me and sweetpea...my angel

me and sweetpea...my angel
Suffer the little children to come unto me and forbid them not

Thursday, November 24, 2011

My new blog site

I have moved! After much frustration with my blogger account I have decided to set up a new blog with wordpress. From now on please go to www.2tiredjamericans. wordpress.com to keep up with us in Jamaica. I am trying to become a true blogger by actually keeping this up to date. Our goal is to keep you informed of what is going on in our ministry in Jamaica and to sometimes make you chuckle. Thanks for following us and most of all thanks for your prayers.

This has been the last rambling of this tired Jamerican on this blog site....SELAH!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Looking up.....


I'm not sure if I've ever told you, but I am the worship leader at our sweet little church here in Montego Bay. Funny thing is, I never really pictured myself doing this. Actually, I pictured myself singing alto in a Southern gospel group. >sigh> (I fear neither my voice or hair is big enough for that) Truth is, when you plant a church it's all hands on deck. I suspect I am not the only one who has stepped out of her comfort zone and into God's assignment.
Tonight we worked on two new songs: Everlasting God, and I Exalt Thee. It was new to everyone in my little worship team, except me. I had to sit as we rehearsed because the pain in my left leg and foot was so severe. But, I was so excited about these two songs. As we attempted to blend our voices it happened. The Holy Spirit just gripped my tattered heart and squeezed it so hard that the tears poured out. Just me, this broken vessel, has the privilege to exalt my heavenly Savior, the creator of the universe. The scripture is found in Psalm 97:9...."For thou O Lord art high above all the earth. Thou art exalted far above all gods."
Father, I exalt Thee, I exalt Thee, I exalt Thee, O Lord.
Sometimes it just takes being flat on your back so you can look up....LOOK UP....and exalt the Everlasting God. He will not faint and He won't grow weary.
This is just the rambling of one very tired...but oh so blessed Jamerican....SELAH!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Precious Blessings from Ethiopia

The day we have all been waiting for has finally come and gone. Last night we welcomed our sweet new grandsons home from Ethiopia. My daughter Stefie, granddaughter Macey, and son Seth joined lots of family and friends at Orlando International Airport to welcome them to their new world. I can't even imagine what was running through their minds as they walked around the corner to the screams of delight by a quite large crowd. The world as they know it has forever changed. Welcome to our family Christian Abiti and Joash Negalegn....welcome home. You will never know how very much we love you!
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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Taking a Stand

I have been watching (with much curiosity and HUGE admiration) the news today about the young Iranian pastor who is on trial for his faith. Yes, his faith. Not because he ran a plane into two towers and incinerated human beings, but because he dared to declare his faith in Christ publicly and refused to renounce his Savior. I remember years ago my pastor asking each of us if we would renounce Christ if we were threatened with death. I couldn't answer that question then....I still can't. I think I would, I hope I would, I know I should but would I? None of us can truly answer that unless we are faced with it.
This Sunday we will look on as four of our dear people at Bay Life will be baptized. It will be in a public forum at the beach here in Montego Bay. They will be making a public declaration that they have put off the old and have taken on the new. They are identifying with Christ in front of not only our church congregation, but also in front of lots of onlookers at the beach. The scripture teaches that each of us who claim His name should be willing to unashamedly claim Him in front of the world. That is what each one of our dear converts are doing. As they go in the water they will be signifying Christ's death, burial, and resurrection. What a public step for each of them.
How about you? Maybe God will never call you to be a martyr for His name, but as a believer you have surely been called to be obedient to this small step in showing the world that you are one of His. Are you convicted that unlike this Pastor who is willing to give the ULTIMATE sacrifice for Christ, you have been unwilling to follow in this one small step? "But whoseover shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which in heaven." Matthew 10:32-33
I pray that when God calls on me to take my stand, I will do it regardless of the consequences....even giving my own life.
This has been the rambling of one tired Jamerican....SELAH!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Learning to wait and to listen....


For those who know me, you would without a doubt classify me as an impatient person. Patience has never been my virtue for sure. I'm not sure why I am so impatient as I was raised in the very lay back Caribbean culture. It would seem that I should be laid back. I wish! My lack of patience is one thing I really would like to change. Especially when I am impatient with myself...yep you heard right. I have grown impatient with ME!
Two years ago I noticed a funky looking rash on my arm and just thought I had brushed up against some weird plant. Or maybe I had been bitten by a freaky Jamaican bug. I really wasn't sure. It really didn't itch at first. Then it started spreading up my arm, kind of itching, and oozing. I also began what was to be a six week splitting migraine headache and nausea. After many attempts to get help here in Jamaica, I was finally forced to fly home to receive medical help. It wasn't until four weeks later that the headache finally subsided, the rash cleared up, and I was able to eat again. Doctors are not in agreement as to what my diagnosis was. One says it was viral meningitis and one says it wasn't but he doesn't know what it was. Whatever it was (I think it was a tropical born parasite called Rat Lungworm), it was the beginning of lots of health issues for me...thus the impatience with myself.

Fast forward to now. For the last year I have been seeing a neurologist that specializes in Multiple Sclerosis. That is a disease in which your immune system attacks your central nervous system. I have the tell tale two lesions on the brain, the demyelinating of the eyes, the numbness, tingling, and pain on my left side. I am still undiagnosed. It looks like MS but I have three of the four markers needed to qualify as MS. I don't really know what I have but I know my body is a mess. I so want to be out going door to door, doing open air meetings, and playing games in AWANA. My mind says go and my body says no. I am perturbed with myself and impatient with what is happening to me.

When you can't get up and go like you want, you learn to wait and listen. Wait on the Lord, and listen to what He has for you. I ponder things a lot more now since I have slowed down some. I listen a little better to those who hurt. I kinda feel their pain. I am learning to be more graceful and more patient with others. (except for maybe with the crazy drivers here). Life is just too short to be constantly uptight and running all the time. I am trying to be still and know that HE is GOD. I pray that while I am "broken", God can use my brokenness. I heard recently a quote that I absolutely love. "Broken vessels spill more water". Simple but so beautiful. I can be "Broken" and still spill more of the living water that our Jamaicans so need to partake of. Pray for me, pray for me to think clearly, see clearly, speak clearly, and move forward when God wants me to. Right now, I am just learning to wait and listen.....and working on that impatience!

This has been a rambling of one tired Jamerican...SELAH~

THE PIC AT THE TOP IS OF MY ARM WHEN THE DISEASE FIRST STARTED. PTL, ALL I HAVE TO SHOW FOR IT NOW IS A FAINT SCAR TO PROVE GOD'S FAITHFULNESS!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Mi tired mun...






I knew when we returned from the USA two weeks ago that we were coming back to the hottest time of the year for Jamaica. I have almost chuckled out loud as I read on facebook all the crying about the 100+ temps occurring over portions of the United States. However, for those of you up there just remember how blessed you are to have air conditioned homes and workplaces to enjoy. Not so down here. In the midst of all of this extreme heat, our first summer mission group arrived from LaGrange, NC. Not only did they come in the hottest time of the year, but they came to work in the toughest VBS group we currently have and in some of the roughest conditions. Did they let either of these factors intimidate or discourage them? No mun...not at all.

They arrived here last Friday with smiles on their faces and an arsenal full of goodies and fun for the children of Deeside. They went and ministered in the church at Deeside (Harvest Baptist) without either of us with them as well since we are fully engaged in ministry at Bay Life Baptist. Even this didn't really seem to bother them. After a three hour service (and test of endurance in the heat) they were still pumped and ready to start VBS on Sunday night after only two hours break in the afternoon. There was no grumbling, complaining, or even a whine heard from any of them.

VBS started out with a bang. The Pastor went out twice with his 12 passenger Hiace van and brought in over 50 kids in two loads. (We know how to pack them in down here) After registering over 150 kids, we literally stopped counting because they just kept trickling in all night. They came in ages ranging from little babies all the way to senior adults. This was repeated again on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Sunday and Monday we held VBS in the evening...much cooler but a whole lot more leg chomping mosquitoes. Tuesday and Wednesday were held in the blistering hot morning because the facility at Deeside has no lights except for some strung from the neighbor’s house to the main room. There are no lights in the back rooms at all. Since we needed every available ounce of space the decision was made to move it to the morning. CAN YOU SAY HOT??? The group just handled it all with grace.

Our last day of VBS on Wednesday morning was one of mixed emotions. The kids that the group had loved on all week would soon no longer be a part of their everyday routine. The relationships that had been started and nurtured would soon become just a stirring memory. I watched with a full heart as tearful goodbyes were said. Tempering the sadness was the sheer joy of knowing that many of those children had given their lives to Christ during the 1/2 week of VBS. We won't even know this side of Heaven the difference that was made in the lives of the children....or the group from NC for that matter.

It is always a blessing to us to be a small part of what God is doing to not only change the lives of our Jamaican people, but also to change the lives of visiting mission groups. Part of the goal of having mission teams is to allow God to change them...to see how God melts their hearts with a burden for the rest of the world. This week was no exception. Our tearful testimony sessions each day was a clear indicator that God was at work this week. Are we tired??? Yes mun...mi tired. Mi also full of joy....for God has done GREAT things.

This has been another rambling of one very tired Jamerican...SELAH!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Public profession




We had our first baptismal service at Bay Life last Sunday. For a baby church, this is kinda like cutting your first tooth, or taking your first steps. We had been looking forward to it with great anticipation....and we really prayed for no rain! Now I know for most USA churches, rain might mean a drop in attendance. In Jamaica, it means almost nobody shows up because they say that the rain makes them sick. (We haven't quite figured out how taking a shower every day doesn't also make them sick) But beyond that, we have our baptisms outside. Yep, the old fashioned way. So it really WAS important for the rain to stay away. The day arrived and the Jamaica sky was as blue as its' beautiful ocean waters. After we said the benediction we all "squoze" in to several members vehicles and headed for "dump up" beach. No, I'm not kidding, it really is called "dump up". Fortunately the name comes from the loads and loads of sand that were dumped there when the bay was reconfigured a few years ago. Somehow the name dump up just conjures up lots of nasty trash. In Jamaica, that too is all too common as well. Anyway, we all arrived at the bay and congregated around the seaside singing songs as our two Pastors (Cletis and Andrew) entered the water. One by one our precious people were baptized, six of them in all. Most have come to know Christ since Bay Life started back in October of last year. There are no words to describe the emotions I felt as I watched the new believers enter the waters of baptism. It was the culmination of lots of planning, praying, sowing the seed, and reaping God's harvest. During the service there were other people swimming at the beach that stopped their play to watch the baptismal service. Some even sang along with us as we sang songs of rejoicing. At the conclusion, one lady approached Andrew to inquire of him what church we were and where our church is located. It dawned on me....isn't that really what baptism is about? Isn't it supposed to be a public display of our decision to follow Christ? How public is it when we confine it within the walls of our church? Maybe I am just partial since this is the way I grew up seeing baptisms done...in the ocean in front of all to see as they pass by, sail by, or swim by. Maybe that is part of our problem these days as Christians....all of our christianity is confined to the four walls of our church. I hope that isn't the case. I pray that we are willing to walk out of our buildings and walk into a world that needs Christ and LIVE like it is our last chance to tell the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It was a blessed day indeed for Bay Life Baptist...it was precious...and it was public. This has been another rambling of one tired Jamerican...SELAH!
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