Thursday, January 28, 2010

Gifts From The Big Island...



Our friend Tim sent us some more installments in the candy wars...which America is still winning by the way. The gifts were sent in stages, but for some postal reason they all arrived today...even though they were sent over a period of a month...all came today. It was Christmas in January!

Thanks Tim!















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Thursday, January 21, 2010

Updated The Website


We have completely updated our website with a ton of new photos, slideshows, and information. Go by and check it out!




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Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Running On Empty

Garafas is the word.

I hate them.
I love them.

Although we live in a large city (800,000), many of the neighborhoods do not have things we take for granted in other countries, like water every day, electricity, sewage, or gas. We have the first three in this house (although in our first house here we ran out of water twice a week at least).

We don't have piped in gas. Now in the States, there are a lot of homes that use propane. These homes have large tanks (my house in VA had a 1,000 gallon tank) that they use.

We don't. We have to purchase five gallon tanks and change them. The problem is, you never know when you can change them. A huge truck drives by the house with a lot of five gallon tanks on it. The man in the back of the truck banks on an empy tank while passing you at about 20 miles an hour. You have to run outside as soon as you hear them or you miss it. This is not like the Ice Cream Man who drives SLOWLY by giving people PLENTY of time to make it. No. You snooze you lose on this delivery.

Not only that, there are a lot of times when there just isn't a delivery. I am foresighted, so I have two tanks for backup. However, we have been out of gas now for the last five days. No one has it.

Our dryer, oven and hot water heater run on these garafas or tanks....so when the tank is empty...we stink, wear dirty clothes and can't eat.

The tank has a purpose. That purpose cannot be fulfilled when it is empty.

I was thinking about this as I sat by myself because my stench of body odor has driven people away. We are a lot like these Garafas.






We have a purpose. However, we cannot accomplish that purpose when we are empty. Our purpose is to flow energy, heat, light, to others. To do this, we must first have it ourselves.






We can't fill ourselves. I imagine the frustration that my little garafa has when the last puff of gas leaves it's mouth. It is like the opposite of a man suffocating. Instead of gasping for a last breath, the poor little garafa is pushing out as hard as possible...but alas no gas. (my kids could run with this illustration on the sick side if they wanted to). The garafa wants to provide hot water. It does not want us to be cold, but it cannot do anything about it. It lacks the power to refill itself. It has to sit there empty until someone else fills it.






When we are empty, it hurts everyone we come in contact with. My whole family is taking cold showers and eating cold sandwiches in wet clothes. (okay, it isn't that bad, but you get my point). The garafa may think that running on empty is not that bad...after all, it is his life. However, his little tin man life impacts 11 people every moment. We are like that. Our lives are not our own. We impact all those around us that God has brought into our lives. When we are empty...others feel the pain.


So, what is the solution? We must run to God and continually ask Him to fill us with the Holy Spirit. As we are filled with the Holy Spirit, our lives bear fruit and we accomplish God's purpose as we bless those around us.

When was the last time you actually ASKED God to fill you with the Holy Spirit? Take a lesson from a smelly missionary...you need to be filled because people around you need the power of God flowing through you.






Till Next Time



Joe

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