Saturday, March 30, 2013

Costa Rica Project Photos

As promised, here are some photos of my trip to Costa Rica, showing a little bit of what we did.  Patrick, one of the team members, was an amazing photographer and took all these pictures and then took the time to add a Bible verse to each one.

This is the EMI team from the States (and Canada).  There were 16 of us altogether, including the planner's family, who accompanied him.

This is the little cabin where three other team members and I stayed.  It was cozy but worked.

Each morning, Dan, the project leader, led a coordination meeting where laid out our goals for the day and made sure everyone was on the same page.

We had a team devotional time each evening, which was good to keep everyone focused on God and build fellowship.  Here we are singing some choruses.

This is the room where we worked most of the time.  This was a planning meeting at the beginning of the week.  The architect and planner are on the left discussing the YWAM's dreams with their staff, seated on right.

This is the EMI team exploring the site on the first day.  I am wearing the funny khaki hat to keep the hot Central American sun from beating down on my face.

One day most of us went on a field trip to check out local materials and construction practices.  Here we are at a masonry building going up...
 ...and a "hardware" store looking at pipe.

This is the planner and I discussing aspects of the projects.  As you can see, I am proud to represent Nebraska in a group from all over the country.

Here is a sketch the planner made about halfway through the week, laying out some housing on the site that will be in YWAM's future plans.

Here are some sketches the architect of the building toward the end of the week.

EMI had 3 interns that are with them for 6 months at a time.  Andrew was the intern assigned to me and here we are working on the project.

On Friday night, we gave a presentation to the YWAM staff and several guests including YWAM board members and financial supporters from the States.  The architect and planner did most of the talking but here is me pointing out the grading and drainage aspects.

At the end of our presentation, the group all raised hands toward the presentation depicting YWAM's future plans and asked God to bless it/them.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Engineering in Costa Rica

I had an amazing trip to Costa Rica and arrived home Sunday night.

1 Peter 4:10 – “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.”

I kept bumping into this verse before, during, and after the trip.  This fits because the team used our own gifts and skills – engineering and architecture – to serve the missionaries in Costa Rica.

This is the property that YWAM Guanacaste owns, 2.5 acres between a mountain and a road.  Our job was to create a master plan for developing this property over time and design the multi-use building that would be the first structure built.  My specific job was the grading and drainage of the property, making sure it drained correctly and the rain stayed away from the building.

During the first couple days, the architect and land planner were figuring out how the site would be laid out and how the big multi-use building would, the engineers focused on some field tests and gathered data that would be used later.  We dug holes on the site to find out the nature of the soil and see how well it drained water.  This was intended to be particularly useful for the engineer designing the septic tank system, but the soil was so dry and wouldn’t hold water long enough to perform the percolation test.  However, the site had a soils investigation performed by a local engineer and we were able to obtain the data we needed.

As soon as the architect and land planner gave me a rough idea of the plan for the site (the multi-use building would be partially open on two sides and would house a kitchen, stage, classrooms, office, and storage space), I began working on a grading plan for the first phase (multi-use building).  Most of us stayed up until 1 am Thursday night (Friday morning) trying to get some rough concepts ironed out before our presentation Friday night.

Friday night was very special.  Several other missionaries and YWAM board members gathered in the small room inside the base where we had worked all week and we presented our project.  The architect and land planner spent most of the time telling about the multi-use building and the master plan, but each team member was given an opportunity to tell about what he or she worked on.  The audience was very pleased with our work and looked forward to the time when they would be able to serve the local people with their new building.

I was very blessed during the week I spent interacting with the YWAM staff.  They really had a heart for the people of Guanacaste and the LORD is working there.  Seeing their passion blessed me as I was using my skills to bless them.  I was also blessed by the other members of the EMI team that I worked closely with all week.  Sometimes it is easy to get caught up in your own little world, focusing on what is immediately around you, and miss what God is doing.  You can get discouraged by the direction the country seems headed or the backsliding of the church.  But last week in Costa Rica, God showed me He still has a remnant of people serving Him, from the volunteers from California, Michigan, South Carolina, Mississippi, and even Alberta to the Costa Ricans and Finns working in Costa Rica’s “forgotten province”.

The YWAM team (left to right):  Robin, Kimmo, Laura, Oliver, Yojhanna, Vivi, Salla, Diego

I know I was in the center of God’s will, and everything about all of us working together and serving our Savior seemed so right.  It made it difficult to leave and say good-bye to the missionaries and the other EMI team members.  I hope I will be able to keep in touch with YWAM and their project in the future.

Thanks to each one of you who prayed or otherwise supported me during my week in Costa Rica.  It is blessing to have so many brothers and sisters behind me.  You also share in the ministry.

(I apologize for the lack of great pictures.  I didn't take very many.  I may be getting some better ones from other team members and may post them when I have access to them.)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Hudson Warrick Beasley
Born: 22 Feb 2012, 2:42 AM
Weight: 9 lb 0 oz
Length: 21-1/4"

Praise the LORD! Mother and baby are doing well, there was no complications, and Hudson even slept a few hours this morning so all involved could begin to catch up on sleep.

Psalm 127:3
"Sons are a heritage from the LORD,
children a reward from him."

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Beauty for beauty's sake

Why do we have sunsets? Do they have some great purpose? If we didn't have sunsets would the earth cease to function?

Why are there so many flowers? Surely a few different varieties would provide the enough substance for the bugs and animals that eat them?

Why create vistas that make you want to weep? Or glorious night skies that silence you in awe?

God is the original author of 'Beauty for beauty's sake'.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Chapter Seven: The last chapter...

In which our rather exhausted heroes drive like mad men to make it home, but not with out religiously observing a stop any true Nebraskan feels called to make... the Sidney Cabela's!

Elsie was ecstatic when we pulled into the Cabela's parking lot. We'd be trying to explain the trip schedule to her, telling her that we'd go home after we had seen the 'big animals'. In her desperation to be back home horses and cows along the road had become 'big animals'.

I think the enjoyment of seeing the grizzly and elephant was sweetened by the thought that she would be sleeping in her own bed that night [smile]!

A very friendly Cabela's lady gave all the little people stickers. Edmund immediately ate his, and Yelena spent the rest of the trip home occupied in trying to get hers off. When we tucked the beanies in their own beds at midnight it was still attached [smile]!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Chapter Six:

In which our heroes, having made it through several wet and tempestuous nights, decide that the time has come to pack up their tent and embark on the homeward journey - much to the delight of their eldest children.

We took a different set of highways and interstates home, because Caleb wanted to stop at Chimney Rock.

Elise enjoyed running up and down the deserted sidewalks - until she took two face-plants in a row. Poor little nipper.

Looking back, maybe stopping that close to nap time wasn't the brightest idea we've ever had.

But Band-aids can heal just about anything. I knew we hauled that first-aid kit along for a reason!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Chapter Five:

In which our heroes undertake a brief expedition into the halls of learning, and the elder two at least return greatly benefited and edified.

If any of you end up in Ft. Robinson, I would highly recommend the camp's museum. The displays were very well put together, and kept the attention of two year old and twenty-six year old alike [smile].

The following exhibit cracked me up. It told what happened when Ft. Robinson became home to several thousand people - soldiers and families - after WWI.

The placard next to the picture explained that sanitation was becoming a big problem at the fort - animals were running amuck. The problem became so acute that Major G. Henry issued the following warning to pet owners.

"To properly train these animals in respectable ways all violators will be taken up and placed in the pound, from which they can be taken by owners on payment of $2 for a dog and $1 for a cat. The owner must be notified , and if not claimed at the end of 24 hours they are to be shot (not the owner)."

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Chapter Four:

In which our heroes are exposed to dangers that run rampant in the outdoors - indifferent camp food and sunburn.

We were going to take it easy after all the hiking the day before, a happy breakfast and trip to the park...

Elise and Yelena waited patiently for the pancakes to be ready.

Caleb, Elise and Yelena played 'Pooh-sticks' while waiting for me to clean up breakfast.

'Pooh-sticks' is a fabulous game in which two sticks - or in this case two left-over pancake bits - are dropped on the up-stream side of a bridge. The players then run to the other side to see whose bit comes out first. It's usually easier to play if you use sticks - there were several times when the water logged pancake didn't come out the other side [smile]!

Poor Edmund looked like a little sausage in a swing, but he did seem to enjoy himself.

It's been years since I've been on a swing - although between giving pushes, and admiring Elise going down the slide - I didn't really get to swing very long!

Elsie was a natural - she and Daddy had a lot of fun together [smile].

It was a rather overcast day, so you can imagine my surprise when we all started turning pink that afternoon. I guess even overcast sun reflects off gravel and give sun burns!

My handsome man!