Tuesday, March 6, 2012

You know you need to update your blog when:

  • Your last post was more than a year and a half ago.  
  • Your kids don't look like the pictures posted anymore.
  • So much life has happened that it would take two pages to bring everyone up-to-date.
  • Your background picture has disappeared!
  • Your life plans may not even be the same.
I'll give you the short version of life today, which those of you who follow me on Facebook probably already know.

Mark and I have branched out in our pursuit of missions.  We haven't abandoned the idea of Agape Flights and Haiti.  However, they have not been in contact with us lately, so we don't even know if they are still interested.  A friend of a friend (actually OUR friend now!) connected us with a school in Nigeria that could use our skills.  One of the missions organizations that supplies their staff is SIM.  We have applied with SIM and are trying to complete the paperwork for their evaluation.  If they choose to continue with us, they will consider us for positions that they think best fit our skills and gifts.  

Mark is still working for M&A Technology.  His job description varies daily, from paperwork to supervising an installation team to driving a truck to repairing or installing computers or printers.  

I have been unemployed since June, when my school decided they no longer needed my services.  I have been blessed to receive unemployment benefits, but I'd like a real job!  Mind you, I'm really enjoying the life of leisure, as is my family, but my unemployment isn't as much as my previous pay was, and I'd actually like to get a job that pays more so that we can advance our debt retirement, a crucial step in moving into missions.  I just got an offer for a temporary position at Cartus, a relocation company.  I'll be a Client Services Consultant.  It will be full time through at least April 22, and it will put my unemployment on hold (if I need it later).

Julie and Josh are living in Maryland, where Josh works for the government.  Julie is currently a barista/shift manager at Starbucks.  They have a puppy, Isabel.

John is in his last 2 weeks of Air Force Basic Military Training in San Antonio.  He will be graduating March 16 then transferring to Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, MS, for his technical training.  He will be there through mid-August.  After that will be his duty station, which is yet to be determined.  He gets to put in his requests at the end of Basic.  

Will is in 8th grade and still attending Denton Education Center, a charter school.  He has great teachers and is enjoying taking Engineering and participating in sports.  The small school makes it much easier to get involved!

At least you know I'm still alive and capable of writing!  I'll try to post more often!


Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Waiting on God

I don't know about you, but I hate to wait. I want to know all my plans are in place and hope that they will go off without a hitch.

I've found that's not the way God usually works.

We are planning to leave for Haiti in 2-1/2 weeks. Our trip will cost about $4000. So far, we've raised $665 (plus $50 that I've misplaced somewhere!). We feel God is wanting us to go at this time, and we've already seen His provision in several ways.

We were able to purchase the airline tickets to Haiti with savings that came from Mark's mother's estate. We'd hope to use that money to pay on debts, but at least we didn't incur more to buy the tickets. The donations we've received so far were enough to pay for our Tortug'Air tickets for our in-country flights.

The remaining money we need is for our in-country expenses -- lodging at the guest house. I'm sure we could always put up hammocks at Ruth & LJ's house and pitch in for food, if we needed to. Their house is so tiny that there's no room inside.

Please pray for me that I'll be patient as I wait on God's provision. Pray for guidance and an open mind if it becomes clear that we're to wait until another time to go. (Our American Airline tickets can be used up to a year from the original flight date.) Pray for God to open hearts to our need so that others can be a part of our trip. Pray for our safety and protection as we venture out, seeking His will for our future. Pray that I'll find that missing $50 check!

Thank you for your love, concern and prayers for our family. We couldn't do this without you!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Haiti Bound, Si Bondye Vle (if God wills)

Mark & I are planning a trip to Haiti in early June this summer. We want to meet the folks doing the work for Agape Flights in Port au Prince. They are doing this on a volunteer basis, in addition to their real ministry! We also want to introduce Will to the country. He'll have just turned 13, so he's still at an impressionable age. We are confident he'll handle it well, since he has yet to meet a stranger! When we went to Agape Flights in October 2008, he was introducing us around because he'd already met most everyone! While we’re in Haiti, we’ll assist in whatever ministries are ongoing with those we visit.

Please pray for God's provision. What is holding us back from entering missions right now is finances. Slowly we are seeing progress. However, this means we can't just stick the expenses for this trip on a credit card or write a check.

Even if we could fund the trip ourselves, we want to involve you, our friends and loved ones. Please pray for us and consider partnering with us for this trip. We will need either frequent flyer miles (35,000 miles per ticket, or 105,000 miles total) or about $2000 for airfare, plus about $2000 for other expenses like food and lodging for about 9 days.

As for the goal of entering missions, Mark is trying to settle his mother's estate. Hopefully, when the estate is settled, we'll be able to pay off all of our credit card debt. This would only leave us with our mobile home and our cars, which are both nearing the point where we could sell them and not lose money.

Julie, 23, is still in Germany with her hubby, Josh. He's teaching English on a Fulbright scholarship. They'll be heading home in early July. John, 21, is awaiting a basic training date for the Air Force. The latest he's heard is August 2010, which is just a guess. He's looking for a job in the mean time. Know anyone who needs odd jobs done or knows of an opening for a college-age guy? Will, 12, is dragging his way through his school work and having fun in karate classes. John joined karate as well and is really getting into it, as well as parkour. (Google it if you're not familiar with parkour.)

We are hoping that we could soon be asking you to help support us as real missionaries! However, we trust in God's timing and know that He is the one to bring it to pass. Please note that our contact information has changed (see above). Thanks for your love and support! Let us know how we can pray for you!

Praising Him,

Mark & Carol Hawkins

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Long awaited update

One of my handful of readers insisted I needed an update. Where do I start?

On the personal front, I'm still working away at teaching school. Things are going pretty well there. My hubby has begun some installations in schools, which means working late and hopefully a little overtime. My daughter is doing well in Germany, apparently (no pun intended) getting baby fever from babysitting two adorable children of friends. My older son is home from his Canada visit to his fiancée and is now waiting for a basic training date from the Air Force. My younger son was doing very well on his AD/HD meds but recently started sliding into old patterns. We visited the doc yesterday, and she is adjusting his meds a bit. Overall, though, he has made good progress!

On the missions front, we were able to represent Agape Flights at our church's mission conference. It felt like a little closer to being missionaries! Our friend, Ruth Scott, Agape Flights missionary to Les Cayes, Haiti, was able to return home to join us at the table, hear her son preach, and travel to see her new grandson! Ruth and LJ are always such an encouragement to us! Financially, we're still plugging away at retiring debts. Mark is trying to wrap up loose ends of his mom's estate, which will bring in a little more money to put toward debts. As you know, Haiti has suffered a major earthquake, which has put life at a standstill in Port-au-Prince. We aren't sure where Agape Flights would have us serve, but we're still willing to go wherever God is sending us. Please keep praying for God's leading and timing.

Agape Flights has been doing tons (literally) of relief shipments into Haiti. The only airplane they own, the King Air 90, suffered a landing gear collapse in Jacmel, Haiti. This will at least put the plane out of commission for a long time, if not permanently. They are leasing and borrowing other planes for relief shipments, but I know they will be needing to repair or replace the King Air. Please pray for Agape Flights as they continue their exhausting work and seek God's direction concerning the King Air.

Thanks for your continued interest in our family!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

I totally missed December in blogging! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas with family & friends.

Our Christmas was small & quiet. My married daughter was off in Germany. My older son went to Canada to see his fiancee. So it was just me, my hubby and my younger son. We didn't even decorate! I got out a Christmas tablecloth, but that was about it. My younger son picked out most of his own presents, so I didn't even wrap gifts. But it was nice and relaxing, and I didn't hear any complaints.

I've enjoyed a two-week break from working. I love teaching, but it's nice to get some time to myself. I must have really been tired because I've been sleeping a lot! I guess I needed to catch up!

We've decided to start planning a trip to Haiti to introduce our younger son to the country. Hopefully we'll be able to spend some time there this summer. Spring break is an option, but it wouldn't give us much time there. We've applied for our son's passport, which is the first step. Once our missionary friends get settled back in the country after their Christmas trips home, we'll start discussing timetables and arrangements.

I've started a diet called the Phase One diet. It is similar to Atkins -- very low carb. I was on it a couple of years ago and did very well. My blood sugar and lipid numbers went WAY down. Right now, my diabetes control is the worst it has ever been ! I need to do something for my health's sake. I need to lose some weight. And if I get a better figure in the mean time, even better! I'm going to try to do some exercising, too. I just haven't developed the plan for that yet. I do have an accountability partner! She's starting her diet on Sunday, January 3. She's a homeschooling missionary mom in Mexico that I met on SparkPeople, a free weight-loss website.

I also want to get into better spiritual habits -- Bible reading, praying, giving, etc. Please pray for me in this. Feel free to ask me how it's going when you see me!

I wish you all a Happy New Year! If you needed a new start, here's a brand new decade!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thankful for blessings

Last Sunday evening, we had a Thanksgiving barbecue dinner at our church. (Yes, barbecue!) The praise time was awesome! There was also a time for us to share what we were thankful for this year. Although I didn't share at that time, it got me thinking. It has been an eventful year, and I have a lot to be thankful for.
  • A Heavenly Father who gave His only Son that we might have life!
  • The ability to offer Him praise and honor!
  • A family who all trust in Christ as their Savior!
  • A son who led his girlfriend to Christ this spring!
  • A wonderful trip to Haiti with 11 wonderful people!
  • A wedding with 14 beautiful Haitian brides!
  • A fun visit with my son's girlfriend!
  • A beautiful wedding for my beautiful daughter!
  • A handsome & intelligent son-in-law added to our family!
  • A loving mother-in-law who finished well and is with the Father now!
  • A lovely daughter-in-law to be!
  • A wealth of loving extended family!
  • A faithful, loving and very patient husband of 27 years!
  • God's provision of jobs and material needs!
So often I fail to remember just how much for which I am thankful. And I'm sure my list is way too short!

I pray God will give you, my friend, a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends and many blessings in the year to come!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Just going through life

It's been three weeks, so it's past time for an update. I'm not sure I have much to say.

Will had a great time on his first trip to Pine Cove, a Christian camp, for a weekend retreat with the midschoolers. A friend & I were counting up the years we have had kids going to Pine Cove. For her, it was 7. I realized that over the last 11 years, when my daughter first went, my kids have gone every year except last year. They continued to go as high schoolers on the servant team (serving meals for the midschoolers). My older son even went once as an "adult counselor" after graduating high school. He skipped last year, though.

Today was Missions Meal. This is a monthly (most months) meal we cook and serve to raise funds for our Haiti Sister Church or other missions cause. It's always fun to get together with friends and work for a good cause. We're raising funds with a new roof in mind for our brothers and sisters in Chambellan, Haiti. We had a small crew, but we got it done eventually, starting at 8:00 a.m. and finishing up at 2:30 p.m. We hung out for an hour to wait for the midschoolers to return from Pine Cove.

I've been convicted about a couple of things -- time in the Word and in prayer, and financial giving. I'm posting it here so I'll be accountable to you, my reader friends. So far, I haven't made any changes. I find time to read fiction all the time, but I'm having trouble getting motivated to read my Bible. Right now, I'm not in a Bible study other than my mini-church (home group), so I don't have a class to structure my reading. I'm terrible at deciding WHAT to read, and that stalls me out. I have a devotional that would at least keep me going, but I'm not picking that up either. So, when you see me, asking me how I'm doing on spending time with the Lord.

Although I enjoy the relative simplicity of having fewer people around, I do miss my big kids. With my daughter in Germany for 9 more months and my son in Toronto for a few more weeks, it's been quiet. But I do enjoy the smaller grocery bill! Only I have to adjust my shopping habits to buying for three, not five. We can get by on a gallon of milk each week! Wow!

OK, I guess I had something to say! I'd better wake my younger son and see if I can get him to do a little more school work!