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 God...like 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 now...to 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 work...be 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,