act on our behalf by becoming “God-with-us”. “He made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!” (Philippians 2:7-8) On a trip like this, we will see much that will move us with compassion. Children living in extreme poverty, with constant abuse or neglect and without hope for any kind of future. How will we act on behalf of…

  • Faith,  Fun Times,  Guatemala

    A True Love Twitter Story

    Once upon a time, there was a boy and there was a girl. They lived far apart and for the better part of three decades, they had never met. One spring day the boy decided to do a series of blogs about social justice. He also decided to tweet about them. The girl stumbled upon said boy’s blog while searching #socialjustice tweets. Through mutual interests, mutual friends and a dazzling dose of providential intervention the boy and the girl began to tweet, email, text and talk on the phone to each other. By Fall, the boy and the girl finally met each other in person and with a little help…

  • Bloggers Trip,  Extensions,  Fun Times,  Guatemala

    Bloggers Trip to Guatemala

    It has been no secret Tim and I have been big fans of Lemonade International, a community development organization focused on the largest urban slum in Guatemala City, Guatemala. When we discovered Lemonade,  we were immediately struck by the story of how God raised up local Guatemalans to walk into one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in the world compelled by love and hope for what could be done to renew this place. We were drawn to the deeply focused method of building relationships and restoring dignity to a group of people who often feel equated with the trash that surrounds the deep ravine they call home. So, you can imagine our excitement…

  • Extensions,  Faith,  Guatemala,  Video

    Reparando, a Documentary Worth Sharing

    Tim and I had the opportunity to share a very meaningful documentary with a few people from our church this last week. Reparando (“repairing” in Spanish) is a story about the deep spiritual and physical needs in the largest slum in Guatemala City, and how God is at work repairing this brokenness through the love of Jesus in remarkable ways. The film begins by building the context of the deep poverty and gang violence found in the slum of La Limonada before unfolding stories of hope, joy and possibility. After the film ended, we processed together images and aspects that touched us the most. Many people gravitated to the story…

  • Extensions,  Guatemala

    Our Wedding Lemonade Stand

    It is hard to believe Tim and I were married almost six months ago. We had a wonderful wedding day with family and friends in a little desert oasis in the Valley of the Sun. But throughout the insanity of planning a wedding from across the country, we were pumped to have the opportunity to support an organization we are really excited about. We created a Lemonade Stand to bring attention and support to the work of Lemonade International. In lieu of party favors, we gave towards this ministry and had the following message on our wedding site: As we prepare for our wedding and marriage, Tim and I are well…