"For the Lord your God has blessed you in all the work of your hands. He knows your going through this great wilderness. These forty years the Lord your God has been with you. You have lacked nothing."
~ Deuteronomy 2:7 ~
By God’s grace, we have reached the end of our time in language school. Hudson Taylor once said, “'There are three stages to every great work of God; first it is impossible, then it is difficult, then it is done.” We have experienced all three of these stages during the past year, and by God’s grace, we can say “It is done!” Our hearts echo the words of Moses in Deuteronomy 2:7 - we have seen God’s blessing as we have worked on learning Spanish, He knows our path, even the things that we did not expect, He has been with us, and we truly have lacked nothing. We praise God for His help and strength in allowing us to complete this season.
After a short break for Thanksgiving, today we enter our final days of classes. The projects are complete, and final exams are the only outstanding tasks. One week from today, Lisa will graduate from the ICS program (Jeff will not officially graduate since he only took two classes). While our formal language learning is coming to a close, we know that the daily, hands-on learning is about to begin.
This past month has been filled with many good things! Earlier in November, the ICS students put together a special ICS chapel program. This was a special time where we had the opportunity to use what we have been learning. We’ve spent a lot of time with our friends on campus, and we even had the opportunity to cook a typical Ecuadorian meal with the Ecuadorian students. Lisa’s Spanish has progressed to a point that she can go all day speaking without any help. Jeff has been excited with his class on Romans and the amount of times it focuses on the gospel. This has been a spark for him as he prepares to share the fire of the gospel with people in Ecuador. We’ve also been spending a lot of time with our coworkers. On Sunday evenings, we’ve been gathering together to pray for Ecuador. We praise God for the blessing of being near them this semester.
As we prepare for our final exams, we are also packing up our things and preparing to leave. We are sorting through our belongings and making hard decisions on what we want to take and what we will leave behind. It is hard to believe we have been here for almost a year. What a blessing it has been to be settled in our own home for this time. As we prepare to travel again, we are thankful that God goes before us and knows our path. Please pray for us as we say goodbye to our friends from here. Last semester, we didn’t get to know many people because of COVID, but we’ve built some special friendships this semester. We know that we may never see many of these friends again, at least on this side of heaven.
December 8th is graduation day. The following day we will leave Texas and travel to Illinois to visit some of Jeff’s family. From there we travel to Pennsylvania for Christmas and the New Year. We will also make final decisions on our belongings and pack everything for our transition to Ecuador. As we pack, please pray that our hearts will not be attached to material things. We can’t take all of our belongings to Ecuador, so we must be very selective in what we take. Mid-January, we will travel to South Carolina to spend our last few weeks with our church family. Please pray for safety and joyful spirits as we travel. It will be an adjustment for all of us to be in the car again.
Simon Says: Simon has really enjoyed spending time with the Woodfin kids. It will be sad to say goodbye, but Lord-willing we will see them in Ecuador in 2022. He will also have to say goodbye to Mine. He has spent so much time with her this semester, and we are so thankful for her influence on his life during the last year!
Praise and Prayer:
1. Praise: God’s help and blessings as Lisa finishes language school
2. Praise: Opportunities with coworkers this semester
3. Pray: Packing and preparing to leave
4. Pray: Safety in traveling
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