Erin Cole

I am the director of Education at the House of Hope Orphanage in Zacapa, Guatemala. I am a teacher from St.Paul, Minnesota.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Primero Dios . . .

"Primero Dios" is a common frase here in Guatemala. The closest frase that we have in English is "Lord willing." It is much more common, however, here in Guatemala. People say, "I'll see you tomorrow, Primero Dios." Or any time they tell you about some plan they have for the future, Primero Dios. I am not in the habit of using the frase in English, so it seems strange to me. This week, however, I am reminded, that we do not really know what will happen tomorrow. My mother, Rita, suffered a stroke this week. She is doing well, praise the Lord, and getting the help she needs. It was such a shock to all of us as she is normally a very healthy person. It is really hard for me, being so far away.
I am reminded of the passage in James that says, "I have a word for you who brashly announce, "Today-at the latest, tomorrow- we're off to such and such a city for the year. We're going to start a business and make a lot of money." You don't know the first thing about tomorrow. You're nothing but a wisp of fog, catching a brief bit of sun before disappearing. Instead, make it a habit to say, "If the Master wills it and we're still alive, we'll do this or that."" (from The Message)
So, Lord willing, I am off to Minnesota on Thursday, next week, to see my mother and family. I will be there for a few weeks as she is recovering. Please remember us in your prayers.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Good Friday

On Good Friday I invited the Oasis staff to my house for a special lunch. We played an interesting bilingual version of Pictionary and generally enjoyed each other's company. I am so grateful for the friendships I have developed here in Guatemala. What a wonderful way to celebrate the greatest gift of all time, the gift of God's son. In a country where this is observed with such mourning and heaviness of spirit, we can rejoice in the freedom we have in Christ. I feel that these moments are a small glimpse of heaven here on earth!

On Monday of Holy Week the teachers and I went to a local waterfall. We had a great time hiking and playing in the water. We hiked to an area above the waterfalls where there is a natural pool. One of the teachers mothers made Caldo de Gallina (Hen soup) for lunch. It is considered a very special dish!