Thursday, September 29, 2011


September 17, 2011 Julia stopped nursing this week. Makes me kind of sad. She is not walking…perhaps she is waiting to take her first steps for my family who come in this week. She has, however, learned to skateboard. It is the cutest thing. She gets a knee and arm on the board, the other arm and knee stay on the ground to help her push.
We worked really hard to finish our home schooling year this week. Now we can fully enjoy Oma and Opa’s visit next week.
When we got stuck in the mud coming into Asuncion Sunday, I think Jeff was a bit excited about using the winch for the first time. His excitement was soon dashed when he realized the hitch lock was so corroded that the winch could not be used!
I asked Ginny, “So is Tangled (the movie) a girl movie or do boys like it too?” She said, “Boys can like it too, after all, everyone has hair.” Paul (our colleague) just had a hip replacement. We’d explained the whole surgical process and mechanics of a hip (ball and socket) to the kids. One night Ginny prayed, “God, thank you that Paul has new balls.” I was laughing too hard to pray when my turn came. Micah declared today that his boots were too tight and we would be wearing flip-flops now. These boots have been glued on Micah for 1 ½ years (seriously, it was all he wore). I said, Micah, how will people recognize you?” He answered, “I still have my bathing suit.” This is true. He is going on 1 year of LOVING his bathing suit. He’s already worn 1 out, but thankfully we had a duplicate.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Sunday, September 12, 2011 I lOVE our once a month encuentro Sundays. We had several new families attend, the stories the believers shred were fantastic, the comments were right on, the fellowship was sweet and the food hit the spot. I always walk away so encouraged.

Sunday, September 25, 2011


Saturday, September 10, 2011

We had 35 kids participate in our very first kids’ club today.  Rosi and Pauli did a fabulous job of organizing and leading the group.
David, who Jeff has been teaching the piano, led us in a few songs. 

Next, the kids divided
into 2 groups. One group
watched a DVD on the
Abraham’s life while the
other group colored.
After 30 minutes, they

Then Rosi and Pauli retold the story, practiced the memory verse with kids, and then gave a gospel message.  We had all agreed in our planning meeting that the most important part of kids’ club was for the kids to hear how they can be saved.  The ladies did a great job.

No Paraguayan gathering would be complete without a game of soccer.  Actually the boys played soccer while Jeff taught the girls baseball.  They had a blast.

As I was looking through these pictures, I realized that I am a bit partial to brown eyed, brown haired little girls (in no short supply here!).

After Kids' club Jeff asked Micah what his favorite part of the club was - the movie, coloring, the singing.  He responded, "The girls!"  No doubt that Micah will one day be a heart breaker, he has taken to chasing after the teen girls who adore Micah and chase him right back! 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


September 2, 2011
I hate hate hate to see my children hurting! Today was a sad day in our house – Joshua’s guinea pig (Chewy) and Ginny’s hamster (Spot) died.  We’re not sure of what.  We had a funeral today just before lunch.  Ginny’s other hamster escaped a couple days ago and hasn’t been seen or heard of since (we fear the worse).  Ginny cried several times and Joshua kept his face hard and kept saying, “Don’t talk about it.  Don’t say his name anymore.”

We stll have 3 of Chewy's babies.  Joshua is having a hard time wanting to sell them now. 

Unfortunately we did find the missing hamster about a week later curled up behind the freezer.  Let’s just say it was gross.    

Sunday, September 18, 2011


Saturday (September 3) afternoon 5 adults and 16 kids (I had only invited) packed into my car in order to observe a kid’s club done by fellow SIM missionaries 1 ½ hours.  We spent the same amount of time in the car getting to Yuty as we spent actually in Yuty.  It was a great time.  On the way home, it was exciting to hear the ladies from San Francisco discussing ways to do a kid’s club in our town.  Next week, it was decided, we will have the first one. 

My least favorite part from the trip was cleaning up the throw-up – one kid threw up on the way to Yuty and a different one threw up on the way home.

Saturday, September 17, 2011


By Jeff McKissick

September 16, 2011

I recently learned that a dear patient of mine passed away at 45 years of age.  Ursulina started coming regularly to my clinic about 4 years ago.  She used to come on horseback but a broken leg which healed badly and left her limping mandated someone now bring her by motorcycle.  I had recently diagnosed her as having a molar pregnancy, which in a nutshell is a chromosomal disaster resulting in clusters of fluid filled sacs instead of a normal baby.  It can rarely spread like cancer to nearby or distant sites.  Her uterus rapidly enlarged causing pain and bleeding.  On her very first visit during her pregnancy, it was far too early to tell by ultrasound that anything was awry.  Only her pregnancy test was positive.  She was none too happy with the news and she said her husband wished her to have an abortion.  They could not afford to feed an eleventh child.  I counseled her to not proceed with an abortion and I seized the opportunity to share the gospel with her and pray with her.  Then I gave her a tract full of Scriptures- God’s promises to us who believe in his Son and how we can know him as Lord and Savior.  There is also a short example prayer at the end which one can use as an example to receive Christ as Lord. 

This practice of sharing my faith with patients, according to my secular humanist medical training at a state medical school, is unethical and frowned upon.  It has been deemed inappropriate, in the North American climate of political correctness, religious pluralism and tolerance (except of course for the growing intolerance of biblical Christianity), to “force” one’s beliefs on another.  I don’t force anyone to do anything.  I present the Bible’s perspective, and on that issue there is no shortage of misinformation and distortion from the culture, so that they can make an informed choice.  I call it “the persuasive winning of souls” and I do it as frequently as I can (2 Cor 5:11 - Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men); ( Pro 11:30 The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who wins souls is wise.).  One part of that persuasion is telling Bible stories each workday to the waiting patients.  It was after one of these storying and teaching times at one of her follow-up visits  that Ursulina and I got to talking in depth about her eternal destiny and she told me she had recently accepted Christ an trusted him.

…)       She eventually had a procedure done to evacuate the molar pregnancy before it grew larger.  As the months went by, her symptoms returned, and her obstetrician was not appropriately following her pregnancy hormone levels to detect a recurrence of the molar pregnancy.  I performed another ultrasound and found the uterus still very enlarged and a mass adjacent to her ovary on one side.  I referred her to the obstetrician again for further evaluation.  She was eventually transferred to the national hospital and a hysterectomy and tumor removal  which was performed successfully.  She received many units of blood and then suddenly passed away several days after the operation. 

Valerie Inchley said once, “Perhaps we should not ask whether it is ethically right to witness during a consultation, but whether it is spiritually wrong for the committed Christian not to do so when prompted by the Lord?”  I have no regrets from having shared the good news of my Lord with Ursulina during working hours (Rom 1:16 I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes).  I never ran in to her outside of my clinic hours.  Had I waited for a more opportune or “appropriate” time, I would have never had the chance to speak the name of Jesus to her at all.  As a physician I realize that 100% of my patients, and even the doctor himself, will eventually die.  I can bring temporary relief and comfort, but I can’t stop death.  I believe God can work through me to delay it sometimes, but I cannot stop it.  Only He can.  In John 11:25 Jesus said to Martha, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.”  I feel honored that God gave me the privilege of bringing Ursulina closer to himself.  May we all be looking for more opportunities as the days pass and the Lord’s return draws ever nearer.   Col 4:3 says, “And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ… Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should.  Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.”

Thursday, September 15, 2011

A “MOUSE” in the HOUSE

August 31, 2011

Yesterday I dropped a piece of paper in my kitchen and it flew under the oven. Later that day, Jeff helped me lift the oven and I retrieved the paper. However, my paper now had a corner missing. The jagged markings were unmistakably made by a mouse. We recently suspected mice (without hard evidence, but were afraid to put down poison because Ginny’s hamsters love to escape and we hated the thought of them meeting and early demise. This time, however, the timing was great because we had plans to go out of town. Before we left, we threw poison under the stove and locked the hamsters in the bathroom so if they escaped, at least, they’d be confined and not in danger of eating the pink pellets of death.

While we were gone, I wondered if we’d come home to the stench of dead animal. Our team mates had this problem. Mice had completely taken over their house while on vacation, leaving their droppings everywhere and then dying in hard to find (but easy to smell) places. I did not want that.

Sunday when we entered our house again, I was grateful that there was no smell. But Monday morning as I was making breakfast with Julia on my hip, I smelled something foul. As the kids woke up and trickled into the kitchen one by one, I asked, “Do you smell that?” One thought it smelled of rotten eggs. One speculated that the toilet was backing up. And one even proposed that it was Micah’s feet. I, however, was certain that the smell could only be that of a mouse.

Now we had some detective work to do in order to find exactly where the body was decaying. The kids followed me as we sniffed by the kitchen door – strong smell. We sniffed by the refrigerator – strong smell. We sniffed in the kid’s room – strong smell. We sniffed in the living room – strong smell. The strong smell was everywhere.

During this time, Julia (still on my hip) became increasingly fussy. I paid little attention because I was on a mission to find the source of the smell. It was only when Ginny came close to me that she found the source (she was actually at sniffer-level with the source). “Mom,” she said. “Julia has a nasty diaper.” I immediately took her to the changing table. When I was done, I no longer smelled the “mouse”.

Here’s our “stinker” (Julia at almost 13 months)
6 teeth
Loves being outside
Loves music
Clap and “dances” to music
Perks up when she hears a cell phone (or any other alarm) and puts her hand to her ear and says something like “o” (hello)
Nursing 2 times a day

Monday, September 12, 2011


August 24-26, 2011

Thanks Bowen family for coming to visit (I didn't get a picture of their entire family....just there 2 oldest boys)!
It is alwasy nice to have guests.  This family has hosted us many many times at their house (they too are missionaries in Paraguay, teaching Guarani) and it was nice to finally have them on our turf. 

We had been without water for 4 days. Lightning had struck the town's water pump motor.  Thankfully on the 2nd day of their visit, the water problem was fixed and we were able to take showers, do dishes, mop floors, and do all those other many many many things that require water.

Saturday, September 10, 2011


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

MATE (with an accent on the A)

Jeff did physicals for the high school PE classes. To thank him, they all pitched in and bought
him a really nice, leather covered mate(accent on the a) thermos (a hot tea we drink here).

Monday, September 5, 2011


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Jeff and I are OVERWHELMED BY THE NEEDS of our town (and church). Our church doesn’t have a youth group, but we have tons of youth that come Sunday morning. The elders meet weekly, but the elder’s wives don’t have a sense of purpose (yet). Teenaged pregnancy in our town, unfortunately, is more the norm than not; sexual purity needs to be addressed. Teenaged girls enjoy coming to our house and we really need to provide something more structured.

We desire so much to fix it all…..but we realize that we can’t.

Last term and this past year, we focused on forming bible studies, writing materials for those studies, training elders and deacons, forming relationships, learning the language (those last 2 things being VERY important), homeschooling and keeping up with our growing family. Jeff and I both feel it is the time to address some of these other needs and help the believers begin new ministries. Here’s a sneak preview as to what is coming….

I have been talking with the ladies of our church about beginning a WOMEN’S BIBLE STUDY. We have never met together like this and I was delighted that they were eager to start. Today we had a meeting to flesh out the details. The church ladies will meet once a month and once a month we’ll invite our neighbors. What a great opportunity for the ladies to mentor, prepare and teach. How wonderful, too, that we have a new incentive to reach out to our neighbors. Please pray as we begin our studies in September.

I have been talking with a couple of the ladies about starting a once a month KIDS’ CLUB. Often we find that adults are stuck in their traditions, but kids’ hearts are very open for the gospel. We are hoping that this gives more children an opportunity to hear the Good News. We’re looking to have our first meeting September 10th.

Jeff and I have decided to open our house for YOUTH MEETINGS. We’re not sure how often, what form they will take or what the balance of bible study and games will be, but we’re excited to explore some ideas. Last week we had a fun time playing games with about 15 youth.

Jeff continues to teach David (one of our deacons) the piano. He’s also helping to teach guitar to another church member. We’re hoping to have a CHURCH BAND and work Jeff out of a (musical) job.

I continue to have a heart for teen girls and enjoy having them over to the house for GIRL TIME. I would like to incorporate purity talks with them and I have a few ideas as to how I want to do that. One idea is to have monthly slumber parties where I’d invite just 6 girls at a time. We’d make dinner, play games, watch a movie, do a craft and in between we’d have purity talks. Maybe in the morning Jeff would share with the young ladies from a father’s heart. I am thinking of beginning in October.