CR Reflections - Jan, 2009


Many people begin the New Year by giving thanks for the blessings they received in the old one. This tradition seems especially appropriate for us, since we’ll be celebrating our 1st year of missionary service in Costa Rica on January 3, 2009! In this letter, we’ve decided to borrow a technique made famous by TV show host, David Letterman, to share with you only our “Top 10 praises.” To us, each & every one is a blessing—maybe even a small miracle—to give great praise for. So sit back, grab a cup of coffee (Hope it’s Costa Rican!), and praise!

The Happs’ Top 10 Reasons to Praise God for 2008:
10. Rainy season has finally ended! So while you’re shoveling & freezing, we get our summer! (Sorry.)
9. We took our first family vacation in 1 1/2 years, 4 marvelous days on the Caribbean Coast, where we had the beach almost entirely to ourselves. From the beach, we saw anemones, sea urchins, & even an eel!
8. Meghan is doing extremely well at Moody—being challenged & encouraged as she prepares to spend the rest of her life serving the Lord. She has a godly boyfriend of whom we heartily approve, and their courtship has been truly God honoring.
7. Lindsay continues to get straight A’s as a sophomore, and as a “veteran” to life in Latin America, to moving, to saying goodbye, etc., she’s been a blessing to all the students who are at her school only until their parents complete language training and move on to their country of service.
6. We’ve finally discovered the right combination of medicines & activities to keep Jordan from getting tonsillitis during rainy season! She’s been healthy since August, and she continues to bring us great joy.
5. Marcette has enjoyed the missionary women’s Bible Study she’s been attending, but she’s really looking forward to joining a new one this year with more Costa Ricans, some of whom are neighbors of ours. One even has a daughter about Jordan’s age!
4. Henry has had great success as the IT Director of LATN, and he enjoys the work. For once, he’s working in his “sweet spot”!
3. We’ve finally found a church! After 11 months of searching, we’ve finally found one nearby with sound doctrine, engaging worship, and a nursery!
2. Though our support needs have greatly increased this year, the Lord continues to provide. Many thanks to those who have increased their support for us this year!
1. And the number one reason to praise God for 2008: This is the year that Henry’s mom came to know Jesus as her Savior! Though we miss her terribly, we rejoice in the fact that we’ll see her again in Eternity.

We thank God for allowing us to continue serving Him in Latin America. Please continue to pray for us and our team as the ministry grows. We truly feel that we are on the cusp of great & exciting developments. 2009 is shaping up to be a banner year for LATN, and we need your prayers now more than ever!

May you be blessed in great & wonderful ways this New Year!

In His Grace,
Henry, Marcette, Meghan, Lindsay, & Jordan

Prayer & Praise
· Praise God for His blessings & provision.
· Pray for LATN’s 57 continuing students in 14 countries to do well in their classes & serve God with integrity.
· Pray for our continued protection and guidance.

Music to my ears!


I had asked Meghan & Lindsay to perform one of their “traditional” Christmas concerts for us again this year. This became a family tradition many years ago, when the girls were first learning to play the piano and flute and were still young enough not to get embarrassed in front of an audience. (Ah, how innocent they once were!) We just never got around to this year’s concert, but tonight, as we talked about how we wanted to celebrate New Year’s Eve, they remembered the promised performance and hurried upstairs to practice. Jordan was just finishing her supper, and when she heard the first notes, her eyes got big. “Meghan’s flute,” she said with wonder, and “All done.” That was the end of supper! She couldn’t wait to go upstairs herself to see what was going on.

So, here I am cutting thick slices of Meghan’s homemade fudge for munching later over games and listening to my talented daughters play their lovely music. Honestly, life doesn’t get much better than this!

I hope your New Year’s Eve is just as blessed!

Mama's Little Helper


The big girls gave Marcette and I a few hours for a "Date Day!" After eating at our favorite mexican restaurant, we wandered around the downtown, bought a vacuum cleaner (A late Christmas gift. Thanks Mom!) and stopped for coffee (a favorite ritual!).

When we got home, Marcette broke out the new vacuum and found she had a little helper! Jordan grabbed the remaining pieces of the vacuum and started right in!

A Lazy Morning


Everyone was feeling lazy this morning!

A new favorite!


Our good friends from Honduras, Fernando and Jannina Montero and their children, sent Jordan a Christmas gift, a stuffed toy. It's Tyrone from the cartoon Backyardigans, one of Jordan's favorites. As you can see from this photo, the toy has become a favorite also, even accompanying her at breakfast!

A Day at the Park


We have a few things our "To Do" list for the time that Meghan is here with us, one of which is to have a picnic in a park. Our team leader, Keith Anderson, told us about this nice park near the ruins of Ujarras, about 30 minutes from our house and so we decided to try to find it today. We did find it, and it was beautiful. It's right on the lake, a reservoir actually. As you can see in the first photo, the lake is all green because it's covered in water hyacinth!

Jordan enjoyed her time as well, going down the big slide and running everywhere.

What made the time even more special is that a group of people near us had a couple of gentlemen playing a marimba, so we enjoyed some great music while we were there. Check out this video snippet!

What's the rain good for, anyway?


Some of you have heard us complain about the long, dreary rainy season here in Costa Rica. Well, we finally found out what it's good for! Last week, we were able to spend 4 gloriously sunny days on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, at a beach called "Punta Uva" ("Grape Point"). It was beautiful! This was the first vacation we'd taken in 1 1/2 years, and it was just about as perfect as it could be. What made it so perfect? For one thing, we were all together. For another, we had the entire beach almost completely to ourselves! Why? Because of the rain! The area had been hit hard by an entire month of daily rains from early November to early December, so many people had cancelled their holiday reservations. Thus the beautiful, peaceful, wonderfully quiet beach that we enjoyed! Someone remind me of that the next time I complain about the rain.