Saturday, April 22, 2006

Lesson from Philipians

This is the lesson I will be giving tomorrow. Perhaps it will be as much of an encouragement to others as it was for me in preparation. God bless!


Message of Philippians ~ Stay United

A theme of unity in the church
A theme of mutual helpfulness
A theme of spiritual maturity
A theme of love demonstrated

Key Passages
4:2-3 Conflict has arisen
2:1-4 Unity and Spiritual Maturity
2:12-16 Unity and Spiritual Maturity as a testimony

How does Paul encourage unity and spiritual maturity among the Philippians.

Paul reminds them he loves them while at the same time giving them advice.
Paul draws the Philippians back to the spirit and attitude of Christ.
Paul tells the Philippians what his prayer and expectation is of them.
Paul admonishes the Philippians to continue on the path towards attaining their goal.
Paul sends help, both physical and spiritual.
Through the transforming power of Christ the Philippians can achieve the goal of a profound love that resembles Christ.


Ø Paul would pray for profound love among us as well.
Ø Profound love is the key to attaining unity and spiritual maturity.
Ø Conflict in the church is normal.
Ø What is not normal is a profoundly loving response to conflict.
Ø God is faithful and will always send us help.
Ø As God is faithful, we too should be faithful in our effort to attain a profound love.
Ø The goal of profound love is attainable through the power of Christ.


Mensaje de Filipenses ~ Mantenerse Unidos

Hay un tema de unidad en la iglesia
Hay un tema de servicio mutuo
Hay un tema de madurez espiritual
Hay un tema de muestras de amor

Pasajes Claves
4:2-3 Hay conflicto
2:1-4 Unidad y Madurez Espiritual
2:12-16 Unidad y Madurez Espiritual como un testimonio

Como logra Pablo promover la unidad y madurez espiritual entre los filipenses.

Se les recuerda a los filipenses que los ama mientras también les da consejos.
Pablo llama la atención de los filipenses al espíritu y actitud de Cristo.
Pablo les explica a los filipenses lo que es su oración y expectativa para ellos.
Pablo anima a los filipenses seguir en el camino hacia lograr la meta.
Pablo envía ayuda, ayuda física como también espiritual.
Por medio del poder para transformar que existe en Cristo, los filipenses pueden lograr la meta de un amor profundo que refleja a Cristo.


Ø Pablo oraría por el amor profundo entre nosotros también.
Ø El amor profundo es el medio por lo cual se logra la unidad y la madurez espiritual.
Ø El conflicto dentro de la iglesia es normal.
Ø Lo que no es normal es reaccionar con amor profundo al conflicto.
Ø Dios es fiel y siempre nos enviara ayuda.
Ø Como Dios es fiel, nosotros también debemos ser fieles en cuanto a nuestro esfuerzo para lograr el amor profundo.
Ø La meta del amor profundo se puede lograr por medio del poder de Cristo.

Carnaval Pics

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Good Health Report

Thank you to all who have been praying specifically for Katie´s health. We are rejoicing and praising God for a good report. Yesterday we went to the doctor for a check on Katie´s condition. We still have to take the results to her regular doctor, but the doctor performing the test said we have nothing to worry about. What a relief. What a blessing. What a gift!!!! We are so thankful. Please continue to lift Katie up in prayer for her health.

On a lighter note, we are also rejoicing with the Custers who just signed on a great apartment in between the building where we and the Sandovals live and the building where the Bulls live. The building is right on the Prado which is the most happening area of Cochabamba. They have an awesome view from their kitchen of the Coronilla Hill and the whole southern section of the city. They will surely post more about it on their blog, go check it out!!

Thanks to all who replied last time. Please feel free to reply as often as you wish.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

April Update

We send our greetings to all from the Garden City of Cochabamba, Bolivia. La Familia Forbess is doing very well. Since the last posting many things have occurred and that would be the reason that so much time has past between updates. We have moved, have gone on two team retreats, have traveled out of the country, have received visitors from the states, and have started Quechua classes.

Our move from the Mustafa’s house to our own apartment occurred on the 13th of March and it has taken from then until now to get our apartment set up. Things in Bolivia tend to take a little bit longer, but we finally have the majority of our furniture, appliances, and curtains. There are still things we are waiting on such as curtains in the living room, a bed frame, an internet connection, a dryer and electricity for one half of our apartment! Despite these little inconveniences we love our home and feel very grateful for the home God has placed us in for this time of our lives. It is a fifth floor apartment in the same building as the Sandoval’s. There are four bedrooms and two bathrooms with plenty of room for any of you who are itching to visit us. There are large windows and beautiful wood floors throughout. We are trying to incorporate as much Bolivian made furnishings as possible so most of the furniture is Bolivian made. The curtains and cloth on the chairs and sofa are toquyo and aguayo both of which are typical Bolivian fabrics. We were blessed this past week to receive our first house guests. Roland and Carol Bowen of the Austin Avenue congregation in Brownwood were here from the 7th to the 12th.

The two team retreats that I mentioned both went very well. The first one was on March 23, 24 and 25. During this time we as team reflected on our past, present and future. We had time to study the Word together, pray together and just spend time visiting and playing games. It was a very enjoyable time for us all and helped us as a team to maintain the close ties that we have already established. The second retreat was a time designed to give us an easy way to all be together with the Bowen’s since we are all in different homes in Cochabamba. We stayed in some very nice cabins about 15 minutes outside of the city. During the second retreat we were able to be spiritually fed by Roland and Carol through Bible study, prayer, and two question and answer periods. We know of many mission teams who wait years for the first visit from supporters, how grateful we were to have the Bowens during our first three months.

The Bowens were some of the first among many planned visits. Before the Bowens we were also blessed to receive a visit from Ken Hines who with his wife Sherry were some of the first missionaries from churches of Christ to ever work in Bolivia. Ken was on a trip to visit the congregation in La Paz and the congregations in Santa Cruz, so he was able to stop over in Cochabamba to spend the weekend with us. Linda Labowski and Lora Johnson who are Katie’s mother and sister plan to visit us beginning on May 7th. The Sandoval’s children Denise and Jonathan and their friend Daniel, will be here when they finish with classes at Harding. The Chesser’s of Austin Avenue will be visiting us in June. There are also some family members of our teammates that are planning visits later in the year. If you are interested in visiting the work please let us know, we would love to have you. A great time to visit would be this coming January when we are planning to have our public launch of the work here in Cochabamba.

Our “vacation” to Peru with Josh and Julie was quick and very interesting. Mainly we went to get our visas renewed to have more time to work out our visa situation. We had received some wrong information that the immigration office in Cocha no longer grants extensions. We later found out the office does offer extensions! We traveled by bus 7 hours to La Paz on March 30. That night we spent the night in La Paz and the following day we took a bus to the town of Copacabana which is right on the Bolivia-Peru border. The scenery was incredible especially going towards Copacabana and Lake Titicaca. At one point all the bus passengers are asked to get out and board small wooden boats to cross one part of Lake Titicaca. While the passengers cross over, the buses which are quite often double-decker also are loaded onto large wooden rafts and cross the lake in the same way. The bus ride there took 3 and a half hours, we got out, crossed the border by foot, took care of our papers on the Peru side and then on the Bolivia side and then got back on the bus just in time to get back to La Paz. The following day we headed back to Cochabamba just in time to get back to see Ken Hines and for Julie to celebrate her birthday with the team. The two little wawas, (Jubilee and Michaela) did awesome as they are already expert travelers. It was fun to seat them together and let them play. It was a crazy trip, but we got our stamp for 90 days praise God and we got to see a little more of Bolivia and even Peru.

The last bit of news for today’s posting is concerning Quechua classes. Of course Butch and Patricia started Quechua quite a while ago at the Runawasi School. Josh and I started Quechua classes last week at Maryknoll. I chose to stay with Maryknoll because many of my favorite Spanish professors turned out to also be the Quechua professors. So far I love studying a new language. It is very different from Spanish and English, although fortunately the Quechua spoken in Cochabamba is more like Quechanol, in other words a mix between Quechua and Spanish. For Quechua purists they must go to places like Cuzco, Peru or places in Ecuador. The Quechua in Bolivia is much more widely spoken and for that reason has been more heavily influenced by Spanish. It is a language that relies heavily on suffixes so words become very complicated very quickly. Another note to any potential visitors: if you have any interest in language study Cochabamba is a great place to come. The Spanish is very standard and the accent is very easy for beginners to understand. As far as Quechua goes, I may never be as fluent in Quechua as I am in Spanish but I am going to give it at least three months of intense study. At the end I should be able to at least converse and have simple Bible studies which is my goal. Even though my Quechua skills are so basic right now, it has already opened up doors to and the Quechua speakers we meet usually seem so happy and shocked as well to hear a North American trying to speak their language. It is our prayer that God blesses us in our language study so that we may reach an even wider circle of people in a more profound way.

Please feel free to send e-mails or post replies regarding our blog entries. We would like to know if it is something our supporters and friends enjoy and how we can make it better. We love you all.

La Familia Forbess