So much has happened since we arrived in Guatemala over three months ago and yet it’s difficult to sum it up into words. I (Hannah) am taking Spanish classes for four hours a day. Almost every day I get to use my Spanish that I’ve learned, but almost every day I realize just how much I don’t know. I can’t even count the amount of times that I have said ridiculous and possibly offensive things to people thinking I was saying something else! I have an incredible teacher who has given me the confidence to keep talking even though I make SO many mistakes. I have learned that speaking Spanish will be a lifelong learning process, but that the LOVE of Christ is a universal language!
(My view on my walk to Spanish class)
While I am in language school for the next few months, Jordan is helping me by taking care of Solomon and Grace in the mornings. He was worried that he wasn’t going to be used by God in any way during this phase of our journey. God has once again taught us amazing things and proven us wrong! Jordan has such a heart for people and specifically youth. There are so many young people in the central park in Antigua who shine shoes or sell goods to help support their families. Many people walk by without even acknowledging them, but Jordan has befriended a few and has spent many afternoons getting to know them. One boy named Jonathan David recently accepted Christ! The last time we talked with him he had almost read the entire New Testament that Jordan gave him. If only we all were so eager to read God’s word!
(Jordan & Jonathan David)
(Solomon is 3 and Grace is walking!)
I am finally getting a glimpse of what it means to be a missionary kid. Jordan told me stories of his childhood experiences and I read books but I could never really understand. In these few months here in Guatemala I have had many precious people come into my life for a few hours or a few days or a couple of months and then they had to return to their home or the next place that they were going. It’s easy to love with half of your heart when friends come and go so quickly. I am learning to love boldly and realize that I’m just extending my lifelong friends. As my friend Judy says “Small world, big family.” I am thankful that God has allowed me to learn this as an adult. I can only imagine what this life feels like for a child or youth and I am thankful to be a part of helping some MK’s appreciate and grow from their lives in Guatemala! I have included an excerpt from a poem written by an anonymous MK that has given me the best understanding of who a missionary kid really is:
Who is an MK? I am a combination of two cultures. I am neither and I am both… I am the six-year-old who cries herself to sleep the first two weeks away from home…I am the one who desperately worries about fitting in, but I am the one who wears my native wrap around the college dorm and doesn't care what anyone thinks. I am the one who has lived under strict school rules, and I am the one who returns to America and questions what my real values are. I am the one the churches make a saint out of, and the one some people pity and laugh at. I am the one who traveled halfway around the world before I was four, and I am the one who has no home. I am the one who promises to write, but never does because it's too difficult to deal with the reality of separation…I am the one who knows and understands world missions, life and death, heaven and hell. I am the one who has seen God work miracles. I am the one who knows prayer works, but I am the one who sometimes finds it difficult to pray…I am the one who has learned to live with a politically unstable government, and I am the one who waits impatiently by the phone for news that everything is safe. I am the one who has spent only three months a year at home. Yet I know, beyond question, that my parents are the best in the whole world. I am the one who speaks two languages, but can't spell either…I am the one who wears a thousand masks, one for each day and time. I am the one who learned to be all I'm expected to be, but is still not sure of who I really am…I am the one who laughs and cries, sings and prays, gets angry and doubts, fears and questions, expects and receives, hopes and dreams. And I am one who cares. I am an MK, and I am proud of it!
We thank you for faithfully praying for us every step of the way! Love,
Jordan, Hannah, Solomon & Grace
(My super sweet friend Hillary who I met my first day of Spanish class. Miss you Hillary!)
(Antigua is beautiful! Even and old wall looks like art!)
(The Guatemalan Mother’s Day is a few days after the one in the US so I got to celebrate twice !)