You know the year is gonna be good when it starts with a churrasco!!
We were still with Andy’s parents for New Year’s. His Uncle Ben, Aunt Karen and Uncle Bill, Aunt Jean also work at the NTM headquarters in Brazil and live in the same town as his parents. So, we celebrated the New Year with cousins and steak!
It is rainy season here, which means it can be beautiful blue skies one minute and downpour the next. People here keep saying it was such a hot and dry January. Meanwhile, the midwest had an extremely cold and snowy January. Our bodies are so confused. Doesn’t feel like January, but we are enjoying it…rain or shine.
January 6th holds a special place in our hearts, ‘cuz we celebrated 13 years!!! We usually do a night getaway in Chicago. I really missed that time away from kids and cares, but we’re here on this adventure. Together.
As wild and unpredictable as our life can be, it is also fragile and precious. And I don’t want to take a minute for granted. So, we celebrated. With these guys and the first Starbucks in 6 weeks!!
We may not have our snowsuits and sleds, but we do have tropical grass and cardboard!
Oh yes, and we have an above-ground pool!! Try not to be jealous 🙂
Rainy season= Mud.
Rainy season + 3 Boys= Lots of Mud.
Rainy season + 3 Boys + Dirt Road and No Grass Yet= Lots and Lots of Mud.
We all have ups and we have downs. Sometimes, the best thing you can think of is packing up a carry-on and venturing into the mountains of a country where all you know how to say is: “Hello, how are you, my name is, what is your name, would you like to play at our house, thank you, goodbye.” Thankfully, every breath is a second chance.
Our family has been meeting Sunday mornings to read, sing, pray together (footwashing above). Then we have been visiting Brasilian churches (they meet in the evening). This man and his wife are some students here at Peniel. He spoke at a church we visited, and I was just so struck by the Portuguese translation of The Lord is my Shepherd: O Senhor é meu pastor.
It’s easy to feel lost in the transition of looking for a church we can be involved in, but not understanding what the pastor is saying anyway. I was just really thankful for the reminder that we still have the best Pastor (Shepherd) of all! I have everything I need (Psalm 23).
Our boys had a blast at some friends’ birthday party here. Cotton candy may be listed as one of their highlights in Brazil so far 🙂
We are moved in!!! (More to come on this later.)
But cannot tell you how good it feels to be moved. Unpacked. Settled. Home.
The Lord continues to show His banner over me is LOVE. All day. Every day.
The verse that keeps coming to mind is Lamentations 3.22-23:
Because of the Lord’s great LOVE we are not consumed,
for His compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
GREAT is Your faithfulness.
Most nights I collapse into bed, exhausted. Wondering how we will do this again tomorrow. Homeschooling 3 boys…Learning Portuguese…Getting used to things taking longer (no dishwasher or dryer or pre-made foods)…Did I mention mud?? 🙂
BUT every morning, the Lord wakes me up and we do this.
His compassions never ever fail.
SO great is His faithfulness.
Again tomorrow. And again the next day. And again forever!
Oh yeah. AND we saw the ocean. Because when it’s 4 hours away, sometimes you just have to leave it all behind and splash in the waves for a day.
Plus, I had to snap some pics as incentive for friends to visit 🙂