Here is another wee update of what I’ve been up to in Paraguay!! Thankyou all so much for praying I really appreciate it so much!!
Life here is crazy at times and very busy, but I really do love it a lot (apart from the heat lol)
So we’ve been continuing with all the kids clubs, prayer meetings, Bible studies, youth groups, teaching, Sunday schools and English lessons. We’re still working in the different areas, Ramonita, Villa Alta, San Antonio, Immaculada, and also in Horqueta and the Chaco. We have really good to know the people that were working with well, so please keep praying for all that’s going on.
Sorry if this update is a little unstructured, but there’s just been so much going on.
Each Sunday we go to the Chaco, which is where the Indians live. Last Sunday when we went they had no water, because it hasn’t rained. We were able to bring them some as well as some clothes that people have donated. But they really do need it to rain, so please pray for that.
A few weeks ago we went to Asunción for 3 days. We got the overnight bus, got very little sleep and were so glad to arrive and go to quite a few coffee shops, since there are none in Concepción. We were in St Andrews school for 2 days, which is an English christian school. School starts at 7am here and ends at 4 so it was a long few days. Melissa went to the primary and secondary school and I was with preschool. It was a very different experience, working with kids who are from very wealthy families (the complete opposite of Concepción). It was so amazing to see how these kids are being daily taught the gospel and also about showing generosity and compassion to others who are less fortunate. Since they are the ones who will be the future business owners and politicians in Paraguay. Even though we were only away for 3 days, I missed Concepción and the people here alot, and I was very happy to be back.
My Spanish is still not great, but I am learning poco a poco. There’s still good days and bad days, but last week Claire was doing a service about mission in the church and Melissa and I were interviewed. I managed to do it in Spanish, focusing on wee things like that have really helped me see how far I’ve actually come in 2 ½ months.
Here’s also a few stories which I have found really encouraging and challenging and which I just absolutely love!!
So one night we had a youth event in Ramonita, lots of planning had went in, all the music and sound equipment had been moved in the back of the cammionetta earlier that day. But nearer the time, there were storm warnings and we considered cancelling it. But when we arrived lots of the young people were already there, so we said they could stay and just have a smaller meeting. It started off well and then the storm came. There were about 30 young people and kids there, we were in a small Hall with a tin roof which was very far away from the church. There were massive hailstones, the size of your hand. These were denting the roof, smashing windows and making lots of noise. Then the electricity went out, and we only had the light from a couple of phones. Lots of people were terrified. But even on the midst of this the young people’s first reaction was to sing. They started singing “my God is so big, so strong and so mighty there’s nothing that he cannot do” Despite everything else going on they started praising God and he was glorified. It was a long night but Eventually the storm passed and everyone managed to get home safely.
Another story I love was at the kids club in San Antonio. We have been teaching them the 10 commandments, and this week it was do not covet. We were talking about being thankful and content with what we have, rather than wanting more. This is one of the poorest areas of Concepción, and a lot of the kids don’t have alot. But when Claire asked then you name 10 things they wanted to thank God for, they kept going and going, until Claire stopped them so we could continue the rest of the kids club. It was very challenging seeing these kids who have so little be so grateful and thank God for everything they do have.
Especially over the last few weeks I have been really really challenged about prayer and faith. My friend Lynne sent a book called ‘Living Faith’ by Helen roseveare out with me, and it is an amazing book! I definitely recommend it. Since being here I have been completely out of my comfort zone in so many ways. Because of this I’ve realised that I need God more and more, I can’t do this in my own strength, and I need to trust him each day. There’s many things here that are absolutely heartbreaking, and also so many people who just need Jesus and the hope that he brings. And this is why I’ve realised prayer is so important. I’m not able to make a big difference at all, but God can!!
Finally, Here’s a few wee points I would love you to pray for...
●Thank God for all that he’s done here so far. Thank for the church here and all the work it does throughout the community.
●Also thank him for good health and protection as we live, travel and work here.
●Keep praying for Claire and Melissa as they are very busy and involved with lots of different things. Melissa has also started a course about worship with a few people from the church, so please pray specifically for her as she leads and also for all the people who come.
●For continued energy even in the heat.
●For my Spanish, it’s still very difficult at times and I definitely need lots more motivation.
●For all the young people and kids that we get the opportunity to work with. Lots of them don’t come from Christian families, and there’s so many other challenges they all face, so really pray that they will know God in such a personal way, and they will feel so loved and know he has amazing plans for them.
●We’ve started planning and practicing nativity plays with the children, which will be happening in December, so please pray for that and all the other outreach we have planned for around Christmas time.
●There’s plans for a Simply the story retreat thing in January, and also possible plans for some people to go to Chile, also with simply the story, so please pray lots for that.
●And finally keep praying that we will all stay so focused, and that God will be the centre of everything and he will have all the glory!