We continue learning some Brazilian values the hard way it seems. We are finding that most Brazilians will put relationships before other things...even if their kids are sick, they will still go out with friends if there is a previous commitment. Now, there are usually exceptions to the rule, but it is a general observance on our part. Basically, relationships are important!! This might be why our kids keep getting sick...they have had fevers for two days straight and going on the third day...because other kids at school have fevers, or kid at the park are really sick but their parents wouldn't dare keep their kid home from the park and not be able to play with their friends. So, a question for us to ask ourselves is: "if we don't show up for a social event, or Caleb or Becky don't go to school for the day, does that mean we are not good missionaries because we don't value relationships enough here??" Not necessarily. It's a difficult line to walk here in Brazil...but each culture has good practices, which are sometimes to the exclusion of others.
We Americans value our kids' health above relationships--that's an easy one. Well, at least for us, Americans. Does it mean there is a right or wrong in this situation...no, and yes. That's the challenge of living in a culture not your own. So, you can pray for our kids, and us too, to heal up quickly and develop strong immune systems by the Lord's grace--may he protect us from all these germs!! Thank you for praying for us!!
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Friday, June 01, 2012
It is now June as you read this post...which means a lot is about to happen in the next two months with our family (thus the Portuguese subject line of this email: More changes...). So, would you keep praying for us and the changes to come? Here is a quick update and a few things you can praise/pray about:
- Becky is on track to finish her Portuguese language program around the end of June/beginning of July--praise the Lord! We know this doesn't mean the learning is over though. Pray for us all to persevere and keep learning.
- Ben was able to lead a Bible study at our weekly small group and enjoyed getting some practice with Portuguese in that context. He was also able to start playing soccer with some Brazilian friends on a weekly basis, until a tree fell on the goal post this week--no more soccer for a while.
- Caleb finishes his pre-school in June and will need to say goodbye to all his friends here--pray for him; this is hard to do.
- Samuel is saying more and more words in English and Portuguese but is having a hard time with mommy gone at language school every morning - pray that he will be at peace and that the next month will go by quickly for him...
- David continues to grow...he definitely is our son--large and sturdy. His giggles keep us smiling around here!
- Ben is going to the US for two weeks to Wheaton, IL for a conference at our mission headquarters (dates are July 7th through 17th). This will be a time of strategizing for the future of our mission agency (www.teamworld.org)--would you ask the Lord's blessings over our time together as missionaries, home office leadership, and staff? Please also pray for Becky to have energy caring for the boys during this time.
- After Ben returns from the US, we will be moving to our permanent ministry location (Anápolis) in central Brazil...we are excited for this move, but it once again involves transition...something we've done a lot of in the last few years. Please keep praying! Becky and all three boys will fly on July 31st, Ben will drive the next day (August 1st) with the car full of our belongings. Pray for safe travels.
- Praise the Lord that our support has remained steady this last 9 months! We continue to ask you to pray with us that the Lord will bring the remaining amount in as we move and begin our ministry roles in August. Thank you for your continued partnership and prayers!
We could not be here without your prayers and generous giving--thank you so much! Please keep in touch as you are able...we miss you!