Friday, April 29, 2011

An Exciting Day in Our Ministry

We have been thinking about Santa Rita a lot since we have been gone. Jimmy casually claims we will start up again in there when we get back. Honestly, I am nervous to go back in. We just did a quick drive through right before we left, but I did not get out of the micro. We both want the Bible study to continue.

I was behind on the blog before we left, so I never posted about one of the most important events that has happened in our ministry. It was back at the end of January. Jesús, who has been attending Jimmy's discipleship class each week (he put his faith in Christ soon after we arrived in Santa Rita), taught one of the Bible studies. He sounded nervous to talk to him beforehand, but during the Bible study he seemed at home sharing the Bible with his peers.
{Jesús (21 years old)}

He planned a devo sheet for everyone during the week, came up with questions to ask during the Bible study which Jimmy put on the projector, and even asked Jimmy, "You think it would be ok if I challenged them to go ahead and accept Christ for themselves at the end of it?" So exciting! I loved seeing his passion as he spoke. He spoke on II Corinthians 5, that is the book they had been studying recently in the adult Bible study. It has been very relevant for what is going on in there right now.
Please pray for Jesús, he has been working a job in the capital while we have been gone. Please pray that God does not move him out of Santa Rita just yet. He is the only one in his family who has accepted Christ yet. He may even be the one that God has to take over the Bible study in there if we are not able to get back in. We love these people. They are our friends. Some are Christians now, some not yet.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Easter

Jimmy and I started off the weekend with strep. The boys had some type of virus, but no sore throats. Jonah had an ear infection. Gringo germs almost did us in.

Jimmy's home church had a special Good Friday service where they observed the Lord's Supper. Jimmy's parents watched our sick boys, so we got to go. I was so thankful. This was our first service at our home church and it was a wonderful one, my favorite of the weekend.

Saturday Jimmy's parents' subdivision held an Easter egg hunt. We had been practicing with Jonah and Silas all week long, showing them what to do with Easter eggs... you put them in your basket.
Only thing is, they didn't have eggs at this egg hunt, just candy sprinkled in the grass. I think the boys were a little confused on top of being sick AND it being very cold outside for us who live in sunny Petén. They had fun in their own way though.
About the time they would get 2 or 3 pieces in their basket they would dump their baskets upside down or grab all of their candy in a big wad, leave their baskets and take off running!
Afterwards we gave them a couple smarties, that is when they really started to appreciate the whole Easter basket thing.

One little boy tried to take a piece of candy that Jonah had in his hand. The little boy's dad quickly pulled the boy's hand away and told him no. Jonah looked at the little boy and then reached out with the candy still in his hand to give it to him. Moments like that make you hopeful that your kids might turn out alright! I think being a twin has helped the boys learn to share at an earlier than average age. They still have their moments, but moments like these outnumber the others.
I did not plan out this Easter very well as far as family traditions go since we have been away from home. I do have some ideas for next year. We did find a little Easter board book that we read together every night during the week leading up to Easter Sunday.
It was of the last few days in Jesus' ministry here on earth, why He died, and then His resurrection. It was put together beautifully.

These were the boys' Easter baskets. On the drive from FL to KS we found out that they are VeggieTales fans... at least when they are buckled into a car seat and have no where else to go! We got them some Easter VeggieTales for our upcoming road trips.
They also got a toy each, a pez dispenser, and eggs filled with marshmallows and frosted Mini Wheats. They ended up preferring the Mini Wheats. They had never had those before since we don't have those in Petén.
{I love their little shoes in this picture}

Since the boys were hacking so much Easter morning and dripping with green snot, we left them home with their Grandpa and Uncle Joe who had both gone to the Saturday night service. I was really disappointed to not attend church together as a family, but they would have been rejected by the nursery for sure. I was thankful that Jim and I got to go with his mom and sister. I love going to church in English!
After their morning nap I put their Easter shirts on them and photoshopped their red little noses.
Silas and Jonah both knew what to do with that toy microphone. None of us can figure out how. They held it up to their mouths right away and started talking into it. The only place we know of them seeing a microphone before was at the Kekchi radio station. They must retain everything.
We had our own Easter egg hunt Sunday afternoon in Grandma & G-Dawg's backyard. This is how you hide eggs for 18M olds... it's easy, you launch them off the deck!
By this time they had figured out that the best part is cracking the egg!
{G-Dawg Silas, Jonah, & Grandma}

We had a wonderful Easter. Next year I do hope to do a better job at incorporating why Easter is so special to Jimmy and I in the activities we do with our boys. We are so thankful for this day and that we get to celebrate Christ's victory over sin and death.

Happy Easter Everyone!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Indoor Nature

It's not like our boys don't get exposed to nature on a regular basis. Maybe we thought they would feel more at home with a little more nature while we were in the States. Yesterday we took the boys to the Great Plains Nature Center here in Wichita. There weren't any crocodiles, but they did get to pet a lot of wildlife...
well sort of. It was wildlife shapes. Safety first here in the USA!
They loved it! There was a little indoor KS wildlife museum.
{Jonah looking at the cool fish}
This place was their uncle Jon's idea, so he came too! I thought it was sweet of him to think of Jonah and Silas.
There were buttons everywhere... an 18 month old's dream!!!
We went on one of their little trails afterwards and found some ducks.
Jonah and Silas had a blast! It is so much fun watching them experience new things. I love seeing their minds processing it all! We already have plans for another place like this soon.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Great Missions Conference

Last week we were in a missions conference here in Wichita. This church has been supporting us since we were in language school. They are so encouraging to us and really keep up with what is going on in Petén. It was fun introducing them to our boys.
I got to share about our ministry during a ladies' tea, both of us got to present our ministry during an informal question and answer time (which we love), and then Jimmy got to preach on Sunday. I think it will even be on the radio this Sunday. We love it when we are given opportunities to share about Petén.
The church family there is always so kind to us. We enjoyed the missions banquet.
Jimmy's grandparents came to the services too (across from us). It was nice to share this time with them.
We got to catch up with some old friends, sweet couples from Mexico and Guatemala that Jimmy had met through the Spanish ministry. They were very supportive of us when we were leaving for the field 5 years ago, now we got to share with them what God has done so far!
We tried something new this furlough. We didn't want to bring our projector all the way back, but still needed some visuals for when we share about our ministry outside of the main service/auditorium, like a Sunday school class or something. We blew up some of our main pictures and mounted them on foam board.
We reinforced them with grommets and put them on rings. They have been pretty handy so far... and we don't have to worry about technical difficulties!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Arriving in Kansas

Here is a video of our first few moments in KS (Jimmy's home). You can tell who they were waiting for!
video
Jonah and Silas warmed up to their Grandma, G Dawg, Uncle Jon, Aunt Jill, and future Aunt Robin pretty quickly.
Toys helped.
For a while I thought this cozy coup was going to separate brothers, but I think it is helping them learn to care about each other's feelings. Silas has always been very affectionate towards Jonah. He hugs him and gives him kisses. Jonah is usually too preoccupied. But we have noticed with this coup that each time Silas starts to cry because his brother gets in the car first, Jonah gets out and lets him have it. Jonah doesn't like for his brother to be upset. He loves his brother... I'm relieved!
They like the car best when their uncle Jon turns it into a flying coup.
Silas didn't hear about no texting while driving.
They were worn out after all the new people, surroundings, and things to play with.
At least their "night night" routine was consistent. Right now we are reading through the 23 Psalm each night.
And Silas likes to make his book a hat of course.
Kisses time! Mommy and Daddy got some, but they weren't too sure about everyone else yet! I'm sure they will be passing out kisses very soon.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Hittin' the Road

Friday morning we began our pretty long trek to Arkansas.
For being in the car for 2 days, I thought the boys did very well. They would let us know when they needed a break and we would stop and run around a bit. We try to avoid fast food, but we do like to stop at McDonalds for their coffee and berry smoothies. When Silas sees their smoothie come through the window he starts this very persistent "smoothie grunt." He will share with his brother as long as he gets the first sip and Jonah drinks fast.
Who knew luggage carts could be so fun... and elevator buttons! The boys have been sleeping so good in hotels. We are very thankful.

Sunday morning we got to present our ministry in a new church for us. Larry, one of the men who came down with pastor Andy's team, invited us to his church.
{Larry and his wife, us, and pastor David and his wife}
That really meant a lot to us because Larry didn't know anything about us until he visited. He caught the vision for KBI and the ministry here and then told his pastor about it when he got back. They were so kind to us and we feel like they are excited about getting involved with KBI in whatever way God leads.
{Pastor Andy's church and plane}
Pastor Andy's church is in a town close by. We love spending time with the Schalchlin family! Ms Connie made us a wonderful meal Saturday night. The boys kept a bowl on their trays for the first time ever... because it was full of ice cream!
Jimmy, Andy, and his sons played basketball!
Jonah and Silas got to play outside.
Their kids are so nice to my boys!
We learned a new game, that I'm sure Jonah and Silas will try in our house back home...
blanket sledding!
Sunday night was the first time the boys and I have been to their church.
Pastor Andy gave us the entire service to share our ministry and then there was a big pot luck dinner afterwards. We had a wonderful time!
{Rob and his wife, another man that came down on that team}
We are so thankful for not only their support, but their passion for the Petén.

Monday we made our way to Wichita (Jimmy's home).
Can you tell we like to eat lunch at Cracker Barrel!
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