I hit a car

Living in Honduras, among other things, has had me on a path of self discovery. I continue to find myself in situations, mostly uncomfortable situations, that squeeze out of me who I really am. Sometimes I don’t like what I see. Sometimes I’m surprised by how I’ve changed. Friday was one of those occasions.

At two in the afternoon I got a call from Alvin asking me if I would pick his daughter up after school. The school is only a few blocks from my house so sometimes she will come here after school until Alvin picks her up. At 2:30 I arrived at the school along with many others to pick up their kids. I found a spot off the side of the road, in front of another car, where I could park and wait. As I pulled in I wasn’t paying very close attention and I clipped the front bumper of the car I was parking in front of. I only noticed when I heard a crunching sound. When I heard it I backed up to get away from the car and then proceeded to pull in to the parking spot.

Crisis. What do I do. I knew I had damaged that car. I looked in my rear view mirror and didn’t see anyone inside the car. I looked around and there was no one else around who saw what I did. I could get away with this. All I had to do was pull out and go around the block. By the time I got back Amy (Alvin’s daughter) would probably be out waiting for me. That is what I would have done in the past. In fact, I’ve done that before, many years ago.

I sat there going over my options: making plans and figuring out how I could escape responsibility. I decided not to pull out and go around the block. The next thought was that maybe Amy would come out before the car owner. She would get in and we would simply drive away. For 10 minutes I agonized over what I was going to do. My old nature told me to run and avoid responsibility. My conscience told me to fess up no matter the consequences.

Then the worst possible thing happened – the owner of the car came out and found the damage. In my rear view mirror I saw him pick up the headlight I had broken off. He looked at it and then looked around to see who might have done it. I sat there watching him. For some reason he didn’t look at me or my car. I thought maybe he would just get in his car and drive away.

No matter how badly I wanted to avoid my responsibility I knew the right thing to do. So I got out of my car, walked up to the man and said, “I’m sorry, I hit your car. I will pay for the damages. Just tell me what you would like me to do.” I was vulnerable. I had done significant damage to his headlight and bumper. He could have tried to soak me for hundreds of dollars. But after we talked for a few minutes he said that if I pay for a new headlight he would be happy with that. He said it would cost around twenty dollars. I gave him twenty-five dollars. I said I was sorry once more and he accepted my apology. After that, Amy came out and we left.

I would like to say that there wasn’t even a question of whether or not I would do the right thing. I wish those other thoughts and temptations never even entered my mind. But they did and I felt like I was in the middle of a battle between good and evil. I’m so thankful that God has changed me and that even though I still fight my old ways he has given me victory over them. I am thankful that I did the right thing and I don’t have to live with any guilt today. And I am thankful that God was watching over me and something that could have been very costly only cost me twenty-five dollars.

Always Be Thankful

Always Be Thankful

Meet Mayra

Mayra is 16 years old, and is one of the girls living at the Eagle’s Nest. She is a teeny tiny thing with a spunky personality and she speaks faster than you can imagine. Mayra’s story is a difficult one to understand, and a lot to process. Before Mayra was born, her mother was repeatedly raped when she was just a young girl by her own father. One of the rapes resulted in a pregnancy which is where Mayra comes into the picture. This means that Mayra’s father is also her grandfather. Mayra’s mother then ran away from the sexual abuse, leaving her two children at home with their father. The raping didn’t stop when her mother left; it only continued. But this time it was the children who suffered the sexual abuse from their own father/grandfather. Mayra eventually ended up running away as well and was placed in the government orphanage known as Casitas (Tiny Houses).

A Better Life

Casitas is where Alvin found Mayra. He saw something in her that said, “I want a better life and I want to try harder.” He then took her from Casitas and placed her in the Eagle’s Nest, where she has now been living for about 9 months. She is doing well and is excelling in school. She is also one of the many who craves love and attention. And how could she not? Don’t we all crave love and attention? I know I do. But I was blessed to have a mother and a father who gave it to me. She was not. Just the other day Mayra wrote me a letter that brought me to tears. I will share it with you:

Hi Trina. How are you? I hope that you are good and happy with your husband and son. You know that I love you very much and I wish that God had given me a mother like you, but it was not so. But I give thanks to God for He gave me a family with Daddy Alvin and Mommy Nelly. And I give thanks for you and Chad for you have given me affection, friendship, and trust. I love you very much and may God bless you always.

Thankful

This is a girl who could choose to hate the world. She could choose to be angry at God for not having a mother or a father who loved her. She could choose to be angry for all the wrong and disgusting things that have happened to her. But instead she is thankful; thankful for what God HAS given her. Mayra, along with many others, has taught me to take a second look at my life. I have so much to be thankful for; and I never want to take any of that for granted. Thank you Mayra for being an inspiration to me.

They Need Jesus

They Need Jesus

Juvenile Detention

One major part of our ministry includes visits to the Juvenile Detention Center, which houses both male and female inmates in two separate centers. Renanciendo (Rebirth) is the center for the boys, ages 12-18 years old. These boys are serving time for crimes such as stealing, rape, murder, and drug and arms trafficking. God is doing amazing work in the lives of some of the male inmates and there is a major revival taking place there. Chad is currently working on a documentary of some of their testimonies; so stay tuned.

Sagrado Corazon

Sagrado Corazon (Sacred Heart) is the center for girls, ages 13-18 years old. There are usually between 25-30 girls in this center. They are serving time for committing crimes such as robbery, kidnapping, assault, murder, and drug and arm trafficking. Most have been abused both physically and sexually. While the guys are experiencing  the light of Jesus, the girls seem to be living in the dark. Each one of them has such pain in their eyes; and upon meeting them, they appear to have such a hard exterior. However, once they warm up to you, it’s hugs, hugs, and more hugs.

Garbage

Because of their past demons with sexual and physical abuse, they all struggle with self worth. A recent issue that has been brought to our attention is the act of “lesbianism” among some of the girls in the center. The girls are not necessarily attracted to other women, but rather this is happening for other reasons. First, peer pressure has a lot to do with it. There are some girls who are the instigators in this act, enticing the others to join in. They know it’s wrong, and they don’t want to do it but they are quick to give in to temptation. Second, because of their issues with self worth, they crave love and attention and will get it however they can. Third, they are doing it out of pure boredom. These girls are locked up in their rooms with nothing to do all day long. Once again, Satan uses that to his advantage and the girls are tempted to do something they know they shouldn’t. And because of their shame, some girls are even led to cut themselves, trying to “get rid of” the garbage they feel inside.

A Second Chance

As Alvin talked with each of the girls yesterday, some confessed that they wish they had a mom and a dad who loved them, and even disciplined them. These girls are broken, discouraged, and lost. Yes, they’ve committed crimes which got them put in the center in the first place, and it is wrong. But these girls have a second chance at life and they are so caught up in their sin that they are too blind to see it. My heart hurts for these girls and I cannot stop thinking about them. I hope to continue visiting them and encouraging them the best way I know how. Please pray that my Spanish will improve enough to be able to counsel these girls. And please pray for them to know the truth…the truth that will set them free from the bondage that attacks them every day.