Friday, March 30, 2012

Good- Bye Sonshine and San Felipe

 My last week in San Felipe and at Sonshine was one of the most difficult good-byes I have had in my life. I now truely know that the good-byes are the hardest part of missions work. At the beginning of the last week I started to feel excited and sad, anxious and content all at the same time. I was so sad to leave my San Felipe friends, church family, and to leave Sonshine. Both have become a part of me and will always have such a special place in my heart. Even though it was not the last I will see of San Felipe it was hard to leave all of these people that have become part of my every day life. During this experience I met some of the most amazing people and have learn so much about a beautiful culture.

Being able to lay the foundation of the orphanage with the staff of Sonshine was amazing. I was so blessed to have worked with great people who will one day soon be teaching children about God's love and grace. To know that God choose me to be a part of that has me in awe of God's grace. I am so excited for Sonshine and how God has and will be glorified there. I have no regrets about Sonshine and cannot wait to visit when the children get there.

I felt so blessed to have been embraced by everyone in San Felipe. My church family took me in as part of their family simply because I was part of their spiritual family and showed me love and a different way of life. I can say that the time I spent with them has forever changed me. Even though this experience didn't last as long as I thought, I appreciate all that I have learned and I finished this experience knowing that I am very much called by God to nations. I went to San Felipe to work with children and while I didn't get to see the children at Sonshine, I believe God sparked new inside of me. During my time with the friends in San Felipe I began to desire really to be with people and have better relationships with friends.  I still want to work with children in the mission field primarily but experiencing the culture through relationships is priceless part of missions work.

I am now trusting God in this next chapter of my life and believe that the fire and passion God has given me for people and culture He will continue to stir. I believe that the work that God has started in me He is faithful to complete as I continue to let God lead the way.


From the English Class a friend and I started at Church

From my Going Away Lucheon with Sonshine Staff

Going Away Dessert after Event at the Church

Monday, February 13, 2012

And Yet I Will Praise Him!

So we have this wall that we have to build that will cost $10,000 and we need to build it before we get Social Services approval. We also need Dorm Parents to come and help with the children when they come. This is a problem because the dorm parents has to be female, 25, Mexican, Christian, and not married and will to live at Sonshine Hacienda.  This is going to be a challenge as well. So we are up against challenges and slowly moving toward the goal. It is very hard on the staff right now and their are frustrations but I know that God will bring children to Sonshine in His own time. The funny thing about God is He is very interested in the process and He has been teaching me new things and showing me parts of myself that I never knew was there. Things are not happening the way I anticipated but yet I will praise the name of the Lord. God has been so good to me and to Sonshine. I think that when times are hard it is best to be thankful for what the Lord has done and to praise Him for who He is. Psalm 69:30  says I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify Him with thanksgiving. I want to make sure I am thanking Him for what He has done and magnifying His goodness above my frustrations. While I don't understand everything that is going on or what God is doing I know that Gods ways are higher than my ways and His thoughts are higher than my thoughts so I have to trust Him.

This the new playset that was put together last month

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A view of the rock climbing area

The bedrooms made up with quilts that were donated

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Have Faith In God

  • The past few weeks God has given me this verse: And Jesus answering saith unto the them, “Have faith in God I tell you the truth, you can say to this mountain, ‘May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and it will happen. But you must really believe it will happen and have no doubt in your heart. I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you’ve received it, it will be yours. Mark 11:22-24. This verse has been such an encouragement to me in the past few weeks. In December I went home for the holidays, but right before I left we had a visit from our social services representative and they gave us a list of some of the corrections that need to be made to Sonshine's building there were a good amount of things that we needed to do and one included  $10,000 fence/wall. This was overwhelming to me. I went home feeling discouraged and frustrated. I want kids to be here already and so does the rest of the staff and now there is more stuff that we have to take care of before we see them here.  I left doubting. While at home the Lord ask me to see this situation not as a set back but as an opportunity to stretch my faith and believe. Believe that all of the things that I have prayed for and declared over Sonshine Hacienda, I'm going to see. I need to make the decision to have faith in God. God has provided for me and Sonshine until now why should I start doubting Him now. I have faith in God and believe that this mountain will be moved. 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


This week we had our Grand Opening/Benefit this past weekend. It was a success. We were blessed to have had over 200 people fill this place. The people of San Felipe came together and raised a lot of the money that we need to open and so many people were able to see the progress that we have made in the past few months. Now this event turned out to be nice but it was so much work. We spent weeks preparing for this night. By the time Dec.2 (the day of the event) came around I was tired and just not very sure of my capabilities to pull off my part of this event. Just when I thought that I was not going to make it, I was surprise by two of my really close friends, Becky and Alayna. having them here with me during that night kept me sane and also reminded me of how God knows what we need even before we do. I had no idea that I needed a couple of friends to walk through that night with but I did. I also had a few friends from my church here and San Felipe help serve at the dinner and it just blessed me. It reminded me how God has placed so many people in my life that I can count on. I am so grateful that I have so many people I can count on for prayer, help, or advice. People who I can call and talk to when I am feeling lonely or homesick. And people who count on to be there for me without me having to ask. When I saw my two friends standing there I was reminded that God sees even my smallest needs and cares enough about me to see that there are met. I am very blessed!

Friday, November 18, 2011

How Great Is Our God!

I love worship. I love the way that we can magnify the name of the Lord and remember His goodness and grace and we are encouraged through that. Right before I left for San Felipe I was so uneasy about the unknown. It was a Sunday morning and we were singing How Great Is Our God during worship at Urban Church and I remember the Holy Spirit surrounding me and God whispering to me "Oh Erin, you have yet to see How Great I Am." Since then I have been here in San Felipe. I have seen God answer prayers, and just do miraculous things in my life and in Sonshine. We now have everything that we need to open.
The very nice people from Social Services

 We have started the social service process. Which was such a difficult process to start because every appointment we made with them they didn't show up for. Then we just kind of said we will wait and pray and finish some other things and as soon as we let it go, the Social Service office called us and wanted to meet with us. I was panicked and trying to get everything together and my immigration papers are still in process and I was still awaiting my background check. The the Holy Spirit spoke to me and reminded me that He called this meeting and that the small things that I worry about are not going to mess up what God has put together. As hard as we tried to do things on our own. God has showed us time and time again that He is in control and He will be glorified in everything here at Sonshine.
This is after 5 hours of interviews. It went really well.  :)

Now there are more really cool stories of God's goodness and I think I am surrounded by moments of seeing the goodness and faithfulness of the Lord. During church here in San Felipe we were singing How Great Is Our God ( en espanol) and again the Holy Spirit spoke to me that as much as I have seen. I still have more to see of His goodness. I'm so excited to see His greatness and majesty.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

This Is Not About Me

Pastor's Wives Fellowship and Dessert. Great Night!
This last week we had a missions group come from Colorado for about 5 days. We started out our time together by climbing this hill that has a cross at the top and the hill also overlooks San Felipe’s poorest areas. These areas are where most of the children that come to Sonshine will be from. Last week I was asked to do the devotion for that morning and come up with a scripture and something small. Now because I knew this would start their trip and set the mode, I just prayed for God to give me something to say because I had no idea. I needed the Lord to give me a scripture or vision. On Thursday afternoon, I was getting a little worried because I had not heard from the Lord about what I was going to say to the group Saturday morning (early morning like 6:00 am). Then the Lord spoke to me while I was getting ready for bible study that evening. God said tell them that it wasn’t about them or us. I bit confused and I just started thinking they know that they aren’t coming for themselves. Then the Holy Spirit just began to remind me that this is not about me, or them, or any staff. I began just dialouging with the Lord and my response to what He was saying was “of course Lord it’s about the children and making a home for your children and teaching them about you.” Then I heard the Holy Spirit say that is bigger than that and bigger than what any of us will ever see.  It is not just about the children who will be at Sonshine but about the generations that follow them and will know the name of the Lord. Some of the children that will be at Sonshine will go on to evangelize and spread the gospel to other nations and thousands upon thousands will come to know the Lord through them and their testimonies. So I realized it is so not about me, but about glorifying the name of the name of the Lord and making His name, His love, and His grace famous. If the things that I do here don’t flow out of that motivation then what is the point?

Playground put together and ready for children!

The fences and clothes line going up

There were 10 people that came in this group. As you can imagine this week the Sonshine Staff had a great deal of help from a fantastic team of believers from Colorado. They worked so hard. When the week was over they had put together our playground and moved fences, put in a large clothes line, and painted and stained so much. I was so blessed by them and their heart to serve. They encouraged me and I really just enjoyed spending time talking with them and hearing how the Lord has moved in their lives and transformed them.  Also the ladies from the team put together a dessert event for the Pastor’s Wives. It was really great to hear their testimonies and what they do to minister to the community. I will say that we have some amazing women in this town who love the Lord and are committed to doing His will.

A gift from the Colorado team.
Sonshine Hacienda
T-shirt they had made

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Things Are Coming Together

These are the signs outside each room 

Things are coming together in San Felipe. The last couple of weeks have been really good. We have been working and getting a lot done here at Sonshine. We now have smoke alarms, emergency lights, and signs for all of the doors and exits. We also have a playset that will be put together this next week by a team coming from Colorado. I am so happy we are going to have a playground soon.  This is the first team since I have been here on staff and I am so excited about them coming. Also this week I was able to get my background check and immigration papers taken care of. Big shout out to those who support me. I could not have paid for the immigration fees without your support. Thank You.

They were hand painted :)

I am so happy I am a part of the start of Sonshine. The more I am a part of the process,  the up and the downs the frustrations and the moments of happiness and success,  the more that God teaches me to have an eternal perspective. He is little by little revealing to me the answer to my main question which is: What is the full vision for my own life? I don’t have it all figured out but this is just the begginning of this journey.  I am constantly learning daily how to take everything to Him. I’m not perfect at it but I am learning to let Him into every part of my life. I am becoming more and more dependent on God and it’s awesome.

I have made some new friends that I struggle to have a conversation with because they only speak Spanish, but somehow I still am able to understand their stories and  hear how God has transformed their lives and I am able to communicate my story with them and what God is doing in me since I have been here. These conversations are usually in fragmented sentences. They usually talk to me in English the best way they can and I talk to them in Spanish the best way I can but we are learning from each other and stretching each other. For those of you who have been praying for my Spanish abilities and friendships,Thank You because God is definitely answering those prayers.  I still have a long way to go with Spanish but God is definitely helping me.   I have also met some really nice friends.  I was just talking to one of my closest friends on the phone about how I have taken some of my most valued friendships I have for granted when I had them right in front of me, not knowing how I was until they were far away from me and I missed them, but I don’t want to do that again. I want to enjoy every moment of this experience and every person that God places in my path.

Dios te Bendiga Hermanos en Cristo!

Someone donated a ping pong table. Going to be some fun times!

After I painted (and made a huge mess with the paint ;) )
I hope to make some fun designs on it soon. 
 In the kid's bathroom
Before I painted