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Feliz Cumpea˝os

Monday, July 16, 2007

Friday was Veronica┤s birthday (Foreman┤s sister, 24 - which made me realize Marleni and I had been pregnant at the same time, because Ben will be 24 next month) Sunday was Estefani┤s (Marleni┤s now 5-yr-old granddaughter), and today is Foreman┤s. He┤s 33.

Well, the pastor from Rios de Agua Viva was propmpt in getting us, and once again the strength of voices belied the number of people. It was basically the extended family. But they appreciated the visit, the word, and afterwards we had a time of pleasant fellowship with Keke (cake) and soda. One of the sisters remembered me from my first visit to Cordero de Dios in 2003, and didn┤t recognize me due to weight loss and haircut.

The pastor drove us home in his motokar, accompanied by his wife and 2 small boys, one perched in front of him and the other on wife┤s lap. I didn┤t catch their names as they are not common. But the wife is VERY sweet, and we had a nice conversation over the roar of the motokar. About halfway home, the pastor┤s little companion had dozed off, so Abel took him on his lap. I plan to communicate with them via letters (snail mail) through Pastor Johel.

Sunday morning I joined Foreman and family at Nueva Vision, where they had JuCUm (YWAM) missionaries as guests. They did a choreo, a drama (mime), and preached (interpreted by JuCum directorClark Barnard┤s son
Robert). Clark had invited Fore, Yeli, and I to join him and wife Beth at this floating restaurant at the mouth of the Amazon. So we dropped Emanuel off with his Abuela Nora.

The restaurant was definitely charming, even in the drizzly day. But the price was steep - kinda like Red Lobster. I prefer Kikiriki┤s. Still, the experience was enjoyable. And So was the company.

When we got home, I was tired, even though I HAD wanted to go visit Ray, my paralytic friend. Plus the rainy weather made travel a bit more difficult. I ended up flopping for a while. Marleni made more of her famous yucca empanadas and Abel and I enjoyed some while we sat out on the front patio in the cool of the afternoon and awaited our next pastor, Jorge Ahuite. He called at the house to make sure he could get through. He arrived promptly and the 3 of us went to Torre Fuerte. It was early, so we went next door to Pastora Evangelina┤s house to visit a while. She is Esli┤s mother. So she got to know Abel, Esli┤s fellow Soldado de Espera. I┤ll be going to her church tomorrow night, but she still sat in on last night┤s service.

Jorge┤s son led worship. With his humble guitar, he has a real anointing. I shared from the psalms about developing our relationship with the Father so that when the inevitable trials come, we can face them with peace and joy. There was a gringa in the service, a friend of Fore┤s - I believe her name is Rachel - who afterwards thanked me for the encouraging word. She┤s engaged to "the pastor┤s" son, but I wasn┤t sure afterwards if she meant Ahuite┤s or Utia┤s.

After the service, Abel and I went to Kikiriki, where we knew Nueva Vision would be going with their JuCUM guests. Fore told us to meet him there at 9:30. We were early, and then they were late. We had just about finished eating, when they arrived. Fore explained simply that there was a great anointing. Good enough. He and fam sat with us, while others went upstairs. Fore took pains to put me at ease by teasing mercilessly as usual.

We got home after midnight, and I wrote in my journal so I didn┤t hit the hay till one.

I spent this morning in relaxed communion, first with the Lord, then with Abel, then Marleni, then Marleni AND Abel. Then Fore, Yeli, Abel, Yeli┤s helper Veronica (not Fore┤s sis) and I went to a local restaurant to celebrate the birthday boy┤s day. We brought some chicken soup back for Mar, who┤s stomach was off. Oh, China the dog accompanied us and lay under the table at my feet...I obliged her with a couple of bones and the last few gulps of my soup. Walking back home, some dog came charging out at China and put her to yelping - we were afraid he┤d bitten her, but after examination found she┤d just been "mouthed". STILL.

Then Abel, Fore, Yeli and I went to the Plaza de Armas, so Abel and I could confirm our flight to Lima (we┤re on the same one - yay!) next Monday morning...and I paid for the "kids" to go to the local theater for Fantastic 4┤s 2nd movie while I spend the 2 hours here at the internet. Found Dany online, so invited him to join me at THIS cabina.

So that brings us up to present!


Various Activities

Saturday, July 14, 2007

One of the things I┤ve been doing is practiciing a choreography with Yeli and 4 other girls. Marleni has praised my performance as she watches me practice,. I still mess up here and there, but less. Yel i is wonderfully patient with me! And since I┤m liviing there, I start before the others arrive and get some extra practice time. I┤m on my second 2G memory card for the camera, and have been recharging batteries, so hopefully I┤ll be able to have Foreman record the grand event, which will be the Sunday before I leave, the 22.

ANyway, yesterday afternoon I practiced, worked up a good sweat, and took a bath. Esli called later, and I told him since I was approaching broke, we were just hanging out at home, watching some music videos , but he was more than welcome to join us (us being Abel and I, because Fore and Yeli were going to the benefit concert for Omar). So he joined us and he and Abel went to the corner store (BODEGA) to get some popcorn (PALOMITAS) which Esli prepared forus, and we watched Hillsong┤s London Jesus Is dvd, then Elf (in Spanish!) It was a pleasant evening, except that Esli announced he was going to be going on a mission trip , and today is our last day together till I return to Peru (or he gets a visa to the US!)

He came this morning around 8:30 while Abel and I were having Yucca empanadas at Marleni┤s. He joiined us, enjoying her wonderful cooking (so crispy outside!). Then the 3 of us took a motokar for 5 soles to the port of Nanay on the river by the same name, and took a speedboat run by a friend of his, Ever. We went to a native pueblo on the Nanay, just the 4 of us, and for 40 soles they performed 3 dances (one of which they kindly repeated for me because Esli hadnt recorded it┤, in which the women invited me to join them.) The host told us his father is also Evengelical, and he told us the next tiime we come it will be a free performance. (How long does the offer last?)

It was interesting GETTING to the small village - the river is low at this time.We climbed up some log steps (Esli took the lead to hold my hand on the steeeeeeeep ascent). Ever told us that during the rainy season, Nov and Dec, the water is up to the path we walked to the village - they take the boat right into the village. I gotta do Christmas inIquitos one of these years!

I got Abel a souvenir , a little gourd armadillo; Esli opted for a bracelet so he can remember the time we had together as he wears it.

Tonight I speak at Rios de Agua Viva possibly combined with Jehovah Es Mi Pastor; tomorrow night is with Jorge Ahuite┤s church, one I┤d been to last year; Tues with Evangelina┤s church, Rey de Reyes (she┤s Esli┤s NATURAL mom, widow of Pastor Mario Gonzalez )

Oh, yesterday Abel downloaded my first chip to Myspaces - I don┤t know if you can access it from there, but here┤s the link anyway, if you want a sneak preview (still untitled)
So, that┤s it for now. Pray for finances!


Lights of the World

Friday, July 13, 2007

I forgot to mention that yesterday morning before going anywhere, Fore and I walked to Refugio (and I must say I┤m pleased with how far I┤ve come in fitness to trod uphill and down without feeling winded) where between the two of us we made some clips showing the progress and explaining the vision. Will eventually post this to You Tube at my sister Leigh┤s suggestion, as well as try to get something enhanced with music and whatnot - presentation IS important.

Well, the host church remembered and got me (and Abel). The pastor, Wilber Salas, had worked with another missionary previously, so he knew Marleni and Foreman. Anyway, off we went to Branza de Dios, and it was in a section where for whatever reason the electricity was out. We strolled with care over the dark dirt roads, passing various candle lit abodes, till we came to the church where a sister stood outside holding a candle to show the way.

Abel and I sat in front, and during the praise and worship, it sounded like there were many more people than there were in actuality, by the strength and passion of the voices. It wazs fitting that the pastor shared from Matthew about us being the light of the world, and when I went up to speak, I expanded upon that, pointing out how often we think we┤re not much of anything, but look what great influence even one little candle has against the surrounding darkness. Yet we need to be intimately connected to the power source, be it electricity , parafin, or oil - ours of course is Christ Jesus, the Vine without whom we as branches can do nothing.

The host pastor for Saturday was also there, so he knows where to get me; he┤s going to try to coordinate with the other pastor who signed up for that date so they could join up for the evening.

Once again, by the time we got home around 9:30 I was ready to call it a night (haqving spent that day at Quistacocha), but I stayed up till 10 to record in my journal (it┤s not a good idea to wait to long - I forget too easily!)

Today is Fore┤s sister Veronica┤s birthday, so we┤ll be lunching at home. No evening plans - Esl˝i will probably come over and we┤ll chill. There is the benefit event for Omar┤s baby┤s surgery. Foreman told me some people of influence and money in their church got together on Omar┤s behalf and the surgery will be all paid for. Thank you for your prayers on the family┤s behalf!

Other matters for prayer:
There┤s another piece of property adjoinig Refugio that would square it off nicely, which the owner is willing to sell to Fore for $300. Pray for funding. (God has His ways)
Also concerning a possible trip to China with JuCUM (Latin Youth With A Mission) - Fore┤s director would like him (and Yeli if possible) to go to China with a group in the fall. On top of that is Fore┤s desire to get a work visa (green card) so he can personally earn money to invest in Refugio (this is his desire for the upcoming year.)
For myself, just this stupid knee, and also a slight touch of diarrhea (may be something I ate).
Other thatn that, having a great time! Thanks for prayers!


How Excellent Are His Ways

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Well, let┤s see...Went to the radio station with Foreman and Abel Wednesday morning. I used notes from a teaching I┤d given in a few churches in 2004, called ALEGRIA (happiness, in Spanish), taking each letter to describe things to do for happiness. Agradecimiento, gratitude,Leer, Read the Bible; Edificar, edify others; Gozate, rejoice in the LORD; Recordar, Remember all He┤s done for you and also where you were BEFORE knowing Him; Invertir, invest in the Kingdom of God; and Alabar, Praise Him - because He inhabits our praises, and there is fullness of joy in His presence. Each section was followed by a bit of music. Foreman, scanning my notes, nodded hihs approval, and told me he was going to use them some time.

After spending 40 minutes thus, we went to breakfast. The Plaza de Armas was crowded with protesters - I had received notice of the possibility from Al...all peaceful, no problems.After breakfast, we went to look for a battery recharger. I thought Fore had one, but last year I had brought MINE and he used his converter to plug it in. So I got one for him to keep, because my batteries - though I had charged them up before the trip - had lost their charges. Frustrating! So, I┤m all charged up again. Yay.

Then we went to the internet a while, and returned home so Abel and I could join Marleni at Intercessor Erlinda┤s for lunch. But Marleni was delayed, waiting in lines to do something or other (which is why it was Fore and not she who accompanied me to MIC). So I flopped a while, and when she got home the 3 of us took a motokar driven by a brother from the church. Had chicken and rice, but my appetite was down from the heat, and I think the cafe con leche was a little too much on my system at breakfast time.Prior to heading home we stopped to greet a neighbor intercessor, and she prevailed on me to greet her bed-ridden husband, so I prayed for him and departed with a bendicion.

We got home and Esli was there. But I had to practice the choreography with Yeli and the other girls (tho they hadn┤t arrived yet, so Yeli and I worked solo a while). So Esli and Abel chilled together a while.

I┤m so glad that these 2 lads have had this opportunity to know each other, sharing the expeerience of the river trip; they also have similar interests and talents. Esli┤s brother lives in Lima not too far fromAbel, so I know the contact will continue. I had origianlly thought I┤d be building more relationships among the youth from Foreman┤s church, but as the Lord would have it, much of my free time has been spent in the company of these 2 young men, who enjoy my company immensely - even when I┤m not taking them out to dine! But they┤re great companions.

Well, after sweating with Yeli and the girls for a while, I bathed and went with my two boys to the Plaza (Foreman: Where are you going? Me:the Plaza. Fore: What are you going to do? Why? - I dunno...) Well, we got a motokar driven by a bro from Fore┤s church, Hernan, and were dropped off at the Boulevard, because it was too early to go to a restaurant. We strolled and sat and chatted. Then Esli noticed a couple of missionaries with whom he had worked in Arequipa in the south of Peru. He introduced us, and I had a great conversation with Rick, and we shared about our ministries, and he expressed interest in hearing more about Refugio. He has a home for girls in Arequipa, and you could see what a great heart he had for the children who crowded around us with their wares. He bought some candies, but also sent me with 2 girls with a sol each to get them something to eat, as they hadn┤t had anything that day...Abel accompanied me at my request, and I went with them to a vendor where they got a huge plate of rice and an egg each. FYI, 1 sol is worth about 33 cents...I usually figure a third of a dollar. Well, I got Rick┤s email, and then the lads and I strolled to the plaza to sit and visit while we waited for the restaurant to open at 6:30.

We went to the pizza place, but we ordered a dish of ravioli, a 4 cheese calzone, and a pizza, and split it all 3 ways, washed down with Sangria. Some more walking, going to the artisan market afterwards. I got a bracelet for Cass, and an armadillo keyring (carved from an aguaje pit) for Abel. We strolled along a few blocks after that to get a better price on a motokar home. Closer to the Plaza they wanted to charge 6 soles, and I didn┤t want to pay more than 3 or 3.5. We got one for 3, and went home - then I gave Esli a few soles for HIS trip home (he was lothe to leave me so soon, which is why he accompanied us to Fore┤s)

I went almost straight to bed at 9:30, and woke at the New Day Dawning Watch (thank you, Al) and so was in prayer for Peru, for the Church here, till I dozed off again. We had a nice unrushed morning and left for Quistacocha as a family - Fore, Marleni, Yeli, Emanuel, Veronica (who helps care for the baby) and Abel and me. When we arrived at the roadside to get a motokar, Dany pulled up oon his motorcycle, and we invited him, too. So Abel, Mar, and I took one motokar, the girls and baby took another, and Fore rode with Dany. We had a great time at the beach, and I told Mar and the others that really, this was the first time in AGES that I┤ve had anything resembling a vacation, a REAL vacation, resting...(and yet, still ministering by being there and giving THEM a treat too). Abel and Dany enjoyed the zoo while the rest of us swam, and we had lunch there - chicken, fish, juanes...and ice cream (not as good as here). A good time was had by all, and Fore and I went downtown together to take care of this business.

If my host church forgets to get me tonight or can┤t find me, the lads and I will hang out at Fore┤s, put in some worship cd┤s and dvd┤s, and enjoy the Lord┤s and each other┤s company.

Prayer Requests:
Funding - for Refugio; for the camp that Nueva Vision will hold for youth at the end of the month (Metamorphosis); for continued work on Fore┤s house (and mine, heehee); for Fore┤s trip to the US next year and all the details thereof.


New and Renewed Friendships

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Mistake - TOMORROW is radio.

Okay, so, after yest afternoon at internet, Abel suggested rather than go home to get Mrleni, HE could navigate us to the market. Well, bear in mind, he┤s not from Iquitos. But then, along came Brandon, Fore┤s friend, and he suggested a place and negotiated a motokar for us. So I got makings for spaghetti dinner for the youth leaders. While cooking, Esli arrived, and when dinner was ready, I served myself, Abel, and Esli, and left Fore and Yeli to take care of the rest when they were ready.

The 3 of us went out afterwards, going to the Plaza de Armas for another hour on the internet. While online, I chatted with my son Cesar in Lima,
and then saw that a friend from the village of Manacamiri, whom I met in 2003, was onliine. I told him where I was, and he said he was 145 minutes away. I told him to come join us , so he did - Guido arrived and we gave each other a BIIIIG HUG, and I introed him to my sons. We finished up at the internet, then took a stroll in the Plaza, Esli and Abel chatting, and me and Guido. Guido has been studying English to teach it, so whenever we┤ve been online we┤ve chatted in English so I could help him practice. We went to an ice cream place and I tried a new flavor at Guiod┤s suggestion (I can get CHOCOLATE ANY time). We sat in the back away from the noise of the street and went back and forth between Spanish and English.

Guido will be going to Lima in October, and staying not too far from where Esli┤s brother Devy lives - which is also not too far from Abel. I┤m glad to see how well Esli and Abel have connected. They┤ve both been on Encuentro┤s, a Christian retreat similar to Rochester Koinonia (similar to Cursillo, to De Colores, Footsteps, Emmaus Walk, etc). There┤s a real communion in spirit among us. So, anyway, emails were excahnged.

I had to tell Esli last night how very sweet it was of him, how much it meant to me, that he went out of his way in his spare time to come and visit me - even when he doesn┤t talk much, he has said he enjoys just BEING with me - "because I feel such peace", the presence of God. What a blessing!

This morning was free, and lazy...I had been wakeful around 3 am, so spent the time in prayer (okay, Al, what watch is THAT?)... so I ended up having a nap early, before Marleni ,Abel and I went to intercessor Consuelo┤s house for a lunch of fish. Then Abel and I got a motokar to the Plaza for the internet, of course, and I got on the IM and was able to chat with my daughter Abi.

You know how when you┤re I M-ing there are odd juxtapositions of conversation. We were discussing our knees, how mine was bugging me, and Abi┤s was too. But her communiques read "I┤m marinating some chicken breasts..." "Mine too". Of course, I knew she was referring to her knee hurting, but I was laughing at the image, and told her, and we were both wiping our eyes from laughing so hard. Still makes me chuckle thinking of it.

So, right now I┤m just going thru mail, IMÝng with one of my Lima sons, (Cesar), and tonight will be preaching, if they remember to come for me and can find the place in the midst of all the road construction. If not, I┤ve got friends and family to keep me occpied. It┤s pleasant - closest thing I┤ve had to a real vacation in a loooooong time, and yet at the same time I┤m ministering to others. How restful to be doing what the Lord wants you to be doing, in His time!

Tomorrow morning is the radio proagram, then lunch with inteercessor Erlinda, then a trip to Quistacocha, this time with Abel, Esli, Marleni, and her daughter Veronica. THIS time I should be able to swim more, without carrying 3-4 boys around ! Evening is free, so we won┤t have to rush.
Hasta luego!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IMANI4000 7/11/2007 10:45AM

    Good morning, Shel! So glad that your trip is going well -- be blessed, my friend. I thank God that He has put you exactly where you need to be, and that you are getting some rest as well. He takes care of us so well!

Be blessed!

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