Testimonies from March 2012
Therefore go…. Hello! This last month has been a quite a challenging month for me here in Peru. I’ve had difficulties at foreign affairs. I’ve been sick. We’ve had big challenges in prison ministry. And after over two years of living here, it feels like the reality of some of the cultural differences is just starting to sink in. But at the same time if you were to ask me if I wanted to return to South Africa tomorrow, I would say “No”. Because I know without a doubt that this is where God has called me to live and to serve for this season. This is the “not-so-romantic-side” of being a missionary. It is the day to day obedience of living by faith. And yet in the midst of it all, God has done some glorious things of which He has permitted me to be a part. I have been privileged to see people’s lives touched and changed. He has also blessed me with a wonderful family here and an incredibly loving and patient husband. I have much to be thankful for. It is not always easy, but it is worth it. Thank you for your prayers and support and for enabling me to be able to obey God and His call upon my life. May He be glorified as we seek to obey and serve Him, even in the not-so-easy times.
A shaking up of things in Prisonâ€Ś. Two weeks ago we had a real shake up in our prison ministry. Around 10pm a large truck arrived at Santa Monica prison and 20 of our ladies were told they had just 5min to gather their things before being moved to the new Virgen de Fatima prison. It was a traumatic experience for them, but perhaps even more traumatic was what was waiting for them at Fatima. Whereas in Santa Monica the girls have a large communal patio with grass and a few trees, in Fatima all the girls have is a concrete courtyard the size of a basketball court, with concrete walls and no shade. It is a very harsh and depressing environment. Many of the girls were just starting to grow in their faith and Mary and I were very aware that they would need encouragement at this time. We have not been given permission to have a group Bible study just yet, but for the time being we are going in to visit the girls individually on a Wednesday morning. In this kind of situation, God really is their only hope. Mary and I are trusting that in the midst of their difficulties, the girls will come to know God like never before. In Santa Monica all is well. Yesterday we were given permission to have a photo day with the girls, so that they can send photos home to their families. Below right is a photo of me with some of the Filipina ladies.
Vision Fest…. Thank you so much for praying for the Vision Fest, God really amazed us with His faithfulness! This was the first event of it’s kind here in Lima, one which sought to gather youth from various churches with the single purpose of worshipping God together. A large focus was on the concept of worship as it is expressed in our service to the poor. More than 700 young people attended the concert and 185 signed up to be a part of the new movement “Fe en Accion” (Faith in Action). “Fe en Accion” seeks to equip young people in the area of social transformation, so that they can go back to their churches and help bring about more effective and lasting changes in their communities. I was privileged to be asked to share my testimony of my experience as a volunteer with World Vision. It was the first time I had spoken in front of so many people in Spanish, but thankfully it went really well (see picture top right). I am also so proud of Jaime. He did such an amazing job organizing the event. It was incredible to see the fruits of his hard work over the last few months. Yet now the real work of training the 185 youth begins. Please trust with us that God will give Jaime and the team wisdom as they put together the curriculum and invest in these young people’s lives.
In the Community…. I continue to enjoy my time serving in the two children’s libraries. I am constantly learning and growing in my know-how of how to work with little ones. As I may have mentioned before, the kids in the Simon Bolivar library really tend to be quite a handful. Two weeks a go I started a good behaviour competition, promising prizes to those who managed to keep all their “good behaviour points” after a month (I subtract points every time on of the kids breaks one of the library rules and add them whenever I see them behaving well). This last Wednesday we had a record 22 children in the library and virtually all of them behaved really well. The older kids are now even helping the younger ones in an attempt to get more points. I am just trusting these new initiatives will become habits over time.
God has also been amazing in His provision for our little libraries. Two weeks ago I received an email from Pastor Wolfgang Beyer saying that there was still finance left over in the Peru mission fund and that he was willing to send it if we needed it. It came at the perfect time! I am now able to buy stationary for the libraries, as well as an illustrated children’s Bible read to the kids. Thank you to all who contributed to the Peru fund all those years back. It is still being a blessing!
Some prayer requests…. The ladies of Fatima…. Please pray for the ladies who have been moved to Fatima prison. Pray that God will give them the grace to keep strong under such difficult conditions. Please also trust with us that we will have favour with the prison authorities and that we will be allowed to start our group Bible Study there soon. Some Prison back-up…. With Mary and myself now going into prison twice a week, we are really needing more people to help us in this ministry. Please pray that God will bring along a godly woman who can help us carry the load. Library wisdom…. Please also continue to pray that God will give me wisdom in the work I am doing with the kids in the libraries. May these children come to know God’s love and goodness.
Thank you…. Thank you so much for standing with us in faith and prayer for the work that God is doing here in Peru. Jaime and I are so thankful for all that you sow into our lives and ministry. Thank you for every encouraging email, every prayer, every gift. May God honour your faithfulness and fill you with joy knowing that lives are being impacted on this side of the world because of you! Much love,
Jaime and Kim
Jaime and I would love to hear from you: please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or you could call on +51 990 50 1552. My skype name is kimmysol.