Saturday, July 26, 2008

Pit Crew-Haiti style

Here's a fun little diddy about my trip last week... On Wednesday the 16th of July, we departed for Haiti and the D.R. We successfully delivered all of the missionary mail and cargo and stayed over night in Port au Prince Haiti. Upon our return trip form David Heady's compound (one of the missionaries we serve) the tire on our truck blows out. At this point I think "no problem, change the tire." But remember, we are in Haiti, not some nice highway in the States. This is after David is done telling us the story of how some one tried to kidnap him on the highway and fired two 45 caliber rounds into the side of his truck. Now we are sitting ducks for anyone that wants to rob us or kidnap us. The ditch is dirt and craggy with rocks, and trucks are whizzing by on the road. Dave produces this tiny little bottle jack (5 inches tall) and we have to put it on top of rocks so it reaches the axle. Once we get all the lug nuts unloosened, the actual wheel won't come off the truck axle. And... we can't hit the wheel too hard or the truck will fall off the jack. Finally we pry the wheel off and we are on our way. We put our pilot shirts back on and proceed as if nothing had happened. This was, of course, before we witnessed a riot in Santo Domingo! On the positive note, we visited with the other pilot's sister in the Domincan Republic and were treated to a fantastic, native, meal!

I praise God for our safety, I praise God for the opportunity to serve in more than one capacity. Finally I praise God for your support in making this possible.

Mark

Friday, July 25, 2008

A vivid picture of God the Father

If any of you know or have spent time with our little Ryan, you will understand where I got this vivid image of our God. You see, Ryan is a fairly new walker and he falls all the time. On top of only walking for 9 months, he has serious balance issues and seizures. So his head gets pretty banged up. When he falls, his forehead usually slams to the ground. While he puts his hands out, it doesn't always stop the head from smacking the ground. He usually has several lumps on his head. I can make jokes about it and say that it's his horns coming through (afterall he is three...) But the truth is, it just tears me up.

So today Ryan has had at least 5 good smacks (and most of them are out in public, so I have witnesses that I'm not causing it!) My defenses are down anyway, so these bonks on the head have really bothered me. Just a few minutes ago, Ryan fell and it knocked open a scab on the side of his head. He's had that spot for over a month now and every few days he opens the scab. Sometimes when Ryan falls he thinks its funny and belly laughs - but this is usually when he is into mischief. But just now, Ryan is tired, so the fall really hurt him; he did that cry where nothing comes out for a few seconds. I, of course, ran to him and scooped him up and snuggled him.

I'm not writing all this just to defend the bumps on the head. It was when I was holding Ryan tightly, that I had this image of God the Father doing the same thing with me. After a few sobs, Ryan squirmed to get loose and was back to his terrorizing, like nothing happened. Right now I'm battling the sin of awful eating habits. Every time I fall into temptation, I realize and I get another "bump on the head" and I can picture God's heart being broken because I sinned again and I'm in pain. But I also see God snuggling me close and wanting nothing more than to take the pain away. So I go to Him and when I feel better, I squirm away and wander off and eventually fall again. How much better off would I be if I let God hold me all the time. While I know this isn't possible, it does bring to mind the fact that I can go to God more than when I'm hurt. Just like Ryan - he comes to me for the good times too - I need to go to God often

This was simply on my heart to share and I hope you can see the image of God the Father too.
Kristin

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Dreaming

Mark and I were sitting in the pool this afternoon with the kids floating in their tubes and we just started dreaming about where God was going to take us. I can't shake this restless feeling I've had lately. I hope it means that God is preparing us for something huge.

We dreamed about the different planes that Agape is interested in acquiring. We dreamed about teaching others how to fly it. And we dreamed about where we might live. That last dream is so exciting to me and fearsome for Mark! I would love the adventure of living in the Dominican Republic. So I always seem to pray, "Lord - take us there!"

But the difficulty in dreaming is jumping ahead of the God's plans. I read in Isaiah about how we dig our own broken cisterns and ignore God's true water. I relate this to my own life. I think I walk around carrying a shovel and digging in spots all the time. I figure God needs my help in determining my life. How wrong is that?? I need to let go and let God direct my path. He will whisper in our ear which way to turn. He already knows what's in store for the Mikarts family. His guiding in our life has already exceeded anything I could dream up!

So as I sit here and think about the dreams, I realize that it's fun to think ahead and be open to possibilities, but I need to wait and see what God has down the road! I personally hope it involves another country!

Kristin

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Apple?

Hi, thanks for checking in! I thought I would tell you a little about my last flight on July 8th. As usual we departed Venice at 6am and arrived in Cape Haitien at about noon. As we were unloading the cargo one of the missionaries noticed an apple rolling around in the plane and asked if he could have the apple, I said sure and didn't think any of it. The missionary ate up the apple, savoring every crunchy juicy bite, practically sucking on the core he told me that that was the first apple he had had in over a year! The Haitians that were helping us unload had never seen an apple!
Once again I an amazed at what we take for granted here in the States. I am so honored to serve these people, I think I got a bigger kick out of watching him eat that apple than he enjoyed eating it. Praise God!!

Mark

Our New Video!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

How we got here in a paragraph or two...

Mark and I think that blogging about our experiences with Agape Flights, and our faith journey in general, would be a great way to share what we are learning and being enabled to do. But just starting a new blog is a bit odd for me, so maybe a little background is needed??

Mark has been a pilot for 20 years (well, as of August 8th, it will be 20 years). Anyone who has spent a few minutes with Mark will know that flying is a HUGE passion of his, especially flight instruction! When Mark turned his life over to Jesus a little over 10 years ago, he always wanted to combine his two loves - flying and the Lord. Through a series of connections, he heard about Agape Flights and he volunteered with them for a year or so. He would fly to Haiti as a co-pilot. Then we had our first child, Mark got a "real" job, and he wasn't able to volunteer anymore. But he was always praying for a way to become more involved with Agape and that they would move from Sarasota to Venice.

Guess what? Six years later he is on staff with Agape as a captain, flight instructor, and maintenance man. God was amazingly gracious to us during the support raising process and we have an amazing team of supporters behind us! So this blog is for you - to see how you are involved in Agape Flights. We wouldn't be here with out you and you are the hands and feet of this operation! Thank you... You are involved in some mighty Godly things!! Hopefully through this blog, you will get a glimpse of what is being accomplished for His Kingdom.

Thank you and God Bless!
Kristin

Captain Mikarts

Captain Mikarts
Mark always says he has the best office view!
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Hispanola

Hispanola
These are the mountains on the island of Hispanola (Haiti and the Dominican Republic)

Haitian Airport

Haitian Airport
Here is a picture of an airport in Haiti!

About Me

My photo
Mark and I created this blog so that our friends and family could see all the blessings God is pouring on our family as we serve Him through Agape Flights. Mark is one of the captains, a flight instructor and maintenance man for God! We believe that through the thick and thin of life, you have to find the humor. We want the joy we get from the Lord to be evident in our daily lives. Our children have unidentified developmental delays, because of this, we have a heart for parents of children with special needs. Our kids have brought us the biggest joy - and the biggest challenges. Through our experiences, we pray we can help others.