Wednesday, December 26, 2012

End of the Year...

So here we are at the end of the year...not the end of the world after all...  and as a family we have had so many changes.  Since January we have lived in 5 homes in 4 cities in 3 countries.  Our luggage is beat.  We, on the other hand, though possibly a little beat as well, are so much stronger for having started on this journey that beckoned us to walk closer and closer with the Lord. 

My heart and head have been worked on so much these last months.  I have been pushed to give when my desire was to keep, asked to remain silent when I felt the need to justify, asked to leap where it seemed there was no place to land.  This is true: life is so short.  We are so sure of what we have, our abilities to maintain ourselves and families, to find our security in predictable things, but I am sure that this is not what our Lord has called us to.  I do not believe he asks everyone to literally leave their homeland for him, but I firmly believe that he asks each of us to leave for him alone our hearts uncluttered.  I do not believe this is totally easy. 
“Child,' said the Lion, 'I am telling you your story, not hers. No one is told any story but their own.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Horse and His Boy 
For each of us, the story is different.  The path may lead elsewhere, but the goal is always the same - that we would love the Lord God with everything, love others as ourselves and in so doing that we would know the God who is the beginning and end of all things, in whom all things exist, the God of Abraham, the God who came to us in the form of a tiny newborn baby in a great expression of Love only to die for us in a greater expression of Love.  This is always the point of everything.

So, with the Williams family, this year we got to be a part of God's plan all the way down here in Paraguay.  It has been tremendous.  Time and time again God has provided, through each of you through your giving of love, encouragement, finances, prayers and friendship.  We have been blessed also to be givers of love, friendship, encouragement, prayer and even through our material things we have here.  We have seen people deepen in their understanding and love for the Lord, we see the seeds of change planted in the community here, and that God is working through the church here and all over.  It is always the Lord who saves and guides his church and we are priveleged to be the workers. 

Thanks to wonderful friends and family many of our needs upon coming home are being met.  We have a home to live in near our church and school and Cole will be working with his grandfather and cousin for their busy season at Williams Nursery.  Our final days here in Paraguay have been filled with the fruit of friendship with contacts, church members, neighbors and fellow missionaries.  In reality, the early missionaries like Paul and Barnabas traveled around and spent a few weeks or months in cities and then moved along but keeping in touch with those new believers to encourage them as they went through the growing pains we all have as we figure out who we are in Christ. We are definitely leaving loved ones here, but we are able to keep in touch and love from afar. 

As we finish out the year, we thank you all with grateful hearts for your support.  It still feels so crazy to be walking where we are, in complete dependence upon the Lord, trusting in the work he is doing in us as well as how he works in you.  Thank You.  Thank You. Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year.


For year-end giving: 
With Lots and Lots of Love and Cheer...
Grace and Peace to you.
The Williams Family
Cole, Kelly, Ted and Reese


Monday, November 12, 2012

God's fellow workers

Before I forget... Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!

For us the heat is on!  We are right at the starting line for summer down here in Asuncion and I am pretty sure I will suffer much evaporation of my precious 75% water.  It will be a totally different Christmas to be sure...    I am laughing right now as I write this... crazy heat is not my favorite thing, but we are loving that God has brought us here.  God is funny too.  I am thankful that we are made in his likeness : )

I have some words to share that have been the words of the Lord to me for a few weeks now... If you can bear with its length...(and at the end I am sharing some details about the next leg of The Jesus Adventure!)
"What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe—as the Lord has assigned to each his task. I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building.
By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames".  1 Corinthians 3:5-15
I can't read the Bible anymore without a million little connections popping up in my mind.  There is no unintended relation between one passage and another...Gods words to us are undeniably clear - We are the plan.  We are the body of Christ.  We must work together with him and with each other.  I love the wholeness of the words "for we are God's co-workers, you are God's field, God's building."  We are His fellow laborers who are to listen, obey and work in harmony in order to accomplish his perfect will.  We are also the field...the place where the work takes place, seeds are planted, the ground prepared through turning, digging and reforming.  We are also the building...God's temple, the end product.  It is beautiful and the complete description of our varied purposes that exist all at the same time in our journey.  We have the burden to reach others, to be yielding to all the different works God simultaneously is doing in us, as well as to be honoring and glorifying to Him as his precious and prized temple. 

And the beauty of the miracle in a tiny seed... I imagine the apparent simplicity on the inside of a small seed...they look blank with virtually no distinguishable marks.  Yet, the moment a seed is planted and then cared for by "God's fellow workers" the miracle inside the seed begins transforming it's very nature and appearance! No man on earth could design such a complete biological plan...this alone is the handiwork of our creator.  Something so plain and common as a seed...and God has designed in nature a multitude of ways for a seed to become planted...some seeds are sticky and attach to the fur of a passing animal, the wind carries others that are meant to be airborne, others are pleasing for food and fall during a harvest.  There is no mistake in the completeness of the analogy the Lord gives us when he speaks of planting seeds.  Let yourself carry on entirely in imagining the life of a seed and how it comes to be planted.  Meditate on the beauty of God's plan!  I believe God designed nature also as a reflection of who He is and how He works...and that is why there are so many comparisons between God's kingdom and vines, branches, fruit, harvest...  God's plans, creation and character are profound. 

What kinds of things are we building...?

Of course the other awesome parts of this passage are the materials with which we can build upon the foundation that has been there from the begining.  When we are talking about building in God's kingdom there is only one foundation that can be laid and that is Jesus Christ- BUT we can build shabbily or strong upon that foundation.  We can be and invest in the building of others into strong, lasting, fire-proof, fire-tested temples for the Lord.  If we labor without truly giving oursleves to the labor or give in work only the things that don't cost us very much, the end result will be buildings that are burned up with fire...only the bare foundation will last.  It is very easy to appear to be building, especially to others, even to toil much in our building.   But, it will be revealed to be nothing if we build with things that do not last.  We have got to build always with our whole heart, with our best attitude, a most sincere and generous spirit...always with love and obedience in faith.  What kind of buildings are we constructing? Clearly we should each desire to be a temple of gold for God... the most valuable, costly, strong and pure temple and equally desire to build as god's fellow workers into the lives of others so that they too can be strong and enduring.   

Oh I love the depth of God's word...  it is always complete and self-supported. 

Whew! And now for some further details about the future of The Jesus Adventure...
We have been so very blessed in this call to serve in international missions.  Wow, was it a crazy transition for us, but to be sure it was and is God's plan for us now.  Our project here in Paraguay is finishing up next year and our team of 40/40's will all be heading home for at least a small break before returining to the field in some form or another.  We ourselves will still have another year left in our committment to Extreme.  After much prayer and seeking, we have committed to begin again as Cluster Support for a new team of 40/40's that is heading to Ibarra, Ecuador next year!  (just northeast of Quito)


We are very excited for this next assignment!  We will be starting next June with the 40-Day Experience followed by theology/language training with the 40/40's and ministry training in Cali, Colombia and then off to Ibarra to invest ourselves with the planting and watering of seeds and the building of God's temples!  Ecuador is going ot be very different than our experience here in Paraguay.  The culture is very much more like the Peruvian culture and it has a much cooler climate than Paraguay.  The city of Ibarra is in the Ecuadorian Andes with a lake and two volcanoes nearby flanked by the Amazon Basin on the East of the Andes (location of events from The End of The Spear movie).  We are bummed out that the timing has not worked out for a short-term group from PortNaz and other interested friends to visit Paraguay while we are here, but I believe you will all be very much blessed in coming to Ecuador to see what God will be up to there!  Pray about it and start planning! in Paraguay is trucking along : )  The church here is growing, we are growing, our bible studies are growing and evolving into beautiful relationships and deepening walks of faith.  God is constantly speaking and is in control of each delicate seed.  We are at our mid-way point for the poject and it is absolutely amazing to have been able to count with some accuracy how many people have heard the gospel through the work of our team here...  Over 2000 lives have been touched with the gospel through outreach events and weekly evangelism!  In addition, each week our 40/40's are pursuing and discipling about 240 different individuals through weekly bible studies and friendships!  This sunday we had 17 people baptized, and two new home bible study groups are opening this week! Please keep our church and team in prayer.  The last months of a project need to be focused on the transition between missionary leadership and local leadership...this is where we need to really see the seeds budding.  And we shall not is God who makes things grow.  It is He who has always sustained His word and His church and this is where we place our hope.  Build with us on the foundation placed in Paraguay through your faithful prayers!! 

Here is the slide show some of you saw in Sunday School last week, and other of you may be seeing in the near future during Sunday School : ) 

We are also working on some Picassa albums for those of you that don't frequent facebook... Hopefully these work...I am a little new to some of this.

Picassa Album Paraguay 2   and   Picassa Album New Folder

Well that is our super long and long overdue blog for now : )  Keep us in prayer as we start figuring out how to prepare for Ecuador and as we continue in ministry in our community here in Paraguay.   We love you and don't forget about you even though we are far away...  We will be home soon for a break next year around May and June!! We will make plans as the time gets nearer : ) Lots of Love dear friends and family!!!  Big Blessings from South America!!!!

Grace and Peace to each of you,

Sunday, September 9, 2012

I am a disciple.

Oh dear friends...

We are super excited to share some of the neat changes in Extreme Nazarene Ministries! The new project name is Extreme South America and includes our current project (Extreme Paraguay) but also includes several new cities, new teams, new ways of preparing, sending and multiplying God's kingdom. It is pretty neat that in the midst of the world's financial crisis, God's work is not slowing down one bit : ) But HE is like that... defying our logic all the time and teaching us to think His thoughts after him.

You can check out some of the new opportunities to GO, GIVE and PRAY.

Some of the hilights include:

~ A new 40-day program in Quito, Ecuador (the soon to be the new Extreme Nazarene headquarters) which includes an intense time of fasting, prayer, service and theology for anyone interested in joining XSA or interested in Spiritual Enrichment...

~ Expanded opportunities for joining the XSA project in a huge variety of roles for every type of talent, passion, calling, age...and location! There is a lot you can do right from your home in the US if you have a call to missions but not necessarily the international mission field...

~ With the new 40/40 structure, one may earn a BA in Intercultural Studies and complete all the requirements for ordination within the Church of the Nazarene WHILE serving as a missionary...

~ A new recruitment program specifically to mobilize South Americans that are called to missions that includes an interview/application process, work with the local pastors and leaders to facilitate financial support and encouragement from the sending church on behalf of the missionary, and training in missions.

~ Extreme Nazarene Ministries will eventually be expanding ministry "to the ends of the earth" in the years to come!

Extreme Nazarene is doing such an awesome job at getting people out into the field that would ordinarily have no idea where to begin, helping people that are called to give get connected with the variety of projects and people that are available to support, and opening the door for people all around the world to engage in missions not only within their country but to shift from a missions recieving church to a missions sending church! It is actually quite amazing to see the local leaders being raised up to carry on the ministry of the church in their area but also that there are people being called to missions out of these very same churches! Right now, our team in Paraguay consists of 3 Brazilians, 3 North Americans, 1 Venezualan and 1 Paraguayan. It is pretty neat to see the way that the body of believers exists unified in Christ!

SO...We are so excited to be working with XSA! We will for sure keep you all updated as God leads our family in this amazing journey!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Turning Point

What a wonderful blessing it is to be a servant of the Lord!  It is a mixture of total humility, dependance, following, obedience combined with the knowledge that we are totally important to, loved, pursued and cared for by God.  It is being both the precious beloved as well as incomparably small.  It brings so much freedom and also a great desire to be pleasing!

Does anything ever work out just the way we expect...?  Maybe not...  but sometimes do we learn a whole lot, grow relationships we might have otherwise missed, see new things...? Yes.  This work here is hard for each member of the team, but I am grateful for this.  It forces us toward God and makes His glory visible in spite of our frequent blindness. 

I must begin with a BIG THANKS to the short-term team that was just here.  Each of you touched my heart and it was a total joy to be with you on your journey and for you to be here as a part of mine.  Also, it was a wonderful blessing to have met particularily the female side of a few amazing couples that are involved in the administration and sheparding of the internationbal Church of the Nazarene.  Sarah Foster (Financial Coordinator of the Paraguay project for Extreme Nazarene) hosted a beakfast (Thanks Sarah!) for Sharon Graves, Natalie Ward, Lilliana Vargas, Charlie Carney, Margite Sarmiento, and myself. What a blesing it was for me to get to know in such a small way the hearts of those leading us as a whole.  It was such an encouragement to have them and their husbands here in our church.  In the tail end of the Impact project with the short-termers, we were thrice blessed with the presence of the team of officers for Extreme Nazarene Ministries.  Again, we have such confidence and trust in those leading us.  It is super exciting to get a small glimpse of where God is leading our organization.  We are so thankful to be working with so many people that eagerly and faithfully follow the Lord's leading at every turn.  If any of you are feeling called to join with Extreme Nazarene with the expansion of God's kingdon, stay tuned!!  There is some exciting news coming in September!

As a team and as a family we have had some cool breakthroughs : )  Many of us began to feel the need for a shift in our approach to ministry that seems rather obvious now, but for some reason we had sort of missed it before... I think we were missing the element of friendship in some of the relationships between our team and the "contacts."  I do believe that preaching and evangelism have great impact on people, clearly, but the deep discipleship and sincere love that God calls us to is best expressed through trusting, fun-filled, mutual friendship.  It is the living of life together in Christian community that truly fulfills and strengethens the body of Christ.  Some new friends of ours, the Hernandez family, have been missionaries here in Paraguay 7 years now, told us that they are very much missionaries in the eyes of those that send and support them, but for them now, Paraguay is their home and they are just Christians living out Christ's love and gospel.  When we look at it that way, it draws us so much more closer to the people here... I think it helped us to feel so much more a part of life here and less of an outsider trying to bring them something.  What we have in Christ in truly good news and witnessing to others is merely testifying to what we have seen heard and felt in regards to Jesus Christ.  We testify to who he is.  There is no real method to that except sincere love that is led to action by the holy spirit.  Another special tidbit that has stayed with us was spoken by John Armstrong, former missionary with his wife Glenda and kids all over South America, which was that we should try not to become worried about the splash we do or do not make and that all we need to do is follow Christ being exactly who he made us to be...and Have Fun!... the rest of the spiritual work is for God.  We follow in obedience, trying to love sincerely and we trust that the power of Christ and the words of life from the Bible will accomplish what they are sent out to accomplish. It is beautiful and freeing.  His yoke is easy. 

Some of the cool new blessings and people God has brought into our lives:

~Gabriela- a worker at the market where we always shop.  Has started coming over weekly to practice English!  She is the most sweet gal!  She has a little girl that is 3 years old : )

~Matias- a shop owner of the Panaderia (bakery) that we frequent. Yesterday we were invited to his family's farm and was amazing!  A very special treat for us!

~Lilliam and Raul- coming over for dinner Sunday : )  They plan to get married in December. 

~Tonight we have invited some people over including some of the folks from the last blog prayer list for a movie night outside! We will be showing Joseph King of Dreams in Spanish.  We hope to just get to know some people and open our lives to friendship and through this share who Christ is.  Our aim is to Love them to the Lord.  

~Our team has been experiencing very much the same things!  Each of the pairs have started having people out of nowhere asking to spend time with them, asking for in-home bible studies (I believe we have 2 or 3 new groups just this week!), and asking more about the church.  God is truly working here in our lives, in the lives of our team and in the people of our community.  It is beautiful.

Thank You all so very much for your prayers!  It is so important that we ask the Lord for his presence, peace, words, guiding, widsom...the whole bit! There is nothing we can accomplish for him without him.  You are such a blessing and encouragement to us and we love you!  Grace and Peace to you all and press on in this unpredictable journey we all have as we walk with Christ!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

So we are in the middle of our 6th month in South America! That sounds like someone else's life... It is pretty surreal. Especially since often we humans don't always do a great job of seeing how great the blessings truly are in any given moment... It is pretty neat to be here! I want to ask you all to pray with us about some of the people we have been inviting to Bible far our Tuesday night study is just Cole and I plus the 40/40's responsible for teaching... Help us fill the house!

~Laura - a gal working in our favorite ice cream shop. We see her practically every day on our way to the church

~Soledad - shop keeper right across from the ice cream shop

~Juan Ramon - sweet older man, a peddler, helped us so very kindly when we needed help transporting a propane tank. He asked us about when church services are but as of yet he has not come

~Lillian - a new friend at church, interested in coming to Bible study but again, has not yet made it, has also attended Jehova's Witness and Mormon churches, she has little girl Reese's age, we have invited her over to play and but this too hasn't worked out yet

Neighbors - in particular the ones across the street, they are Catholic

These are the people tha twe are praying for and pursuing right now...Please pray for God to open the doors of relationship and the Lord's word.

Please also pray for stren

gth, focus, servanthood and humility within our team. We always need your support through prayer. Your pleas on our behalf actually and totally affect what we are doing here. Please believe this.

Also keep in prayer the Short-term team that is here working right now. They are delightful and encouraging!!

We think of you all often and in many ways feel even closer to you here in being far away...We are so blessed to be serving with you as the body of Christ... I hope you are enjoying the last bits of summer and begin the new season refreshed!

Grace and Peace Always in Christ,


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Please Respond

Dearest Friends and Family~

We are struggling somewhat financially.  After several large expenses including airfare to Peru, again to Paraguay, household set-up, and training in Peru... we are nearing deficit.  A great many of our supporters are consistent and we are so thankful for each small and great bit that the Lord provides through them.  There are also some who pledged with good intention have been unable to fulfill their pledges and others are inconsistent.  We also have been having several fees each month for declined cards nearing $100 each month.   This last month of June alone, we received $700 less than was pledged.

We ask that each of you pray specifically for provision.  We are able to live here on a very small monthly budget but what we have coming in from donors is not overlapping enough that we are able to repay loans from within Extreme Nazarene for some of our large one-time expenses in April and May as well as return home for our 3 week holiday in December.  We find our overall budget short more than $8,000 at least, not counting inconsistent monthly pledges.

I know this is a huge stretch for you.  It was a massively huge stretch for our family to leave you and the life in the US that God had blessed us with.  We are finding ourselves in a bind right now and we humbly and desperately need for you to continue in support and prayer for us.  We pray that you will be blessed with all that you need to continue walking this crazy road together. 

This next month we are expecting a group of short-term volunteers that will be doing lots and lots of outreach.  We hope their experience here is a great blessing. Our church in Fernando de la Mora has just completed a patio/building that should be able to hold 400-500 people.  The structure is basically a cement pad with a roof which sounds unimpressive, but really it is quite large, usefull and cool.  The very day it was finished we hosted an area church event which turned out awesomely (and lasted until 1am!...we went to bed at 10pm).  This next week three young men from our team will be travelling to Cali, Colombia with Pastor Felix.  We are so excited to see how they will be changed by their experience there.  

Cole and I still feel very strongly that God is and will continue to use us here. Our dream is that the church in Fernando de la Mora, Paraguay will be a sort of beacon here just as Cali is for Colombia.  This is a big, big, that may not cone to fruition just in the time that we are able to be here...but we greatly desire that God will use us in this journey of the Paraguayan church. 

How easy it is to sink into "normal" and lose the vision that we receieve from Christ.   I know that while my little family is down here so far away, you continue in the daily demands and responsibilities for your own family.  And, there are many things that we are removed from that you all are experiencing there.  Somehow, this all works together to accomplish His good and perfect will.  We said this many times while fundraising and preparing to move to South America, and it still remains true now... We have no doubt of the call God placed on our lives for this time and because of that, we know that God has called a lot of you to carry us through.  We are entirely grateful and blessed by your support and we need a few new people to step in along the jouorney or if you are able to increase.  We know that life is crazy right now. We know that the news keeps speaking of financial failure.  But honestly, who do we serve?  We are the body and the head is Christ!  What is sent out will not return void.  Please, pray with us for provision.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


The Paraguay team of 40/40's has gone from a team of 3 pairs to 4 pairs! We welcome a Paraguayan national, Shirley; and another Brazilian, Camila! We are so happy to have them working with us! They will be working on starting an in-home bible study in our house for the people in our neighborhood as well as opening a number of other groups in the homes of people here in the Fernando de la Mora community of Asuncion. We are very excited and eager to see what great things we will be a part of of through this particular opportunity with them!

Some non-detail highlights:
- Visited Argentina!
- Teddy and Reese will be able to start school this next month!
- Reese got her cast off and is as good as new!

We have been in South America now for a little over 4 months and I imagine the toughest wave of culture shock should be here soon... The kids are doing better and better all the time but I have had a few days where the small differences really seemed too much to bear. Believe me, culture shock messes you up for a while! At least we know it passes and doesn't affect every day : ) The coolest thing for me about going through some of the adjustments has definitely been changing my focus away from myself and completely on God. At home in the states we had a very different sense of identity that related a lot to where we fit in with our church family, our regular friend circles, even with work and things like MOPS. Here as missionaries in a culture where we are outsiders, have the language barrier, and have very new relationships with people, we have felt great humility in doing what God has called us to do. It has been so freeing to just simply and sincerely ask God "how do we fit into your plan here?" Everytime I find myself feeling uncomfortable, unsure, or out of place God has given me the sense to consider His perspective rather than rely on my own inaccurate way of looking at myself. I feel like emotionally getting here was like a slow but quickening walk forward but with my back toward I knew and could feel his power, his light, his call but my own sense of selfishness or self-concern kept me feeling afraid to completely let go and run straight toward him. It's desiring and feeling a great sense of excitement for the hugeness of God's plan but at the same time a fear that it will be too much to bear...that I will fail if God's expectations of me are too high. And that I suppose is what I am learning to do right stop considering how God's plan affects me but rather how I fit into it. This is so not about me. It is insofar as my relationship to Christ deepens but God's master plan is about Him, the only one worthy of any praise. Humility is truly and wonderfully freeing. When we stop worring about gaining the approval of others, stop concerning ourselves with the judgement we may feel fom them, stop modifying the vision, passion, and confidence we receive from God, we will be free to live up to the highest expectations of our Lord because then will we live in His strength, under His yoke, with Christ bearing the heaviest burdens on our behalf...and I am certain it frees those around us to do the same. It is my desire to be invisible here...that we decrease so that He increases. I hope that when the time comes for us to move on, that people here would be so deep in Christ that He would be all they see.

Things in Paraguay are a little politically unstable right now. As a result of a land dispute over properties seized during the dictatorship, 17 people were killed including police and landless farmers about two weeks ago a few hours away near the Brazilian border. Directly following the dispute and deaths, parliament and the senate called to impeach the President. Within 48 hours or less of the impeachment filings, the President was removed from office and replaced by the Vice President. Other South American nations are highly suspicious of the quick removal and perceive the governemnt to be illegitimate and unstable. The day after the impeachment was announced one of the 40/40's had a sudden sense of urgency for the need to pray for Paraguay.  This brought on an intense time of prayer for our 40/40's who were at the time in Argentina visiting a church. They prayed intensely that God would show mercy, protect and cover Paraguay... that He would save them and choose them to be among his people. So far, we have not felt any sense of danger or unrest but are monitoring the situation so that we can be wise about what we need to do. We greatly deisre to see God's church grow supernaturally and live through Christ. Having heard Paraguay's reputation for being difficult and unresponsive toward God, we have come here knowing and believing whole-heartedly that this is 100% a spiritual task and doable only through miraculous intervention. Please pray with confidence for God to continue what has begun here. He is above all and grants all authorities their power. Please pray for leadership in the country but more for those who are and would be leaders in the church... that God would take those who right now are like young King David in the field being called to do that which all else are afraid to conquer, that they may be raised up to be blessed and courageous leaders of God's people.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


Sorry dear friends for such a long time between posts.  We have only had internet access at the church and having enough quiet and thoughtful time to write a blog there was just not really possible.  So, as of now, we have all that we need to live as far as the home goes...internet included! We had about a week to orient ourselves before the College Momentum short-term group came down on May 9th.  They left maybe the 22nd or so and they were tons of fun! I am sure you have seen some of the crazy antics in photos on facebook... It was a great breaking in time for us! 

June 1st started our official run as Cluster Support.  It is very nice to finally feel settled and comfortable with the beginnings of a healthy routine.  We are enamored with our team! My heart soars with admiration and love for them.  I am so thankful for this chance to work with this particular group of missionaries.  God knows what He is up to and I have great faith that He is working wonderfully through each of them.  As you have time, I definitely recommend checking out their blogs too! 

Thanks for your prayers last week!  We were feeling quite yucky as Cole and I both had Dengue fever.  It was terribly uncomfortable, but we made it!  The good part is that we are immune now to that strain of Dengue...the bad news is that if we catch one of the other strains at some point it will be much more uncomfortable.  We are pretty healthy, strong and yet young, so I am confindent we will be fine should we happen to get ill again : )  We'll just file this as "Jungle Life"...

Thank You all who are participating in our Kid's Prayer Team! It is totally awesome to know you are praying for Teddy and Reese!  Somedays I have mixed feelings about all the crazy changes they have experienced, but it is a great comfort to know that God called them to this too and that there are daily prayers on their behalf to ensure their success here. It's pretty crazy that they are "Missionary Kids" now.  May God bless their sweet and precious little growing selves... I almost forgot! Reese broke her arm!  She was playing on a tree stump that had a large rock placed on top of it.  She slipped and fell and caused the rock to fall upon her arm.  She actually took it very bravely.  We weren't sure if she had broken it and didn't get her to te hospital until the following morning.  She was a tough little girl!  She is about half-way through her time with the cast now.  She should get it removed in a couple of weeks.  She is a wild little sassafrass and not even this cast is able to slow her down.  Life as usual. 

Please, please continue praying for us.  This is a ministry not just for us and our team here, but a minstry for each of you who follow along with us.  Do not forget lift up your local church leaders along with those of us that are leading in other countries. Encourage one another daily.  We are the body of Christ.  There is nothing more important than that we love and support one another and that wwe strive together to share the good news at all costs and in all opportunities with those who God is calling.  God gives us great blessings in so many ways, but not so that we should be distracted by them... I challenge you to ask God how you can fulfill the unique purpose you have been created for.  Daily commit yourself to the Lord's about your father's business at all times, in all ways.  Faith receives much more than it asks...doubt loses much more than it disbelieves.  I truly, truly love you all.  Being away from our home, family, friends and culture certainly has a way of growing our fondness for it all.  We are genuinely blessed in our being here, but also genuinely miss not being there with you.  Keep in touch with us too!  Comment and email us!    Let us be encouraged by the great things God is doing in you as well! 

Grace and Peace,

Saturday, April 28, 2012

So...we were lucky enough to make it to Cusco and Machu Picchu before leaving Peru this coming Tuesday!!!  It was very surreal and cool to visit such a magnificent place.  I just kept asking myself "why can't we build things to last anymore??!"  I imagine our kids won't remember much of these things, but I know the experiences are building their characters to be adventurous and comfortable all over the world...who knows what greater things their lives will bring!

We visited Machu Picchu as well as Ollantaytambo and Chincheros which are other sites of Inca ruins.  If you have access to facebook you can see a couple hundred pictures from this trip. You will notice that there are more steps/stairs than one could count!  These places are built up into the mountains for security as well as spiritual reasons.  While we were walking up, down and all around these ruins I kept looking back to see where we had been...the perspective is always different.  It always seems like so much farther than you had realized... While we were moving our eyes stared down at our feet so that we were sure footed and didn't fall in the moment while looking ahead...and surely you cannot look behind while trying to move on.   I think the analogy in this is obvious.  Sometimes we need to just pay attention to right now, but also important to stop and see how far we have come every now and then. 

Of course it has been absolutely wonderful to visit Lake Titicaca, Cusco and Machu Picchu...these are places that are very touristy for good reason!  I have to say that our mentality was not entirely that of tourists.  We are here on a great leap of faith that God has called us to take part in his plan here in South America.  Through these visits in other parts of Peru we have learned so much about the people that is actually quite different than some of the assumptions we had made.  In general, we really thought they were very Catholic...and to some extent that is true, but a lot of Peruvians seem to live in a religious fusion of Incan earth worship and an ambiguous Catholic belief system that primarily takes over the icons and prayer to saints. 
All over the countryside are these altars set in mountain sides, city walls, they are center pieces to children's parks, they are in restaraunts, gas stations, homes...everywhere.  Pictures of the altars are even more everywhere including hanging in almost all taxis and combis (buses), in hotel rooms, probably most homes.  It is crazy how idolic these icons have become.   At first glance, the church seems to be everywhere, but these icons are so far from related to anything in the Bible.  There are crosses everywhere too...which initially I assumed was connected primarily to the crucifixion from a more Catholic perspective but several Peruvians have told me that the cross is really just a symbol of "religion" in general and that it represents whatever belief system one may have.  Folks here seem to be very aware and believing in supernatural and spiritual things but are missing a whole lot about what the Bible says about God.  I wonder if in some conversations with people I have been ignorant in assuming what they already believe or what their culture is.  I also wonder at times if the idea of us being missionaries is offensive...that there is an annoyance about a foreigner coming in to change the beliefs that are the heritage of ancient ancestors.  I honestly have no idea.  We have met many Peruvian Christians that feel deeply the same burden to share the hope that they have in Christ.  We have had several Christian taxi drivers that have been very encouraging...we met some Brasilian pastors that church plant all over their home country...and of course the people in the local congregations in the Nazarene churches and the leadership are entirely supportive and are working with Extreme Nazarene to spread the good news of the gospel.  Seeing Machu Picchu and the immensely sophisticated community they had got me really thinking about the cultural history of the people of Peru.  I can't say that I have unravelled anything here, but it has reminded me how important it is to understand a person, to be where they are, go where they can be reached and have respect for the journey they are on as we share Christ.  I would hate to be perceived as insensitive or disrespectful in my attitude, words or actions.  At the same time, we do take part in God's reaching the world with His precious gift.

As we are fininshing up our time here in Peru, we definitely feel a great burden to understand who the people of Paraguay are not only as individuals but also who they are collectively and culturally.  I pray that God does amazing and huge things there not to change who they are but to fulfill who He made them to be.  We all have a story and a heritage but truly we are all meant to be with Him.  When our lives are wrapped up in our Christian communities, friends, church, etc.  things can feel very comfortable and as they should be...we even feel proud at how above reproach we may be...and feel accomplished in our Christian walk...but the reality is that there are millions and millions of people all over the world that are living with only a small inkling of who our Saviour is.  I don't even know how to begin tackling that except to pray.  My heart didn't even really feel this or understand this until just recently.  I am sure that sounds silly coming from someone who just "gave it all" to go into missions...but really I feel very common when it comes to the Lord and the whole reason we came down here as a family is because we felt that He was asking it of us.  All of this is one step at a time, the Lord giving in time. 

Please continue as always to keep us in prayer.  We feel very eager and ready to be a part of what God is undoubtedly doing in Asuncion.  I know that things may work out entirely different that what we may aim for but even in that I am completely sure that whatever the Lord accomplishes through Extreme during this time is going to be just as He designs and will surely produce fruit that lasts.  Right now we feel that the future is wide open and we choose not to dampen it with the same time we have great but unknown expectations of the Lord...I am confident that He is capable and will be faithful to use each of you and us in this endeavor.  When we ask for things that please the Lord, we will surely receive them.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

...late for Easter Sunday but always in season...

**I am having trouble posting photos to our blog for some reason. I will continue working on this but in the mean-time you can see them on facebook:!/profile.php?id=100000841991937&sk=info Just friend us!**
Easter weekend we were able to join a short-term group and some of the Extreme staff from Arequipa in Puno, Peru near Lake Titicaca to celebrate Easter and the first official service in a new church building constructed by the short-term volunteers and funded through donations to Extreme Building projects. It was amazing. It was very cool to see Lake Titicaca, as it is the world's highest navigable lake...but I personally was touched most by the volunteers there (short-term and long-term) but especially by the pastor's wife. I haven't talked to her ahead of time for permission to share what she shared with me, but I will just say that it is so crazy how God works years and years in bringing his plans together. He began working in the life of a little Peruvian girl years ago and calling her to minister along with her husband and family in Puno, Peru. It is beautiful.
So Sunday morning, Easter morning, I woke up and started reading in Luke about the crucufixion. Of course there are so many things that are striking about that strange time. During the last supper Jesus is speaking about being betrayed and he says "Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you turn back, strengthen your brothers." (Luke 22:31-32). Of course Jesus said this knowing that Simon Peter would deny him three times after Jesus' arrest. It reminds me of Satan's asking permission to toy with Job and test his faith in hopes that he could destroy it. The cool thing about this is that in spite of the fact that He knew Peter would fail, He still prayed for him that his faith would remain strong. Right after he says he has prayed for him Jesus basically says that his faith will fail by saying "and when you turn back"... Jesus knows that we do fail and yet He is honored by our desire not to fail (Not that we do always fail of course because there are a great many times where our victory is completely secured by Christ!). God intends to change our lives, teach us, and teach others through our failure. It got me thinking about this whole story from Peter's perspective. Later on in verses 54-62 Peter denies Jesus 3 times and in that moment right after the 3rd denial, the rooster crows and it has all the drama of a movie...I imagine all sounds and movement halting except the sound of the rooster crowing and the electric gaze of Jesus piercing the heart of Peter (Lk 22:61). In that moment, Peter must have felt like the most horrible, disloyal, unfaithful friend in the world - a huge failure...small as a speck of dust...and yet, Peter is the rock upon which Christ will build his church (Mat 16:18). Christ knows exactly how we fail, He prays that our faith will remain strong but He uses us in spite of the failure and I would even say He uses us because of our failures. Peter in that moment of desperate humility must have walked away knowing his weakness in a way he could not have known before and enabled to increase in faith at having seen Christ's unwavering love and forgiveness. At the end of those verses, Jesus says "strengthen your brothers." Our failures are able to create strength!
The teams that are working down here go through so much. There are so many ups and downs and times when they may feel disappointed in themselves or in their team. I believe that these things are definitely more about the strengthening that comes after rather than our dissapointment at missing the mark we had set. We can never see all that Christ is doing. I am praying, right alongside Jesus, that our faith may not fail, but where it does let us be strengthened.
After the Resurrection, he appeared to some travellers walking on the road to Emmaus. This whole time they had no idea who He was even though they were among his followers. Now, they were kept from recognizing him until he chose to reveal himself... the women realized later that during their visit, their hearts had been burning and they knew at once was because their Lord had been with them! Sometimes we don't realize what the Lord is showing us until we are able to look back on it. I hope that we have the wisdom to recognize Christ, even if not in the moment... Let us not ever become discouraged for His plans are undoubtedly unfolding as they should. When we are walking along the road to Emmaus and we feel that all is lost, I hope we turn around and realize that Christ is Risen! He has conquered it all and "now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come."(2Cor 5:5).
Easter is so emotion-filled...but awesomely beautiful at the end.
We are finishing up our time here in Arequipa this next week. We will be visiting Machu Picchu as a special little segue between our time in Peru and the beginning of our work in Paraguay. Oh my goodness it was so hard for us to get here but now I see fully in this moment that God has definitely ordained this for us and has already opened up blessings for trusting in His plan. I think this is our calm before the real work begins. Our team in Paraguay is working so very hard and they have already seen some amazing growth there but at the same time they are experiencing many challenges. Please be in prayer for them. Pray that they will not feel discouraged or incapable. We need only be willing and God will form us.
Thanks for reading all of this if you have gotten this far : ) In closing I am including a clip from David Platt, author of Radical. This is what Easter is all about...what Jesus died for, and what we are going to Paraguay for. Even here, on the mission field, we need to remember to give it all. Each day we may fail, but each day we may grow stronger. Let us be passionate in our living and bold in our faith! Let us ask of God for God...not for ourselves.

Lots of Love to you all and Thank You most whole-heartedly for your support.
**We need some of you to sign up for our Kid's Prayer Team. We have all months after May open. See to sign up. We have a few unfulfilled pledges and so are in need of a few more monthly sponsors. We are also praying about schooling for our children which would mean an additional monthly expense that does not qualify for tax-decutions for any donors. Please join us in praying for these needs.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

In Peru one month! and almost to Paraguay!

I seriously can't hardly believe that we have been in Peru for over a month now and that it actually is starting to feel normal! Our emotions now compared to the first couple of days are miles apart! We are pretty much able to get all around the city without feeling disoriented and handicapped with our language. We have found favorite places to eat and shop, have found friendship with the teams here in Arequipa, have been spiritually challenged and encouraged in Bible studies, and have even made some random friends with locals that are completely unassociated with Extreme or the churches. Isn't this what life is?? These are the things that give us a sense of home and comfort no matter where we is just finding yourself and God wherever your "normal" is. We are very thankful for all of these wonderful things!

About our new Peruvian friends... Last Sunday evening Cole was out for a walk near our host home and came across a group of 5 middle aged and slightly older men all dressed out in soccer gear. They ended up chatting and inviting Cole to be their goalie for their soccer games every Sunday morning (I think because he is about a foot taller than most Peruvians). They play Sundays at 9am and our church service doesn't start until 11:30am so Cole plans to play this Sunday. Cole is a little nervous to play but I keep telling him it's a lot like waterpolo...not sure if I am right! ALSO, about a week ago while waiting for a combi ride in front of the Real Plaza shopping center, I ended up having a friendly conversation with a woman named Mary who works at El Ekeko a nice restaraunt in the shopping center. We talked for about 7 or 8 minutes andthen my combi sped up and I left rather quickly. Yesterday we saw her and she ran up to me and gave me a cheek kiss (the common way to greet a friend here in Peru). She said she had been looking for me the past few days and that she would really like to keep in touch. We exchanged emails and ohone numbers... we will see but I am wondering if it would be ok to invite her over for dinner before we leave. We may consult the Extreme Staff to make sure it's not a problem. What a blessing...who knows what may come of these friendships!!

We also have the opportunity to get our own furnished apartment for our last month or so here in Arequipa! We have had great blessings and provision with out host family but aer also very excited to be able to cook for ourselves and experience life as a family in Peru for a little while doing everything on our own. We found a place not too far from where we are staying now in a gated community with two very cute children's parks about one minute from our front door! It will be very fun to "play house" again with our little family and hopefully invite our teachers over for one of our favorite meals from home.

Just yesterday we also got approval to get our flight to Asuncion!! As soon as we get the funds on our cards to pay for the tickets we will be booking our flight! Now that we are half-way through our stay inPeru it is feeling a little least for me. We have settled in here pretty well and of course that will start over when we get to Paraguay. We sure will miss our teachers and the very cool staff/teams here in Peru. Right about the time we leave Arequipa will be a lot lighter in the way of North Americans. At the end of April the first Arequipa team that started over 2 years ago will finish up their work here and head home. Shortly after that we will be on our way to Asuncion. We are excited for our last weeks here but are still very excited to meet up with our team and see what God has waiting for us there. We are very optomistic. I think we will get along very well with the leaders and 40/40's working there. We are of course very stoked to meet Felix Vargas...that will be a little surreal the forst time after we have heard...but he is just a human following God's call. Really the excitement that we feel is for the work we know God has his hands in there...our joy is to see God there.

Please continuue always as you feel lead to pray for us. God is working in you and through just as much as he is working in those down here. He speaks into your heart ways you can pray and ways you can help beyond what you might imagine. His ways are beautifully complicated beyond comprehension and every called person of God plays an amazing role in his plans.

We ask specifically that you continue praying for our kids. We are considering whether we need to put our children in school while we down here. Teddy is currently 4 1/2 and Reese is almost 3. We believe having them attend school down here will be an invaluable gift of language and culture acuisition. We have a few months to figure out what we should do since we are not yet in Paraguay. Please pray for us in the matter. If we put the kids in school we will need additional sponors to support specifically the cost of schooling. These funds would NOT be tax-deductible as they are not an "allowable expense" under IRS guidelines for charitable giving. I do not yet know an exact cost but can estimate it at about $150 per month per child plus some extra for uniforms and supplies. Please pray that we will know what is best for Teddy and Reese in this and that if needed that the funds will be made avaialble.

We also still have a lotof room available on our "Kids Prayer Team." If you would like to support our kids by prayinffor them both during one particular month that we are down here and by sending them a postcard or letter during that time, please email me at You can also check it out on the "Kids Prayer Team" tab on the top of this blog. Maybe you can bring this before your Sunday School Class and see if anyone would like to sign up. I will try to fit you in on the month you prefer but may need to assign people. Prayer and encouragement is SO IMPORTANT. Your encouragement to our kids is a great blessing to our whole family.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Estamos aprendiendo...

"I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been
doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to
the father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may
bring glory to the Father. You may ask for anything in my name and I will
do it." John 14:12-13

Spanish classes are coming along. Our official departure date for Paraguay depends on our progression with learning the Spanish language, so very seriously pray that we can build a solid foundation of Spanish to build upon over these two years.

We have been enjoying our classes very much as they include times during which we get to walk around the city and see, learn and do as a part of our learning. Last week my teacher, Julissa, took me out to see the antique stores! They were filled with the most beautiful paintings, dishes, furniture and Incan artifacts. She was saying that there is not a huge market for antiques in Arequipa and that mainly foreigners shop at these stores. Oh how I wish I had a way to buy and mail some of these things! I love old stuff! It was very much a treat to spend the day with her in the antique shops.

We have been having ridiculous amounts of rain here. Just yesterday we re-routed our taxi to take us home instead of going to church. The roads here just aren't designed to handle the amount of water that has been pouring down on the city. The road to the community of Hunter, where our church is, pretty much looked like a chocolate milk river. I wish I had my camera at that time to show you how nuts it looked. The cars were at a stand-still on most of the roads and a tree had fallen down completely blocking an entire throughway. It was like a movie! The neat part is having amazingly clear air, green hills and miraculous views of the snow-capped Misti volcano. It is pretty cool to be able to see and live nestled at 8,000 feet so close to the Peruvian Andes. God has made some very wonderful things in the world and what a treat it is to be able to appreciate them. We are really hoping that we can plan a short trip to Macchu Picchu. How could we be in Peru without seeing this amazing wonder!?

Our team in Peru continues to work tirelessly through thick and thin! We have gained a new team member to partner with one of our 40/40's. What an answer to prayers! The latest numbers I heard were 20 home Bible study groups and church attendance of 150! Check out some of the links to blogs the side of this page specifically for the Asuncion blogs to read in more detail about what our team-mates are up to, some of the neat stories and what you can be praying about for them. If you are interested you can also check out our facebook group for the Extreme Nazarene Paraguay Team to get to know them better and encourage them. They are working very hard and having wonderful success! Please keep them in your prayers!

Some other things you can remember to pray for: Our Spanish lessons, schooling for the children and the funds to cover the cost (see, continue praying for our children's health and safety. ALSO, please consider joining the kids prayer team to specifically pray for them and send them letters or cards of encouragement and love! See for more information.

Grace and Peace,

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Week 2

We are having a great time here in Arequipa! Today we went for a tour of Arequipa to see a little more of the area. We saw some very beautiful and rustic countryside and enjoyed the company of other Extremies! We have finished two weeks already and I actually feel like it has gone by quite fast. This last week both Reese and I got pretty sick and tonight we finally have water on our house again after 2 1/2 days without it. I am not sure what caused the water problem... we have been told that it is common to be without water for a short period of time, but even our host family thought it would have been resolved sooner. It might have been a broken pipe, or something altogether different.

I am totally amazed at how well our kids are adjusting to our new life here. Teddy is hailing taxis and combis and Reese, just today said "Hola" to a little Peruvian girl without being promted to do so! They are precious little people. I think in some ways being here as a family is so much easier than trying to do this alone. There is so much comfort in being a family no matter where we are.

Spanish classes are also going very well! Cole is doing a great job! We worked on some homework together this week and I am totally amazed at how much he is learning for only two weeks in classes. The language learning process will be continuing the entire time we are down here in South America, but for now I am super proud of how well we are doing!

Keep in prayer for the efforts to show Christ to the people here in Arequipa. Very soon the Director of Extreme Nazarene will be pastoring a church here and they will be working on adjusting their ministry plans to be even more effective as the next group of 40/40's are preparing to begin their ministry here. It is so neat for us to see how God works through each team and through all the different personalities.

Thanks for all your love, care and prayers! WE LOVE YOU!

P.S. If you are free, next weekend Lysa TerKeurst, NY Times Best-Selling Author and Speaker, will be speaking at SHINE, a women's event, in Porterville, CA! Check out the details at

ALSO: We still have need for a few more supporters! If you can and would like to support us monthly with any dollar amount sign up at

Friday, February 24, 2012

One Week In...

So we have been here about a week now! There have definitely been some tough things... for one helping the kids to settle in and be okay with so many changes. This is also pretty much the first time Cole has moved so far away from home for a long period of time. He was born in Lindsay, and has only moved away for one summer to work at Sugar Pine Christian Camps, then also a semester of college in Canada. As for me, I am just not letting my thoughts fully develop in this. We are trying to take this one day at a time and not let worrisome thoughts consume us or take the joy and wonder out of each special day. All in all, I think we are doing very well in this!
It has also been a little tough being here, but not being in Asuncion with our team. They have been in Asuncion working very hard for a couple of months already since they started this journey ahead of us and have been finished with training for a while. We are very eager to be with them and to have a home we can nest in a little. It has felt like we are "homeless" for more than a month now because of all our packing and transitions. For me a sense of home is so important and for now we are in another home that is temporary. It will be wonderful to be able to root ourselves a little more when we get to Asuncion.
All that said, Arequipa is a great city with some very wonderful people in it! The people we have met with Extreme are doing such important work here as they all have left lives in the US to be where God has drawn them for reasons that are sometimes obvious and I imagine others that are yet to be revealed. So it is with us as well : ) We have gotten pretty comfortable riding the combis, which are like city buses. They have regular routes but no regular stops. You have to hail them like a cab and then you have about 10 seconds to get on before it starts speeding off! They are a little nuts at times but quite efficient and cheap (only 70 Soles, about $0.30). There is a mall called Real Plaza which is fairly close to us and I just love this place! There is a store in it called Casa & Ideas and this is totally my favorite store! I think I should stop going in there though because it makes me want to set up our household already which we can't do until we get to Paraguay : ) They also have some crazily amazing chocolate that is made here in Arequipa called La Iberica. I have alerady eated like 4 large bars of this... if it is normal to lose weight here, I think I am forfeiting it for this chocolate!
Our Spanish classes are pretty neat. Cole has gotten to walk all around the city with his instructor, Manolo. I just adore my instructor, Julissa! She is the sweetest lady! In our classes we pretty much get to chat a lot (in Spanish) about whatever we feel like because it is all practicing the language. So I get three hours of hanging out with a new friend every day. I love it! So far there isn't a lot of crazy homework but I think it is coming for both of us very soon!
Some other funny and different things here: the trash man comes three times a week and plays classical music loudly so that people will put their trash out; most people keep their dogs on their roof; pedestrians DO NOT have the right away; they have a bridge here made in the 1800's out of the left over metal from the building of the Eiffel tower; there is a volcano nearby that is sleeping butthey cannot say it is inactive; every house has about 4 bathrooms for some reason; most things you might buy for a baby is like two or three times the price you would be in the US; nuts are off the charts expensive; Spas are super cheap (about $7 to go in for the whole day); you can get a mani/pedi for about $7 and a haircut for less than $1; purses here are so expensive considering the comparison of quality in materials in the US (almost any leather purse is like $200+ no idea how crazy a fancy Coach purse might be!)... Well there are some tid bits...
Things you can pray for: Pray for rapid and thorough learning of the language, for our team in Asuncion, for health (Reese has been a little sick), and for little opportunities to connect with others to share Christ. I find myself wondering very often if the people around me know Christ and I don't want to miss the opportunities that Lord will have to share the hope that I have.
Lots of Love to you all! Grace and Peace!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Mailing Address for Peru

Our Mailing Address while in Peru!!! I think we may only be in Peru for 2 months instead of 3! We will keep you posted when we have better details about our arrival date for Paraguay...

Cole and Kelly Williams
C/O Ministerios Nazarenos Extremos
Urb. Primavera Entel Peru D7
Yanahuara, Arequipa
Arequipa, Peru

We would love packages of course!! But keep in mind that we will be flying to Paraguay soon. If you have things you would like to send, it might be best to send them after we getto Paraguay since we will be there for 2 years. If you have cards, letters or very small packages mailing them to Peru will be just fine! After we get to Paraguay and see what we can and cannot get there, I think I will make a list of suggested package items : ) I can already think of some things here that we could totally use that cost a fortune here and small change in the states, but I shall wait for Paraguay! Thanks to each of you!!

Friday, February 17, 2012

We are here!!

Yahoooo! We made it through all the crazy airport madness and were NOT overweight with our bags! We have two very spacious rooms in ou host home and are fairly settled in. The very first thing Teddy wanted to do was to decorate his room! So thst is what we did. Very late last night we were placing robot and owl wall decals and getting out all the toys that have been packed for the last couple of weeks. We read "Big Bad Bruce" and called it a day!

Today we went shopping at the mall, which has a big super-wal-mart like store inside of it complete with groceries. We thought we would buy a cheap umbrella stroller to use for Reese but they are about $40-$80!!! I think because they are imported. The same stroller we could get at Target for $15 is totally $40. But the fruits and vegetables are super cheap. It is about $1.20 for 2.2lbs of papaya...and some of the papayas here are the size of watermelons. They do not have brown rice here and no oats : ( We haven't yet told Teddy about no oatmeal... I sure hope they have oats in Paraguay!! The showers are heated with an electric shower head about the size of a grapefuit and it works much like an electric tea kettle.

It looks like we will be able to finish up our schooling here in only 2 months which would be pretty awesome! We feel very eager for Paraguay! We are excited to be with the 40/40's and to invest ourselves in the culture and people there. We are also quite excited to be here in Peru as well and to get to know the folks on staff here, to start classes Monday, and to lean more and more on God to be our comfort. We are happy to be here knowing that this is where the Lord has put us.

Pray for the children to be comforted and adjusted. Pray for Cole and I to grow so close, to keep our family safe, and to learn spanish rapidly!!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Our Last Days....

This week has been pretty neat. I am feeling quite blessed these days...not only from watching impossible things actually happen...but because God has been showing me all the ways that He has always been with me over the years. Though some of my readings, conversations with Cole and with my older brother Sean over the last months I see that God truly uses all of us uniquely and according to the purposes he designed before we even came to be. All these steps I have taken have lead me here and even though I clearly fail at times, even those failures have been blessings of protection, learning, and comfort. It has been such a precious thing to look back and remember some very difficult times, especially as a kid, when I did not consider how profound it really is that the Lord says "I will never leave you nor forsake you"(Joshua 1:5, Hebrews 13:5-6). It also says in Proverbs 16:9 "In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps." I am convinced that all that the Bible says is true. We are jars of clay designed with a purpose, "But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us" (2 Cor 4:7). This is all to say that God has loved me so deeply and carried me in every moment of my life because he has created me to be just what I am...a fearfully and wonderfully made creation in his likeness. I love him because he has first loved me and it is this love that takes the focus of my life off of me and places it all in thanking Christ for his great gift. I am just a vessel created, held and sustained by the creator. It is humbling and profound to know one's place... to be so small yet treasured by our God.

These are the thoughts swirling around in our heads right now as we are preparing for this great leap. It is plain to see just how intricate his plans are as we get to see them unfold now. For me personally, it is just a shift of focus because certainly I am not always able to see the beauty of his plan. Sometimes I get stuck on my own plans and settle on feeling disappointed. If we remember that we are his vessels to be used as he wills, the burden is removed to carefully plan a life with meaning and fulfillment...all that is required is our submission to his will and to be obedient as it unfolds before us. We are entirely God's work. Nothing is lost is his hands.

For those who are watching and praying: We are at 86.73% funded still in need of 13 more families/individuals to support us with an average of $40/mo for 27 months. We have about a week and a half to reach 100%. Ask of the Lord to show you if you can join us in this. Just as he has called my family, he surely is calling some of you to support and he will provide!

We are flying out very early on February 16th. Please pray for us in all the travels and adjustments in our new South American lives. We will be missing you all tremendously and are so thankful for your continued love and friendship even while we are away. We will be praying for each of you as your lives change and unfold that you would keep your focus on Christ, not letting yourselves become discouraged for any reason. He is faithful to forgive us and to cleanse us...his plans are to prosper us, to give us a hope and a future.

Grace and Peace,

"Then Jesus said to his disciples: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it. What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?" Matthew 16:24-26

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Very Quick Update!

After some neat news last night we are at 83.06% and are in need of just 15 more families or individuals to give an average of $40/mo for 27 months!!! Praise the Lord!

NOTE: I just learned recently that if you are signing up, the most effective way to pay is EFT through a checking account if possible. Any way is great, but EFT if fastest and bypasses the small Card processing fee to the card companies.

THIS IS AMAZING! You all are wonderful examples of faith and generosity... We are so thankful to all of you joining us through prayer, encouragement and financial support. Thank You! Thank You!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Keep Praying!

We had a most wonderful weekend visiting lots of friends, family and new friends in the Merced/Atwater area! Thanks to all of you for wonderful encouragement and support! It was such a blessing to see you all and make connection once again. You hold special places in my heart and are already a part of our God-story. Thank you so much to the pastors that opened the doors to us... I hope we can visit again to share how our story will continue to unfold!

We are inching closer to our goal... We are still in need of 19 more families or individuals to give an average of $40 per month for 27 months. Overall we are 78.5% funded. If you are still considering and praying about joining in this with might be just what we need to seal this deal! It would mean giving up one meal in a restauraunt per month or taking a lunch to work a few days out of the month.

I almost can't believe how far we have come in such a short amount of is crazy! I just know that the Lord wouldn't carry us this far and then let us fall short. Join with me in praying for his provision both for this journey with Extreme Nazarene as well as for those who have and will be joining us through financial support.

If you have already pledged an amount but still need to sign up, please get signed up as soon as possible by going to or by contacting Crowne One at 1.800.326.9235 or by mail at Crowne One P.O.Box 9285 Boise, Id 83707. Mark all donations for Cole and Kelly Williams. Your gifts are tax deductible and you will receive a giving summary at each year's end.

Lots of Love to you all!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Blast from the Past

So, of course right now we are packing up the house and going through lots of things. Well tonight I picked up one of my old journals that I have in the past used specifically for thoughts about God. I opened it up and read a couple of lines from the first page I saw
..."I have decided to give my life to God's work. I'm going to be a
missionary." June 24, 1997

I am totally amazed and have to smile at how God does things. I don't really remember writing this. I do know that for a time in high school I was very interested in missions but I don't remember resolving in my heart to make it my occupation per se. I just don't think that things happen by chance anymore ever. It is all working together unfolding as it should. He is so faithful to complete what he begins...even when we forget at times where we are heading. I am definitely planning to add more to this journal I found. It is such a precious gift to one's self to see from where we have come...too often we forget just how much we have to be thankful for.

Financial update: We are at 73.96% and still need 23 more families to join us at an average of $40/mo for 27 months. I cannot express enough how grateful and humbled we are by your gifts. They are a crazy blessing not to mention an amazing testament of the body of Christ. All the glory goes to God.

PS Thanks to Pastor Frankie and the wonderful people at Porterville Iglesia del Nazareno. You have touched my heart and I will be in continued prayer for the Lord to bless your efforts to be true and pleasing say the Lord " Here I am!" each time He calls.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

We are now at 66.3% funded! I hope you are so excited and amazed just as we are watching the Lord provide!

We now need 30 more individuals or families to give an average of $40/mo for 27 months. We are getting there! Keep praying for this ministry as we prepare in faith for the Lord to complete what has begun.

We are in our final days of packing, cleaning and transitioning. We are totally blessed to have some wonderful churches that have welcomed us to share our little piece of God's story right now. Sharing has been so fun!

If you can donate, consider a one-time gift, or an amount other than $40/mo greater or lesser... do what is in your heart to do. We have of course been in prayer that God would provide for the finances we are expected to raise...but my prayer is also that the Lord would provide each pledge for those of you who sponsor us. This is as much your leap of faith as it is ours. I know He will come through each and every month. Again, thank you all so much!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Fundraising Update

Well we are pretty excited to say that we have jumped to 59% funded!!! It is amazing how much support we have received from friends, family and new friends.

That said, please keep praying about whether God would have you join us financially in this. We must reach 80% before we commit to buy airfare and still need to be at 100% by the time we fly out. We are expected to arrive by February 8, 2012.

We only need 37 more families or individuals to give an average of $40/mo for 27 months. There is no doubt that God has called us to this work but we simply cannot do it without the support of others in the Body of Christ.

If you have already decided that you are able to join us financially, take this time to sign up at

We are so thankful and excited to be in this with you all. I know the Lord will bless your efforts and desire to praise him with your lives and choices just as we are aiming to do ourselves.

Grace and Peace to you all!

Monday, January 2, 2012


We are so thankful for all the support we have received so far! We are about 30% funded for our 27 month committment in Paraguay! We are expected to arrive in Peru for training Feb 1st, which is practically upon us. Keep praying that those who are considering partnership in our journey will go ahead and take the leap with us! We will be going before our church, Porterville Church of the Nazarene, this coming Sunday and before FBC Merced the following Sunday. We also expect to visit the Iglesia del Nazareno in Porterville and perhaps a couple of other area churches. Pray that the Lord will work to connect us with those who are willing to give with a spirit of faith. We are also in a flurry of packing, organizing, and trying to mentally prepare for the journey we have ahead of us. Oh my, yes, it is at times overwhelming! Our faith is increasing more and more out of necesity that the burden be held by Christ to carry us completely. There is so much we can't see. We are ready for the future to be more amazing than we can imagine, and at the same time a greater challenge that we have ever had before. My heart is already starting to grieve a little for the family and friends we will be leaving. The neat part of going through such a crazy change is that it has allowed me to see the true blessings we have had in so many people. It has already enriched many of my relationships. I am also so excited for the wonderful people waiting for us in Arequipa and Asuncion! So much still to do, and so much to look forward to! We are definitely counting on all of you guys praying for us! Please lift us up so that we might be ready and worthy for this call!