Sunday, July 30, 2006

music

Hello everyone! I am posting once again before we head back to Cebu today...where we have limited access to the internet. Last night we attend Vertical Youth at the Atrium. Bird shared his testimony and a message on Jonah...it was really good (and I am not just saying that cuz he's my husband). Honestly, it was good and the band that played was really great as well. All of the members are great musicians.
This weekend at our discipleship class we had a lot of good discussions about the Holy Spirit and God's guidance in our lives. All of us are learning a lot through this experience and I am very grateful for that. We are now heading back to Cebu where we hope to finish the work the guys started on the neighbor's house and finish painting the bathrooms at Shofar. - Sara T.

skulls and testimonies.

we are getting ready to leave dumaguete in a few hours. things went well here this weekend. josh was able to do a LIVE radio interview with tom fri morning, did you hear it? it went well i am told. my wife gave her testimony on sunday morning at church...i gave mine at 'vertical youth' (james' youth outreach) sunday night. i guess people like to hear testimonies here. we hope to finish the home reconstruction project this week. just wait till you see pictures..it has been an exciting project...please pray for a good outcome. we will also be doing many projects around shofar, some bigger than others, and a retreat in dumaguete this weekend unless things need to be changed (which is ALWAYS a possibility here, and not uncommon).
last weekend i went to a cemetary several hours up the coast. did i tell you about this already? it was maybe the neatest place ive ever been. bones and skulls everywhere. every tomb was a work of art. i was the only one that went in, everyone else was waiting in the truck so i needed to hurry, but i couldve stayed over night and been ok with that. i took some snapshots...theyre neat. this cemetary is a place worth checking out for future teams...
i am asking you to please pray for me and the rest of the team that we will finish this trip strong. we often find ourselves thinking of our return, but we've still got lots to do here. home will come soon enough...we need to stay focused. that is critical. thanks...we are all blessed by you.

In The Projects

No, we're not living in the projects, we are doing projects. While up at Shofar we're doing various projects, one of which is redoing a local families house. This isn't the home make over thing, this is more of the make the home kind of project. Their house was made of sticks and used thin wood. The roof was partially good metal, but partially rusted out metal and plastic bags.

I don't have a lot of time to go into detail about what we did, and we're not totally done yet, but here are a few pictures of what's been happening on it.

Friday, July 28, 2006

salamat

Salamat (Thank You) to all of you who have been reading and commenting on our blogs. It is a lot of fun to read your comments and know that you are interested as to the work we are doing here. I wish I could put pictures on here but it takes forever...but you will get to see them at the camp out. I am really looking forward to seeing everyone again at the camp out. We only have about 3 1/2 weeks left so I am praying for perserverance and that we would finish well the ministry we have started here.
Next weekend we will have our retreat in Dumagete at a beautiful camp. I am very excited to get to room with the girls that are in our class and get more of a chance to fellowship with them. What else can I say....the guys have been working on rebuilding a couple's home near Shofar. They are doing a great job!! Sara and I made lunch for the workers and family one day. It is nice to be able to bless them and show them God's love. Next Tuesday I get to go there to work too!
Teaching in the schools has been an interesting experience for us because it is nothing like the schools in America! One of the schools is a two room school house for grades 1-6. A lot of the times the kids just come and go as they please but I am glad that most of them make an effort to come when we are there. One boy brought us pineapples last week. Teaching in the schools has forced me to learn more of their language so if you are reading this and you will be coming here one day...I encourgae you to start learning their language today! They really enjoy it and respect the fact that we are making an effort to speak their language. Every word that we learned has helped us. So far we have taught the kids about creation, Jonah, Noah, and Daniel.
So besides building, teaching in the schools, and teaching discipleship class we have been repainting Shofar and fixing up odds and ends their to complete the building. What a privelege it has been to be here and fellowship with these awesome people!

Chocolate crinkles 'n kapi

Kapi...that's Cebuano for coffee, and chocolate crinkles are one of our favorite cookies to have as a snack during discipleship class in Dumaguete. I'm ashamed to admit it, but we have ALL been drinking kapi on occasion on this trip (yes, even Josh, Bird, and I...the die hard non coffee drinkers!) Of course lots of cream and sugar are required. Tim would be so proud!

Sara and I are sitting in the internet cafe right now e-mailing and such while the guys are out making stops at a few hardware stores. I like the change from Lutopan to Dumaguete every other weekend. Dumaguete gives us a taste of city living and the discipleship class here is basically all very young students (mostly University age which is 16-20 here) while Lutopan is mountain living and the discipleship students range in age from about 30-75! We are working on getting all the details together for a retreat with the Dumaguete class next weekend. Please pray for us that everything would fall into place.

Getting to be here for 3 months is so neat. With the work we are doing in the schools, we sometimes see the teachers or students as we are going about our daily errands and activities, whether it be as they are whizzing by on a motorcycle or when we are driving past their houses in the truck. It's great that we have relationships with them and are feeling like part of the community. That's about it for now. We love reading all the comments that everyone is posting!

a big mistake

today in dumaguete we went to the bureau of immigration to get our visa's extended. we needed to photocopy something, so josh and sara huhmann went next door to make them. when they left, the man who was helping us asked my wife and i if they were our children. it was dreadful.

Monday, July 24, 2006

weekend at bogo

last week we began building (tearing apart and RE-building) a house down the road from us. we have completed some but not all of what we have intended to do, and so far it is looking nice. we will continue working early this week, and finish the work asap to begin another project. this weekend was spent at a resort near bogo (at the top of the island). we had a great time. it was good to relax. this weekend marks the halfway point (roughly) of our stay in the philippines. hard to believe we are on the downhill side now. please continue to pray for us that the work we are doing will not be hindered and that we can accomplish much before our return. we all miss you and are thinking of you often.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

chuckie...good.

everything is well here. all of us are staying healthy...no major illnesses or anything (except for a giant mosquito bite i had on my forhead. he got me while i was sleeping...sara killed him in the morning. blood everywhere). the trip is almost half over i think. josh and i are doing alot of teaching which can be exhausting and rewarding simultaneously. yesterday james told me that this class was going very well, that there is nothing like this (a two month discipleship training class) in the entire city (dumaguete). he said the students are learning much and are excited to hear more. its quite a blessing to have students like them. today we will return by ferry to cebu island where we will begin doing some work on a home just down the road. a family of 9 living in a 13x14 foot hut who is greatful to recieve some help. i am honestly nervous to begin tearing into someone elses house, but am excited also. please pray for all of us concerning this project.

HOW TO: Comment

I read one of Erik's comments and thought that it would be worth posting on the main page how to post a comment without a blogger account. When you click on comments, you'll see on the right side, three small circle select boxes. You can choose Anonymous, Other, or Blogger. If you don't have a blogger account just click on the circle next to 'Other'. You can type in your name or whatever and it will let you post.

Josh

Things That Are Brown

On Sunday morning we all got to experience our first brown out here in the Philippines. From 8:00 a.m. to approximately 4:00 p.m., the city of Dumaguete was without power which meant the morning church service we went to was by candle light! It was neat because with no power, we were back to the basics for everything from worship music to lighting. I had the opportunity to share my testimony and Josh taught on the difference between being an almost Christian and a Christian. We also have the last session of the weekend discipleship classes on Sunday afternoons, and part way through the session the lights and air conditioning kicked back on – ahhhhh. Sunday night we all went to Vertical Youth which is a ministry for University students that meets weekly. They have lots of music and then Sara T. got to share her testimony and Bird taught about salvation. Sundays in Dumaguete are busy, but it’s awesome to be a part of the great things that God is doing here.

Oh yeah. Did I mention that Chuckie is my new best friend? One of the things I miss most about Wisconsin is the cheese and MILK! Chuckie is a popular chocolate milk drink here (thanks, Nestle!), and it’s the closest thing I can get to milk to satisfy my cravings. Yum….I could really go for a cold box of it right now!

Saturday, July 15, 2006

hello

We are in Dumagete right now teaching the Discipleship class. Today we ventured to the Forest Camp while searching for a place to have our retreat here in Dumagete in a few weeks. It was very beautiful but we'll see if that is where we have it. The last retreat in Lutopan went great and seemed to bring our group closer together. I want to post more pictures on our blog but at this time I am unable due to the computer. Anyways, thanks for your prayers in regards to the schools. We appreciate it....well I am off to buy noodles for supper.....Sara T.

Monday, July 10, 2006

School

today was our second day at the schools. The school that we were at today was a two room school for grades 1-6 with only one teacher! She is busy!! Most of the parents approved for their children to come to the christian ed classes! So it is going well. We had our first retreat last weekend and it went great! God held off the rain for us and kept the weather perfect. Evelyn (lando's wife) helped prepare the food with Sara and myself. I am very excited to be here and enjoying the culture. Everyone is very friendly and much more relaxed then us Americans. The school of discipleship classes is going well. We have about 15 people in each class and we are having great discussions. One class has mostly people in their 20's and the other one has a wide range of ages from 20 - 72! This weekend we will be off to DUmagete for our third class there. We are also attempting to do some work in the community. So please continue to pray for us. -Sara T.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

A Most Unusual Day

I'm posting this from an email via a treo phone. So if my spelling is poor, please pardon me, the keys are very close togetherWhat made today unusual you may ask, allow me to fill you in. We went to pastor landos church this morning for a very nice service. I don't know what it was about other than the fact the text was Ephesians 4. Its not that I didn't pay attention, I really did, but he taught the entire time in tongues, and I don't have the gift of interpretation. A shame, as he looked like he was preaching really well. Ok, so actually he just preached in cebuano, which I am very limited inAnyway, we came back to shofar bringing with us Oscar and Evelyn a couple who live in nearby Loway, which is probably spelled wrong but is pronounced 'low-eye'. We ate lunch and started working on some stuff at Shofar when Lando showed up. He had gotten a phone call from someone in Loway asking if they could use the truck. He said his church did not own it, but that he could ask us to drive them. Confused yet What had happened is that a 75 year old woman in Loway had a heart attack. The problem is that ambulances will not go to Loway because its so far out of the way of everything. They needed someone to take her to the hospital and lickity-split. What was I going to say, 'no sorry, she's going to have to stay there and die?' We had the only truck around so I jumped in the truck with Lando and we drove to Loway. We got to Loway, went through,
went to the end of the road, and got to her house. There were about 30 people outside the house and she was laying on the bed with a couple of family members inside. They got her into a chair and carried her out to the car where she laid down on a bench with one lady holding her head and another her body. I proceeded to drive down to cebu city acting as ambulance. I might have been speeding a bit if there were speed limits, but Lando said the limit is as fast as you drive, so I did just that Cebu city is nuts. Absolutely crazy, but I made it through the gates of hell with Lando telling me encouraging things like, "This is one of the busiest intersections in town." However to his credit, he never grabbed for the handles that I saw mEventually we got to the hospital. Once there the lady laid in the back of the truck until they finally found a stretcher for her. If, God forbid, I have to go to the hospital, this is not the one I want to go to.I knew that the family would fee the need to pay us, and when they tried to pay Lando told them that we wouldn't take any money, and that we did it
because Jesus loved them. We left, and came home. What a day, most unusual I would say.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

half of the team left us today! i cant believe it!! was this part of the plan? they just got into an airplane and flew away!! what am i supposed to do here? i cant believe it! who do thay think thay are? the nerve.

everything here is fine and dandy. we have been approved by the district superintendant to teach in the area schools. today we sail back to cebu.

Mostly, Really, All the Way Done

This picture will probably be in the church newsletter coming up in a few days, or maybe it's already been out, but I thought for all those not going to JFB I would throw it up for you guys to see. If you look closely at the picture you can see a bulldozer in the background pushing the top of the hill behind us off the mountain. It's now a big flat spot.
If you look even more closely you may see a gray speck on the front column of the building. That is the plaque that was put up on the day we dedicated Shofar. The building is done. The plumbing is in, toilets flush, showers... shower, and it's now home for the next 2 months.

Still working on getting the internet going up at Shofar. My hope is fading, but I'm working on possible alternative methods of posting.

Themes

God seems to work in themes sometimes, perhaps when he's trying to make a message known to us very clearly. As you may know, we've been teaching the same class in Dumaguete as we have been in the Cebu mountains. Sundays are busy days for us when in Dumaguete. It starts with church, where Bird or I, or possibly both at different places, will teach. This Sunday it was Bird teaching. He taught on Eph 6, spiritual warfare, and did a fair job of it.

Later that day during the class one of the sections we spent a good deal of time discussing was Eph 6, you guessed it, spiritual warfare. Sometimes we split the class into men and women's and address issues that may focus more to the genders. I was teaching that section, and the verse we started with was... yep, Eph 6, spiritual warfare.

I'm picking up some kind of theme here. Perhaps. I seem to be very dense sometimes so it's helpful to have God speak clearly.