Here we are! Already into October and Autumn is in full swing! How exciting it is for me when the seasons change, it gets colder (it’s been FREEZING in the mornings), leaves are falling, changing colors and fuzzy socks are now acceptable to wear. Today, as we were driving to church, we saw some beautiful trees that were between orange, yellow and green, with the leaves falling in the wind. It was such a beautiful sight!
Last month, I celebrated my two year anniversary of moving to Bachiniva. It was a sweet day of reminiscing and I got a little emotional thinking about all that the Lord has accomplished and is continuing to do.
That day, I moved into a new room on the girl’s hallway with some new interns, we organized our room, got things settled and were getting excited for the new season that God was bringing us into. As most of you now know, I’m a reminscer, so of course, I broke out my old journals and started reading journal entries from the past couple years. I started laughing to myself as I read my journal from when I first arrived. If you already don’t know the story, to sum it up in few words…It was awful. My first three months in Mexico were very difficult, I had a terrible attitude and didn’t want to be here. Then, when I see how much He changed my heart for this town and these children, I can’t help but praise His goodness!
My journal entry from exactly a year was quite a shock to me. I prayed for many things for this coming year, but one was the most prominent. I prayed specifically for the Lord to stretch me, grow and for my faith to be tested. Man, did the Lord come through!
This past year, I think I’m able to say, has been the most difficult year of my life. Truly. April was about the start of my whole world shifting. The Lord was showing me more of His sovereignty through His word. My faith was shaken, I had many doubts of what I believed, what I was called down here for, if I should have gone to school, if I made a mistake committing to serving at the orphanage. I doubted if my service was for the right reasons, I thought through what it’d be like to move back to the states, I wondered if I was “missing-out” on the usual 20 year old life. I questioned the Lord’s goodness in my life, if He really was my Savior, I was emotionally stressed, exhausted and overwhelmed.
Even now, as I write this, all those emotions and thoughts are so easily on the outskirts that it doesn’t take long for them to creep back in.
But, through it all, the past 6-7 months, the Lord has been so faithful and so constant and so ever present that I know Bachiniva is where He has called me to be. In the battle against my doubts, questions, “what-ifs” and uncertainty, the Lord, faithfully, as He ever does, led me and guided. With His sweet, beautiful, life-breathing word. This past year was the year of God revealing more of Himself to me, through His word. Truthfully, it was painful. Painful, humbling, shocking and beautiful.
The Lord also put amazing friends in my life. Friends that you do life with. Hard talks, sharing of the heart, encouraging one another through scripture and crying. Lots of crying took place. A lot of questions were asked. Truth was spoken and sin was called out.
A couple weeks ago I spoke with a close mentor of mine, someone who has been a part of my life for over 5 years. As I shared all of this with him, I jokingly said that when people speak of being “in the trenches” if there could be anything harder than what the past few months have brought. He shared very seriously, “Angelica, I think you’re in the trenches now.” Him saying that to me was such a shock, because as difficult as this past year was, I didn’t ever think about it being my “trench” year. I always thought I would be brought through something more difficult for it to be described as me going through the trenches. As I thought more of what this year brought, I knew he was right. This year was my trench year. I’m sure the Lord will bring me through more trenches. To purify me, refine me and glorify Him. But for the time being, this is it.
Now, as I look back and see what the Lord has done, there is absolutely nothing I would change. Nothing. I have never felt closer or more in love with the Lord than I have now. While I’m writing this, I know, without a doubt in my mind, that this is where I am to be. Surrounded by kids. Washing dishes, washing clothes, cooking food, laughing, crying, playing UNO over and over again. Singing the same songs, telling the same kid to pick up their sweater for the 5th time. Bachiniva, Mexico is my home. The Lord didn’t make a mistake when He called me to serve here long term. He knew exactly what He was doing when He planned for me to spend the last years of my teens and the beginning of my twenty’s taking care of 15+ children. Because of confidence and faithfulness the Lord has constantly shown in my life, I know there is nothing else in the world I would want to do right now nor anything that I regret not doing.
***These next couple weeks will be my last ones before I head up to the States for my furlough. I’m excited to head back, see friends and family and share with my church of all the things the Lord has done!
Please be in constant prayer for my time here as I prepare to leave. For me to finish strong and trust in the Lord to guard these kids as I leave. Also please pray for my time in the States. That I would get rest, good time of refreshment as I look ahead for the coming years and sweet memories be made with friends and family.
If any of you would like to hear more of what the Almighty has done in Bachiniva, I’d love to meet up! I’ll be in the Seattle area from November 1-12. I’ll be sharing at my church in Puyallup on Sunday November 5th. Contact me for any more info!
Thank you all for your prayer and constant support in my life. The Lord has been so good to me with all of the friends He has allowed me to have. I’m so very thankful for each of you!