Monday, May 25, 2009


So I had a close call yesterday. I already called my mom so she is not hearing about this for the first time on my Blog. The bottom line is that my angels were protecting me yesterday because if a few things had happened differently I just might not be here right now.

After church yesterday there was a group of us heading to play a soccer game. We were in my friend’s van and I was sitting next to the doors. The van has two doors that open outwardly…kind of like suicide doors.

Well...we did not secure the doors well and as we were heading down to the game downhill on a very curvy highway we took a curve and the two doors flew open and I flew out of the van too. I am not sure how fast we were going but it was downhill and it felt very fast.

I reacted and grabbed onto one of the doors so that I would not fall onto the highway. And praise God that Paola and my friend Ben sitting next to me reacted and grabbed me as well. I thank God that I did not fall out of the van onto the road because there was a lot of traffic and we were in the left lane so if I had fallen I would have been laying in the middle of the highway.

However, I didn’t come out of the accident without any injuries. I have a pretty bad asphalt burn right below my knee because although I didn’t fall out of the van completely my right leg dragged along the highway for a while before we could slow down and stop. I thank God that I was wearing jeans because the pavement burned holes in my jeans before it burned my leg. My right shoe was burned some and it even burned off my shoe laces.

The bottom line is that I had a close call yesterday. If we had all made a few different movements I might be in Heaven already. But Paola and I are both thankful that it was not my time. God is good and I know that He protected me yesterday. And I know that He has a plan for Paola and I...together.

I was not lucky. I was protected by my Heavenly Father.

Here is a pic of my leg…that black part is the asphalt still burned into my leg…ouch!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Youth trip recap

Great mission trip this past weekend. We had about 15 youth on the trip and a few more folks to make us a group of about 20 people. Friday we left La Paz and arrived to Caranavi after a six hour bus ride. Caranavi is a town of 15,000 people in the jungles of Bolivia.

The orphanage that we visited "Casa de Esperanza" is above the town on the side of a mountain in the jungle. It is hotter and there are way more bugs. No hot water.

About 60 orphans live at the orphanage. On Saturday morning the youth worked with the kids while Paola and I headed down into town to buy food for the orphanage. When I was back home in December I received a donation from some kids at church to support the kids here in Bolivia. That donation along with a few others allowed us to buy the orphanage about $250 worth of badly needed food. As you can imagine, feeding 60 orphans every day is not cheap.

Saturday afternoon we had a program for the kids with singing, dancing, puppets, games and drama. It was great. And Saturday night the youth played more games with kids while Paola and I had a meeting with the directors to talk more about the pressing needs that they have.

On Sunday we went to church with the kids at their church in town. Then we enjoyed a little time in the pool before heading back to La Paz.

I was amazed once again by this orphanage. These kids have so much potential and all they need is an opportunity. Someone to give them a chance. All have been completely abandoned by their earthly families but NOT abandoned by their Heavenly Father. All of us left impacted and changed in some way. Paola and I thank God that He is using us in the lives of the youth right now and we thank Him that we got the chance this past weekend to share His love with kids who really need it.

I was just really reminded that our service to God is worship. Sometimes we think that worshiping on Sundays in church is our only worship. But not true. When we leave our comfort zone and serve God we ARE worshiping Him.

Enjoy this highlight video that I put together of the trip.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Heading out

Well, the hour has arrived for us to leave on our mission trip with the youth.

Please pray for Paola and I, pray for the youth and pray for everyone going with us on our mission trip. We are about 20 people. We are heading to share the love of Christ with some kids who need to feel that love.

Please pray for protection as we travel and for protection against spiritual attack. Please pray that the hearts of the youth would be open to receive what God has planned for each and every one of them. Pray that our time with the orphans will be fruitful and that everything we say and do will be for the glory of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

It is His spirit living inside of us that gives us the strength to go and serve.

And just pray for lives to be changed. There are some new youth going on the trip who need an experience with Christ so please pray for them specifically.

I promise stories and photos when we get back Sunday night.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Back to Caranavi

Well, this Friday Paola and I are heading back to Caranavi. Leaving the mountains and heading back to the jungles of Bolivia. Heading back to Casa de Esperanza orphanage, home to about 60 orphans. I went last year with Pao and her family.

But this time we are heading back with about 15 youth.

How cool it is to see God use us. We are trying to help the youth here get out of their comfort zone. And this weekend we have the perfect opportunity to put into practice what we learn every time we open the Word. We have the chance to carry a substantial donation of food to the orphanage AND through words and actions share the love of Christ with a group of kids who thirst for that love so bad.

They eat it up. And Paola and I just thank and praise God not only for the chance to be used in the lives of the youth but in the lives of the children as well. When I was back home over the holidays I received a donation from some kids at Holy Cross Anglican Church and they asked me to use the donation to support the kids in Bolivia. Well this is the time. We are going to use that donation along with some more donations that I have to purchase food for the orphanage, things like rice, noodles, milk, sugar, etc…

Also, we will be working with the kids, singing with them, dancing with them, sharing puppet shows with them and just hanging out and playing with them. How can you look at the smile of a child and not see the face of God? Especially when the kids have no father and mother. God is their father.

Please pray for us on Friday as we travel to Caranavi and on Sunday as we head back to La Paz. And pray on Saturday and Sunday that all of us will be used by God in a mighty way in the lives of the kids there.

I will have digital camera and video camera in hand so I promise a nice recap when we get back in town next week.

Have a blessed weekend and thank you for following our Blog.

Monday, May 11, 2009

My Beloved

So in my latest email blast to friends and family back home I mentioned that Paola and sang a duet at the all night vigil that we held with the youth at the church recently. Paola has sung and played guitar and piano for most of her life. I play the trumpet and sing only in the shower and while playing Guitar Hero World Tour. Well, Paola has given me the confidence to not just sing in the shower anymore.

Here is a video clip of us at home singing the duet that we sang at the vigil. This is the first time that I have ever sung and put the video on my blog. So I am a little nervous.

But enjoy Paola and I singing. The song is entitled "My Beloved" and although we are singing in Spanish you will find the words in English below the video. Enjoy.

"My Beloved"

How sweet is your love, how fresh are your kisses.
My Beloved
My soul cries out for you, my spirit is ensuring your return.
Come my Beloved let's spend the night in the villages.
Let's see if the vines have budded.

My Beloved, My Beloved
I need you, My Beloved
My Beloved, My Beloved
You are my master, My Beloved

My Beloved Jesus, My Beloved, My Beloved
I need you, My Beloved
My Beloved Jesus, My Beloved, My Beloved
You are my master, My Beloved

Wednesday, May 06, 2009


a. A watch kept during normal sleeping hours.
b. The act or a period of observing; surveillance.

Last Thursday night we held an all night vigil with the youth at the church. The goal was simple: To set aside time and listen to the Lord. And from 10 p.m. to about 7 a.m. the next morning we did just that.

It was a very blessed time. We had some fun but most importantly we worshiped and prayed and tried to listen to the voice of God in our lives. As I have said before God is really using us in the lives of the youth right now. They are very hungry to receive more from God.

At one point early in the morning after a time of worship we gave them the chance to share any words they received from God. And the overwhelming message from God was the same.

He was just happy. He was smiling.
And He said that it had been too long since we stopped.

God was happy that we set aside time on a Thursday night and Friday morning just to seek Him. He said that it is great to show up on Sundays but that is so routine. What is not as routine is to sacrifice a whole evening during the week to seek Him. And He was just happy that we did.

Setting aside time should be a way of life not an occasional thing. And we are all busy. I am struggling with this myself. For example, I thought it would be way easier for two people in love with Christ like Paola and I to set aside time for God. But it turns out that it is a lot harder than I thought. You think you are immune but life and busyness really do get in the way. Even for missionaries.

I guess I am just realizing that I am not yet the spiritual leader that I want to be in my home. Every day is a learning process. Every day God pours His grace and mercy on me hoping that I lean more and more on Him and less and less on my own strength.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Day Trip

Our friends Erlan and Evelyn called us this past Saturday morning and invited us on a day trip. So we left the honking horns of La Paz and headed about two hours outside of the city to get an up close and personal look at one of Bolivia's highest peaks, Mt. Illimani. Paola and I rode in the back of the Land Cruiser the whole way and although the ride was a little uncomfortable at times the view when we finally arrived made it all worth while.

Here are a few pics for you...

Paola looking very Arabian...

Me very happy to be getting out of the city...

The view once we arrived...

The view with us in the photo...

My marketing photo...our ride with the mountain in the background...

The beautiful sunset as we headed home...