Thursday, March 25, 2010

Mess turned into BLESS

It was a beautiful and exciting Monday morning. We opened our windows to the roar of a back hoe digging a trench down our side of the street. Jeremiah was in his element. Watching for hours as the men worked to put in a new drainage system and eventually a black top road.

Suddenly, all work stopped and the worker yelled in to me, "Is your power out?" "Yep," It was 9:15 a.m. He accidentally cut through our underground phone and electrical wires. It wasn't long before the electric company was there disconnecting the old wires from the transformer. After lunch the workers were busy pulling new wire from the pole, underground, and into our main electric box.At 5:00 p.m the workers called in the electric company to reconnect the wires. I had a dim hope that we would get them on that night. James headed off to his Monday Bible Study and I lit every candle we had and read a book, watching at the window for the electric company to arrive.

They never came.

No one slept that night because we were invaded by MOSQUITOES. We have no screens, we usually use "bug plugs" a little plug with an insect repellent that slides in. But with no electricity that wouldn't work, and neither would our fans, which also help ward off the pesky mosquitoes. I did use a topical repellent, but it didn't really work. Jeremiah woke up with over 40 new bites. Even James who can sleep through a hurricane, couldn't sleep because of the constant bites.

The next morning James talked to the workers again about getting us power. "They said they were coming" was all we could get. So, our neighbor called the Electric company for us. They said, "We passed by last night and since the wires at your box weren't connected, we didn't stop." James and I both are electrical novices, and we though those wires would be connected after the electric company did their part. Since this was not the case, we were puzzled as to why the workers didn't finish their part before they called the Electric company to come back out.

Our dear neighbor, who is an electrician, attached the wires for us. At 4:15 p.m. on Tuesday, the Electric company came out and the first thing they checked were the wires that went into our main box. All looked great and they soon had power going back to our house.

They made a little path for us to back our car out onto the road and we were all set!!!

Then came the rain.

It rained steadily ALL day on Wednesday and washed our driveway away. Car, after car started up our hill, only to have to slide back down, backwards! It was a sight to see. Fortunately, no accidents.

Ok, you have seen the MESS, now the BLESS!

We have met so many people through this, and strengthened ties with most all of our neighbors. Monday as I was at the street, checking out the work, a neighbor from down the street started talking to me about my dog. By the end of the conversation he had invited James and I to his house sometime to meet his wife. I was bold and said, "Can we come tomorrow afternoon?" I think he was a little surprise but he agreed. Tuesday James and I went and visited with him and his wife as well as their daughter and her husband. We were able to leave both of them with a copy of the book, "50 Reasons Why Christ had to Die."

We are also so excited to have a babysitter now. Last Friday, God opened the door for one of our neighbors to call and ask if she could come and talk to us. (This is a huge break through because we have invited her so many times and she has always said no.) At the end of our conversation, where we were able to share the Gospel, I asked if her daughter might be interested in babysitting for us. After talking to her on the phone, we scheduled her for 3x this week. Two afternoons for 1-2 hours and one evening. This is a huge blessing because James and I really like to make visits together. You never know when you will find a woman home alone and it is VERY difficult to make visits with 3 "lively" kids tagging along :) This week went really well and we are looking forward to the future. The kids all really like her.

So our Mess turned into the Bless because God has given us so many opportunities to meet with people and share the Gospel.

One more final note: I have really struggled this week to TRUST and not be ANXIOUS. Everything was out of my control but I had these great moments of worry. God kept reminding me that He calmed the storm and fed the 5,000 and He would take care of me. Today He answered 2 little, insignificant prayers but they were a great reminder of His care of the tiniest details of our lives. 1. We had been praying for a book to arrive that Laura mailed to Hannah in January. It arrived today at lunch time. 2. James was concerned about being able to back the car out of the driveway (we haven't been able to leave for 2 days.) He thought that even if they re-leveled it off we would need more dirt or our car would sink. Today they added more dirt and 2 loads of sand. We never said a word to them about our concerns.

I am so thankful for our Great God who cares and provides more than we can ask or imagine.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Friday Afternoon Visit

Our visit today was with the lady furthest from James on the right

Today James and I had the opportunity to visit with one of the ladies that came to our February outreach. This is actually the third time we have been to her home since then but this was the by far the best visit. She is catholic, in her 60's, and knows she will not go to heaven if she were to die today.

It was so neat to talk to her and share again the gift of salvation that Christ purchased for us on the cross. James shared some Scripture with her and focused in on Christ's Words on the cross, "It is Finished." In the Greek that is one word. It was often used in the marketplace during that era to signify that a purchase had been finalized, paid in full, complete. As James explained to her Christ's FINISHED work on the cross I was so excited. She is old and has worked so hard to earn her salvation, to love others and live a good life and she knows it isn't enough. BUT, she has HOPE because Christ paid in full her debt of sin. It was so neat to see that hope spark in her eyes. PRAY that she will read John 3 tonight and that God will help her to see with new eyes the truth of the Gospel and come to the LIGHT.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Acrostic Poems

Today in school we learned about acrostic poems. Here is what we came up with for ourselves:

Animal lover
Eats a lot
Loves his family


A Lover of cats
Not very bad

Eats lots of sugar (when Mommy lets him)
Repeats like a parrot
Excellent brother
Makes lots of messes
"I not Jeremiah, I Jer."
Always plays with cars & trucks
Helps in the kitchen

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

All Brazil Conference

Last week we had the privilege of meeting together with all the BMM missionaries that are currently serving in Brazil. We celebrated 75 years of working in Brazil and it was so neat to hear the stories of perseverance of those who have come before us. We were also excited to know that we are opening up the first BMM work in our state. In a country the same size of the Continental United States, there are still so many who have never heard the true Gospel.

We met daily for time in the Word and prayer with the other missionaries. It was neat to get to know missionaries who work in the Northern part of the country as well as those who are living and serving in the Amazon region. Many retired missionaries came back to celebrate with us.

Mary Ruth and I were able to participate in a Ladies Choir the last night of the conference. We sang a new arrangement of "When I Survey the Wondrous Cross."

Hannah & Jeremiah with Myla & Elle
Poor Jeremiah!

The kids LOVED getting reacquainted with old friends and making new ones. Each day they had a VBS type program for the kids. They had so much fun making crafts and hearing bible stories.

Daniel & Hannah's class

Hannah with her teacher, Tia Dori, who is a short term missionary in Rio de Janeiro

The theme was Dinosaurs, which is Daniel's favorite subject right now. This is Jeremiah & Luke Farlow searching for Dinosaurs!
Right away we met up with a family that we had met on Deputation, the Proios family living in the amazon. They have 2 daughters that our kids loved. Daniel is just at the right age to begin making good friends. When we got home on Saturday, he said, "I am never speaking Portuguese again!" What I finally understood from this comment was that he loved his friend Haley so much that he was afraid he would forget her if he spoke Portuguese. They have already begun to trade emails and cool pictures. We only see this family ever 6-7 years at All-Brazil conferences.

Daniel & Haley on the Merry-go-round at the park.

Big Daniel & Little Daniel
Happy Birthday Little Daniel!

We got to celebrate with our friend, Daniel Holmquist. This is the same family we were in Candidate school with. They are serving in Rio. We are so thankful to be in the same region in Brazil where we see them almost once a year.

Of course, we spent each afternoon in the POOL! (Even when it was rainy and cold!!)

Lots of fun time with Granna & Grandpa Taylor
They had a few water-slides which all of us really enjoyed.
Daniel calls this:
"The incredible flying James"
Daniel, the "BULLET" Taylor

Jeremiah & Daniel, yes that is dirt on their heads!

Paul Farlow & the girls!
Hannah & Myla Holmquist

I had to throw in a few food pictures. There is nothing like a Brazilian salad bar!
Always beautiful, tasty and supper healthy!
"Bolo salgado" (salty cake)
It was really like chicken salad cake, yummy!