On worrying and new cars!

Some bad things are "blessing in disguise."
The same could be said of good things. They are "troubles in disguise"?
I'm wondering this about our new car.

I had been suspicious that I might be pregnant for almost two weeks.
I kept telling myself I would do the pregnancy test after we purchased the car so I wouldn't feel burdened by spending our savings on the car when a little one was on the way.
I couldn't take it anymore and I did the pregnancy test before the purchase.
When I read that positive my heart was racing with joy, but my always ahead of time head was already worrying. I began considering to cut my car budget to have saved money for the baby.

It was heart breaking. Even at the top of our budget, we couldn't find a decent car or a car at all!
We were buying a used car, FYI (No way on earth we could afford a new car at this time)
Buying a used car is a little like gambling. You might win, but chances of lossing are always higher. After going to several car sales where most of them just turned us around because they had nothing in our budget or showed us awful old cars, we finally found a car we both immediately liked. It looked like its previous owner kept it in optimal conditions. Its interior was prestine, the exterior was without a single bump or dent. The only thing  we could spot on the car was sun damage on the paint. The price was way out of out budget. Almost 1000$ over. We told the buyer our top budget and he accepted dropping the price after an hour or so of negotiating.

The car was a little bigger than what we were intending to buy.
We wanted a more fuel efficient car.
The thing about fuel efficient cars is: their owners don't part with them easily.
We couldn't find any! If we did, they were way above budget. If we did, they were in terrible conditions. We could have never reselled it.

The car is going to spend more on gas than our previous car. This kept a heavy weight on my heart.
But the amount of money we have been spending lately on transportation placed us in desperation.
We have been spending a fortune fixing the car we previously used which was borrowed. We spent 20% of the budget we had for our OWN car on another's car. This really brought me down.
Since the other car has been in the shop for more than a month now, we have been spending a LOT of money on taxi fairs (No, I can't take the bus or shared cabs because I have to carry my work Laptop). And all this was eating away the money for the car. It could not be postponed anymore.

We could not pay the price we had negotiated with the seller. We asked him if we could pay 90% of the money and the rest 10% next month. The hubs prayed to God that if he didn't accept the offer, the car was not from Him. He accepted. We kept on looking though, kept on hoping to find something that suited better our needs. We searched everywhere but nothing.
And so we bought a car.
We were careful and sought advice. My father-in-law was gracious enough to accompany us to see the car a second time. He was more thorough on checking the engine, the oil, the wiring, the chassis with the hubs. We took it for a test drive and it seemed to be in perfect conditions. He gave it an ok.

We have a car. Our own car.
I should be jumping up and down.
It is really a relief not to worry how I'm gonna get to work or home, no longer have to worry that my laptop gets robbed. It is a relief I no longer have to spend my money on other's property.

Is the car really a blessing and I'm just falling into my old bad habits of worrying for everything?
I mean, I worry about every single purchase I make.
It didn't matter I no longer had cloths to wear to work, if I spent 200$ on a new wordrobe, I'd go home feeling this same pressing on my chest.
The shoes I wear to work are worst than a scary movie; they practically seem to scream!
I even felt this way when we purchased our bed and washing machine, eventhough sleeping on two old mattresses was giving me back problems and morning aches and we had to drive our clothes to our in-laws and spend their electricity and water only doing one load per week!

Why does the "He has never forsaken you" takes so long to sink in when the "how on earth are we gonna make it?" has front row tickets to your mind?
"We also have to move to a bigger house," my mind is also reminding me. Our current house (more like an apart though it is a stand-alone little house) is too small for a new member and we have serious dust issues. All the windows of my house are ducktaped because we live infront of an unpaved street that passing cars lift enormous amounts of dust inside everyday. If I clean the dust, by afternoon it will seem like I haven't dusted in days. I can't imagine how it would be if the windows weren't sealed!
"So, to sum it all up," the mind keeps saying, "you have to pay the loan for the car, pay more on gas, pay more on rent for a bigger house, and still make all your other bills!"

Nine months! The baby won't be here for another nine months. Thank heavens! One step at a time. One step at a time is all you can take.
Step 1: you bought a car. hooray! (celebrate, don't stress)
Step 2: right now you can pay the car and the gas with your income and still be ok still living in your old house.
Step 3: The hubs is looking for a part time job.
Step 4: After that, you'll be able to start looking for a new house.
Step 5: The baby is coming, but God is your provider.

I can't let worrying take over me. It is a luxury I can no longer indulge. I must lay my burdens on Him. I MUST!
People always aked us how were we going to afford a baby with my hubs still in school and me at work?
My answer always was: I don't worry about that. When the time comes, the Lord will provide.
This is the Child the Lord gave us.

Psalm 127:3
Lo, children are a heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.

Psalm 37:25
I have been young and now am old, yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken or their seed begging bread. 

The time has come. It is time for me to trust the Lord as convincingly as I told others I wasn't worried.
I wasn't. I am not!
A child is a blessing. A blessing I've been longing. I will not let it be shadowed by my insecurities or the economy and society.
God says children are His gifts. It is a gift!

So, a little list on worrying:
1. Worrying accomplishes absolutely nothing. (so why worry?)

Matthew 6:27-29 
Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don't work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. 

2. Worrying is not good for me or the baby.

Proverbs 12:25 
Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up. 

3. Worrying is the opposite of trusting God.

Matthew 6:30 

And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?

Philippians 4:6-7 
Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.4. Worrying puts my focus on the wrong direction.

4. Worrying puts my focus on the wrong direction.

Matthew 6:25 

That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life-whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn't life more than food, and your body more than clothing?

Matthew 6:31-33 
So don't worry about these things, saying, 'What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?' These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

1 Peter 5:7 
Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. 

And the little list of  gratitude:
*439 a positive in a home pregnancy test and a blood test. All I'm missing is a doctor's appointment. Bear with me, this weekend I could only get the lab tests done and the car purchase. 
*440 I'm gonna be a mommy!!!!!!! YES!!!!
*441 Our own very first car!!! YES! The hubs is beyond himself with joy. 
*442 A hubby spoiling her wife by taking care of everything in the house so she can rest.
*443 a very caring very loving hubby who puts me first.
*444 a hard working hubby studying all weekend for his upcoming test. May the Lord bless his result today!
*445 a hubby that will look for a job and work hard at work and school for his family.
*446 no morning sickness yet! Just a few headaches.
*447 the puppies starting to get along.
*448 fumoffu coping better with her new house, her new sisters, and her new food.
*449 how much money we make is not our sense of security!
*450 the Lord is our provider and carer, who or what shall I fear?
*451 a loving Lord that answers prayer and sends gift in His time
*452 His will is good and perfect!
*453 fumoffu finally slept outside and allowed us to sleep.
*454 a shower of congratulations from excited friends. Ecstatic aunts and uncles! 
*455 a lovely dinner at Johnny's enjoying Mel's cooking.


For He has been mindful of His servant!

I Samuel 1

 10 In her deep anguish Hannah prayed to the LORD, weeping bitterly. 11 And she made a vow, saying, “LORD Almighty, if you will only look on your servant’s misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the LORD for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head.”

17 Eli answered, “Go in peace, and may the God of Israel grant you what you have asked of him.”

Yes, I can understand how she feels. 
My heart sinks low in my stomach when I see a baby.
I have prayed to the Lord for a child. 
Like Hannah, I long for children to give to the Lord.
I desire for Him to title my husband "father" through me. 
I've had friends and family join me in this prayer. 
I was not yet in the weeping state, just in the fiercely longing and praying.
I allowed fears cloud my mind and forget the God that I trust. 
Certainly, no the God Mary was singing to:

Luke 1

“My soul glorifies the Lord 

 47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, 

48 for he has been mindful 

   of the humble state of his servant. 

From now on all generations will call me blessed, 

 49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me— 

   holy is his name. 
50 His mercy extends to those who fear him, 
   from generation to generation.

Nothing will ever compare to the blessing the Lord gave Mary,
but I can think of one really, really close. 
It is not official yet. 
I will try to go see a doctor tomorrow. 
I'd go today if I could. 
Some minutes ago, my pregnancy test was POSITIVE!!!!

I don't know what to think!
I don't know how to feel.
I'm shaking as I write this down.
I'm tearful.
My cheeks hurt from so much smiling. 
If everything goes right and this is true, there is a child growing in me. 
My child is growing in me!

Oh Lord, Oh Lord!
Thank You!
The Lord has heard my cry and answered my plead.
He has showed me His inmense mercy upon me once more.
I can't fathom His goodness and love. 
I'm humbled and grateful.
My God is an awesome God.

Aunts and Uncles out there (You know who you are that I'm talking about!) be prepared!
The Zelaya-Ulloa hurricane is coming to town!!!!!!!

"Like my mother...  To be like my mother." That was the prayer!
Mommy, God heard us! 


Don't Forget!

Jeremiah 20

9 But if I say, “I will not mention his word 
or speak anymore in his name,” 
his word is in my heart like a fire, 
a fire shut up in my bones. 
I am weary of holding it in; 
indeed, I cannot.

I always try to point out on my blog that this blog is not me trying to teach anyone anything.
I write because I love to write and I want to become better at it.
I write because I have much in my mind that usually comes out of my mouth, BUT when I put it on writing, my thoughts can be organized, scrutinized (by me, this is not an invitation!), corrected (yes, my thoughts are not all gems), directed (usually by scripture, God, or loving friends and family), and shared in an edited environment (oh, if we could rethink, reread, and edit what we say more often). You have no idea how many posts are stored on my blog but never published.

As I was saying, I do not mean to say what is right or not or convince you of anything. I do however wish with all my heart to be continually learning. I try to write down the things I've been and still am being taught and  thus my blog does teaches me. I've spoken of the beauty of journaling. To me it's like the altars Abraham used to erect whenever God had done something in his life. We see Abraham making many altars for what happened in specific situations and tell us it was for the purpose of remembering what God had done.
The striking thing about this is that the times for which Abraham made those altars is not easily forgotten; or is it?

We forget. When the clouds darken, the winds blow hard, and the light is dim, we forget it was once sunny, bright, and warm. We forget it WILL be sunny, bright, and warm once again. I forget. A LOT! I forget how loving and caring my husband is when we have an off day. I forget how serviceable and diligent he is when something didn't get done. I forget how patient and longsuffering he is with me when he (rarely) is angry or frustrated. I forget how God has never left us wanting when I see our bank account status. I forget to ponder and praise Him for His death and resurrection when I'm too busy and tired with travelings. I forget to meditate on how humbling it was for Him to be born with all the Holiday fuzz. I forget I must love Him with all my heart, mind, and strength when I am consumed by my everyday toils and I haven't given Him a thought. I forget the teachings about patience, prudence, modesty, goodness, longsuffering, joy in all situations, gratefulness for all things, love, and much more He took and takes me through.

As I read back a former post or curl in the sofa with one of my old journals, I am once again amazed of how good He is to me. How lucky I am to have God in my life and had been given purpose to live for His glory. What would have been of me had I not had Him? This I need to remind myself. Never forget you are nothing without Him!

Abraham's altars also had the purpose of reminding those around him what God had done in His life and even had done in their lives. God's works are the only thing you can show off. This is why I find peace when I hit the publish button. When someone tells me they could relate to something I posted, or they were encouraged from what I had been through and how it turned out, it's clear to me that it's God's work in my life that has the impact. Nothing about me or my life is encouraging or inspirational. Everything about God is! It maddens me to no end when a friend went to a Christian seminar and I ask: "How was it?" and he/she answers: "Good" and that's all he/she "shares."  When God's Word moves me, I want it to move you. If gratefulness is changing my life, I want it to bear fruit in yours too. If my mind is constantly thinking "Consider it pure joy when faced with many trials..", I want it on your mind too. If what God is doing in your life doesn't impact me, there is probably two reasons behind it:
1. You don't open up enough to really show what God is doing in you. (Probably too shy or proud to open up your life).
2. You aren't seeking Him.

Seriously, if you don't hear me talking to you of what God is doing in me, ask me how my relationship with Him is, because I'm most certainly not seeking Him (reason 1 will almost never apply to me. No surprise there!).

Remember His blessings and share them:
*427 a nice trip with my hubby and my brothers-in-law
*428 a trip to Honduras' biggest zoo. I had so much fun feeding carrots to the jiraffe "Big Boy"
*429 the hub's relatives lending us their house eventhough they were away. How kind of them
*430 a nice pool day
*431 movie night in SPS
*432 an exciting banana ride on the beach of Cortes. The banana was going so fast and was poorly inflated it turned over and dropped us three times. It took a lot of swimming and upper body strength to get untop of the banana again, but it was fun every time. These banana trips are a tradition with us and the hub's bros.
*433 a scrumptious sopa marinera (yes, I have no idea right now how to say that in English. What?)
*434 time with my hub's family, It's hard for me for they aren't Christians but it's part of my duties of honoring my husband to spend time with them. I was very lucky their niece Patty is into singing, so she and I were able to go apart on our own and do a little singing. I enjoyed my time with her very much.
*435 we saw... a comet???? We don't exactly know what it was. It was a green burning ball with a white tail that went across the sky really fast. We had debates on what it was and what each had seen. Some thought it was a flare, others thought is was a jet about to crash, and others speculated on aliens. It was a highlight of the night for sure.
*436 Fumoffu came home safe and sound.
This was the toughest part of the trip. We were anxious because my mom had been told in Mexico we would need a vet to get her out of the airport. Where on earth am I going to find a vet in an unknown city at 9 pm on Easter Thursday?!! It took three trips to the airport, money paid for all the papers (ouch), and a lot of praying to get her out. Luckily, the guys handling her papers where so desperate to go home and not miss the last bus, they released her pretty fast. I left the airport at 10-ish pm when I was told I'd probably be done at 1 am with luck.
*437 finally home to sleep in my good ol' bed. Home is not where the heart is; it's were you sleep more comfortably. There is another version to this saying. If you know it, know that I also completely agree. :P
*438 Sunday spent with my sister just the two of us. Best days!



The Unexpected

My husband very lovingly was teaching me a lesson on dealing with the unexpected.
The unexpected will hit you without notice.
You can't be prepared for it and, seeing how I am a control freak, it's hard for me to deal with.
The unexpected has striken our family.
Never did I imagine that in my first year of marriage I would be diagnosed with a life-long disease.
The unexpected hits us hardest on the financial department.
Being raised by a single mother, I would think I would have some experience fencing the unexpected.
I sure had my mother's example to learn from.
Lesson learnt during those unexpected years: God has never forsaken us.
It is the first thing I remind my mother when in struggle or she reminds me.
It has been pretty marked; His pressence that is.

My husbands first reminder to me is: "This too is within God's will."
For years I've been learning not to be fearful of the future; to put my trust in God.
I've been finding myself fearful of the unexpected a little too much and it's time to break the myths.
"What if I can't get pregnant? What if my kids are born even more unhealthy than me? Will we ever be able to have financial peace of mind? Will I be able to be a stay-at-home mom? Will I be healthy enough to give my husband a happy home?"
"He has never forsaken us," my mother tells me always.

A 24 year old mother of three with no labor experience must have had greater fears of the unexpected.
One thing that was not unexpected, it was planned by the Lord, He decided long ago in His perfect will: my mother. The true heroin and princess in my childhood stories. Maybe not a fairytale but a victorious love story. And her prince, our prince, was the center of our home: Jesus. And I want to have the opportunity to be just like her.
I've been thinking though, that if I were to be pregnant this year, it wouldn't be unexpected but it would certainly be challenging. My mother's example and my Savior's ever present hand gives me hope and they should also be making me brave.

I learned this week that the unexpected is two faced coin.
Take for instance my lovely weekend.
We spent the night at a friends car wash that has a pool table and trampoling playing and laughing with friends till 2 in the morning.
My brothers-in-law had an inflatable pool borrowed and we set it up on our backyard, at 2 in the morning when we got home. Spent the whole night playing video games. Had breakfast at 9am and spent the day at the small but refrehsing pool, eating pizza and laughing at everything.
It felt like being teenagers again, and we (the hubs and I) don't have many of those days.
Curiously enough, I didn't go to work on Monday morning feeling tired at all.
I even felt light-hearted about having to work during a week were everybody else is on vacation.
It was unplanned and unexpected (which I normally hate) and yet very enjoyable. My heart was happy and satisfied.

The unexpected hit us again last night. I received a call from mom saying that we have to travel to San Pedro Sula to pick up our dog Fumoffu from the airport. Fumoffu is our honduran dog that we took with us to Mexico. My mom is living in Panama City now and my brother will have to move to an apartment where dogs aren't allowed. Fumoffu is too much a part of the family to give her away so she is returning to her homeland until my brother finishes college and comes for her. My brother and she are inseparable. Fortunately, my mother got us my uncle's car borrowed and we will be traveling this week afterall! We weren't gonna travel for lack of car and now we'll get to change scenary! I'm so excited!
I really didn't want to stay home watching movies all week. God is so faithful!

It's a good lesson my husband was trying to teach me. The unexpected is unexpected. You can't prepare for it and you can't control it. It has it's purpose and it's in God's hands. He never forskaes us. Never!
There will be much unexpected heading our way. I'll still learn not to be afraid and trust. Today, my unexpected is making me smile; my unexpected is God.

*411 an amazing unexpected weekend with boys in my living room, water puddles all over the house, mess everywhere, unhealthy fast food, sleepless, sunburned, and happy as the heart can be.
*412 my mother's example and reminders.
*413 seeing my sister happy for her new job.
*414 my dad taking the first vacation with his family in a very, very long time.
*415 the hubby and I traveling this week!!!!! Maybe I'll get to go to the beach!
*416 my boss giving me Wednesday off. I had to work till 12 pm but my boss is gonna give me the day in exchange for last Saturday that I had to come to work.
*417 our car budget will be enough to get us what the Lord has instored for us.
*418 we were finally and with lots of sacrifice able to save our car budget, although it was not what I had hoped for.
*419 my father-in-law seeing his work pay off and start to lift off.
*420 fumoffu being added to our family. Hope Terry and Lanky get along with her.
*421 an understanding hubby that welcomes fumoffu to our home.
*422 better relationship with my coordinator. becoming friends at last.
*423 friends that visit and come for dinner. Loved having you Danny and Jenny!
*424 friends we had over last week: Johnny and Meli!
*425 a hubby willing to learn to understand his ineffable wife.
*426 adding more veggies, raw food, whole wheats, and fruits to our meals and the hubs enjoying them and eating them all. Yes, he is my little kid right now! :P