Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas and a bit of an update

Well, here's the pictures I promised in the last blog. You can see Christine's belly a little bit...isn't she cute. We felt the baby kick the other day. Christine from the inside and me from the outside.
Also, wanted to give you a bit of an update for our plans...we'll be going on a retreat to the coast w/ our mission a couple of days after Christmas. From there, we'll be going to Cuenca. Cuenca is Ecuador's 3rd largest city and is supposed to be a beautiful colonial city in the mountains. We'll be sure to let you know about the trip and show some pics. Please pray for our trip and especially that Christine will feel well as we do some travelling. For our Christmas plans, we'll be going to Quito to meet w/ some other missionaries and have Christmas lunch and a Secret Santa gift xchange. Yesterday, Christmas eve, we met w/ some neighbors. I guess that's about it, Merry Christmas, once again.

Merry Christmas and more Peru pics

Hello all and Merry Christmas to all-Christ is born in Bethlehem...may he be born anew in our hearts as well!!! Unfortunately, I don't have any recent pictures...we really haven't been taking many pictures here recently. Maybe we'll try to get one of us and the Christmas tree and put that on tomorrow. For now, I just have some more Peru pics. I think I just might have one more round. I know I took a lot of pics there, this is really just a fraction of them. This first one is at a Quechua market in Piura. We really wanted to go to the area this lady is from, down around Cuzco and Machu Picchu, but didn't. That would have been a much longer and costlier journey. At least we met these folks and go some stuff from there.
This is the image of the Virgin Mary of La Merced on the coast in Paita, Peru. Legend has it that Pirates were trying to cut her head off, miracously they couldn't but they did leave a slash mark on her goes the story. You can't really see the slash mark in this pic, but there she is.
This is the town and port of Paita.
This is the beach over in Colan, not too far from Paita. We hung out at this place in Colan and had lunch. It was quite beautiful. The water was quite cold, though. Went for a nice walk on the beach, relaxed a bit and helped some fishermen w/ their nets.
This is in Colan and is supposed to be the 1st church in South America. I would've thought it would have been on the Caribbean coast some where but maybe I'm wrong. It was beautiful any way.
This was taken over at the bus station in Paita and it says, 'Urinario gratuito', which mean 'free urinal.' Not sure if they were serious or joking, but I kind of think they were joking cause I didn't see anyone use it.

Now, I want to put lyrics from a favorite Christmas carol. A lot times, we hear these songs so many times that we really don't even pay attention to the lyrics. A lot of them have quite a bit of theology and Bible and are quite deep, if we pay attention. Here's one that came to mind. It is one of my favorites but not my very favorite. My favorite is 'O Holy Night,' Christine's is 'Hark the Herald Angels sing.' This brings a question for you to comment on-What is your favorite Christmas carol?? For now, I will italicize some interesting parts of the song and comment on them below and put relevant scriptures.
Hark the Herald Angels Sing, by Charles Wesley
Hark! the herald angels sing,"Glory to the new born King, peace on earth, and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled!" Joyful, all ye nations rise,join the triumph of the skies; with th' angelic host proclaim,"Christ is born in Bethlehem!" Hark! the herald angels sing,"Glory to the new born King!"
Christ, by highest heaven adored; Christ, the everlasting Lord; late in time behold him come, offspring of a virgin's womb. Veiled in flesh the Godhead see; hail th' incarnate Deity, pleased as man with man to dwell, Jesus, our Emmanuel. Hark! the herald angels sing,"Glory to the new born King!"
Hail the heaven-born Prince of Peace! Hail the Son of Righteousness! Light and life to all he brings, risen with healing in his wings. Mild he lays his glory by, born that man no more may die, born to raise the sons of earth, born to give us second birth. Hark! the herald angels sing,"Glory to the new born King!"
Come, Desire of nations, come, fix in us thy humble home; rise, the woman's conquering Seed, bruise in us the serpent's head. Adam's likeness, Lord, efface; stamp thine image in its place. Second Adam from above, Reinstate us in thy love. Hark! the herald angels sing,"Glory to the new born King!"
Adam’s likeness, Lord, efface, Stamp Thine image in its place: Second Adam from above, Reinstate us in Thy love. Let us Thee, though lost, regain, Thee, the Life, the inner man: O, to all Thyself impart, Formed in each believing heart. Hark! the herald angels sing,“Glory to the new born King!"
The first three verses are more well-known but all are quite interesting.
comments on verse 1-God and sinners reconciled, 2 Corinthians 5:18-19-"All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. And he has committed to us the ministry of reconciliation."
verse 2-God with us...there are so many scriptures that speak to this theme but will put a few references here: John 1:1-2, Colossians 1:15-20
verse 3-Philippians 2:6-7-Jesus, who being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.
verse 4 harkens back to a prophecy given to the Serpent (Satan) about how a descendant of the woman would have final victory-here is the verse, Genesis 3:15-"and I (God) will put enmity between you (serpent) and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head and you will strike his heel."

Saturday, December 15, 2007


Well, here are the latest pics of 'Junior.' That's what we're calling him/her for now. We do have potential real names picked out but are waiting to find out the sex. We hope to do so next month. These pics are actually almost 3 weeks old, so baby has grown and developed quite a bit. It was still quite exciting to see the last sonogram. These pictures really don't do what we saw on live video justice. We saw him/her jumping around and he/she kicked one time. We could also hear the hearbeat and see the spinal column, brain and heart. A real miracle from God! I guess this is all till next time. Please continue to pray for mom, dad and 'Junior.'

Here's the captions for the pictures from the top:

1- brand new cyst on Christine's ovary! (not that exciting)
2- baby in gestational sack
3- baby, heart (dark part in the middle of chest), heart beat record (below) this is probably the best pic
4- placenta below baby (left); cervix below baby (right)
5- measurement of spine/head, from back (left); measurement of head to bottom, side view (right)
6- uterine fibroid (tumor) (not exciting either)
Psalm 139:13-16- "For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be."

Friday, December 14, 2007

more recent pics

This is from the World Cup Qualifying match between Ecuador and Venezuela. Venezuela won this one 1-0 by complete luck. It was quite frustrating as it was cold/rainy and then Ecuador lost to a team they should have beaten. In this picture, the fans are holding up a flag of Ecuador that says, Ecuador-my country.
Noe's baptism. He is a believer and a part of the church out in Azcasubi (Ramon's family's church).

These next three pics are from pilgrimage to El Quinche, where the image of the Virgin Mary of Quinche is worshipped. People go on this pilgrimage in search of blessings or help from Mary. We pray that people will find these blessings from God, who we have direct access to.
Others go to Quinche in search of drunkeness and immorality as this picture demonstrates. We saw a lot of guys like this passed out on the side of the road and went to the jail to see a couple more.

This picture is in the main park in Quinche and has a picture of the image of the Virgin of Quinche.

Here's a picture from Francisco's wedding. I've mentioned him before and he's a good friend. He's also a believer. Pray for him and his wife, Nadya as they start their lives together.

Here's a picture that was taken a few days ago with our poinsettia tree. I guess this is all for now. Take care, God bless and keep praying for us and the work here.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

more peru pics

Here are some more pics from the Peru trip. These are from Chiclayo, in the witchcraft section of the market.

These are candles that are supposed to bring good luck, wealth or used to curse others.
Here are some beads, herbs, and I guess what is a voodoo doll.

Here's an assortment of other things as well. The one figure with the outstretched arms is supposed to bring money and luck. He has paper money taped to him. Being in this part of the market was quite an interesting experience and a good opportunity to pray, but it was pretty wicked too. I began to feel kind of sick as I was there and felt better as soon as we left. I ask you all to pray for people that are deceived by these superstitions in Peru and Ecuador. Pray they would find truth and peace with the Living God.
Here's a stretch of road going north between Chiclayo and Piura. It was all desert and quite interesting. There were areas that had dunes like this, but some of the dunes were bigger than this.

This is the main park in Piura, Peru. It was a really interesting town and we enjoyed our time there.
Here's the Peru flag.
I guess this is all for now. I now I need to get some more recent pics on here and we need to do a newsletter. It's just been pretty busy but I hope we get these things done in the next couple of days.