Matt traveled to Guatemala last week, from January 10th-13th. The purpose of this trip originally was just to sign Matt’s name to the lease for our home God lead us to. We were really uncomfortable having to pay for a round-trip ticket just to sign a paper, but in a different culture, things are done differently! We couldn’t fax it, email it, or anything else. Matt HAD to go, and we had to have a co-signer and a layer there as well. (All of which God provided without any hiccups.)
But, as always, “and we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28) Once Matt stated his trip, many more opportunities began to fall into place, making the trip much MORE than just signing for our home.
Here are the things Matt did along with signing:
1. He worked his first shift at the homeless shelter he will be volunteering at
2. He met with our neighbors who he already knew through previous trips down and had dinner with them – integrating more into our local community which is a huge goal of ours
3. He met with our adviser from a Church-planting group we are working with
4. He met with his assistant pastor
5. He met with the Buildin’ Guate coordinator for our missions team going down in late August after we’ve moved.
6. He met with fellow missionaries – visiting, praying, and sharing with them.
God moved in SO many ways on this trip. I will try to make an amazing long story, short (but probably fail.) 🙂
So, as we continued our hunt for a home for our family to move into when August came, our friend through Bulidin Guate was chatting with Matt and told us she was friends with a Guatemalan Realtor and she would get her in contact with Matt. Not long after, a LOVELY realtor named Valaria got a hold of us. She asked what we were looking for and where and then started her search. A couple days later she messaged us letting us know she’d found a beautiful home and that she could not believe the price for the location and the way it looked. She showed us photos and we were very interested. We asked friends of ours to go and look at it for us to see if it was something we should really move on. After our friends got back to us saying how lovely it was, much prayer, and my heart was at total peace AND excited (a common way God speaks to me) we decided to move in faith.
We wired money for the deposit down via western union (I did not know you needed cash to do that! but the ATM had JUST been stocked and I happened to have 2 different account ATM cards on me! Praise God! That was the First amazing thing God did.) and cemented that the home was ours. Now Matt needed to travel down to sign the lease and pay the first months rent. We had the money saved in our ministry account but it was a large expense we weren’t anticipating. But we bought the best priced ticket we could find and in good faith believed God would give it all back.
On Matt’s flight down a woman was traveling with her two sons but they were all in different seats. One brother sat next to Matt and the other, younger brother looked at Matt with big sad eyes as the row was now full. The mother called to the younger boy telling him he was a row behind her. Matt interjected saying how he was traveling alone and the young boy was more than welcome to take his seat so he could sit with his brother. The little boy was thrilled and rushed back to sit by his brother and Matt was moved to an aisle seat. As Matt was reading his Bible, the mother took noticed and asked if he was a Christian or a missionary. Matt explained what he was doing and told her about our family and she was so excited. She told him that she couldn’t wait to introduce him to her husband who works as the Guatemalan Embassy! They are Christians too and so excited to help us and our ministry! This was the second thing God did.
Then Matt met Valaria and saw our home and he was SO excited. The home actually had 4 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms, a big, beautiful yard (this is hard to find), allows large dogs (this is even harder to find), was literally less than a mile away from a ministry we are very close with and plan to help support, the landlord is holding the home for us until we move down in August but we don’t have to pay for it in that time waiting, the 2 down stairs bedrooms have their own doors out to the street and their own on-sweet 1/2 baths – this will make hosting teams SO nice, and two huge things for me that are SUCH little blessings to MY heart are they even allow chickens, and there are 5 mature fruit trees! (Lemon, mango, avocado, some Guatemalan fruit, and a nut tree.) This was the 3rd blessing God gave us.
After all this, Matt met with a friend of his Esly, who’s parents happened to live down the road from us! They were so happy to host him. While he was eating dinner there, another Guatemalan knocked on their door looking for Matt! The missionaries who’ve been there years and years told Matt that his connection he already has in the community with the Guatemalans takes others YEARS to establish! This is a huge goal of ours – to actually KNOW and INTEGRATE into our community and minister to their hearts. So this was the 4th blessing God gave us.
After speaking to me and showing me his photos of the home I had several questions for the landlord. Matt was able to go back the next day with the help of Valaria (she was amazing.) When they went to the Lawyer’s office to sign for the home, the landlord Carlos and his wife Duly began to cry. Matt asked what was wrong and they told Matt that they had forgotten, but someone had prophesied over them that a great man of God would come live in their home in January!! Realizing this meant Matt they began to cry with joy. This is the 5th amazing thing God did.
When Matt got home our church gave a very generous donation and we hosted a reptile fundraiser (see blog) and we made the exact amount of his ticket back!! This is the 6th amazing thing God did.
After the third time meeting Carols and Duly at the home, they ended the meeting all holding hands on the roof, praying and praising God for His greatness. Duly was crying, again 😛 Haha. They are Believers who are SO excited to have us there.
Our home is in San Antonio Aguas Calientes and is beautiful. It is under construction, getting a brand new full bath downstairs but even still, it’s lovely. We are SO excited and feel God’s hand in all of this. There is still MUCH to figure out and be done, but even in this SO many seasoned missionaries keep telling us we are so far ahead of the game with everything.
Below are some photos, two of which are a layout of what the home looks like I made. We are more than thrilled about this blessing and praise Gd for His plan and provisions.