Friday, July 24, 2009

Moments Together and Reflections...

The past year has flown by as Felipe and I have been through MUCH - serving together in missions and growing together as a couple.

Enjoy these photos of various moments we have shared together!

Our first Christmas together as a couple! Feliz Natal!

Recently, at a wedding of two of our friends who work with us at the Light House. We getting married at the same beautiful location!

Felipe and I after a good, long RUN!
We were actually in Rio de Janeiro in the above photo!
Soon after we were engaged we took some vacation days to rest and went to a YWAM base in Rio for the New Year's holiday. Several days we went running and then jumped into the ocean to cool off afterwards. It was a great!

Celebrating New Year's Eve in Rio de Janeiro!

Out on the town in our city - BELO HORIZONTE!
A date night!
We took this photo when we were celebrating 9 months together!

Mangabeiras Park!
Felipe and I love going to this nature park, which is located here in Belo Horizonte. There are many hiking trails, beautiful look out points, and so many intersting plants and typical Brazilian birds and animals.

I think it was in April that Felipe fell and made a deep cut in his leg that was almost to the bone. Here we are in the emergency room waiting room - waiting.
All bandaged up!

Enjoying quality time together afterwards at a nearby park...

Felipe and I at a YWAM Brazil National Leader's Retreat in the state of Sao Paulo!
This was a great weekend to meet other leaders who work with YWAM Brazil and also to worship and seek the Lord. During this trip we had fun taking cool photos with the beautiful Brazilian countryside as our background.

Some of my favorite moments are when Felipe and I minister together.
We often lead the worship times during the YWAM Belo Horizonte weekly worship services on Thursday nights.
Felipe also has had the opportunity to preach and share God's heart about children at risk and the slum communities of Brazil in various churches here in Belo Horizonte and other cities.

Of course working with the kids from the slum of Cafezal is one of our favorite things to do and this slum is one of our favorite places to be!
Felipe and I also really love going on walks in the community, talking with the children in the streets and just being in this place. We see such beauty here, in a place where there is much pain and brokenness.
As I write now, I am reminded of a quote from 'Return of the Prodigal Son' by Henri Nouwen.

In the context of a compassionate embrace, our brokenness may appear beautiful, but our brokenness has no other beauty but the beauty that comes from the compassion that surrounds it.

A friend passed this quote on to me during a missions trip in Thailand. Much truth in the above phrase...

The beauty that I see in the slum of Cafezal is the beauty of a compassionate, unconditional loving, and pursuing FATHER God!

In the middle of all the brokenness, all the mess, all the confusion, all the pain, hurt, and dificult situations - I see a loving Father longing for HIS children. I see the father in the parable of the prodigal son. In this story as the son returns to his father's house, the father runs towards his beloved son.
But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. Luke 15:20

What beauty!
Our Father God is like that...He is running towards HIS children, running to give a compassionate embrace FULL of LOVE and a BIG kiss.
He is running to me, to you, and to the children and families in Cafezal slum.
He is a LOVE.

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