Skip to main content

The Blessing and gift of journals

I can’t say enough how Julie's words in her journals have blessed me. Over the 12 years of our marriage, we occasionally read to each other entries from our journals. But only occasionally. Why read each other’s journals when we had each other in person?

In person, we could talk and share insights, struggles, and dreams. We met every morning for Paraguayan tea time. It was a ritual, a sacred date that we considered one of our daily highlights. Missing the 6am tea time was almost a transgression of a family tradition.

Today during my early tea time, I opened a journal from six years ago. Julie was sharing her struggles as a mother, wife, and daughter of the king.

A few months after Timmy’s birth, she wrote: "It’s my first Mother’s day ever. Thank you God for the privilege of being a mom. What a life change I have had in the last six months. Timmy has consumed so much of my time and energy but it is all worth it. Timmy is sitting up unassisted and soon, will be crawling. It is amazing to see his growth. Praise God for a healthy child." (May 14, 2006)

Four days later, she wrote: "We are putting up our fence on our new lot. It is so exciting. Thank you God that we are able to buy a lot and plant trees. On mother’s day we planted a Lapacho and a chivato. Timmy is more full of life each day. He is flexible, fairly easy going and not a cry baby." (May 18, 2006)
Just planted grass and Lapacho national tree
Entries in 2006 reflected the life of our little son and ideas about our future home. It was a stage when we had just purchased a property and were thinking and dreaming about home ownership. We planted grass and trees before anything was ever built. We began saving and looking for ways to finance our home. We had been married six years, four of those in Paraguay. We were excited about the future. God had given us a sweet little baby. Life was busy, dynamic, exciting.
The first bloom of our pata de buey tree, only three months after  Julie planted it

The next six years were incredible. We were able to see Timothy grow and go to preschool and first grade. We were able to move into the home that we'd both dreamed of. We got to host people from at least seven different countries. We got to see Timothy play in his own, blue-walled room. In a sense, God gave us the gift of seeing things happen and dreams come true.

Just reading these entries brought back a ton of wonderful memories. Thank you for the gift of good memories. Thank you that dreams do come true.

As I process my grief, deep inside I know that God will restore and that I will see a few more dreams come true. I am continuing to journal, even if my journal never sees the light of the day. It’s a blessing that I get to enjoy.

Norberto and Anahi


  1. What a beautiful way to remember, from Julie's own words. I'm so thankful she recorded them, and I feel guilty that I haven't done more of that. You and Anahi will be blessed by those journals for many years. :) I'm glad to hear that you are writing, too!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

September highlights. A month in Paraguay

I want to thank you for hanging out with us this past month. Every day was different. Sometimes I wish I had more of a routine. But in my missionary role, routine is not something I experience very often. Here are a few September highlights.

We traveled to Asuncion, to get some paperwork done. The trip to Asuncion generally takes six hours on a two lane road, with crazy traffic. We avoid these trips as much as possible. 

I was part of a Baptism ceremony in the Parana River. 28 people made a public commitment. The Parana Rive is the second one in size after the Amazon River.

I had a chance to continue my bible teaching at our local church on Tuesday evenings. I fill in various classes and find teaching very rewarding.
We celebrated Anahi’s 6th birthday with our immediate family. Anahi is finishing her preschool and will start first great next year

We celebrated Dominick’s 4th month. He also got his shots last week. Dominick has occupied the center of attention. He has been a great joy for …

Technology in missions

As I started my day, within a few hours, I had a list of things to do. By 10 am I had enough items to keep me busy for a week. After several hours in the office, I was able to send audio messages and video conference with people on both side of the Equator. I sent letters out to several people in just a few seconds. I posted on FB, and I googled some maps while listening to a webinar.
Did my grandparents or even my parents have these technologies? The answer is no. David and Lilian Meier left on a steam ship the port of New Orleans in December of 1935 towards South America. All the field knowledge they had was a letter from a German missionary who wrote to America saying. Will someone come to Brazil?

That was the beginning. Their first trip lasted a decade serving in several places in South America. There where no phone calls, no daily FB updates and no cool Instagram pictures. Few words on a telegram, or when letters were written they delivered weeks later were the ways of communica…

A month in Paraguay, Come and hang out with us

Book fair – Freedom of expression
Its was the beginning of the 12th , annual book fair. This event is organized by a local university as one of its arms into the community. Publishers, book sellers and authors come to present their books. Until Sunday Sept 11th, kids, professors from different schools will come and visit plaza de armas (city square of weapons) in downtown Encarnacion to learn and interact. In parallel with the book fair, workshops are going on all day, dealing with topics as wide as social media, religion, politics, team work, biographies, and history.

Just to refresh our memory, until 1989 Paraguay had only two universities in the country. The country was governed by a dictator for 35 years. Freedom of expression could cost exile, jail or even death. That’s only about 30 years ago. Today there are 54 universities, but still only about 4% attending university. People are gaining their voice without fear of repression after two hundred years. You can imagine how these …