“It’s soooo hard!”
This isn’t something you’d normally hear me say when describing pioneering. I don’t know why. I mean it is hard. It is exhausting and overwhelming sometimes but I just love it. It doesn’t have to feel hard. There are hard times. Unfruitfulness, is the pioneer’s enemy but seeing one soul changed and growing in Christ is too beautiful to focus on, “it’s hard”. I prefer, ” it’s challenging “. Then you feel like a conqueror, a warrior, a pioneer. See men; women like adventure too!
Bliss and Frustration at Once….?
I’m amazed at what God is doing here in Brazil and can’t wait to see what else is to come. The people are awesome and already feel like family.
The church organized a “Cha de Cozinha”. At first I was kind like, what’s going on? What is it? But basically it’s just an excuse to have a fellowship and have people bring stuff to supply the church’s kitchen.
I love that we have a kitchen and can fellowship at church because Brazilian apartments are tiny. However, we had no kitchen supplies. Surprisingly things like disposable plates, cups and napkins are expensive here so having actual silverware is a blessing!
We played an “ice breaking” game and got to know one another a little better and 3 people gave their testimonies. That, of course, was my favorite part. I couldn’t understand every word of what was being said but I could feel God’s presence on these people. I could see the hope and joy in their hearts because God has redeemed them and they’re hopeful for the future. One couple is planning on making things legit so we should be having our first wedding soon! How amazing!
That was the bliss. Pure. Sweet. Bliss. You can’t find this joy anywhere else. No drug, no relationship, no experience can compete with being right with God and in His will.
Now the frustration…
Portuguese. I know I’ve said this before but….Ahhh! I shouldn’t say Portuguese. I should say, “learning another language”. Ahhh!!! Lol! I have learned A LOT but my goodness, there’s much to be conquered and I get embarrassed saying, “não entende” so many times.
Queue the funny quote….
Here’s one my hubby struggled with…
All laughter aside…
I’m so thankful the people are so patient with me. I gravitate toward one lady, Patricia, she’s such an angel. Instead of moving on and ignoring when I say the infamous “não entende” (I don’t understand) she looks for words I know and tries to speak to me using them. Usually I get the point then we get back to conversing where I’m able. With her around I feel like, ok, I can do this. She’ll also step in and help when I’m speaking to other ladies. See people God provides!
I’m only 35 (I don’t think that’s old?) but my brain seems stuck sometimes. My mind knows what it wants to say but it comes out all wrong. Once my husband was talking to a couple and they asked if he knew anything about Brazil before coming here. “I” thought they had asked if he knew Portuguese before coming here. At least I understood the “before coming here” part. Haha! Anyways, I blurted out, ” No, but he spoke Spanish before coming here “. I was proud of myself but everyone gave me the poor foreigner look and kept talking. They were probably wondering what spanish had to do with Brazil…? Lol! But hey, I’m putting myself out there. There’s probably been plenty more of these moments but I don’t even know it. I’m sure we’ll laugh about it one day when I’m fluent. I haven’t given up though. I’m a trooper. I can do this! (Pep talk in progress) Even though I have a lot to learn I know God has helped me supernaturally. Thanks to my prayers and yours.
My daughter Julia is 12, and I’m so proud of her. She, like me, doesn’t speak Spanish or any other language similar to Portuguese but, unlike me, she’s more confident.
Example: We went to the mall to pick up photos and my husband asked if I wanted to get the photos while he went to another store. I said, “Uh… No thanks. I’ll wait for you.” I just didn’t want to be in an awkward “não entende” moment. Then Julia comes over (she hasn’t heard my cowardice) and says confidently, “Dad, would you like me to go pick up the photos?” Bam! I was so proud and bummed at the same time. She’s 12. I can learn a lot from her. She’ll put herself out there and I admire that about her. And here I am concerned about confusion and being misunderstood and she’s like “I got this”. I vow to be more like Julia. (Love you baby girl)
It’s amazing that God will use us if we’re willing. He doesn’t call the qualified, He qualifies the called, right? Especially if we’re crazy enough to say, “Sure God, I’ll go that nation I’ve never been to and learn a brand new language and culture.” That quote definitely means so much more to me now!
Bliss All the More
While hearing the testimonies during the Cha de Cozinha I felt so privileged to be here and see God move on these precious people. Pioneering is a miracle. Don’t ever forget that. A family restored, a redeemed life, someone giving (or getting) forgiveness, etc, are miracles just as well as seeing the sick get healed.
No matter how overwhelming, frustrating, slow, fast, or heart wrenching this journey can be… it’s the best.