Walking into the Immigration office earlier this month, we were greeted with an unanticipated question. “Are you here to do signatures and fingerprints?” Though unexpected, the question was not a huge shock – we knew some coworkers had just been in to take care of that stage of the residency visa process, and imagined the receptionist was confusing our family with theirs. After all, we were there that day simply to get permission for a long-planned trip out-of-country!
A short time later, we were working on that travel permit process with a second Immigration official. Partway through, we were again asked, “Will you be doing signatures and fingerprints today?” This time, the question seemed quite odd! Signing documents, paying fees, and taking fingerprints comprise the final step of the residency visa process – one which takes place after applications are already approved! Certainly they would tell us when the time came to do those things… we didn’t understand why they were the ones asking us, rather than the other way around.
Yet, ask us they did – and suddenly the truth dawned upon us. Our visas – all of them, including Amy’s – had been approved! The local officials thought that this was the true reason we had come in, while we had not yet been notified and were there for completely unrelated reasons. A couple clarifying questions later, we all laughed and got down to the truly important work: putting our signatures and fingerprints onto those wonderful documents, permitting our permanent legal residency in Mexico!
With that visit to Immigration, the odyssey of our visa applications has finally come to a close… with a little of God’s wonderful humor thrown in to brighten up the revelation of its conclusion! Our trip to the United States was approved, so when – Lord willing – we return to Chihuahua in October, the physical residency cards will be ready in the Immigration office – waiting only for us to pick them up, no further signatures or fingerprints necessary! We’re so grateful for God’s kindness to sustain us through the delays, and relieved that this particular time of waiting has come to an end.
While waiting on the visa process to conclude, we found a trusted doctor in Chihuahua who could see Amy. Blood work eliminated a number of possibilities, some of which were rather scary – and after further evaluation, he prescribed medication which we hope God uses to help bring Amy back to normal.
Our original plan was to get a second opinion in El Paso before starting treatment, because Amy’s treatment runs the risk of side effects and typically takes several weeks to show improvement. As we could not get an appointment before this Friday, we decided not to wait – and are grateful that things have gone well so far.
Please join us in praying that tomorrow’s appointment adds clarity to the situation, and that God grant us wisdom to know how to proceed from here. We do not know everything He is doing through this situation, but know that our Father is always at work in all circumstances – anything He allows to come to pass, He uses for His glory and the good of those who love Him!
- Nahuatl believers continue to meet twice a week – praying, studying God’s Word, and encouraging one another. Intra-cultural barriers which cause embarrassment and prevent interaction are at times weakening within the church.
- The people living in Las Moras have been going through a difficult season – with money and food both in unusually short supply, and limited prospects for immediate relief.
- Friend and colaborer Justin Bullington writes that unreached people groups worldwide continue to write letters begging for missionaries. I encourage you to read examples he shares from PNG, and consider his challenge: “When Was The Last Time You Genuinely, Prayerfully Considered Full-Time Missions?“
- We recently wrote about several needs before us in the coming season of house construction – God continues to provide necessary funding, and we hope to be able to share a more specific cost breakdown in our next update.
- Do you need one of our new prayer cards? Would you like to receive email notification of these updates? Please let me know; we will be happy to arrange that!
Thank God with us!
- For small – yet significant – signs of His Spirit at work among our brothers and sisters in the Nahuatl!
- For the happy end to our wait for residential visas!
- For Amy’s opportunity to see a doctor in Chihuahua, and rule out several potential problem areas!
- For encouraging time we were able to spend with my brother Joseph in Kansas City last week!
Ways you can pray:
- That the Nahuatl church continue drawing together, growing in Christ and seeing His life work out in theirs.
- That the needs of the people in Las Moras be met, and God be glorified in the provision.
- That Amy’s doctor’s appointment tomorrow either confirm her diagnosis or reveal the correct one, and that God lead us clearly with regards to our next steps.
- That God bless this time of preparation – as we work on building plans, cost estimates, fundraising, team co-ordination, and much more!