Starting a post by saying how busy you are just seems a little ridiculous, I mean who isn't busy? We all have jobs, kids, school, ministry, sometimes all four, so yeah, let's just say God has blessed us abundantly and we are thankful for his providence. The past couple months have been a lesson in being, as Paul would say, content in whatsoever state we are. Through having almost no money last month and being down to our last bag of beans to God giving us enough money to fix the timing belt in the truck, buy a truckload of food, and do a couple medical trips down to the border, we have been able to see God providing for our needs every step of the way.
I'll admit that in the past my faith was probably the size of an amoeba. Sure, I knew that God would provide for his people because it said it in the Bible, but only over the past year have I truly been able to experience God opening the windows of heaven and pouring out his blessings. Over the past six months He's blessed us with a truck we never dreamed we'd be able to afford, a new computer to replace my 2007 iMac, and provided enough money for us to do regular monthly trips to Manykee. Being able to come to a point where I can honestly say that I have faith that God will care for our needs has been an amazing journey. It's definitely not been an easy one, but it's one that I am thankful to be on and one that I look forward to continuing on moving forward.
You don't know how thankful we are for the support of all of our friends and family who have been there to support us, and not just financially. Honestly, money is one of the things that we care least about when it comes to support, what we treasure most is your support spiritually and emotionally. Over the past couple months we have hung out with friends -- and one time an acquaintance we had just met -- and to have them ask if they could pray for us was just amazing. There is something special about being prayed for and it makes us feel cared for and thought of every time we hear someone is praying for us. We also really treasure hearing from you, so if you have a minute feel free to drop us a line and let us know you're still alive :).
Okay, on to the newsy part of the blog.
Due to the volatile nature of Thai regulations regarding immigration and staying in the country I am currently going back to school online to get my BSN. The current situation is making more and more imperative to have higher education in order to get work permits which are required to stay in the country on a more permanent basis. The wonderful thing about the school that I'm doing my BSN through is that I can do it on my own time frame which is really nice because I should be able to finish my entire degree in six or seven months...that is as long as I put in enough time every week. The coursework is primarily writing research papers and I must say that I'm severely out of practice writing. Hopefully over the next month or two my writing will continue to improve to the point where I can actually write a paper that doesn't require Maria taking hours to proofread and edit it :P.
Our trips to the border and the village of Manykee continue on a regular basis. Due to funds we have not been able to go as often as we like, but we have still been able to go on an average of about once a month. The villagers there have been very thankful for the medicine and support that we've been bringing them and we look forward to every trip we get to make to the village. The kids ask us on a routine basis when we are going to Manykee next and are always very excited when we get to go.
During one of our last visits to the village one of the old aunties asked if we would come and do a worship service in the village so we are going to be trying to organize that soon. We are currently hoping to get a DVD player with some speakers to take with us up to the village so that we can play some Christian videos and programs for the kids of the village while we are treating patients.
Do pray for our vehicle, we just got a bunch of work done on it (timing belt, radiator, belts, water pump etc.) and then on Wednesday Maria took it to the grocery store and couldn't get it started. It had been acting like the battery was going dead for a while, but it finally just wouldn't start. Well, we took it to a good mechanic here and he thinks it's the valves or something so hopefully we can get our vehicle back soon without it costing an arm and a leg since I thought it was just going to be an alternator or starter.
For those of you who made it all the way to the end of the blog here are some pictures from one of our recent trips to Manykee :).