I had been talking with God for quite some time now regarding a special need my family and I had. I know that God is not surprised by my requests. I know that He is fully aware of what His children’s needs are, yet there I was talking to God, reminding Him of our needs. I stated in a past prayer letter how Satan knows how to “get us,” and this was one of those things. My family and I had been free of debt prior to coming to the mission field. After a couple years on the field, we had acquired a car for a great price, yet it needed some TLC. Unfortunately, the TLC turned into some minor vehicle repairs and then into some major vehicle repairs. My personal, yearly allotted vehicle repair and maintenance funds were quickly depleted. Needless to say, my family and I incurred a hefty debt repairing our vehicle.
A couple months passed, and one emergency after another kept holding us back from paying off our debt. I asked God for help. He wisely held off answering my prayer request. My family and I kept this to ourselves. We knew that the only reason we were not able to pay off our debt as fast as we did before was because God was trying to show us something. We prayed and continued with our business as usual. God had allowed us to become used to being in our situation. If our vehicle acted up, we would take a taxi or public transportation—nothing new to us, as that is what we had done prior to getting our vehicle. It truly is amazing how we quickly we can get used to such comforts as having a reliable car that starts and goes when it is supposed to.
Towards the end of March, I received an email from one of our faithful supporters. Jeff Bollman from Next Day Plus had a desire to specifically fulfill our need. He stated that he and his wife Bev wanted to insure that my family and I had a reliable vehicle when on the field. I was floored. I stated to him how bad the vehicle market is here in Peru, that there are many used vehicles for private sale. However, the unregulated asking price (no Kelley Blue Book value here) will always be ridiculous, and the motor will most likely be tampered with due to lack of available good OEM replacement parts; e.g., 1998 Subaru Legacy 100,000 miles; Peru price = $4,500 (with motor tampering), USA price = $2,200 (good mechanical condition). Yet Jeff and Bev Bollman would not be dissuaded. They were adamant about wanting to fulfill this need. Fast forward a little, and my family received a good-sized love offering. This was their message to us: “I hope you can get a better car for your family if that’s your biggest need. If not, please feel free to use the funds in any way to best serve your family.” I sat my kids down before they left to visit the States and told them about Jeff and Bev Bollman’s gift. Their response was exactly on point: “God answered our prayers! The Bollmans are awesome!” I agree.
It worked, Dad. They came.
Our Sunday school class has always fluctuated in size due to many factors. My kiddos had noticed that several students had not returned to class. Regardless of how much we visited them on Saturday, they would still not show up on Sunday. I noticed that Joaquin was getting discouraged about a couple boys’ absence. I asked Joaquin if he wanted to pray specifically for them. After a couple Saturdays of repeating this scenario, Joaquin was starting to get upset at these boys, and I could tell it was bugging him a lot that these boys would not come to church. My wife and two eldest had left to visit the States, so it was just Joaquin and I alone for a few weeks. One Sunday
night as Joaquin and I sat by ourselves, we saw two familiar heads bobbing up the stairs as they made their way into the church. It was the two boys! Joaquin was very excited. He sat very proudly next his friends. “It worked, Dad! They came.” This was the topic of our conversation on our ride back home that night.
To be continued . . .
I am thankful for praying and giving friends such as you. If it weren’t for you, my family and I would not be able to be here in Lima, Peru. We love you and pray for you often. I pray that the Lord continues to bless you and your family.
I have included links below for more information and pictures of the various ministries of Team Peru (IBI). Please feel free to share them with friends and families who may ask, “Hey, what is Team Peru up to?”
• Safety for our family, our team leader Bro. Dan Hubbard, and the other families of Team Peru
• Additional monthly financial support
• Health for the families of Team Peru
• Travel mercies for the team families that will be traveling in the next couple months
• That we find the correct vehicle for our family
• We have seen 37 souls saved.
• Sunday school class children are soul winning and bringing visitors to church.
• My wife and two eldest had the opportunity to visit the States.
• We received a very generous love offering from Jeff and Bev Bollman from NEXT DAY PLUS, www.nextdayplus.com.
• Faby celebrated her birthday on March 22.
• Lani celebrated her tenth birthday on April 25.
• Marco celebrated his thirteenth birthday on May 14.
• I celebrated my birthday on May 28.
Thank you once again for your prayers and support.
Your co-laborers to Peru,
Abraham, Fabiola, Marco, Leilani, and Joaquin Avila