AMY: Sitting in our first Spanish language classes almost two years ago, I was very pregnant with Joel. It was so exciting to be in Mexico, beginning to catch bits of the language and expecting our third child! Little did I know that less than eighteen months later I would be pregnant once more and putting my studies on hold again.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have one baby in a different country, go through morning sickness with your second, all while taking care of your kids and household and learning a second language? What an adventure the Lord has taken me through; and there are many more joys to come! After Joel was born, I took a break from official study until I could get enough sleep to think clearly when I continued. From there I took things slowly, adding more hours each week. Before I knew it, the Lord brought so many opportunities to be with people and grow in language that I often surpassed my weekly requirement of 27 hours. I was amazed by His goodness!
Things settled into a routine afterward – with Spanish classes, Elayne’s school, events, friends, church, Bible study, and more – always aiming at growing in understanding of Mexico’s language and culture. And then this January we found out that baby #4 was on her way, and almost immediately I was hit with the worst morning sickness I’ve ever experienced. It was quickly apparent that just living, keeping the house running and kids alive, would be more than I could handle – let alone putting any significant time into Spanish study. I admit that the Lord had some major work to do in my heart at that time. “But Lord, what about our great plan for finishing our studies and heading to the tribe?” “Lord, I want to study, I want to see my friends and church family! I feel like a hermit staying here at home all the time.” Such were my thoughts, as I struggled to surrender my will and accept His beautiful plan for us. He faithfully worked on me until I was willing to let go.
How about now? Well, I am back into full-time Spanish study. Will I (miraculously) finish before our baby is born, or will studies need to pause once more? Only the Lord knows the answer, but I know that whatever He does will be best for me, for my family, for the tribal work and team, and especially the best thing to bring Him glory and honor.
JORDAN: Meanwhile, I have also continued pursuing language and culture here in Chihuahua. A lot of my best study at this point comes through simply going out and doing things with friends in the community! We’ve attended the first birthday party for a friend’s grandchild, spent a day at an outdoor pool park with our language helpers’ family, visited indoor play places where our kids had fun interacting with new friends their ages (while hiding from the summer sun!), and attended the quinceañera celebration of a young lady in our church – a fifteenth birthday party rivaling weddings in cultural importance! Each was a valuable cultural experience, and a lot of fun as well.
Teaching Bible studies at our church continues to push me, also greatly blessing me through fellowship with our Spanish-speaking church family. After finishing Philemon we studied Esther, and are now ready to select our next passage. A new area of focus for our church has been moving! After more than six years, our little body is ‘growing up’ – moving from a tent over a dirt floor to a new location just up the road. An existing house will house children’s ministries, and we’ll construct a second building for use on Sunday mornings. To that end, the men of the church have met early Saturday mornings to prepare terrain for pouring the foundation. Waking up at 6am on Saturday may not be the plan I’d choose for myself, but the fellowship with my brothers in Christ has been precious beyond words.
Praise God with us!
- Three of our co-workers – Rachel Chapman, along with Pete and Liesl Hypki, are back in Las Moras! We are encouraged as they are able to continue working on Bible translation and the chronological teaching lessons.
- Amy and baby continue in good health; our mosquito-prevention measures work great and we are excited to meet our new arrival in early October. (Note: Chihuahua is not considered an area of great risk for the Zika virus).
- In the latter part of July, we’ll spend a week with each side of our family – the first time of any length in the Pacific Northwest since arriving in Mexico! We are so excited for quality time with each of them!!!
Ways you can pray:
- For continued language progress for both Amy and I – Amy as she desires to wrap up as much as possible before our daughter is born, and myself with regards to my major language evaluation this week.
- That Amy and baby continue in good health through the hot summer months; also for my back (muscle tweak last Saturday at the church). Please continue praying for our coworker Katie, still in the US looking for medical answers. A key doctor’s appointment is July 7th.
- Finally, we ask for continued prayer as we look to replace our ever-struggling minivan with a vehicle suitable for the journey into Las Moras… and also one which will actually run for us here and now!