“Today is a good day for a good day.”
That is my mantra each morning…. a reminder that it is a new day, fresh start, and with endless opportunities to be good. Life here never quite goes to plan, and that’s ok. I’ve said before how we have to make plans and hold them very loosely, something that has been a great lesson for me. I used to try to plan everything out, but over the past few years that has been something God has been working on in me. When you’re super focused on planning things out for next week, next month, next year it is easy to lose sight of the joy that can be experienced in the moment. Now I’m not saying we shouldn’t plan things; my life would be a mess without my planner and “to do” lists! But learning to let go of some of that control allows you to take life in stride, laugh a little more, and stress a little less when the unexpected happens.
From the first time I read it, I have loved the verse in Matthew that says “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own” (Matthew 6:34). When I was in grad school and working full time in the OR during the pandemic, I really lived one day at a time but not really in the healthiest way. It was more of doing what I had to each day, surviving one day at a time. Living here I have started to develop a better understanding of what this verse is actually trying to say: to worry (an appropriate amount) about what is happening now, and not to waste time worrying excessively about things that may or may not happen in the future. Living in worry about the future steals the joy from today. So, if you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed, focus on what you can do today and give the rest over to God. And remember, today is a good day for a good day!
So, what is new since my last blog….
This month we have hosted two separate teams from North Carolina. The first team was led by Katelyn Houser, who has now become a good friend – so good to see her again! Her team did two days of VBS and then two days of volleyball camp with a local team they met last year. The volleyball camp was a special way for the girls to share Christ and their love and knowledge of volleyball with the girls here. This week we have another team doing VBS. It is fun in the summer to be around the guesthouse while teams prep for VBS….reminds me of my first trip here! It has been nice to catch up on other things while we have had non-medical teams here, but I am excited for our next two weeks of medical teams.
At the beginning of the month my friends Hannah and Alejandro had their twins, Elsie and Isaac. Thanking Jesus for a safe delivery, two healthy babies, and that Hannah and the twins are all doing well. It is so special to see your friends become parents!
Last week the Buchers, Tyler, and I were able to spend a couple days in Las Terrenas. This was my second time there and Las Terrenas has quickly become one of my favorite places. I am still learning the balance of working in full-time ministry, and I have found the importance of little getaways like this to help me “turn off” for a few hours to truly rest. Thankful that we were able to go on this trip and spend some time together outside of our regular work lives.
Arlo and Osa’s puppies have continued to grow like crazy. Last week they turned 8 weeks old, and Tyler and I made a trip to Santo Domingo to deliver 3 of the puppies to their new families. At that point only half of the puppies had homes so I decided that the runt of the litter would join my family. Meet Rue! She is as cute as can be and just as sassy as she is sweet. She might be the smallest but that doesn’t stop her! It is so fun to watch Rue and Arlo play together.
The last update I have is on little baby Ben, the 6 pound 10-month-old I helped my friend Kailey transport to a hospital in the capital last month. Unfortunately, the hospital never found the reason behind his vomiting and failure to thrive. After a few weeks in the capital his mom brought him home and Tuesday morning he went to heaven. I debated whether or not I should share this update, but I have had several people ask about Ben and sadly this is the reality of life here. This just reminds me once again of the importance of improving healthcare in this country and for the need to support programs like our child nutrition program.
- For baby Ben’s family as they mourn the loss of a child far too soon, and for Kailey who fought so hard for him….it is hard not to take a loss like this personally even though she did everything she possibly could to save him. My heart just aches for all of them.
- For Hannah and Alejandro as they adjust to life with 2 newborns, and for Elsie and Isaac to grown and thrive.
- Safe travels for the last of our teams coming before our summer break, and for us as we travel back to the states next month.
- That the last 3 puppies find homes.
- Health, safety, and rest.