Good morning! This really has been an exciting time for us here in Sucre. Sometimes it seems so hard to “Keep Up”, sharing with you all the things that are going on here in our lives and ministry! Mom wrote yesterday wanting to know if we were still alive… That’s a sign, showing me that I need to do a little bit better in keeping in touch!
There’s so much to write about, but I’ll try to keep it short and to the point so that this post doesn’t get TOO long!
Well, Derrick is now 4 1/2 months old, and is great. He’s pretty well “great” in every way! He’s been healthy; he’s such a happy baby. He just smiles and laughs all of the time. He’s a lot of fun. He just talks up a storm, plays with his voice, the things around him, etc.
We need to take him to the pediatrician soon, he’s also due for some more vaccinations, so we’ll probably have to do that this week some time. He’s put on quite a bit of weight. He’s weighing about 16 lbs now (16 1/2 lbs with his clothes on). We haven’t measured him in quite awhile, but he has grown a lot!
THE REST OF US
When you are a baby, you get all of the attention. Since the rest of us aren’t babies anymore, phenomenal things have to occur to hear much about it! In any case, Erynn and Jordan are doing very well. Erynn will be finishing 2nd grade in a few months, and Jordan is doing a lot better in his pre-kindergarten. He enjoys it a lot, and is learning quite a lot there. He is talking a little better, although he is still not understandable to most everyone except Erynn! He does seem to be putting sentences together now, sometimes of quite a few words… BUT he just doesn’t pronounce things well at all. We realize that he has some sort of speech delay, but we’re praying that it’s just temporary and that it won’t affect him his entire life! One thing we are certain of is that God has everything under his control… so we aren’t too worried. He knows what he’s doing. Norah’s been great. A few weeks ago she got a few of those dizzy spells again, so she took more of those iron pills, and she immediately got better. I guess her body needs more iron than what she is taking in naturally at this time. I figure it has a lot to do with her breastfeeding Derrick.
The ministry, of course, is what is keeping us so busy. We’ve been working hard on starting up quite a few new cell groups, along with consolidating the small groups that have recently opened and reopened. We continue with the 40 days of prayer in the church. Every morning, from 6 to 7 AM we have prayer there. Norah and I are leading this time, so we have to be there early. So we get up about 5:25 am every day, get ourselves and Derrick ready, and then we go and open up. We have about a 20 minute devotional at about 6:30 and usually get back home by about 7:25 in time to get Erynn ready and to school by 8:00 and Jordan to his school by 9:00.
During the past few weeks we’ve had quite a bit of movement in our main team of workers. A couple who has been with us for several years left last week to go live and work in Santa Cruz. We really don’t like for those who work with us to leave us (Of Course), but since we don’t pay most of them for the work they do, we can’t FORCE them to stay. This couple was having some financial problems, and they were offered a job in an orphanage in Santa Cruz, so they ended up taking the job, with our blessing. We took in most of their disciples, and have also promoted several of our disciples’ leaders. We now have 27 people on our main team of leadership between the two of us. I have 12 men, and Norah has 15 women.
We now have two MAJOR events coming up in the next month. From April 3rd to April 6th, we will be holding an evangelistic campaign in our church. I’m kind of jumping in head-first here. We are promoting it as an “Evangelistic Crusade of Healings and Miracles”. We believe that God wants to heal the sick, and as was prophesied in Isaiah 53, “By His stripes, we were healed”. We believe that he died on the cross so that we can have eternal life with him, and a blessed life here on Earth. During the past several months, quite a few people have been healed, and we believe that God wants to do even more. Several of our team of leaders are visiting the main hospital here in Sucre daily. On Friday, 16 people received the Lord while they were there, and on Saturday I was told that 14 received him as their savior also. God is doing a great work during this, time… and we give God all the glory!
We are also preparing for our 3rd annual International Cell-Church Conference that’s coming up from April 24 to the 27th. Pastors Gustavo and Susanna Rossi will be coming again this year from Buenos Aires, Argentina. They now have close to 2000 cell groups under their ministry! It’s exciting to have them come and share their experiences and God’s word with us. We hope, as in years past, to have participants from all around Bolivia.
It’s kind of hard to explain ALL of the things that we do daily here. We have several cell meetings a week, we meet individually with each of our team members monthly, and we have weekly meetings with other pastors in the city. In another meeting, Norah has prayer every Tuesday afternoon with other pastors and leaders from around the city. We have prayer every morning; we seem to be invited to preach in different churches and events almost weekly. We visit and minister to our team’s disciples often. We prepare to teach for each of the events that we have, we are visited about 15 times a week by different people (that’s a rough estimate), we make sure things are running smoothly in the administration of the church. We read and read and prepare and prepare, and visit those who are having babies (which we have many in the church during this time), we take the kids to school and piano lessons (Erynn is taking piano lessons), we take them to visit other kids, and others come here… That’s not counting all of the work it takes to take care of Derrick, and cooking, etc. Man, when I write these things down, I get tired just typing it all out! Anyway, if you wonder what we really do here… there’s a few of the things that I can remember right now!
We ask that you would ALWAYS pray for us. NEVER FORGET! We need God’s help, his blessing and his power daily. I think I’ll end this here. May God bless you in all you do.
Jason, Norah, Erynn, Jordan & Derrick