Wednesday, September 27, 2006

special water and our fish

You'll have to read the labels on these water bottles closely to see what they say. The one on the left says, 'Sin Gas' and the one on the right says, 'Con Gas.'

No, this is not special water for sinners...Though, these words sound like they are English words, they have very different pronunciations and meanings. 'Sin Gas' is water without carbonation and 'Con Gas' is with carbonation, like club soda. Just thought this was kind of interesting to share with you all.

Now, you can meet the newest additions to the Haley family. Yesterday, we bought a fish tank with all the equipment, etc. We have two goldfish and another kind, can't remember the exact breed, but he looks like an orange and black minnow to me. The silverish goldfish on the left is named 'Tin' which is short for Agustin Delgado, who is a soccer player. He (the soccer player, not the fish) plays on the Ecuadorian National Team and on Liga de Quito, my favorite Ecuadorian club team. On top (the orange minnow), is Marcos, named for Marcos Vidal. Marcos Vidal is a favorite Spanish Christian singer of ours. The last one on the bottom is 'Spot', so named because of an orange spot on the top of his head. I guess this all for now about the fish. We are going to see how they do and maybe add another one or two. I hope they fare better than the goldfish I tried to have when I was in middle school. They lasted a couple of days and then I tried to get some more a couple more times, but no luck. These seem to be doing a lot better.
I don't know too much else. I hope to post another blog in the next couple of days with more pictures, and update and prayer requests.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Mt. Cayambe and prayer request

With a foot in both hemispheres. Here I am at the the equator, in the middle of the world. The other guy, to my right is Francisco, one of the translators. This is an area close to where the volunteers worked last week. We had a great time with them and they were a great group, even though they were from Oklahoma-just kidding! We are glad for the work they did and hope to see them again.
Amos 4:13-"He who forms the mountains, creates the wind, and reveals his thoughts to man, he who turns dawn to darkness, and treads the high places of the earth-the LORD God Almighty is his name."

This is a picture of Mt. Cayambe, another snow-capped volcano. It is not quite 19,000 feet tall. I think it is inactive. The equator actually passes over this mountain, making it the highest point on earth that is at the equator.
This is a sign posted on the way into a church. Interestingly, it says the following, 'Attention (ojo-literally 'eye') brother-turn off your cell phone and don't lose your blessing. Thanks.'

A quick prayer request...-Just want to let you know that Franklin Graham will be in Quito and having programs tomorrow night on Friday and Saturday evening. Please pray for this event and more importantly for the people that will be coming. Please pray that the gospel will be taught and received, all for the glory of the Father.

Friday, September 15, 2006

mountain climbing and numero 1

First of all, I want to apologize for not putting anything on the blog in a while. We have been busy helping with a volunteer team up near Cayambe (a bit north of here). The little time that I've been on the computer in the last week or so has been spent on my space.
The pictures here are from another hike up Mt. Ilalo that me and my neighbor Jim went on last week.
This was taken of me near the top of Ilalo.

Here's one of my friend, Jim. We are thinking about climbing Mt. Cotopaxi...guess we'll see. Watch out, Cotopaxi. This was my second time to climb Ilalo (I have pictures from the first trip back in the March/April archives). It was a nice trip but a bit drier and dustier this time.

Here is a picture of some strange grafitti, it says, in Spanish-'I urinated here.' Instead of 'I wuz here', 'Here, I made my mark.' It's just kind of funny. Here in Ecuador, people write grafitti in different places. A lot of the messages are political, or otherwise, are philosophical observations about life. I'm not sure what this one is. It is painted on a wall in our neighborhood. We'll have to share more grafitti statements later on...
Check out this lawbreaker...citizen's arrest. The sign here says, you guessed it, 'do not urinate here.' I guess some people don't just care (this picture is taken of, guess who? and this is only a publicity stunt). A neighbor and I were discussing public urination one time and he stated that it is a mark of 'maleducacion' or a lack of education. This brings me to my next story...sorry for this blog all about #1. Anyways, to start out I can explain that from our front window we have a view of the street below. Well, we had some neighbors over for dinner and a Bible study. They were preparing to leave and we were just casually looking out the window to the street below. And lo and behold, this guy was doing his business, you know, marking the territory. Well, he kept going and going, kind of like the energizer bunny...finally, my neighbor remarks in Spanish, 'dude is going like a horse.' I then commented to him that we have the same expression in English. The moral of this story is you learn something every day and we never cease to be amazed at things we see and hear here.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Gulliver's Travels

I'm starting off with another picture from Guayaquil. This one is of the lighthouse that is at the top of Santa Ana hill. The flag there on the left is the Ecuadorian flag and the light blue on the right is for Guayas Province. Christine is standing with another friend/colleague, Barbara who has been working in Guayaquil for 20 years. She showed us around and we had a nice time with her.
The next two pictures are from a place near El Quinche where a house church meets. The only problem is that the ceiling is a bit low in the house. As you can see, I have to crouch down a bit or just hope that we sit down. Most houses don't have ceilings this low but just wanted to share this with you all. See, being tall does not always have advantages. In both pictures, I am standing with Ramon who owns the house here and has been involved in this house church for 2 years. I've posted other pictures from their farm before (they are the ones who give us strawberries and feed us lunch practically every time we got out there.) He is also Ramon Jr's dad and their whole family came to believe after one of his sons died. Now, they are strong and committed disciples of Jesus. Please continue to pray for the house church group as they reach out to the surrounding community and that they can start other groups like their own. Also pray for their extended family.
I really love the singing and praise time out there. The music is just beautiful and it is usually a warm time of praising God in song. This last Sunday, the music leader said that we were going to use the Bible as our songbook. We mostly sang Psalms, which were originally songs of praise to God. One of my favorite songs we sang that day was a few verses from Psalm 145. The following will be words/lyrics (in Spanish without accents and English) from this Psalm.
Psalm 145:1-3-"I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever. Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom."
Salmo 145:1-3-"Te exaltare, mi Dios, mi Rey, y bendicere tu nombre eternamente y para siempre. Cada dia te bendicere y alabare tu nombre eternamente y para siempre. Grande es Jehova, y digno de suprema alabanza; y su grandeza es inescrutable."

Monday, September 04, 2006

Guayaquil, part 2

Here are some more pictures from Guayaquil, with a couple from the trip home. The first one here is of 'Silver' and some kids from a church that we went to outside of Guayaquil. Silver is the vehicle that we've been driving for the most amount of time here in Ecuador (we had 4 others before this one but all for short amounts of time). We really love Silver and he gets us around pretty good. He can handle the rough roads really well but he is also pretty quick and agile and is good at dodging cows, buses, potholes and drunks, and he can leap giant speed bumps in a single bound. So hi ho Silver away!
Next is my buddy Aron. He is a little guy that I saw at one of the churches. We played together a bit.
This is a sign for a pool and restaraunt area that decided to use the name of the greatest state in the Union in its name.

Lastly, is a picture of a waterfall that we stopped at on the way home. It was so nice, just to see a small wonder of God's creation and to hear the rushing water-oh, and check out the babes they have there. It is amazing how many waterfalls we've seen in Ecuador. I guess it has to do with the fact that there are lots of mountains as well. I think I've heard that Ecuador has the most waterfalls per capita in the entire world (just kidding!), at least I'd be willing to bet on it. Guess this is all for now.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Guayaquil, part 1

We have some pictures from our recent trip to Guayaquil. As I mentioned before, we really had a nice trip there. Thanks for the prayers. We had a special time of fellowship there and a safe trip there and back. We also were encouraged to see the work there and got a few different ideas from our friends there. We also got to do a bit of sightseeing and the following pictures will be from this time. These first few pictures are ones that we took along the way there that reminded us of other places we've been...
Might has well have been in Texas in this one...

Might has well have been in Kansas or Missouri in this one...

This one sure reminded us of Southeast Asia (rice fields).
This one reminded me of all the banana trees in Uganda, only these were of a different variety of the kind they have in Uganda. The ones here are the same kind that you would get at the grocery store in the US. We saw miles and miles of these fields and many signs that said Dole. We heard that Dole gets a lot of their bananas here. I have also heard that Ecuador is the number 1 banana exporter/producer in the world.
This next one is finally from Guayaquil. It is from Iguanas Park, which is in front of the main cathedral in the city. It was so amazing to see iguanas just walking around everywhere. We saw some up in trees and a friend that lives there warned us to watch where we stood!
This one is from Santa Ana hill, which is a area that they have developed for tourism. It was really quite nice. There were some nice restaraunts and shops on the way up to the top of the hill, which has a lighthouse and lookout area. It was painted up pretty nice and was a nice area. Guayaquil is the largest city of Ecuador and is really an area of extremes, mostly in regard to poverty and wealth. I think quite a bit of Ecuador's money is in Guayaquil or goes through it. On the other hand, there is quite a bit of poverty there as well. We really saw that in one community we went to. Overall, we were really pleasantly surprised by our visit there. We really hadn't heard much that was good about it. I think this is mainly due to the rivalry of the Sierra (mountainous area) and the Coastal area. I encourage you all to pray for Guayaquil and the work of the gospel that is going on there. Pray especially for our missionary friends that are there as they begin new works. On top of this, pray that local workers will be sent out into the harvest field (Luke 10:2).
This one was taken from the top of the hill. It has a nice view of us, the city and the river and riverwalk area. I guess this is all for now. I hope to put some more pictures from our trip up next time. I guess I'll close with telling you all about my My Space page...I don't know if you've heard about this phenomenon (I'm kind of new to it) but if you want to check it out click on this- or on the link on the side that says Ben's my space page. Take care and God bless.