Sunday, February 22, 2009

Rambling on...

I am at a loss as to know what to write. I've sat at this very computer, staring at the screen, just about every day since we have arrived home. I feel empty of words when it comes to writing about our Brazil trip. I want to, I'm just not sure how.

I don't know how I can convey to you the joy of knowing that God has given me a heart for that place. Or the excitement that comes from seeing prayers answered as I watched Warren minister there among the Brazilians. I don't think that I can put into words the depth of my feelings as I began to realize that I cared, really cared, and loved Rio. A complete heart change there!

The first question everyone asks when they see us is whether or not we know where we are going to live in Brazil. No, we do not. And we are okay with that. God has been so faithful every step of the way thus far and I have no reason to believe that that will change. In my flesh, yes, I would like to know. But I trust Him in the fact that, for whatever reason, He is withholding that information from us for now.

Where would we like to live? Truly, I don't know. I mean it when I say we are so glad that we are not making that decision. We love so many people there that it's like choosing a favorite child. Impossible! God has made His plan so clear to us in the earlier steps that we are trusting that He is going to do the same again. We really are not trying to figure it out on our own.

What is our next step? To sell our house and to sell 30 years worth of accumulation of stuff! Neither are a small task and in this economy it will take a big god. But we have One!

When are we planning to move? Well, that again depends on the sell of our house but we are hoping to leave sometime around July. That is subject to change in either direction as we hear more clearly from the Lord.

How are the missionaries, pastors and their families doing? We are blessed with amazing men and women on the field. We were encouraged by them and hoped we left having encouraged them. They are not without struggles. Right now the dollar is doing better in Brazil but last year was a very hard time for them with the dollar being down. They are not living charmed lives! But, they are blessed. And they would be the first to tell you of their blessings and the last to tell you of financial hardships. They have the challenge of cultural differences along with the fact that they are under spiritual attack for their very purpose of being there. Pray for their marriages, their health (for them and their families) and for leadership in the churches. Pray that they will not grow discouraged. Let them know you think of them. Everyday I checked my facebook, e-mails and our blog for comments from those in the U.S. They do too!

God told me months ago that it is a privilege that I get to go to Brazil and serve the Brazilian people.

I'm beginning to understand the truth in that.

Saturday, February 21, 2009


You have always brought so much life into our family. The jokes, the silliness and the ability to laugh at yourself, all have made you a fun person to be around. And then you bring your caring, loving heart and you're near perfect!

Our lives wouldn't be the same without you. I love you very much.

Happy, happy birthday, sister!

wish I could share the day with you

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


I put on my trusty, old, blue robe last night (the one Warren hates!) and we slept in our own bed.

There are some things even the best of vacations can't provide.

It's good to be home.

Monday, February 16, 2009


Three weeks have gone so quickly and yet it feels a life time.

"When you are in Brazil you will long for the US. When you are in the US you will long for Brazil. Things will never be the same for you." This was said by a wise friend of mine when she heard we were praying about moving to Brazil. TaLisa knew what she was talking about as they have now been here 9 years.

I cannot help but love it here. I cannot help but long for the U.S. And this journey has only just begun. I am not deceiving myself into thinking that the transition will be easy and without adjustments. At the same time I cannot imagine not coming back now.

I'm glad that God has given us this time to see Brazil from the prospective of actually living here. And I am even more glad that He has given me a desire to return.

Please pray with us for the sale of our house and all the other things that we have gathered over the years! Also that we will continue to be fruitful in Corvallis until the Lord would have us make the move. That we would finish there strong. Please pray that God would reveal the next step to us clearly and eventually the place that He would have us call home.

But for now - We leave to return home and we are so grateful!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Too Short

I'm sorry that I totally missed out on filling you in on our time in Florianopolis. We didn't have good access to the computer and we were there a very short time. I will post some pictures when we get back to Corvallis for anyone that is interested and write about our time there.

Know this - the island is unbelievably beautiful and for that alone it is worth a trip!

In two short days we had a rain storm that caught Warren, Jess, Zeph and I off guard and completely drenched us within one block of shelter! We had some warm days but not sunny enough for the beach. We were able to attend the mid-week study and meet some of the people of which Claudio informed us were not their regulars! The Caze family were troopers in showing us around and making us feel welcome.

Short, yes. But certainly a time to remember.

The Difference of Perspective

Rio did not disappoint.

It was exactly how we remembered. Dirtier than the other places we have been. Louder. More people. Scarier. Gaffetti all over the place. The driving is an amazing feat of faith and riding in the car takes even more. Yes, it was just as I remembered except...

In the evening we went to church and I had forgotten how much I loved these people. Their warm hospitality. Their love for the Lord and the church body. They shared their visions for this church, this city. Alex shared with us his heart for what he believes God wants to do with this place and the Vaz family's steadfastness in staying here.

When we left everything looked different from when we had entered the building. The busy roads were full of possibilities with people scurrying all over the place. Beggers sitting at street corners, in the middle of the sidewalk, or under doorways. Popping sounds that I was assured were not guns but rather celebrations! Possibilities of people being responsive to their need of a Savior, the Savior. Possibilities of people wanting more from their lives that only Christ can give. And there is amazing beauty here.

I went to sleep at peace and I woke up the same. We do not know if this is where God would have us make our home yet but it is a possibility.

And I'm okay with that.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Our First Son


I cannot even begin, as your mother, to tell you what an amazing man I believe you are. From the first moment I laid eyes on you, I loved you. You have fascinated me, loved me and challenged me.

You have exceeded what I had hoped you would be as a man. One that loves the Lord, loves his family and one that is the best kind of friend.

I am honored to be your mother.

I love you, son.

Moving On

For whatever reasons my pictures will not upload today. I've tried it twice. Maybe tomorrow!

I am so excited for the team that will be coming to Curitiba next month. It is a beautiful place here. John and Flavia are the best at showing you amazing sights and places in the city. And can Flavia cook....!!!

We've so been enjoying our time here with them. We have seen multiple seasons :) as well as places. This morning we got to take part in the English service that John does every Sunday. It's a new thing for the church but seems to be well recieved. Many people like to have opportunities to hear and speak English so they use it as such. However, we see it as a great outreach where the Word is going out into this place. Praise God!

We look forward to the evening service in just a few hours. Once again we find the people warm and inviting here in this beautiful city. And the visions that John and Flavia have for this place and especially for their church are exciting. Everyone needs a visionary! I've teased them that the visionary is John in this case and Flavia is the Curt Duever that every visionary needs!

For those of you who wonder: God has not told us this is "the" place yet. We hold losely to the hope that we have to know where we will be living. However, should God reveal to us that this were the place to put our tent we could be happy here and excited about coming.

For those of you who have been praying for me regarding my request to be excited about coming back to Brazil, your prayers are being answered. God has been confirming over and over His desire for us to be here and although we do not know what we have to offer, we are excited for this next chapter in our lives. Thank you for your prayers.

We serve a faithful God.

Tomorrow we take the bus to Florinopolis.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Continuing On...

Here are some of the pictures that I would have like to have shared with you earlier.
The first two pictures were taken at the Women's Tea that TaLisa put together on Sat. We made mosaic pictures, had a devotional time and ate. The fellowship was wonderful and fruitful as many of the women had never come to the church before and came back for the Sun. service.
These next two pictures were taken at the fair were Warren had his interesting "out for breakfast" experience. The food was nothing we had ever experienced before but it was wonderful and all in all a great morning.

Bethany in the rubber tree. (Oh, my girls will be aghast at my poor quality pictures) sorry!

Continue on to the next post for more pictures.
The time with Tim, TaLisa and the kids was wonderful. They certainly made us feel a part of the family there and it will always be a time remembered. Thank you guys! We love you!

1. Abraham and Bethany at the Three Frontiers. The point where Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil border each other.

2. and 3. The Sunday church service in Iguassu Falls.
4. and 5. Iguassu Falls. It was beautiful and amazing. At the top the sound of the water was deafening. TaLisa reminded us that the Word says God's voice is like the rushing waters. It took on new meaning as ALL we could hear was the water. I long for it to be true in my life that God's voice would be heard above all else.
Last night we hopped on a bus. (1st class seats) to take us to Curitiba and arrived this morning. Clearly another adventure is in store for us. We are enjoying the day catching up with John, Flavia and Daniel. Catching a glimpse of their lives.
We are truly blessed as we continue on another part of our adventure.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Being A Guest

I don't know what to write.

  I sit here thinking about a post and my mind goes in so many directions.  How can I know from observing for a few short days what people's lives are really like?   I can't.  But I do see a hunger for God that is not so apparent in the states.  Their day to day lives are harder here and yet they have a joy and contentment that I fear we would not have in the same circumstances. 

Their church service is on Sunday evening here so in the morning TaLisa, Abraham and Bethany showed us around, doing their normal activities, while Tim stayed home and studied.  TaLisa had told us that we were going "out" for breakfast. We did.  Warren said it was not quite what he pictured.  We sat on plastic chairs scrunched against a vendors booth (because we wanted to be in the shade!) at a flea market!  The usual Sunday morning activity!   We saw many people that they knew and some we already knew.  We ended the time by hanging out under the rubber tree (for shade)talking with friends while the kids literally swung from the branches (Tarzan style!)

We had had a ladies day at the church on Sat. and so it was so good to see several of the guests from that outreach back to the church on Sunday.  I was able to talk and share with several of them (in English!)  and was encouraged to see their desire to come back.   The worship was amazing.  So good to see how worshiping can happen when you don't even understand the language.  We could easily make ourselves at home with these people.   

Well, another full day today as we leave for Paraguay (illegally.  What's the law?  to pay someone off!)  

Okay, okay so life isn't so tough here as a guest!

Sorry there are no pictures this time.  We are having problems hooking up our computer (does that surprise anyone?!)here so I'm using Tim's.  It took us forever to get the pictures posted last time so I'll just have to wait until John and Flavia's house.