Saturday, November 14, 2009

Starting to BLOG

To my Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Well, this is my first blog and really the first time that I have had really anything to report back to the States in the past 2 months. The last two months here in Arequipa have consisted solely of Spanish school on the weekdays, a free day on Saturday, and then Sunday which tends to be the most stressfuol and draining day of the week. I got here the 4th of September and got right into the swing of things, being that I got here a week later than the rest of the 40/40s in my group. I moved directly into a household with 3 Peruvians: Paco, Ursula, and Alejandra, who all speak English well. Our maid, Gogi, only speaks Spanish, which has actually been really good for me. In the house, fellow American 40/40, Gary Crites and I try to only speak Spanish with the family and it has helped us tremendously over the time that we have been here. Gary and I go to school every weekday from 1:30 to 5:30 in the afternoon and then take Fridays for meetings at the Extreme Office. Sundays have tended to be the day where we attempt to put our knowledge to use by trying to speak to other church goers and then trying to understand the sermons as best as possible. All in all it is a difficult experience, from the trip out there to the trip back. Saturdays have been awesome however. For example, two things that I figured that I would have to give up coming to Peru were playing basketball and watching college football. Yet, almost every Saturday, Drew (another fellow 40/40) and I call people and get a basketball game set up in the morning and then after that we then travel to either the Foster's house or the Drinkwater's house for the Oregon Ducks game.

Really that has been my weekly schedule since I arrived in Peru, but now we are a week from moving from here to Lima where we will meet our Peruvian counterparts and then move to Iquitos for Bible training and where I will be working for the next 2 years. The last week and a half have been a little crazy with little problems, but we have also gotten to meet another 40/40, Wendy Sheets, who is 6 months farther down the road then anyone in our group. She told us what we should be expecting over the next 5 months and how to prepare accordingly. It was all extremely helpful. In the last two months we have had our fill of little odd and crazy things that have happe3ned to us. We have all drank Frog Juice, which is exactly what you think it is, and to our surprise it was not as bad as we had expected. Gary, Brian Tibbs (our director), and I have gone to a couple of brothels and talked to three prostitutes about Jesus Christ and their current situation and tried to hook them up with information about our wonderful, brilliant, scary, and yet loving Creator. No takers so far, but we know God uses everything.... All in all this is what I live for and why I am here to be used as a tool by God and it is awesome to be able to do that even while learning the language. There is no feeling for me like being completely out of my comfort zone and relying on God to be "'my everything".

If you could continue to pray for me whenever you can, I could certainly use it. There are times when I wonder what in the world I am doing here and why I left my family, friends, and my two younger brother to be "alone" in Peru. I also need help staying focused on the ultimate goal and forcing myself to study. Also, I need prayer for the sturggle to learn something that doesn't come easily to me and that I don't naturally enjoy as is the case with Spanish. I also lost my wallet the other day in a taxi and actually this whole past week has not been great so any prayer would be appreciated.

In Christ's Love,