I’ve been sitting here, looking at those 4 words and wondering where to even start.
Do I start with the first time I met Pastor Remberto and his wife Esther 3 years ago? When they first asked us to come help them? Do I start with the trip down, and how exhausted we already felt (Leo had pulled an all-nighter the night before we left) and how relieved we were to finally get there?
I will start with something that happened this morning, in Ecuador, while I was taking a nature walk with Elias.
There are fruit trees everywhere here, and Elias has discovered the low-hanging, fruit-bearing branches. He is just now learning to say his colors, and I thought that by telling him that we CAN pick the ripe orange fruits, but we CANNOT pick the un-ripe green fruits, he would be ok.
He was not ok. He wanted to pick every single fruit he could reach. When the tree wasn’t giving up it’s unripe fruit very easily, he pulled harder and harder, with no luck. I tried to explain to him that it wouldn’t work, but he is a very determined toddler.
When he couldn’t pick them on his own, he got frustrated, came over to me, took my hand and asked “please!??” He got even more frustrated when I said “no, I’m not going to help you”.
He eventually got so mad that he got some kind of super toddler strength and plucked all 3 of the unripe oranges he could reach.
His tantrum was over and he was happy. Lol!
As I was watching all this unfold, I felt the Lord say “I make all things perfect in my time”.
The timing of our visit to Bolivia was absolutely perfect. For so many reasons.
At first I wasn’t thrilled about not being with family for Elias’ birthday, but as it turns out, celebrating his birthday in Bolivia opened up some much-needed doors between the pastors and a brand-new family to the church.
And, this year, the national conference just happened to be in Cochabamba, so we were not only able to serve at the conference, but help with the worship planning and practices leading up to it.
There were also some brand new musicians that had come to the church just 6 months before, who needed poured into by other musicians.
The timing of everything was perfect.
The church needed sound help. Badly. Leo was able to design exactly what they needed for sound absorption treatments and a volunteer from the church made the frames out of aluminum. I went with the pastor’s wife and the missionary to pick out the perfect color for the walls, and we spent a day at the church stuffing the foam into the frames, hot-gluing the fabric to it and hanging the treatments on the walls.
Then, it was fairly easy to hang the speakers and re-wire the system so that the singers could actually hear themselves over the instruments.
Our nightly worship practices produced a new song that Remberto was able to translate into Quechua! He has been asked more and more to go preach in the “campo”- mountain farms- and the majority of the people there speak Quechua. There isn’t a Vineyard present in those lands yet, but there is hope that even more songs can be written or translated so that the musicians can go with him on outreaches.
We were asked to help with harvesting some food out in the campo, and watching Remberto in that environment was inspiring. He was a whole different person. He was cracking jokes, captivating the farmers there. You could tell that he was truly speaking his heart language, and that the Lord has favor on his relationships on the farms.
Timing is everything on these kinds of trips, and we see God’s faithfulness in EVERY blessed detail.