I’ve been doing a really awesome study on the life of David lately. I’m praising the Lord for His grace and bringing things along exactly when I need to hear them. What an encouragement it is to my heart that He knows exactly what I need to hear exactly when I need to hear it, even before I know that I need to hear it! The particular part I was studying this morning was about Jonathan’s covenant to David and his great love for him. The writer of the study referred us to Duet. 7:6-9 to read a bit more about covenants and what they contain, and oh, what an encouragement to my soul it was! I know God was talking to the people of Israel here, but praise Him he has made the same covenant to us through His Son Jesus Christ!! Here’s a pic of how I put it in my Journal:
And, the best part to me is that I can fill that blank in with whatever! I don’t have to labor and work for His love. I have full access to it at all times because of His Son Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit that indwells in me! And not only does He love me, but He redeemed me! I no longer have to say “yes” to Satan and belong to Him. I belong to the Living God and have His Holy Spirit living inside of me, and I will go on to live with the Lord forever.
So, I’ve had a particularly challenging couple of last months. I am especially struggling in the area of language learning/adapting to life here in Paraguay (still! I know, you would think I would have it by now, right?! 😉 ). So this morning, what a great reminder for me that He didn’t choose me because I am awesome at language-learning and can adapt in new cultures easily. . . He chose me because He loved me. He didn’t choose me because I never “blow it” and I walk in the Spirit every moment of every day. . . He chose me because He loved me. He didn’t chose me because I’m so “strong” and “brave” . . . He chose me because He loved me.
And not only does He love me, but what great reminders of His character are contained in those verses as well!! “The Lord your God is God; He is faithful, keeping His covenant of love to a thousand generations…” Ahhhhh. What sweet rest and revival for my soul. I can be at peace, trusting that the Lord that loved me enough to save me for Himself is the same Lord that will continue to love me forever, no matter how many times I blow it.
In other news, things in “normal life” here seem to be moving right along. (Whatever normal is?? Haha!) I was so excited last month to finally receive my 1 year Visa, which means I’ve completed my first step towards being a resident of Paraguay!! Praise the Lord with me!! After this year is up, I’ll apply for my full-residency visa, and then I’ll be legit!! 🙂
I’m continuing on with my grammar classes that are downtown Asunción, which have been really helpful in figuring out how to use the (17!!!) different tenses. I am also done with my first month of teaching Sunday School, which has been a bit of a challenge as well. I do enjoy it, and have been blessed to be able to work and be around kids a bit more. It’s definitely stretching my Spanish skills! But it’s so sweet to hear them talk about truths from God’s Word that we have learned about in class.
Another HUGE praise was that on September 12th, I had my first Paraguayan Birthday! What a blessing it was to be able to celebrate with my friends here all that the Lord has done in the past year. As I reflected on the past year, I can for sure tell you that I have never had so many hard and trying times in my life. But I can also say that I have never been able to see the Lord at work in my heart and life as clearly as I have been in this past year. I know I say it often, but it’s true: I am so thankful that the Lord has given me the privilege of living here in Paraguay and has entrusted me with the task to bringing light into the dark places here.
I am sure that there will be many more hard and trying times to come, but praise the Lord, He is faithful, loving, trustworthy, and strong, I don’t have to fret and be anxious, but can rest in Him. And, that same God that loves me, loves the lost and dying here in Paraguay. That’s why I’m here. That’s why He has led me to this place, thousands of miles away from everything I knew into a place where I didn’t (and sometimes still don’t!) understand a single thing. The Lord not only loves me enough to redeem me through His Son Jesus Christ, but He loves the lost indigenous people of Paraguay too. And I will always be able to look to that and trust in Him for that as well. I’m sure times will be tough, but they have the SAME God loving and fighting for them as I have loving and fighting for me.
Here are some things you could be praying about for me this month:
1. That I would be walking closely with the Lord, trusting in Him and His great love for me. And not only me, but His great love for the world
2. That I would be able to continue to study hard and well, and that I might be able to keep pressing on in my language and culture learning
3. For continued relationship-building opportunities – specifically boldness in partaking in conversations more, as well as finding new ways to make myself “uncomfortable” for the sake of the Gospel.
4. For my Spanish class that I’m taking, as well as the Sunday School class I’m teaching
Thank you so much for the encouragement that you all provide! I’m so thankful to the Lord for you all!