Sonidos Serranos

Sonidos Serranos: Sounds of the Sierras...
Reflecting some of my family's interests: God's wonderful creation (especially mountains and hills!), music, and language...

Psalm 121:1-2 (NASB)

I will lift up my eyes to the mountains;
From where shall my help come?
My help comes from the LORD,
Who made heaven and earth.

30 January 2016

Psalm 113

Celebrating a decade (plus nine months!) of motherhood today, meditating on Psalm 113...

The psalm JM read aloud, as a testimony, at our church’s annual Thanksgiving Service two months before we would be seeing our Sweet Baby Girl’s face for the very first time.

Praise the Lord! [lit. Hallelu-Yah]
Praise, O servants of the Lord,
Praise the name of the Lord.
Blessed be the name of the Lord
From this time forth and forever.
From the rising of the sun to its setting
The name of the Lord is to be praised.
The Lord is high above all nations;
His glory is above the heavens.
Who is like the Lord our God,
Who is enthroned on high,
Who humbles Himself to behold
The things that are in heaven and in the earth?
He raises the poor from the dust
And lifts the needy from the ash heap,
To make them sit with princes,
With the princes of His people.
He makes the barren woman abide in the house
As a joyful mother of children.
Praise the Lord! [lit. Hallelu-Yah]


The dull ache of longing, of hoping, and – as years passed – of not daring to hope...

The sharp pain of well-meaning but insensitive comments – especially on Mother’s Days...

But always – coming back into focus – the great faithfulness of my Good Loving Shepherd. His promises. His more-than-sufficient grace.

Today, I look back on those days of longing and waiting with a very full heart. In a jumble of emotions, I can treasure even the darkest moments of disappointment, driving home from yet another baby shower, gripping the steering wheel, trying to see through my tears… Ultimately coming (once again) to the realization that our Loving Shepherd was leading JM and me “in righteous paths for His name’s sake...”

He always does.

And today we echo words we chose for Elizabeth’s birth announcement:

“For this [child] [we] prayed, and the Lord has given [us] [our] petition which [we] asked of Him. So [we] have also [lent] [her] to the Lord; as long as [she] lives [she] is [lent] to the Lord.”

Happy Birthday, Little Lady!

26 January 2016

“¡Campa de Jóvenes!”

The summer camp theme has been “Cristianos con Visión Misionera en el Siglo XXI” (Christians with Missionary Vision in the 21st Century).

We’re thankful. Please pray for God’s continued work in the hearts of all the “jóvenes” (upper high school, plus college and career ages) who attended camp this past week...

Yesterday I cropped and edited (and used Movie Maker for the very first time), putting together a three-minute picture video with highlights from the youth camp.

Pictures truly are worth (more than!) a thousand words! J

20 January 2016

Love?! Promises?!

Recently, walking down the sidewalk, running an errand, holding DJ’s hand, I told him that I love him.

He hugged my arm: “I love you so much, Mommy, that even when you don’t exist, I’ll still love you!”

I love watching the little wheels turn in his mind as he tries to understand metaphysical realities; he gets glimpses of how much I love my Mommy and my Grandma and Jona who, as he sees it, don’t exist here...

And his most recent line, when trying to persuade, has been:

“I’ll make a wedding promise that I’ll...”

(Attending a couple of weddings recently inspired conversations about the seriousness of covenant vows, etc.)

On our way to the most recent wedding...

Just this past week, DJ was helping me put clothes into the washer. I showed him the Mickey Mouse t-shirt that Marcos gave to E – five or so years ago?

She’s finally tall enough to wear it.

I explained to DJ that Marcos was a very loving cousin; he chose to give his favorite t-shirt to E – even though it still fit him!

DJ stood there, staring at the door of the washer: “I don’t think I could do that!”

“That’s the kind of love that costs us. Do you think we need Jesus’ help to love in that way?”

DJ nodded, deep in thought; I could tell the little wheels were turning in his mind. Then he said: “When I give you flowers, it’s because I don’t need them...”

He was so confidently frank, entrusting that bit of information to me, that I just had to laugh! And I’m still grinning now as I write. But he obviously has a lot of learning to do...

I’m thankful for the wonderful example he has in his Daddy!

19 January 2016

“¡Campa de Niños!”

E had a wonderfully full week at campWere very thankful for our co-workers and all the work they evidently put into making the week what it was!

This afternoon, we enjoyed looking through the pictures on the CD she brought home. And I had fun cropping and editing and adding some of my own snapshots (from the day we visited), creating a two-minute video clip of condensed memories.

Pictures truly are worth (more than!) a thousand words! J

Pray for God’s continued work in the hearts of all who attended camp last week...

16 January 2016

Welcome Home!

When E returned from camp (her first time ever as a full-time camper!), she was happily surprised to find that we’d finished painting her room! There are still decorating details to finish, but the basics are done and the room is in order...

It’s been fun to pull a look together with paint!

As I took pictures of our accomplishment, JM teased that I was capturing the orderly look on film because the room wouldn’t look that way for very long... J

And I was remembering ten years ago, when I was taking pictures of another little room where we had just set up a crib and added decorative “Noah’s Ark” details...

So much has happened in only one decade...

God has been exceedingly good to us...

11 January 2016

Funnies & Firsts!

We recently allowed “seasoned salt” on our lunch table. Being unusual, it was very much a highlight for the younger members of our family.

All of a sudden, I noticed that DJ was talking about “a somersault” and then “a winter salt.” While I was still trying to process what he was saying, he suggested that the makers of the “season salt” [sic] should specify which season they mean for us to use their product in.

Meanwhile, E intentionally enjoys plays on words and what I call “Amelia Bedelia Humor” (in English) and “Sapo Ruperto Humor” (in Spanish). When we’re not rolling our eyes, we’re laughing with her...

We love to encourage their love for books!

This morning E got on a hired tour bus full of children going to EMU’s camp on the coast. This will be her first full week as a camper.

I already miss her!

DJ misses her, too. But he also decided to have a first milestone today!

I like this milestone – a lot!

[Abu Julia insisted that I get a picture – to show to his grandparents...]

06 January 2016

Pray for us! (January Ministry Report)

We want to thank you for your part this past year in what God is doing in Uruguay. We don’t know what 2016 will hold, but we do have full confidence that Jesus, the King of the nations, is building His church.

In our latest ministry report, we’ve described several situations that seem to show us a glimpse of some specifics of His building work...

You can read details on highlights from 2015 as well as updates on ongoing ministries at: Good News from a Distant Land.

Please continue to pray for Uruguay!

02 January 2016

Happy New Year!

On New Year’s Eve we celebrated with extended family, preparing and then eating “asado” in our own back yard!

We enjoyed traditional holiday treats, reflecting Uruguay’s Spanish and Italian heritage:

pan dulce / panettone

turrón / torrone

Our newly planted rosebush joined the celebration with two new buds...

[Pic by E on New Year’s Eve]

[Pic by me on New Year’s Day]

On New Year’s Day in the evening we went for a walk and “hung out” at a park with friends.

E enjoyed literally “hanging out” on the monkey bars!

¡Feliz Año Nuevo! J