To Honduras, with love -
My dear friends ... some of you may not know this person, because you: A. Don't live in Florida, B. Don't know the Acevedo family, C. Are not FB friends with me. :) But now you will ...
this ... my friends ... is my dear friend - Amanda. She is so beautiful on the outside, but even more beautiful on the inside, and we've both got friends to back me up on that!! :D
She is a "heart-sibling" to the Acevedos, and has become very dear to me in a short time! We really praise God a lot for bringing the two of us together in friendship! What started out as "wow, look how close she is to Lydiana", a FB friend request, and one day when we met for the first Canoe trip, paddling the canoe together(I was horrible, of course, and little did I know that she is a proficient sailor) and singing together, turned into e-mails and teasing on FB, and prayers and hugs and Biblical sisterhood! I have been so blessed by 'Manda. We giggled and shrieked over Isaac and Lydiana, talked about friendship and our walks with God, prayed for each other and saw each other rarely.
Then, at the Fall Barberville, Amanda told me that she was going back to Honduras, where her family are missionaries, and I just rather stared at her. "When?" ... it was the next week, and my jaw dropped. She would still have internet, thank God ;), and our friendship is still going strong, but boy, those last few days before she left were tough ones. At the Fall Barberville, when we were leaving at the end of a long day, we thought that was "goodbye for now", and some very long and tight hugs were shared. Holding in the memories. :) Hah. I'm getting all teary now. Hah, hah. Amanda gives some of the best hugs I know, we kept saying "See you soon" and "I love you" and "We'll write", until tears burned the back of my eyes, and I was close to having a meltdown right there in the empty dance schoolroom on those wood floors.
... and we took a picture so we'd have one to look at while we were countries away ...
but then a few days later, we got together, a small group of special people, and sped our way through a glorious night of speed kart racing, and the night that GabeLynn and I were in that "crash" on the track. haha. Poor us. And we ate at Chipotle's, and I have the cell phone pictures to prove it. And then we hugged more hugs, promised to see each other before we were 30, she kept me from having a breakdown in the parking lot, and then ... she hopped in the A. bro's truck, and then they drove off to Lady A. *you can all start crying now, with me* (while I pretended like I was NOT having the hardest time keeping back the ugly cry with GabeLynn and EmilyCase being all normal. Poor people. Good thing they love me.
and THEN. and THEN ... yes, this story does go on. and then ... she flew to Honduras. and we e-mail. and we chat sometimes. and we message. and we PRAY, and we LAUGH, and we shriek because ohmygosh. Lydsie and Isaac! God is so awesome! hahaha. :) and we pray more, and we cry together, and we talk life and relationships and then we say something and we cry more. And then she gets on FB and a picture shows up from some memory, and I burst into tears.
Waiting for 30 is SLOW when you want to see someone now!!! :) But I am so blessed by Manda's friendship. It means so much to know her, and if you know her, you understand. :)
and today is her birthday!!! Happy Birthday, my darling Manda!
Leave her a Happy Birthday if you know her, or just tell her you are praying for her family in Honduras, and their work that they are doing there! May God ever be glorified and may His light shine through sisterhood and friendships between His children. :) May God ever grow you, Amanda, and I into the beautiful women that He desires us to be, with His light in our eyes and His grace in our steps, and His love in our hearts for others, for His glory!
I love you, my dearest, beautiful Rat.
"For the Lord is the great God, and the great King above all gods.
In His hand are the deep places of the earth; the height of the hills are His also.
The sea is His, for He made it; and His hands formed the dry land.
Oh come, let us worship and bow down; Let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.
For He is our God, And we are the people of His pasture, and the sheep of His hand."
~Psalm 95: 3-7 ~