We had just gotten to church Sunday morning when Esmeralda called China and asked to be picked up. Steph, China, and I went to get her, arriving late to church but happy for the reason. Esmeralda said she had been trying to call Steph, but she kept receiving a message that it was no longer in service.
We had a blessed service together. Afterward, Esmeralda wanted to have lunch with us and come to instruction class. She is still radiant and happy, which is so lovely to see. We definitely sense she is a different person on the inside, and we’re confident the outside will be catching up.
She says she is still separate from Fernando, but she is living there to take care of her daughter. Things are bad at home, but she says she is reading her Bible and praying daily. She doesn’t know what the next right step is. She is not living in sin, but she is surrounded by it.
She seemed eager to study in the instruction class and wants to come regularly. She says if she can get away, she plans to be at prayer meeting on Wednesday evening as well. She needs a lot of support in her situation. Keep praying for her. We would love to see her out of that situation and progressing with the Lord, but we recognize the tough decisions before her. Pray for us that we would know what to say and when.
We decided to share the money we had here from gifts that some of you sent. She seemed fairly moved by it and wondered how she could ever thank the brothers in the States. I told her the greatest gift would be for them to see her faithfully serving the Lord and never looking back. She said she would certainly do that!
A new school year has officially begun here. We’re a month behind where we would have liked to be, but with the two months of furlough last fall, our school year went wonky. China and the students worked valiantly last year to get it all done in fewer days than called for.
We’re all excited about a new year. China and Leonela will be alternating teaching days; this should help the students learn and practice Spanish better. Each of the students has double in Language, Reading, and Math; one in English, and one in Spanish. They plan to do social studies together as a class; next year will be a science year. It’s a lot of work, but we want them to have both languages and math systems. This is now our third year with this system.
Someone mentioned recently about not hearing about trips to Cusco. A few of the places we had normally gone are now requiring a third vaccine dose to enter, so Cusco trips are on hold until we can arrange that. Caleb made the first step to getting his in Izcuchaca, so that just leaves the rest of us to also get our request into the system. It takes a bit of extra legwork for us since we are foreigners, but it really won’t be that much effort.
The animals have improved tremendously. A couple fellows came by the farm to look at the goats. They had said they wanted to buy some, but then they decided against it. I’m praying that God helps us sell some on Friday.