Honduras Missions Archive

Honduras Missions The Ritchie Family missionaries to Choluteca Honduras....

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Beautiful Flowers

Here is a flower that is very, very beautiful, in stark contrast to her 12 years thus far.
Our Sunday beautiful flower.

The beauty of a flower is not in the flower itself. It is in the mind, emotion and heart of the one it is for. Some of the most beautiful flowers grow in the most harsh conditions.I have seen Artic wild flowers bloom purple across spring snow after a harsh winter. I have seen desert flowers bloom after years of drought. As it is with all of creation. Many look at beauty as evolving ever better, this is not true rather it is degrading in an ever more sinful world. To see beauty one needs contrast. Therefore the clearest beauty is seen in the harshest of circumstances. In talking with Alba early this morning after prayer, I told her she was a beautiful flower. Then paused and her countenance did not change. I continued with yes you’re a beautiful flower but one that has had no water or light for a long time. Papy’s house is Jesus house, here you will get much spiritual water and light and give a sweet odor to Jesus. This elicited a large smile and a tight hug. Later during setting up for church, Julie went to the field were the boys were setting up church tents and picked flowers and put them in Alba’s hand. Alba brought them to her nose to smell them and drifted off to sleep. The song that was playing was a Ron Hamilton (God makes no mistakes in Spanish) song, but by the time I got the Camera on, it had changed.

Later after church we all went to a city park. Alba asked to buy a bag a water to drink. As she was returning walking down the sidewalk she stopped and opened her bag and watered 2 beautiful tropical flowers, that were strangely orphaned alone in a patch of sand. I could not help welting up in tears.
My LORD has assured my heart he has a purpose for her life and it will bring Him Glory. See if you see the beauty I see....
Click for Video Link

Born to a prostitute mother who maimed her as a baby by burning her in a fire, thinking to make more money begging in the streets. Her skin is massively deformed down her one side to her ankle. It feels and looks like hardened roughcut leather. Her hands are deformed from broken fingers than were never set. Her body is covered in other scars from cuts, burns. The calluses on her hands are those of a heavy truck mechanic; from full time caring for her 6 brothers and sister from the moment she could (5years old). Eating from neighbor’s garbage to survive. The house she lived in was dirtier than a USA dump. Her father used it to burn bones on the floors and sell the ash for money. A Parasite infested belly. A beautiful hearted soul, who has been repeatedly, forcibly raped by the father, 4 older brothers and sold to men for money… yet has no hatred, because she is a true child of God.

I can see no glory for the LORD to also allow her to have aids and hepatitis. And nothing but glory for Christ if she is healed and sings of His Glory. She has promised me a song, to use her wonderful singing voice to sing “God makes no mistakes” and allow me to record it. It will be my treasure and hers, to lay at Christ feet and carried in my heart for all eternity….

Please Pray as we test her blood again Monday.....


Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!
Yesterday(Wendsday) was one of those days you dread. Like having to amputate your own leg to save your life. We were summoned to the criminal court, not even sure of the reason, but found justice is swift in Honduras. Lisa was needed to sit with Alba on the witness stand as she shared her story in full this time. Lisa could hardly stand it. It was brutal, violating her all over again. I had told her she needed to be strong so her little sister Julie would not have to testify. Thus far much of what had been revealed has only been to Lisa or myself and what Julie shared had been left out. When she finished, all were weeping including the Judge, the defense attorney and the 6 shot gun armed police surrounding her father. All I could think about was the Judgment seat of Christ. This case was more than a "He said she said." There is undeniable forensic evidence, doctors testimonies as well as several witnesses. When the DNA result returns they will sentence him to at least 20 years. It is only needed to prove he is the father, for there are no records Alba exists.(God knows her) Because it was a strong case, the Government has chosen to make an example out of him and is putting him on national news and posters as a warning to others. Afterwards, we were instructed to take Alba to a psychologist to make sure she was ok and build a family record to create a birth certificate. He asked Alba whats your moms name? "Lisa Marie Ritchie" He said no I mean your birth mother. She replied again pointing "that's my mommy". Lisa looked at him with bewilderment then handed him our Children's Lighthouse profile history.(Her mother has an arrest warrant out and has maybe fled the country.) He then said this is enough we are finished, let her turn the page and go on. I agree totally.

Walking out I told Alba it is now over. She jumped and hugged me with her feet off the floor and wept till my back began to ache. On the 14th the family grows some more with Besy 5 and Iris 8, two more children with a similar backgrounds. On the way home, I promised Alba after they arrive, we would find a way to take family time and travel Honduras like she wanted, we need to get away for a while, heal and bond the family. Not sure how to travel with a family of 14 or how to feed them, clothe them, educate them...or? There are so many things that have to get done but prayer has worked thus far.

3 hours after the verdict, the third medical lab we contacted called and said they had the results for the aids and hepatitis tests. They apologized for taking so long, it's just that the doctor was very concerned we were testing a child for things sexually transmitted and only wanted to be sure. He paid himself to have his results verified in two other labs in San Pedro Sula. For this we were grateful, between Alba and the other children we have spent a fortune on labwork thus far. One lab was the American Red Cross Lab who did a slow cell count test. Every test came back negative. HIV 1, HIV 2, Hep A, B and C... Amen.
If you would have held this little girl in your arms last week, seen her tongue swollen in thrush (a side affect of aids)seen the original test results and have the doctors who examined her say he thinks she has about 4 years left. Then see her now with no evidences, you might believe as I do. All I can do is praise and worship my LORD, and my Saviour, Christ Jesus.
Exhausted and just before falling asleep one night this week Lisa and I were talking about the events and she commented isn't there a verse that says if you lose something for the gospel sake God restores ten fold. I said yes but with the fog of my mind could not remember it. After laying there a few minutes confused, I finally checked the computer and the verse popped up. As I read it I smirked and uttered "uh Oh" Lisa said "what now?" "Want to hear that verse you were thinking of?" "Yes"

Matthew 19:29 And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.
We have 10 more children in our house. So were only 10% of the way there. We drifted off to sleep with a frightened smile. Never the less not my will but thine LORD....

More wonderful news. Jeny asked Jesus to save her Monday evening...with tears of brokeness it was so sweet. Alba came in to encourage her saying she had gotten saved right here last year sitting on the end of the bed. I had showed a strong gospel witness movie for the kids just before our devotion. Jeny has been weighing on the whole situation with Alba as well. After the devotion all had left except Jeny because I was to deal with her on a few issues of rules in the house. Then she look at me and said I hurt here and pointed to her heart. "Why?" "I am not a Christian." She was finally ready with tears rolling down her face her head buried in my shoulder, she asked Jesus to save her. She then smiled and went to tell Sasha "I am a Christian too."After saying our good night hugs, later I asked "hurt here?"Pointing to my heart..."No Mas" came sweet reply and smile. AMEN AMEN AMEN!

On Tuesday night I opened the girls door to say goodnight and saw Jeny and Julie at the end of their bed on their knees praying in a Precious Moments pose for Alba. I silently closed the door went to my room and wept with gratitude to the LORD.

Now for Ana. She took a turn for the worse Wendsday night and her Oxy count dropped. They did more tests and feel the will need to reopen her today for more surgery. She needs the same ferverant prayer and grace Alba received. I enclosed pictures that were emailed last night.
Ramons Family and I thank each of you for your prayer and support, we are truly living of the Gospel.

Email from Bro Hinds in Guatemala... Thursday Afternoon....

Dr. Castenada came out to see Ramon after the surgery and he was very upbeat and said everything went very well. It sounds like what they did tuesday actually helped them be able to do something better today. That was good to hear and I'm sure it will help Ramon in being able to leave tomorrow. Of course, little Ana is still in intensive care. Her mom will probably be staying in the waiting area (with other parents with children being operated on) until they move her to a room upstairs.
The Lord used the open door with those in the waiting area to share the gospel. Instead of turning on the tv, they were all reading the tracts and other books we brought. Cathy heard that Ramon was able to lead one young man to the Lord before he died of liver problems.

Amen and Amen

Don Hinds

The LORD gives grace as it is needed, and has given wisdom beyond my measure through this trial. This past weeks we taught Alba and the rest of the children that if we gently squeeze or tap them 3 times it was a special private family code for I Love You. It works in spanish too because Te Amo is also 3 syllibals. It has come in very handy and used often, like in the court room story above. It silently gives comfort in a crowded room or frightened by strange men with guns asking hard questions. By Thursday afternoon we needed relief from all the strain. So we packed up everyone and went to the beach for some healing time. As I was taking pictures the children rewarded me with a spontanious chant that was music to my ears... Here is the video just click on it.