Monday, March 29, 2010

And Then There Were 2...

Hello! = ) Well, let's see, where did we leave off on the last post? As of thursday ive been here an official two months and they've been unlike anything ive ever experienced! This week was packed with a lot of great stuff and also had its share of not too great stuff. The school-ish part of school was fairly normal this week, but there was a lot of talk amongst those same people who were talking about christianity and whatnot last week. For a while i sat there just listening like i did last week and the same guy kept bashing Christianity and saying a lot of stuff that he thought was bad about God. He said he doesnt believe in God or the Devil and that you are born already determined whether you are good or evil. So i got Patricks attention and asked him if there is not God, where do the standards for good and evil come from and he couldnt answer me. Our conversations was cut short cuz class started. They started talking about it again afterwards, but i havent gotten another chance to talk to the same guy. This kid is really just confused and doesnt know what he belives, so please pray that God prepares both of our hearts for His will in the sittuation.
Other than that, school has been pretty normal, we're started to prepare for Bimester tests that start next week. woohoo.... ; D But hey, its another opportunity to watch God's providence work! As far as things at Grupo CEO, theres been a lot of preparation for the teen and pre-teen easter skits. Ive seen them rehearse and they're all taking it seriously which is a blessing to see! i cant wait till service on sunday! The teen service on friday was very good! Bill lead most of it and talked to the kids a little about me and the reason i am here and encouraged them that they can do the same thing i am doing if they just let God work in them! He spoke for about 2 hours and most everyone stayed engaged the whole time. By the time it was finished, we had two boys (Renan and Thiago) and two girls (Leninha and Josefa) volunteer (i use that word a bit loosely) to give a short devotion this coming friday! Please pray that they will seek God to give them courage to share and wisdom! But they're not the only ones who will be speaking on friday. Im also gonna lead the main devotion and some people (bill and erika) are under the impression that i will give said devotion in portuguese! we'll just wait and see about that..
This week was also full of opportunities for me to talk one on one with some of the girls who have been problems with their home and spiritual life, and God blessed me with the words to say to encourage them in His wisdom, but they still need prayer!
Patrick and I spent saturday at the mall with some friends from school and saw The Book of Eli. (fantastic movie with a great message when viewed from the perspective of the Truth!) We had a good time "socializing" (hehe) and hanging out with everyone. Patrick and i had some time to hang out before everyone else showed up so we just sat and talked for a while. We've spent a lot of time together between school and just hanging out, hes gettin to be like a younger (but much taller) brother. haha. Oh, and before we went to the mall, the whole family at lunch at Peixe Vivo (or something along those lines, its a fish place) and i saw our lunch get taken straight out of the water and wacked! crazy stuff! haha.
Sunday, well mostly sunday night, was a little discouraging because of some things that are going on with a couple of the kids not coming to Grupo CEO and choosing to do other things that are gonna lead them down the wrong path. But I've realized something else since the last post. Last week i was talking about how God was showing me that i can do nothing without Him, but this week it hit me that, not only can i do nothing without Him, He can do EVERYTHING without me. (if He wants to) so even though i sometimes dont have the opportunities to talk to some of these kids or the words to say to them, God's Spirit can work in amazing and heart changing ways!
well, i feel like i've written a lot, and still left plenty out, but im gonna wrap it up by echoing the words to a song by Brandon Heath and praise God because He's loving like ive never seen and i am living like i used to dream! so im gonna keep on singing my new song to Him!!
Until Next Time,

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Hmm.. i really dont know what to title this one.. = )

hey there!
well, i am happy to say that God blessed me with another good week down here and it started off with an eye-opener. so i was sitting in class copying the notes down from the board when i heard the kids behind me start talking about Christianity and what you need to do to be saved and what the Bible says about certain things, which i thought was interesting cuz usually the conversations people have during class are rather pointless. lol so im listening to them talk and i realize that one of the guys is saying pretty skeptical things about the bible and salvation, and the other kids who claim to be Christians dont know quite enough of what the Bible says to be able to answer this guys questions. so, if you know me, you know that i was burning to say something! but since i didnt understand all of what is being said, and we were in the middle of class, i decided not to. so, feeling pretty helpless, i went back to writing my notes and could only pray that God would give me another opportunity to share His Truth with those kids. Now, where does the eye-opening part come in? well what God showed me in that situation was that the kids that i am around every day at school are just as much in need of the Truth as the kids i minister to at Grupo CEO. Its a bit different, of course, because at Grupo CEO they come to be taught God's Word and at school they just come to be taught their ABC's and 123's, but that doesnt mean that they dont have questions or a desire for something more. so God laid something on my heart: every day i am going to bring the Portuguese/English Bible that Erika let me use to school and im gonna read it during our break time before i play basketball. What i want you guys reading this to do is pray that the Holy Spirit works in the hearts of the kids who need to hear the Truth and moves them to voice any questions or doubts they have, and of course, that i can show them the answers in Scripture. Its out of my comfort zone for sure, but im pretty sure that went out the window when i stepped on the plane almost 2 months ago. haha.
as for things at Grupo CEO, i heard some upsetting news about one of the kids here. its a tough sittuation that needs a lot of prayer, and i know you guys will do just that. apart from that it has been a good week of ministry and also building relationships. Leninha and Gessica spent the night on thurdsay (we had school off on friday. woohoo!) and today Bill and Erika and us kids went to the beach in Taiba to visit Erikas parents and family. We also went out to a mexican restaurant for dinner which was very much enjoyed by me in particular! (but dont worry dad, it didnt hold a candle to Poncho's!) all in all, it was a good week that God 100% lead me through! Hes shown me once again that i can do nothing, but it is His Spirit working in me that makes a difference and changes hearts!
as for the week to come, i can't wait for more oportunities to serve and invest! and you know whats cool? every single person reading this can do the same thing! here are some overall prayer needs for the people here: choose joy, be open to His voice, realize His perfect love, abandon apathy, be aware of blessings despite hardships. Thanks so much for praying me and all of these people up! God bless!
Until Next Time,

Sunday, March 14, 2010


hey guys! well, i gotta start off by praising God for carrying me through another week! As some of you know, I've been getting my scores from my tests back and by the Grace of God im not doing as badly as i thought i would! haha. technically i have not actually gotten a passing grade on any of the tests, but i havent gotten them all back yet and really, im just greatful for my 5's 4's and 2's!
ive told you before that the most important thing the school wants from me is to see me give my best and socialize with the other students so that i learn more about Brasilian culture, so ive been doing just that! after taking a break from basketball last week because of tests, ive started playing during our break time every day wich is a good way for me to intereact with people outside of my class. i also went to the mall to see a movie yesterday with Patrick and some friends from school! (if you would have told when i was down here back in 2007 that in 3 years i'd be goin to the movies on weekends with people from my Brasilian school, i would have feared for your mental health. God is the one with the plans though!!!) we had a good time, and afterwards Bill (who got to come home from his job early!, Erika, Patrick, Douglas, Amanda, and i all went to eat at Pasta ou Pizza which is pretty much THE place to be as far as pizza is concerned down here! especially their CHOCOLATE pizza! (yeah, i know, im really going without down here on the mission field.
Last week i said that i felt like God was going to open up opportunities for me to talk to some of the teens about stuff thats going on in their lives, and He did! Not only here at Grupo CEO, but also a litle bit with one of the guys from school. Im not going to go into detail on all of them, but i will ask you to keep praying for the teens and that they would realize that no matter what is happening in their lives, nothing can take away the Joy that comes with the Holy Spirit that is working in all of us who believe!
Another one of my "socializations" this week was getting involved in this short Good Samaritan skit that me and a few other teens are presenting tonight at Church. I should actually go and practice one it last time right now so thanks for reading, thanks for praying, and thank You LORD for loving me through!!
Until Next Time,

Saturday, March 6, 2010


hey everyone!
well, after a long week of tests, this weekend couldnt have come fast enough! thanks to all of you who prayed me through this week! I can tell you for a fact that God heard those prayers and gave me a better understanding of the material on my tests! that doesnt mean i passed them all with flying color though... the grading scale here is 1-10, 10 being 100 percent and i found out that i got a 2 on my Literature test! hah! but the best part is, i tied with another kid in my class and got higher than one of the girls! dont ask me how that happened, im just greatful that God is getting me through and im gonna keep giving it my best!
I had a cool opportunity this week to talk with some of the girls at my school about why i came to Brasil. They asked why i chose to study at Collegio Batista and i explained how i know Patrick and his family though missions work that i have done here in the past and i told them that i came to Brasil and i have to study because i am a teenager, but the real reason i am here is to do missions work! it wasnt an incredibly in-depth conversation considering that we were talking with no one around to translate, but im glad i had the chance to tell them why i am here and where my heart is. Praise God!
Today was a work day at the Grupo CEO building and it was really encouraging to see many of the teens and pre-teens show up to help mop, sweep, wash chairs, and organize the building. the place looks great now, with the new floor and everything. But the church buidling is nothing without The Church!
I think this week i am gonna have the opportunity to talk with a couple of the teens here about stuff that is going on in their lives, so pray that 1)i can understand what they're saying! 2) i can communicate to them what God Word says about their sittuation and 3) that im sensetive to the Holy Spirit cuz without that, anything that i say is pointless!
well, i have another long week ahead of me but its filled with opportunities! I can so joyfully say that God has been revealing His love to me and its so incredible to open my eyes and realize how ACTIVE He is! When i read His Word, He reminds me that those promises arent just for people who lived 2000 years ago, they're for me, for this very day that i am living! Hallelujah! Father, you are so worthy of all the praise that i have ever recieved or given and soo much more! Nothing compares to knowing Jesus Christ as my Savior!
Until Next Time,