Dear faithful readers.Â
We are continualy learning so much about Bolivian life, ourselves, each other, and ways in which the Lord works.Â
There have been times when we wanted more work to do, but God is teaching us to instead give love (and to recieve Love).Â We are learning to be good recievers…of the lessons learned, and the ways in which the kids love us and most importantly recievers of GodÂ´s love.
We celebrated the birthday of Ixiamas by taking some of the kids to the parade in town.Â It was a good time and everyone was in high spirits because school was cancelled for 3 days.Â
We are all excited to see the group from Columbus today.Â Our Spanish is improving, but it will be fun to communicate without haveing to Â¨listenÂ¨so hard.Â Continue to pray that God will reveal himself to us and we can see the ways in which we can best serve him and be apart of his will in Ixiamas.Â
We’ve gotten a little behind in posting cofounder Ken Corson’s SIFAT Remembers articles from the SIFAT Journal. The following article appeared in the April Journal. You can download the SIFAT Journal on our news page.
Because of our experiences of working with the church in Cuba, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico and later in Bolivia, we were often asked to speak in churches on the subject of â€œmissions.â€ In addition to telling our experiences, we were telling a part of what we essentially were and what we still are today. Our faith is what we believe in enough to act on. Some churches and people caught the vision of a holistic Gospel of faith and technology. We found that men especially were interested in things they could do with their hands for Christ.
Still there were times when faith and technology were greeted skeptically. Once while representing SIFAT in a seminary, a student looked at our display. â€œFaith and Technology?â€ he questioned. â€œWhat does technology have to do with faith?â€ Then he conceded, â€œWell, maybeâ€¦.I went to Haiti, and I saw that the Gospel was not enough for Haiti. They are starving. They need food. I guess technology would be o.k. for them.â€
Immediately, I knew something was wrong with his statement that the Gospel was not enough for Haiti. I responded, â€œOh, the Gospel is enough for everyone in this world! It is YOUR CONCEPT of the Gospel that says it is not enough for Haiti!â€ God cares about every aspect of our beingâ€¦our bodies, our minds, our emotions, our soul. We who minister in His name need to care about the whole person, and not just individuals, but the whole community as well. That is the integrated Gospel!
We are almost finished with our first week here in Ixiamos, and it has been very educational. This week we definitly started off as the students, starting with me and Olivia’s lesson on peeling carrots, potatoes, and onions, (there really isn’t a special method, it’s pretty self explanatory, which we learned from the look on Roxie’s face when we asked her how) to our first time washing clothes in the river. Things that the kids have known all of there life and are somewhat non-traditional for us. It has been great to learn from them, and to begin helping them with computer, english, sewing, and guitar lessons.
Yesterday we visited Miguel’s (a student at the internado) home and family. He is from Tahua, a very small farming community, techniacally two hours away, but for us four. The mud delayed us for a bit, but only increased the joy of being there. Miguel will be the first student from the internado to graduate. His family was so welcoming and friendly, they fed us a delicious meal, showed us around their farm and saw mill, and introduced us to their extended family. It was a really great opportunity to hear from one of the families who are so greatful for the internado and the opportunity that it provides. It just really impressed upon us the importance that the internado plays to these kids and their families. It was an exciting trip into the life of one of the students we see everyday.