Wow, SO MUCH happened in the month of February. There is no way to really describe it in a newsletter. The main thing that I saw happen was a group of youth faithfully come almost every single day of the summer to serve God. They would get here sometime as early as 8:30 in the morning on their summer break! A lot of days were very long (some 12 hour days) and super hot, but these youth did an outstanding job. On a daily basis there was normally 11 youth that would help Elar and I. Sometimes we would even have up to 22 people help us during some of our events during the summer. They knocked on thousands of doors, shared the gospel, read the Bible story, explained the Bible verse, lead the games, and the music. They sometimes actually argued over who got to share the gospel in the Bible study. It was an absolute joy to watch them grow in Christ and SHARE Him with others.
One day after Calle 10, our group had to split into 2 taxis because there were too many of us to fit into one. When I got out of my taxi the other youth from the other taxi excitedly told me how they shared the gospel and talked about Jesus, and what we were doing the entire way home to their taxi driver. They were so excited about doing it and my heart couldn’t have been happier. A lot of times it is hard to see the fruits/results here when you are in the midst of everything. It is such a refreshment when God gives me a glimpse of all that HE is doing. This was one of those moments.
Another huge highlight of February was that Jeremiah Smith and Holly Randall came to visit me and pour into me and the ministry. Holly and Jeremiah have become great friends of mine. This was Holly’s 3rd time to Peru and Jeremiah’s 2nd time. They were a great encouragement to me; they are so much fun to be around. They helped in all of our Bible trivia competitions, beach days, and lead a great youth night which included a “snowball fight” in the desert. We are excited for them to come back soon!
Another great joy was that my Peruvian son stayed with me over summer break. He lived with me for about 6 weeks. I have known him and his brother and sister since they lived in the orphanage. I met him when he was 5. Since the first day I met him, he stole my heart, 8 years later he is still so precious to me. His older brother and sister had to work this summer, but he was able to spend the summer with me. It was so neat to watch him participate in everything. He gave his life to Christ at camp and his transformation was immediate. He LOVES sharing the gospel. He even told me one day that he he had been thinking about creative ways to share the gospel, and he had thought up a way using rocks to explain the gospel. His rock idea was a little off and we had to correct it a little bit, but his passion is so great for Jesus. Please pray that his great passion for Jesus would continue now that school has started.
- 2 Pool days
- 14 Bible studies in our weekly neighborhoods. At each Bible study we had water balloon fights using approximately 4,650 balloons in the month of February. In Peru, February is “water balloon fight” month. People literally throw water balloons at each other all during the month sometimes even hitting people they don’t know on purpose. We take advantage of the water balloon fun and add it to all of our weekly Bible studies.
- 2 Sports tournaments
- 6 discipleship classes
- 4 Bible studies/outreach events with water balloon fights in neighborhoods that are prospective Bible study sites
- 2 Beach days with our two discipleship groups
- 1 youth night
- 4 Bible trivia competitions in our 4 weekly bible study neighborhoods
- 2 Bible trivia competitions with our 2 weekly discipleship classes.
The competition had 20 Bible verses that they had to know by memory. It was so impressive because a lot of the kids knew a lot of the verses. Mostly all of our youth knew between 13 to 20 verses by memory. In the youth and adult competition they couldn’t even miss one word or it didn’t count. There was one girl that knew all 20 verses perfectly. I was amazed. The Spanish language has a the word “el” or “la” in front of most of their nouns. They couldn’t even mess up with even one of those tiny words because the competition was so tight. I was so stressed being the judge because the first place winner of the verse competition literally one by two little words out of 20 verses.
I love seeing people memorizing God’s word. We do these competitions to encourage them to really retain what we learn in our weekly Bible studies and to help in their scripture memory. It is so neat seeing the timid ladies in Huaral that I met 7 years ago who would barely speak to me, competing in the competitions and knowing the answers! Praise God only He could accomplish this in the hearts and minds of the People in Peru.
Thanks to your generous support we are able to buy prizes for Bible trivia competitions, buy water balloons, do pool days and so much more. None of this would be possible without the financial and prayer support from each one of you. Thank you SO much!