“My feet hurt.” That is one statement I had not heard in a long time. My family and I had grown accustomed to walking a lot when we arrived in Peru. We were blessed with a car almost two years ago. If you recall my previous prayer letters, our car had been giving us problems, and the mechanics weren’t inspiring much confidence. All that being said, for a little over four months, my family and I were on foot and utilizing public transportation to its fullest. One Friday I had experienced an overly exhausting morning but knew I needed to do a few more things before I could work my way back home. I had worked out my game plan in my head and was ready to execute it when I heard those familiar words. I looked to my left and saw my youngest son Joaquin looking at his feet as he repeated those words once more. He wasn’t whining. He was just stating a fact to me. He looked up at me to see why we had stopped walking. I smiled and asked, “Can you give me a few more blocks? The team (Peru) really needs me to finish this for them.” He looked off into to the distance, as if trying to calculate his personal pain-to-miles ratio, and after a few seconds he smiled back at me and said, “Okay, Dad.” We walked on for a few more minutes as I told him about a story I once read, “Just One More Lap” by Bro. Robert Hooker. He giggled at the humor in the story. Then he stopped and asked, “Is that what you tell yourself so you don’t get tired?” I laughed and told him that I get just as tired as he does, but the sooner I finish my job, the faster I can go “play. Then the team doesn’t have to worry about these items anymore, and they can focus on their ministries. He nodded in agreement and said, “I like that play part.” “Yes, Joaquin, but getting the job done is what counts,” I said. Then he picked up his pace and said, “Playing is much ‘funner’ though.” There are times that I get physically and mentally tired here. Then I recall the one statement my previous manager and mentor once told me, “Do what you have to do so you can do what you want to do. Don’t worry if no one ever acknowledges your work.” These past few years, I have seen my children mature and don new responsibilities. I smile and thank God as I see my children more involved in the ministries here, either as an usher, a pseudo-Sunday school class worker, or witnessing and inviting other kids to church.
It works; they’re coming . . .
San Gabriel recently celebrated their third anniversary. It was really interesting seeing the kiddos as they arrived. Some of our regular kids were shocked, and one even stated, “It works; they’re coming!” You see, my Saturday soul-winning group consists mainly of our Sunday school kids. I have been promoting the Big Day with our kids for a couple of weeks and was encouraging them to bring their friends to this Big Day. A couple of the kids had been discouraged because they weren’t confident that their friends would come. I had one ask me what else they could do to get them to church. I told the class that they could do the biggest thing anyone could ever do—pray. We prayed that their friends and the recently invited children would come for the Big Day. Fast forward now to the Big Day, and you can image why our kiddos were feeling what they were feeling. God is good!
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
• Healing after I have four wisdom teeth removed
• That the visitors that came for our Big Day stay
• We had 36 souls saved.
• Sunday school class children are soul winning and bringing visitors to church.
• The postal strike is over!
• My children received a box of Christmas goodies from the States. Thank you, family and friends and New Testament Baptist Church of Northfield, Ohio.
• Joaquin celebrated his eighth birthday this January.
Thank you once again for your prayers and support.
Your co-laborers to Peru,
Abraham, Fabiola, Marco, Leilani, and Joaquin Avila