Do they celebrate Thanksgiving in Guatemala?
I have heard this often over the last two weeks and the answer is… The Pilgrims did not come to Guatemala, so the country does not recognize the day…. but WE will be recognizing the day, with as many American traditions as possible.
We are without the constant reminders every time you go to the store and the television and radio advertisements… and so the day feels much like any other day here. But in some ways, it helps us to focus on the bounty of THANKS that we have over the last year for all that God has done and provided here.
This past year has not been an easy one – as we have been stretched and asked to do more than we have felt possible at times. But as I reflect back on where we were a year ago and where we are now, I can see clearly so many things that I am truly thankful for.
… for all of the people God has brought together to advance His kingdom, whether they are here or there…. He has provided people to fill in gaps where they were much needed, equipping each with their own gifts.
… for financial provisions that have provided for the hospital ground, opening of the school, construction equipment and materials, and labor.
… for personal health that has kept me from major illness during this time here – and for healing through those weeks where the virus kept attacking.
… for a first class of students that were gifted with a lot of grace and patience to accept change, adapt and encourage me through the first year of teaching in Spanish.
… for protection and favor for us as we will always be foreigners trying to work within a foreign system.
… for cultural adaptation – to be able to love the people here for who they are, amongst their own culture and to be able to connect in part on a heart level.
… for the opportunity to serve a God that is doing things greater than we could ever imagine.
… for a support system in the states that has encouraged me, listened to me and upheld us in prayer through the challenges of this past year.
2014 has been a milestone year – one that I will be sure to remember when they all start to flow together….with ups and downs, challenges and victories…. but one in which my faith has been solidified as I have lived in the middle of a whirlwind. I have experienced what it is like to live where God is active and alive…. and we have been blessed.
Hoping that you all have experienced His presence this same way in the past year!