Fight for the Light

It has been a long time since we've talked about the electricity project in Las Lomitas, but that doesn't mean that we haven't been working. We have been, just not in the traditional sense. No sweat, no blood, but plenty of crazy. For the past months, we've been chasing down every politician that will give us a meeting. So to update, after a long dead spell, we made a connection a with a powerful director within the national electric company, the ENEE in March. At his word, we informed some donors that made some very generous gifts to prepare ourselves to work starting in May. The donors came through, the director did not. No action was taken.

Soon thereafter, I was summoned by a neighbor to come meet the "mayor" who had just arrived in our little village. This confused me since I already know the mayor, but assumed it was I misunderstood the Spanish. I didn't. It was a mayor want-to-be from the other party trying to make friends with the Gringo. I thought, "It won't hurt to meet this new guy. Any connection is a welcome one." Soon after I shake his hand, he starts to promise about how the electricity project will arrive for free, that the people shouldn't work on this project, he would provide it all, just sit back and wait he says -- IT'S ON ITS WAY! He and the Gringo probably won't be friends after all. It was a really hot day, my stomach was a little off, and I had grown weary of political types abusing the people here. So, in as many words, I let him know that all help aimed for the good of the people here is welcome, but the help of lying selfish politicians not so much. That was a couple of months ago and people still joke with me about it.

Since then, we've been on the phone innumerable times with the Electrical Director Supreme, the Upright Infallible Congresswoman, and the Mayor. We've been in personal homes, offices near and far, and vehicles of all shapes, sizes, and numbers of functional tires. We wouldn't be doing this however, if there weren't two people with us every step of the way: Pastor Erick and community President Pablo. Together, these two represent the leadership of the community of Las Lomitas, and they have endured lie after lie after lie long before we arrived. As leaders, they've arrived home late from meetings, chased down lead after lead, and given up a great deal of personal money in transportation and days of work lost. Pablo faithfully meets with the community to encourage and unite them even after hope seems lost. But hope is not lost.

The community has decided that enough is enough, and we are right with them. As a community, we are shooting for a start date of August 20. Should we not have irrefutable evidence that the project will start in the imminent future, action will be taken. After meeting today with the Electrical Director Supreme and Mayor, it was decided that Pablo and I will be traveling to Tegucigalpa with the Mayor tomorrow in order to determine the truth about the project at the national headquarters of the ENEE. The Director will also meet us there, and the opposing party's congresswoman called upset informing us that she would also like to come. Tomorrow will dictate the future of electricity in Las Lomitas.

This is a perfect example of development as we often share. Yes, we could have pushed through and tried to do it alone (all with donor money) and fast (according to US timetable) but all of this true, lasting, personal and communal development would be lost.  Our goal is not the project, but the process. This is why we are passionate about "community development" and this is where we see God doing great things.

Tomorrow will be the climax of a year and a half of running around. Should we manage to squeeze all of these egos into one room and ask the important questions, we may actually discover the truth. This has been an incredibly frustrating several months, but it is looking like action will soon happen. This flurry of action and emotion has done incredible things in the community though.

It is an election year here in Honduras, and the whole country is in a red vs. blue battle. Politicians feel overempowered and begin to crank up their aggressiveness, taking advantage of uneducated people in small villages and turning them on each for a color without meaning. Promises are made to keep the oppressed waiting while the politicians never take action.  Unfortunately this tactic has been highly effective in Las Lomitas, but on the flip-side has opened up a dialogue that presses for unity. The most powerful thing that can happen to unite a people is to give them a common enemy, and the emotion that the word "politico" inspires has recently become more powerful than a respective color. Using some red and blue colored water, we demonstrated the potential in a united community, a purple community. The idea that lasting change can only come from within the community is now beginning to take root. As faith in politicians fails, hope in the potential of a small community and recognition of worth in Christ is beginning to rise. We are crossing through a critical moment in this small community's history.

Our neighbors have been oppressed by lies for years now. Because of its size, no politician has considered Las Lomitas worth their time or effort and that sentiment is reflected in the people's self-esteem. They know that no-one cares. Part of our goal of being here has been to instigate development through relationship building and this has been a case study in its merits. Tomorrow I hope to see with my own eyes, a resolved leader from a tiny, rural Honduran town in the national capital, hours away from his home, meeting with leaders at the national level looking for truth to bring development to his people. 'To loose the chains of oppression, and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free.' That is our charge.


  1. I will be praying for you and Pablo tonight and tomorrow continuously. Proud of the work that the people in the community are doing and in awe of what God is doing in Las Lomitas. God's name be praised!
    Tell the people to keep their chins up and their eyes on Christ! They have a lot of love and pride coming from far away!
    God is so good!

    So much love and support,

  2. What an exciting time for Las lomitas. I'm grateful for your patience for the Lord's timing and not putting the end result above the empowerment and unity and self-worth of these people. I'm praying for you and them!

  3. Praying for your meeting today. -Katie Mueller