Change Of Plans For The Ortegas

March 20, 2020 | Franc and Mary Ortega

Dear ones,

As all of you know by now, coronavirus has only been getting progressively worse. We had to pray earnestly and by midday Sunday, we concluded that this would not be a favorable time for us to go to Panama to visit Mary’s aged and ill mother. Many various factors were seriously considered before making this major change in our schedule. Would we be able to escape infection through four airports before arriving? Would we be allowed to freely leave the airport in Panama City and not be placed in quarantine for 2 out of the 3 weeks that we were going to spend with her mother? Could we avoid the roadblocks and freely travel the 7-hour trip from the capital city, north toward the border with Costa Rica where Mary’s relatives live? If we could get passed all those major obstacles, could we be sure that we do not carry the virus and infect Mary’s relatives, including her own mother, the main reason for our visit? Upon our return, would we be allowed to freely land in Miami from Panama? If so, would we be sure that we would not carry the virus and infect Sarai, who just happens to have no autoimmune system and has not been able to fully get rid of a common cold for the last month due to her lupus? Because we did not have God’s peace about going through with our plans, we had to cancel our trip. We are disappointed but are at peace about our decision! God is sovereign and He is good and we submit to Him.

We currently find ourselves in San Antonio, spending quality time with our beloved Sarai, reminiscing about better days, yes, even having some pretty emotional days about her current health condition and even her long-term battle and her future. It is so good seeing her appreciate some beautiful birds that often come very close to her window from time to time. My, who would have thought that in her busy days as a teacher she would ever afford such a quiet and precious time? She is more at peace with herself and with God, although she is still processing her overwhelming experience. At the end of some very intense conversations, she still acknowledges that God is God and that He is good.

Please pray that God would grant us the wisdom to know how to best utilize our Sabbatical time, limited as we are to travel or move about during these coronavirus days. How comforting the words of the psalmist who wrote: “Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10

Thank you so very much for your love, valuable prayers and faithful support.

Franc Ortega

Franc & Mary

Grandma & Ollie

Sylvia & Sarai