Thursday, May 26, 2011

Good Humiliation

This morning I had the pleasure & privilege of speaking with a man I really respect, Howard Norton, who is the current president of the Baxter Institute here in Tegucigalpa.  He has lived a long life of faith, serving as a missionary for many years in Brazil, and preaching and teaching at the university level in the U.S.  Now that he and his wife, Jane, are serving here in Honduras, they are adding a third language to their repertoire.  To me (especially now that I’m experiencing the struggles of learning a new language), this task they have joyfully chosen to take on is truly impressive.  

During our chat Howard said something great: “Learning a language is humiliating.”  He is so right!!  Standing in front of a native Honduran, knowing my mumblings and mutterings make me sound like a 3-year-old, is stressful, tiring, and often embarrassing!  And while I’m so grateful for the seemingly endless patience of the Hondurans that we’re around (they really support any effort we make to speak Spanish), it has been so frustrating to know what I want to say to someone and not be able to say it.

But the gift in this ‘humiliation’ is that I need to be humbled!  I need to be reminded that I don’t have it all figured out.  And I need to be in a place where I have to rely on God and on the people He’s put in my life.  When I finished school there was a big part of me that believed I wouldn’t have much more to learn in my life.  And now, thankfully, God is showing me that it would be a sad, sad existence to stop learning and challenging myself.  Not only because my brain would get bored and my life would be a yawn, but also because my faith needs exercise. 

Having said all that, I must also say that being in the midst of the learning-spurt is very difficult.  At the end of a bad-Spanish-day (sort of like a bad-hair-day, just your brain & tongue don’t function well together), I find myself yearning for an easy day, a day when I know how to do what I need to do.  

But today (thank you, God!) I’m encouraged by Howard and Jane, who, in their late seventies, are still continuing to seek after God’s next challenge for their lives.  Truly inspirational!  

Happy to Have the Dodsons

This month Bart's parents were able to make the trip from Colorado to Honduras to see us and the things we do here.  They experienced some of our typical, day-to-day tasks, as well as helped us with some special, one-time events.  Pictured below are some of the events.

Susan and I held a ladies brunch for all the women employees at Jovenes en Camino.  These are some of the hardest-working women I know, so it was great to honor them with a morning of food & crafts.    

To help reinforce some of the English classes Bart & I have been teaching at JEC, Barry & Susan helped us play an English BINGO game with all three groups of boys.  Barry will now forever be known as 'Bingo Gringo.'

Thanks to a donation of reading glasses from the States, we had the opportunity to help those in the community of Mateo who needed a pair of glasses.  

And we also got to tour some of the pretty places in Honduras, like this great park on the north side of Tegucigalpa.

Thanks, Barry & Susan, for making the trip!!


Saturday, May 14, 2011


A few months ago we found out the law had changed which had once restricted visa-renewal travel to countries outside the CA-4 (Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador & Nicaragua). This was great news for us, both because being able to travel to one of these bordering countries would be cheaper for us and because we were really interested in seeing parts of these great countries. 
So last week we visited Antigua, Guatemala. It was a beautiful city, filled with old architecture, gorgeous fountains, tasty restaurants, and lots of international travelers. We were so thankful to have the opportunity to take a short break from our daily routine and experience the rich culture of Guatemala. 
I just posted pictures on my Facebook, so enjoy those...and for now here's a self-portrait in front of an old cathedral on the main square.