Below you’ll find this month’s general life/ministry updates and prayer requests along with photos our kids and I took a couple Saturdays ago as we were all doing chores, giving tutoring classes to Gaby and Josue, and generally participating in various activities around the house as a family.
Special Needs/Early Education Room Created, New Teacher Added
Due to the high costs of our special-needs son Josue’s private transportation and monthly school fees, we made the move to begin educating him at home for about the same cost (while being able to implement several positive changes not only for his benefit but for many others as well). A local Christian woman has been added to our team of laborers as Josue’s full-time tutor/teacher, and we’ve transformed what was our guest room to now be Josue’s classroom! Not only Josue but also 7-year-old Gaby (who also suffers developmental delays due to severe abuse suffered before she arrived at our home) and three little boys from our neighborhood also benefit from our new special needs/early education classroom, thus freeing up our primary teacher (Miss Isis) to focus more intensively on the other students who are more advanced and can already read, write, and participate in a normal classroom environment. Gaby and Josue’s new classroom has floor mats, a mini trampoline, many stuffed animals, balls, art supplies, a little skateboard, whiteboard, and everything else our little munchkins need to continue developing intellectually and emotionally in a safe, fun environment! I think our older kids are jealous!
Breakthroughs of Confession and Repentance
In the past several weeks we have experienced several surprising breakthroughs with our teen daughters in the realm of confession and repentance. We give thanks to God for these incredibly sweet moments of light as we are all coming into a fuller understanding of God’s grace, and we ask that you continue to pray with us for their continued transformation as daughters of the King!
General Health Updates
My struggle with insomnia continues onward with basically zero progress. Each night I’ve been sleeping roughly 1-4 hours and am unable to take naps during the day. I’ve begun seeing a Christian massage therapist/counselor to help detoxify my body and find ways (both physical and spiritual) to manage my stress levels better, but even so I have not been able to attain normal sleep patterns. Darwin and all of our kids are enjoying wonderful health!
We have submitted our very large manila folder full of bank reports, personal recommendation letters, our marriage certificate, proof of purchase of our car, and many other letters/documents to our lawyer in the capital city of Tegucigalpa, and we are officially in the midst of adopting Dayana (15), Gleny (11) and Jason (8), the first three kids to move in with us in November 2013. The cost ended up being higher than we had originally anticipated, but even so we’ve been able to make the first of the three payments. Please pray with us that our Father will provide the funds each step of the way to make their adoption a reality.
April Grocery Bills Cut Back Drastically
Last month we began a rice-and-beans-only fast for an indefinite period of time in an attempt to cut back on what were quickly becoming extremely high grocery bills due to the fact that many people get fed in our kitchen. Well, the fast was a raging success — last month we spent roughly ONE THIRD of what we had previously been spending each month on food products. Right now in the month of May we have continued onward with this fasting mentality, although not as strictly as last month. Please pray with us that we will be able to find sustainable ways to cut back on grocery spending while still investing in a fairly diverse diet for our growing kids.
Darwin, Jennifer and Team of Christian Laborers Studying Danny Silk’s Book “Loving Our Kids on Purpose”
We are currently studying a fantastically dynamic book targeted at parents, teachers and mentors. The process thus far of reading, underlining, etc, and then coming together throughout the week to sit down, pray together, and discuss new insights has been enjoyable and very helpful as we are seeking to grow in effectiveness while also training our beloved laborers in this work the Lord has entrusted us.
May 27 and 28 I will be attending a conference about 5 hours away with Isis (our Primary Teacher/Christian laborer) to continue growing together and learning from other missionaries and laborers across the country who are dedicated to similar labors with at-risk youth. Darwin and I have benefited greatly from attending this annual conference during the last two years, and this year we sensed that Isis and I were to attend while he stayed back with the kids and students.