Saturday, April 27, 2013
P had been itching to start a Bible study in his neighborhood. There have been several attempts but all have left him feeling discouraged. At one point it looked as if he had given up the fight, but with renewed strength he began begging God again for a group to lead. This time the doors opened and they opened wide. He now meets every Friday evening at his son and daughter-in-law’s house. The very family members who had been so opposed to the gospel on previous accounts. We met P on the road one weekend. With a smile and a heart overflowing with joy he announced, “They prayed out loud for the first time last night. It was a very sincere prayer to God. They are hearing God’s word and it is changing them.” P’s wife later told me, “Their prayers are straight from their heart.” Jeff recently saw the daughter-in-law as a patient and he asked about the study. She said, “My eyes are open. I was confused about a lot of things. It is like I use to walk in darkness and now I am in the light.”
What Bible study curriculum is changing lives as dramatically as this? What does this lowly farmer with a 5th grade education have to offer the next generation of rural Paraguay? Drum roll, please. Bible stories. Plain and simple. That’s it. Bible stories. Every Friday night Pedro tells a memorized Bible story and leads a discussion on Spiritual matters. I think so often we forget how powerful those stories really are. Instead we rush first to find a curriculum written by a best-selling author or the newest book on the latest Spiritual buzz word. Teaching Bible stories straight from God’s word has been a blessing to many out here. And to be honest, it has been a blessing to me too.
Thursday, April 25, 2013
April 7, 2013
Today we had a wonderful church gathering of people from San Francisco (where we use to live) and Jataity (where we live now) at our house. During the service, a neighbor gave his life to the Lord! Pray for Jeff as he meets weekly with F to disciple him.
Monday, April 22, 2013
April 5, 2013
We had fun celebrating Jeff’s 37th birthday with teammates. The dads took the kids to the little (and I do mean tiny) fair in that is in town this month while the moms made pizzas. When the dads and kids came back we ate dinner and then funnel cake for dessert.
Josiah is a great baby, precious in every way. He’s eating and sleeping well. We weighed him today (at 9 days old) and he is 3kg – so back up to birth weight. He just seems so small, 0-3 month clothing just swallows him up. He has a birth mark on his hand, full lips, blue eyes, and a bit of dark hair. He doesn’t seem to like the pacifier, but has found his thumb on a couple occasions.
At 14 days old he is now 7lbs, 9oz. The past week Josiah has gained a pound - it’s all the milk he is drinking AT NIGHT. This guy hasn’t yet figured out that nighttime is sleep time. The past few nights he has been up every hour. Ug! And I am so not a nap person, even when I am very tired. For one, it’s hard to get the house quiet enough for me to sleep and second, it is hard for me to turn off my brain. But I have been going to bed early, sometimes before the kids. Tyler and I have been reading The Hobbit together in the evening, but I can barely get a couple sentences out before my eye/brain/mouth quit working together.
4-8-13 - I found a pique (a burrowing flea) in Josiah’s toe today! How in the world did he get that? His feet have never touched the ground and he is always in socks or footed pajamas.
Monday, April 15, 2013
It’s always so fun to show off a brand new baby.
first band-aide from that heel stick test
Jean came with us to Asuncion to watch the kids. Kevin and Rebecca were already at the guest house and came right over after a text message went out telling the team that the baby had arrived. Jean had bought sparkling cider for the occasion and we so we celebrated together.
Hannes was also at the guest house and met Josiah Friday morning along with Renee and her two girls who came up Friday morning from Villaricca (3 hours away) to meet Josiah. Andy Bowen, Jonathan Lee and Tony and his boys got to meet Josiah in his first few days up in Asuncion.
A birthday party to celebrate Josiah
Introducing Josiah to the grandparents via skype
Everyone wants a turn holding Josiah
The next couple days after Josiah was born we began working on his papers. With Julia we had such a hard time obtaining a certificate of live birth, but this time it was a breeze, praise God. What we did have trouble with was obtaining a birth certificate. One place insisted on putting Crittenden (my maiden name) de McKissick for his last name. Since our other kids’ certificates have just one last name, we really wanted them to be uniform. Place #2 and #3 were fresh out of certificate sheets. Place #4 said that we had to go to the main office downtown to get a birth certificate because we are foreigners. By that time we were tired of taxis and lugging a newborn around Asuncion that we gave up and went back to the guest house.
On day #7 we left Asuncion and began home. We stayed one night at friends’ house and then continued on to Jataity the following day. Thankfully, the little guy travelled well. And we came home to a clean house..our teammates came over before we arrived and cleaned for us. They left us a welcome home banner and a cake for Josiah (which we all enjoyed).
Friday, April 12, 2013
Brought into the world by Mommy pushing, Daddy catching and baby crying. Praising God for a wonderful experience and a great home delivery!
I feel bad that we weren't decided on a name when the baby came. We have been so indecisive throughout the pregnancy. Frankly, I think we have too many (children’s) opinions! We had talked about Josiah in December, but dismissed it because everyone wasn’t on-board. A couple days before his birth we began talking about the name Josiah again. When he arrived, Ginny (one of the undecided ones) said, “He looks like a Josiah.” By the next day, we were set on the name.
Tuesday, April 9, 2013
Thursday, March 21, 2013
First let me say that my previous SIX pregnancies went 40 weeks with a couple pushing 41 weeks. Tyler was the earliest arrival, arriving 3 days before his due date and Julia went 6 days over her due date. For baby #7 I was as mentally prepared (as prepared as one can be) to go 41 weeks. My labors with all SIX have been at least 24 hours long or more (I was in labor with Julia for 36 hours) and pretty predictable. I expected nothing less this time around. Our plan was to head up to the city – 5 hours away – on the 5thof April to wait out the April 11th due date. But that was just OUR plan. God (and baby) had a different plan and this is how it went....
I woke up leaking some fluid. It wasn’t enough to get excited about, but enough that Jeff wanted to do an ultrasound. All looked good - no dilation and no contractions. I went about my regular business of cleaning, cooking and homeschooling and didn’t give it much thought.
Jeff however was giving it much thought and over lunch he announced that we needed to pack up and head into Asuncion just in case. I have learned that it never wise to argue with my husband or my doctor and seeing that the two were one in the same, I did as was told even though I did not feel that a baby would be coming any time soon.
It took us an hour and a half to get our suitcases packed, our house ready to leave, medical/birthing supplies packed, and plans made for our animals. Not even the bumpy roads leading to civilization produced any ounce of a contraction.
But at 5:00 all my doubts changed as I had my first contraction and my second and third and so on...all 5-10 minutes apart and getting more intense. We arrived at the SIM guest house in Asuncion at 8:00pm and Jeff immediately set the room up as a birthing suite while I tried to get comfortable. With oxygen, ultrasound, Doppler, suction, airway, scissors, suturs, clamps, towels, IV tubing, and medicines all in place.....Doctor Dad was ready for delivery and I was getting there too.
At 10:50pm, after some intense pain and a couple pushes the newest little McKissick was born. He was pretty blue when he arrived; but with some oxygen he pinked up in time. We praise God for another great “home” delivery, for a healthy mama and a beautifully handsome baby boy.
What’s his name? Well, we’re not 100% decided. Maybe he’ll have one by tomorrow.
How thankful we are for Jean (a team mate who lives and hour up the road from us) was able on a moment’s notice travel to Asuncion with us to help with the kids. Of course, the kids were not able to sleep knowing that their baby brother would be arriving soon. They were wide awake when we went in to announce his arrival. Micah was the first to hold him and then he made his way through the arms of each kid. Julia gave him a thumbs up.
Saturday, April 6, 2013
It took us 2 days to drive home from Brazil and without stopping at our house, went straight to an annual team meeting. For me, it doesn’t get any better than finishing up a vacation with a gathering of all my SIM colleagues.
The ladies surprised me with a baby shower! It was a green and blue “about to pop” popcorn shower. So cute. So creative.
And then, I went straight to a Paraguay ladies’ retreat. How encouraging it was to gather with 38 other women (many of whom I did not know) who are also praying fervently for and working diligently at bringing the gospel to Paraguay. We had a wonderful group from Titus Women’s Ministry (state-side) minister to us through worship, God’s word and prayer.