The above pictures are of our newest sister in Christ here in Cochabamba. Camila is a precious young lady who decided to give her life to Christ. Please keep Camila in your prayers as she begins to a new life in Christ!
The other photograph is from the launch as Roland Bowen and I say goodbye to some of the visitors.
Welcome to all. We have heard through the grapevine that many more people are reading our blog than those who leave comments, so it is nice to know you are out there in cyberspace somewhere keeping up with the Lord's body here in Cochabamba.
Since the church launch last month we have been quite busy. I cannot remember everything in chronical order so I will just tell about what comes to mind. One of the greatest blessings is that Katie and Billie have finally gotten permission to enter into the ladies prison to conduct a series of classes about the Bible. The course will take place over 7 sessions. Billie has waited for over 6 years to come to Cochabamba and begin a prison ministry, praise God for her patience and persistence!
Katie and Billie also continue to work with the ladies at Manos con Libertad. They continue to study with the ladies on Wednesdays at the shop and now have also added a Friday afternoon study at Billie's home for those ladies who want to study more in depthly. Katie had considered prison ministry in the states but didn't really know where to begin. It seems as though God is helping her with that! Please pray for God's continued guidance for Katie and Billie as they embark on a great adventure to bring the good news to willing ears and hearts.
Since the launch we have also continued with our English language Bible study on Monday nights. This has been a really good way to maintain contact with our English students after the formal English classes ended before Christmas. Please continue to pray for our contacts. Among the ones who we have been able to spend the most time with are Talia and Omar, please pray that God continues to work through us to minister to these two precious people. Just last night I also began tutoring Talia's son Marcos in English as well. Katie has also begun studying with Talia in Spanish a book about the power of a praying parent. Omar comes to our English devo. on Mondays and also comes weekly for a one on one Bible study with me.
This Monday and Tuesday our team had two days set aside for a review and planning session. It went extremely well, praise God! We had time to review our goals for year one and to see how well we met those goals. We then set aside time to modify our plans for the next three years, especially for the year 2007 now that we have lived in Cochabamba for one year and have learned a great deal. On our second day we had time to talk about team dynamics and how we are getting along as a group. As with any group we have our struggles but everyone had a true spirit of humility and love as talked through some difficult issues. We of course still have room to grow, but every family including the best has room for improvement. We came out very encouraged and excited about working together during this new year. Please continue to pray for our team that we may always grow closer so that we may serve the Lord better.
Our small groups have really seemed to have taken off since the launch as well. One very special couple, Jose and Sonya, have been coming to the small group faithfully on Thursday evenings at the Sandoval's house. This is a couple who found us, because they were looking for a friend's church and came into one of our Sunday services by "mistake". They liked what they saw and heard and have chosen to continue meeting with us. They are coming to services, to small group Bible study, and they also have begun a one on one Bible study with Butch and Trish. Our English student Talia has also been good about coming to the small group Bible study on Thursdays. Please pray for Jose and Sonya that God may soften their hearts and lighten their burdens by leading them to putting Christ on in baptism.
On Friday nights we have begun another activity which has also had a great impact on us as a team and church family. We have begun a Friday night prayer service. We usually try to split the night up into four parts. We start off with a prayer of thanksgiving, we then have a prayer for the sick, we then have a prayer dedicated to four congregations. We select one supporting congregation to pray for, we pray for one mission point other than Cochabamba, we pray for one of the other Bolivian congregations and lastly we pray for the Cochabamba congregation. The last prayer is a special request time for other specific needs of the community or church family. Please pray that this time continues to be Spirit-led and that it may be a time of encouragement to the body and visitors.
In personal news, we have decided to leave our apartment for a house. Nothing in particular was wrong with our apartment, in fact it is the nicest place Katie have ever lived in. We just decided that for the same amount as rent or a little more we could find a house with a yard for Jubilee. We also wanted something that we felt Jubilee can play outdoors and in the surrounding neighborhood when she gets a little older. We were blessed to find a very nice house close to Gary and Laura, Vicente (Bolivian brother in Christ) and one of our regular visitors Priscilla. We are planning to make the move in a little over a week. Please pray that our new home will be used to its utmost potential as a refuge for us and the people we minister to.
To conclude, it is exciting to see how God is working here in Cochabamba. Please know that all those of you who read this blog and lift us up in prayer are a big part of what is happening here. As in all parts of the world we are engaged in a spiritual battle against the powers of darkness, thanks for putting yourselves out there on the battle lines through prayer, we truly cannot do this alone. We love you family!
La Familia Forbess