As I take a quick glance over these past few weeks, I stand in awe and amazement at what God has done. First of all, my hopes of publishing a book have become a reality! FLOW: Living the Dream was published at the end of October, and I was able to start selling my books at the Youth Conference at Liberty Baptist Church in Durham. Speaking of Youth Conference, what an excellent time I shared with my dear Liberty Baptist Church family. They are always so good and kind to me. It was an honor to get to share what the Lord has been teaching me this year with their young people in the Christian school and with both their Spanish and English churches. I soaked in fall for the first time in five years and enjoyed many sweet moments with my Kokubun family as well!
One thing I never imagined was having my worlds become flipped. Now when I go to the States, I don’t feel as if it’s home. It’s the States, and I love being there; but after about four days, I’m ready to be back home with my Peruvian family, my church, and my teens. I experience culture shock the opposite way now—look at how clean and pretty everything is! Raindrops falling, red and orange leaves on the trees, crickets chirping outside my window—is it even safe without bars on these windows? I accidentally speak Spanish my whole way through customs and order my food, realizing, only because of the weird looks I’m getting, that I must be saying something wrong. I’m not sure why they’d expect this blonde to speak English anyhow. I felt humbled and saddened at the state of my country. I’m not sure how many people I witnessed to, but not a one received Christ as their Saviour. Give me an hour here, and I can usually find at least one, if not ten, ready to gratefully bow their heads to receive my precious Saviour.
It was an honor to have Pastor Kevin Crowell come to Peru and preach to my teens. I love when people from my churches make the time and effort to come visit the field. My teens were so excited to have him and his daughter Julia here. Julia got to stay an extra week, and I thoroughly enjoyed showing her my world here!
We celebrated our Fourth Annual Teen Banquet last Friday night. It is a joy and honor to work with these teens and see them growing in their walk with God. My prayer is that through our youth group, they will be prepared to face the world and stand strong in their faith. Being a “Christian” is not common here, and many face much peer pressure on a daily basis.
Valeria is studying at seminary each week and serves in our ministries each weekend here in Lima. She has been a huge blessing to our church this year. She has a soft heart for soul winning! If I could get all my church members and teens to be as excited as she is, we might be able to change the world!!! I snapped this picture of her last week. She regularly wins people to Christ. Please pray for her as she seeks opportunities to continue her education in Argentina next year. Opportunities here in Lima are nothing like they are in the States, and this is a big step of faith for her.
I am blessed to be able to travel to the States and spend Christmas with my family this year. I praise God for the work He is doing in my heart and life. Although the pain will perhaps never go away, I have found joy in my Saviour and in serving Him. I see the results and the change God is making in me. I stay faithful to Him and watch Him bring more fruit than I could have ever imagined. I cry tears of joy in humility as I watch Him continue to use me. Is there anything greater than serving Him? I daresay no.
May His blessings and presence be with you as you make moments to ponder His immense kindness to send us a Saviour.
Gratefully serving Him,