Thursday, June 27, 2013

Leaving Ecuador

Good afternoon, from our last day in Ecuador for 7 months.  We leave tomorrow for Ghana for a month and then the states for 6 months and we "think" we are ready for the new adventure.  Preparing our house to be gone for 7 months was strange and I think it is just now sinking in for all of us that we won't be back here for a long time.  Please pray for us tomorrow (Friday) as we travel from Quito to Guayaquil to Amsterdam to Accra.  Please pray that we won't have any problems with immigration leaving Ecuador or customs or immigration entering Ghana.  Please also pray for us as we adjust to Ghana and that we can be of help to the missionary families there we will be serving alongside as well as good examples and leaders for the summer interns while remembering that our first priority is to show God's love and salvation to the Ghanaian people.  We will try to post as often as possible but look forward to seeing all of you who are in the states in August.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Parkview's First 2 Days in Shell

Well, it has been a crazy first 2 days here in Shell.  It has rained non-stop and the group has worked non-stop as well.  Enjoy the pictures and don't believe anything you hear about leg wrestling.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Searching for future missionaries

As our trips into the jungle wind down for this school year, I'm really trying hard to connect with many of the kids that we spend time with.  It's often very difficult as they prefer their indigenous language even though they're fluent in Spanish.  Being a big white man with a whiter beard often causes a little angst as well.  Typically I'll joke with them and address them as much as possible (and sometimes bribe them with cookies) in order for them to feel more comfortable.  One thing that I've found that really lights them up is to take their picture and then let them see it.  In no time I can have a group of 10 to 15 hanging on my arms trying to get their turn.

These two didn't have anything to do with me . . .until they saw their pictures
Once I've developed a rapport with them I'll try asking them about their lives.  Most are in school so I'll ask about their classes and what their favorite subject is.  Invariably, I get a lot of 'science' or 'math' as responses but do get an occasional 'recess'.  I'll then ask about their future plans.  Many want to be a teacher, like those who come to the community to  serve as their teachers and many want to be a pilot, as they get to see the MAF pilots on a daily basis.  Every once in a while one will tell me that they want to be a missionary.  You can imagine the joy that I feel in my heart when I hear that,  not because of anything that I'VE done as usually I'm just arriving in the community, but because of how God had used others to plant that seed and help it grow.
Marta - a future missionary

When I recently went to Moretecocha I got to meet Marta.  She's been in the Compassion program for a number of years and was recently saved a few months ago when a group of missionaries from the US came to several of the jungle communities.  She was soon baptized and gave her future to the Lord to be used to teach others the gospel.  In Moretecocha alone, I met 2 others that wanted to do the same thing.  While there I got to pray for them and encourage them in their readings.  They all had already received Bibles and are slowly reading them.  It was another great experience to see the Lord working in the lives of those eager to know Him.  Please pray for Marta and for those in the Compassion program so that He may continue to touch each one of their hearts. - Joe