Here's what's been going on in the past few months.
Have you ever had to wait a long time for something? In the midst of waiting you may feel discouraged, bored, or just plain depressed. It can be frustrating waiting, but God is always there teaching. It's a time of highs and lows. You think your day is coming and then it doesn't. You hear news that everything is finally ready, just to learn that there is some new development. Then finally, FINALLY all that waiting pays off!
We must be stubborn people, because it seems that God is still teaching us about patience! Visas, the car, the house, and so very many life events have taken more than the usual amount of time. And we get frustrated, discouraged, bored, and depressed. Then, when we just can't take it any more we cry out to God and he gives us peace. I am beginning to think that if we would just learn to cry out to God first we wouldn't have to go through such an emotional roller coaster. Imagine that!
And after a good wait you are so much more grateful to God for the gifts he gives.
So, we are finally settled in to our new home. The reforms are done and it looks great! We are so thankful for the beautiful house we have. For the first time in our marriage we are in a house not an apartment (or room at a relative's house!). We are learning how to be responsible home owners and about how much time you have to put into care-taking! We have been able to house Jeff's parents in our guest room for the past two weeks and are looking forward to the next two weeks that they will spend with us.
We also have a new seven passenger car to enjoy! It is not the same make that we were looking at before, instead we purchased a Nissan Grande Livinia. It's been such a blessing to the ministry already! Jeff was able to help transport the American group that was here last week and we have been able to give more people rides to church because of it, too. With such a big car (for our area) we find ourselves asking all the time, who can we give a ride to today?
The last few weeks (really month!) of school was extremely busy for Lindsay with grades, evaluations, an end of semester program, and English Camp! We had a great semester and a wonderful wrap up program through the English Camp (a VBS program for the school where we focus on encouraging the students to make a decision to live for Christ). We started off with an intern through World Renewal from the US in February and ended with two exchange teachers from Canada and the United States through a secular teacher exchange program. Since our dear friend Emily Taylor returned Stateside we have worked hard to cover her many roles of volunteer communication and coordination, English teaching and outreach, and so much more!
Here's what's on the board for next semester and how you can pray for us:
Teaching: Lindsay teaching Nursery (2's) as their main teacher and the first grade English class at the school. Jeff continuing to teach communication and technology classes at the school. Both Jeff and Lindsay teaching English classes at church in Lagoa de Itaenga. Please pray that we will be bold witnesses to our students in both what we say and how we act. Pray as we revamp our English classes at church. We have had a significant drop in attendance. Pray that we learn how to best serve our community in this way.
Outreach: Lindsay is beginning to work with Rachel Winzler and a church in Carpina to help with an outreach called Massa Humana that reaches out to families who live in the trash dump in town. She also helps with a girl's bible study for the older girls from the school. Jeff is beginning to help with a soccer ministry at our church that has started because of the new multipurpose gym/meeting room. Jeff also leads the youth group at the church on Saturday nights. Pray for consistency for us in these areas. Some of these events are held every-other week and are easily set aside (or cancelled) when other events come up. Please pray that we will work diligently with these outreaches and that they will impact the community for Christ.
Interns/teachers: This is a very busy area, so here's a list of names! We will be receiving a new missionary from São Paulo this next week, Suenia. In August, we are expecting one World Renewal intern to help teach at the International School from Indiana, Michaela Hawkins. In September we hope to receive a basketball/teaching intern Mike Westlake. Please pray for all of our missionaries that they will receive the prayer and financial support that they need to come. We will also may be receiving 2-4 international interns (from China, Russia, and Portugal) to work with our Living Stones program and our school. This it through a secular student-teacher exchange program. As an International School we seek new experiences for our teachers and staff. Please pray for them and that they will be open to hear about Christ, an opportunity that they may have never had in their home countries.