Thursday, January 17, 2013

On our way

We are finally on our way. After months of prayer, packing and preparing, we are on our way to Paraguay! Are we excited? Are we scared? Are we sad? Are we glad? All of the above! But above all we are at peace and rejoice in the knowledge that we are obeying the leading of the Holy Spirit!



We are sad because of the many, many people - friends and family - that we are leaving behind. We are sad for those who are walking in close fellowship with the Lord Jesus Christ whose encouragement and companionship we will miss, for those whom we love who are not walking with the Lord whose lives we might influence to a closer walk with Him. On something of a more superficial level, we will miss the 5th Sunday dinners at Grace Community Church and going to Taco Bell after Sunday night meeting. We will miss the Barkleys Hayride and the Silveys "Super Farmer" events, as well as bonfires at the Franklin's and McIntyre's.  We will miss wide highways and courteous drivers, Mexican food, LongHorn and Starbucks, daily conveniences and earthly comforts.

We are scared in considering change and the uncertainty of the unknown. We are scared when we think about where our next check will come from. There are many things that we could be afraid of but, 
Whenever I am afraid,
I will trust in You.
In God (I will praise His word),
In God I have put my trust;
I will not fear.
What can flesh do to me?
Psalms 56:3-4 

In the same breath, we are glad and excited. Excited and glad in anticipation of what God will do.  It has been my prayer to see with my eyes the glory of God, His hand at work. Not to look back and, after the fact, realize what God has done, but in the moment to see and to realize "this is the hand of God"! I pray that God's provision for our material needs will become commonplace (though never taken for granted) and that our physical and emotional energy will be channeled entirely on the spiritual needs of God's people in Paraguay, Argentina, Uruguay and wherever the Lord Jesus Christ directs us by His Holy Spirit.

As the song so eloquently states, "many things about tomorrow I don't seem to understand, but I know who holds tomorrow and I know who holds my hand."

We will arrive in Asuncion Paraguay around 9:40AM PYST tomorrow (01/18/13). We want to get our cell phones activated and set up for use in Paraguay, Argentina and Chile. We will head to Villarrica to spend the night and then Saturday early we will head to Caaguazu for a family camp directed by brother Braulio Bernal (Loida's dad).

Sunday morning, after the last service, we will head to Ciudad Del Este; Loida's home town and where brother Braulio is still pastoring. Monday we will head back to Villarrica and help with camp preparations for the Isla Vega camp, which will start Wednesday evening.

After camp we will have a few days to get ready for our trip to Argentina, Chile and back to Argentina for two weeks of meetings. We will be meeting up with mom and dad in Chile and will travel with them the rest of the trip. Once back in Paraguay on the first of March we will travel to about 30 different local assemblies holding one or more services in each place over the span of 54 days. Please keep us in your prayers for God's provision, for health and strength (especially for mom and dad), and above all for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit on these assemblies.

These last few weeks here have been hectic and have passed by very fast. We are grateful to all the saints here at Grace Community Church for all your love and support, but especially for your prayers and fellowship in the gospel of Jesus Christ. We are also grateful to all the saints in different places who have embraced us in fellowship and have expressed their love and support in so many ways. A special thank you to Abundant Grace Fellowship for a wonderful weekend (December 30th, 2012) and for your love and fellowship.

Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may run swiftly and be glorified, just as it is with you,  2 Thessalonians 3:1