Smelling the Roses

Well, I guess Covid is here to stay awhile. Back in March it was hard to imagine that this virus would still be dominating our lives the way it has. It’s also interesting how certain things have become so normal, for better or for worse, and how we have adapted to the new situation. Here in Queretaro we are experiencing a second wave of sorts and we are set to return back to the highest risk level. I’m not sure what that means in terms of locking things down again, but it certainly doesn’t look like things will improve anytime too soon. That means more mask-wearing and more guilty feelings for standing too close to someone. It means more stores shutting down and parks closing. And more watching church from home and missing family and friends. More uncertainty.

Of course, it’s not all gloom and doom – it never is with God. There are always more than a few rays of sunlight that fight their way through the clouds. We have many things to be thankful for, and I’d like to highlight a few in the paragraphs below, which at the same time should also give you a bit of an update on what we have been busy with recently. 

We are thankful for good health. It’s easy to be me-centred and only think about all the inconveniences Covid has caused. It’s easy to forget that this virus has proven deadly for many and there are many others who live with a heightened sense of fear due to their preexisting conditions. Whether or not you think the risk of the virus justifies the safety measures taken, we can still acknowledge and grieve those who have died. We are young and healthy and don’t know anyone personally who has died, so for that we are thankful.  

We are thankful God has blessed our food aid project for families suffering loss of income during the Covid pandemic. With funds from our churches back in Canada, we were able to start this project back in July and since then we have been delivering food parcels several times a month. Most of the places we have been to several times which enables us to get to know the people we are helping and hopefully establish some long-term relationships. From the start, we did not want to simply give handouts, but we saw the potential to form relationships and share the gospel through this project. God has blessed that desire immensely and we have been given opportunities that never would have been possible otherwise. 

We are thankful that recently we have been able to return to Pan de Vida and teach a few English classes there every week. We had been unable to visit the children’s home for about six months and it is good to be back and involved again. Teaching provides a great opportunity to get to know some of the kids. 

We are thankful for two new bible studies. One we started several weeks ago and the other we hope to begin this coming Sunday. They are both in places to which we have delivered food parcels – places we likely would have never gone to if it wasn’t for Covid. We will be studying the gospel according to Mark and it is our prayer that the people would encounter the person of Jesus Christ through this book and put their faith in Him and/or deepen their love and understanding of Him. 

We are thankful for how well our kids are doing. They’ve adjusted to the new normal and continue to busy themselves with colouring pictures, learning how to bike and figuring out Spanish. Our nanny has been such a blessing during this time since it ensures the kids continue to be exposed to Spanish even as their interaction with other kids is limited by Covid. We are also thankful for the park near our house which has remained open and provides the kids with some room to run. Pearl’s daily mission is to convince her parents to take her to the park 🙂

We are thankful for the weather. It’s hard to beat the weather in Queretaro and we often remind ourselves not to take it for granted, especially when we see snow on the ground back in Canada. Stay strong friends! 

And the list could go on. 

Sometimes it is hard to look to the year ahead and have so much uncertainty of what lies beyond the horizon. But God is good, and he will carry us when we are too tired to take the next step. If there is one thing I’ve been learning over the last months, it’s to keep going, keep doing the next thing God places in front of you, keep being faithful, and keep trusting in God. Do that, and then watch and see what God does with it. And take time to stop and smell the proverbial roses. 

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