Sunday, November 23, 2014

Habitat for Humanity: Nicaragua

Check out our team's blog for our latest husband-wife adventure! I love my husband's perspective on why we do these things:
I started attending Crossroads Christian Church in August three years ago, after my new bride and I moved to the city from Wisconsin.  I met a very large group of inspiring and gentle brothers and sisters in Christ whom I hope to stay in relationship to for a long time to come.  These people and Pastor Mike, as well as the book "Radical", given to me by a WELS friend from Milwaukee, brought out a godly desire in me to serve our Christian brothers around the world.  At first I was not sure how people can help others so far away, and indeed there are also those in need so close by.  But I believe God would instruct us that fellowship and giving is not constrained by material or logistic concerns, and that service knows no barriers within the heart.  Hopefully, what I can contribute to the kingdom here on earth, will be to leave a small impression of the glory from above.  Our group is coalescing to help a family build shelter.  Housing is a need much like basic sustenance: without it we are tempted to despair and we suffer physical pain.  Our group is blessed to be a part of answering the prayers of this family in a time of need.  Although reports refer to Nicaragua as one of the poorest countries in the world, it looks certainly beautiful from the photos, videos and personal accounts available.  I intend to make the most of our time in the country and hopefully make friends we can bring with us to heaven. 

Off we go! Hola Nicaragua!

Between Adventures

Much time has passed since the last blog post, but another service adventure has inspired me to write again. My hands are always eager to do God's work, whether building, cooking, gardening or knitting. Before I dive into our next adventure, here's a little show and tell what my eager hands have been up to.

One of my best friends was married last fall and asked me to make, or rather remake, her wedding dress and bridesmaids' dresses!  Her mother was married in a beautiful, though dated wedding dress.
What an honor to be trusted with such a remodel! It took such a long time to decide what to do with that neckline, and how to do it.
 What a beautiful bride!
I'm especially happy with my dress! Original design!
Then on to Christmas knitting!
The highlight of the winter was the opening of my Etsy shop, Eager Hands Workshop! It hasn't been filled with goodies, but getting started was the hardest part. Hooray, I'm a business owner!
Having my own shop inspired me to work on some more simple but original designs.
Baby gifts!
And a sweater for Hubs and one for me!
So now, off to Nicaragua! We are building a home through Habitat for Humanity with several friends from our church in Chicago!

Hope Springs

We went to the site of Plaza Towers Elementary School where seven children were killed by the tornado. 
Here is an overhead view of the area prior to the tornado
and after 
 The destruction was just so complete and terrifying. It's amazing that anyone survived inside that crushed building. According to a CNN story, many of the students who survived, survived because they were huddled and protected underneath their teachers. First responders pulled a car off one teacher, only to find three children under her. Another teacher kept an entire wall from crushing her students, and not without injury. Although I have lost the source now, I recently read a quotation in the Moore Monthly Newpaper from another teacher that went something like, "When the roof came off, I felt myself being sucked up. I knew that if I went, all the students under me would go too. So I just held on. I held on for dear life." I can't imagine the terror that these teachers, students, and their families experienced.

The message traveling throughout media coverage and conversation is one of hope, and you can see evidence of that in the photos above.

"If calamity comes upon us, whether the sword of judgment, or plague or famine, we will stand in your presence before this temple that bears your Name and will cry out to you in our distress, and you will hear us and save us." 2 Chronicles 20:9

As we prepare to finish our work here, it is evident that this experience has been a blessing to so many. God is glorified in the heroic acts of of his people during the disaster and the disaster recovery. I am so impressed by the faith of this entire community, and so thankful to be a part of it.