Tuesday, September 16

First Family Vacation in Nicaragua

(Sorry folks, after several tries to post pics, there seems to be a problem with the website, so you'll have to use your imagination!)
Well, we just returned from a 3-day vacation at the Pacific Ocean at a nice little resort called Vistamar (literally, SeaView). It as a wonderful, relaxing time, and the boys enjoyed themselves immensely. We arrived Sunday around lunch, and enjoyed a sumptuous lunch, then ran straight to the ocean. Zach was a bit timid at first and insisted on holding Steve's hand, while Nathaniel, all 33" and 27 pounds of him, walked straight into the ocean and would have kept walking all the way to China if we hadn't stopped him!!
The wide beach was beautiful and littered with thousands of perfect, tiny seashells. We now own the 2nd largest sea shell collection know to man! The hotel was divided amongst several bungalows, and we took advantage of the free room-service to enjoyed most of the meals on our back porch, overlooking the ocean and swaying in the hammock. The sunsets were absolutely breathtaking, and I had to refrain from filling up my memory card with images of God's handiwork splashed across the sky.
We also sampled 2 of the 4 swimming pools the resort had to offer. Zachariah enjoyed "swimming" on his own, while Nathaniel continued on insisting that he "do it myself!", with a little help from Mommy. Throughout the day, boys and teens from the surrounding villages would stop by on horseback and offer a ride. While Zachariah declared no fondness for horses, Nathaniel was excited to try his hand at the beast, and enjoyed a quick ride with this charming young man, only a boy himself.
This is a bit late, we went away the weekend of Sept 14th.

Tuesday, September 9

The God of the Impossible… (by Steve)

On a Sunday afternoon recently I was listening to a teaching on a CD that some friends gave to us. The speaker spoke of the idea that God enjoys doing the impossible and related numerous accounts from the Bible as evidence: Gideon with his weaponless army of 300 against the mighty army of 150,000; Jesus waiting until Lazarus was ‘stinking dead’ to come and raise him; Peter’s release from the heavily guarded prison; etc. His point was that the more ‘impossible’ the task the less likely it is that we will be able to take credit for the miracle. It struck me that often times when I ask for things I ask for things that may be possible (healing for someone who is sick, perhaps), but I never have the faith to ask God for the impossible (fix the tire on the motorcycle).

A couple days later I had an opportunity to test my faith and ask God for something that seemed impossible. I was driving my motorcycle in the countryside and in the process I lost a small notebook somewhere that contained a lot of important irreplaceable information. I thought, “Well I could try to retrace my steps and search high and low for the notebook, but that would take an incredible amount of time and it is not likely to be successful. Or I could ask God that someone else would find it and return it to me”. But I felt like God was challenging me to ask for the impossible, that the notebook would be in my pocket when I returned to the house.
I struggled with this for almost an hour as I was riding, and each time I would try to ask God for this the voice of doubt would say, “but you know that it will not happen”. I was amazed at how difficult it was to ask God for something impossible without thinking at the same time that if it does not happen it will be because it was not God’s will. I realized how little my faith really must be to not be able to ask, believing, for God to do something so small.

In the end, without looking for it, I came across the notebook in a place that I had been earlier that day. So was that God’s answer to my prayer? I don’t know, but I believe that the revelation of faith and believing were well worth the experience, and I expect God to continue to challenge me in this area.