I definitely do not need to wait this long between blogs. So many things I’m sure I’ll forget but I’m surrendering this process to the Lord and HE will make of it what He sees necessary.
So beginning our first week of school here was very interesting.
Daniel and Lydia are in the same class and I am in there with them as a
teachers’ aid. However, by this week I’ve been doing a lot of teaching
on my own which says a lot about the kids and myself. Their English is
getting better and my Malaynon is getting better too. In the classroom
there are 31 students. They range from 4 yrs to 15 yrs old. The reason
for this is that some of these kids are right at Kindergarten level and
some are above, but most of them are right at it. The reason for the
older kids is that they have never been educated yet. The ati people
have been pushed out of the society here so if they can’t pass a certain
test to enter public school then they cannot go. This school gives them
the opportunity to learn enough and even more to pass the test so that
they may start public school. Now, you can’t tell they are up to 15
because Daniel is almost the biggest kid in the class. They are so mal
nourished that they have not grown like they should, or they are just
While we are at school, James and Sam are usually running errands for
people or taking people to and from the clinic or hospital. This week
James and the people have been working hard to get the mayor’s permit
finished for our school! Everyone here has fallen in love with Sam Sam
and he brightens days wherever he goes!!!
We attended some new feedings last week and they are in beautiful
locations. Here everything is very green and there are lots of rivers.
It’s such a sight to behold. The people here live almost completely off
the land. For instance, on our way down from a very long hike to a
feeding this lady tore off a leaf and stuck it to her forehead. I asked
why and she said it’s good for headache and tummy ache. I should have
grabbed a handful but I didn’t. I also learned to make coconut oil this
week. And we had fresh coconut milk because of that process. Here they
cook with the coconut milk a lot and us the oil for pretty much
everything. When my friend was showing me what to do, after she finished
squeezing the milk from the coconut pieces, she ran her hands through
her hair. She said the milk is very good to nourish, like conditioner.
We made another trip to borocay but this time the boat was a very
nice inclosed ferry. At borocay we got lots of American style foods but
we are mostly taking on the Filipino ways of eating. My kids love the
bananas and mangos here. We eat rice with every meal and lots of
vegetables. Our meats are mostly pork and chicken. My friend, sister
anna, is teaching me lots of ways to make foods here and I haven’t found
anything I don’t like. Daniel eats more than I do these day s and Lydia
has lots of rice with sugar sprinkled on it. Sam loves it all, but
mainly the rice, just by itself.
The kids have made lots of friends and so have I. I am happy to say I
know about as much Malaynon (the language here) as a two year old. I’m
working very hard to learn. I have a notepad I keep with me to write
down phrases and words I’m learning. I’ve learned enough that I can
actually teach all alone!! My issues come when the kids are telling on
each other, then I need some help. James is learning a lot from me and
the kids are just picking up things as we go.
It’s a cooler time of year here right now. It’s about 70 at night and
80 during the day. It’s still very very very humid but we seem to all
be getting used to it. We sleep with the ac on in our bedroom at night
but no ac during the day. We have windows open and fans running. We
moved the kids’ bed into our room so all five of us are in there,
Filipino style. I like that better anyway.
We had a 4 yr anniversary celebration for the radio ministry here,
last Sunday. There we over 300 people who attended and it was an awesome
time to give praise to the work God is doing here. Our church in Cugon
had and choir that sang (young people) and Rick Holden brought the
message.2 young men gave their lives to Christ!! It was very cool!! I
got to sing with my friend, sister anna’s group. I have just jumped
right in here and I love it.
There are a few kids here I’m pretty sure will end up being our
children forever but all of them have made their way into our hearts.
There is nothing like holding a child, knowing they have no mother to
hold them and that God has appointed you for that moment in their life.
Or, filling their bowl with food and seeing their face light up. Who
needs a thank you after that!?!
At the feedings the food are one pot sort of meals. Mainly rice, with
veggies and chicken. There is enough to feed the kids and their
families and these feedings cost anywhere from $10 to $25 depending on
the needs at each location. This feeds around 40-80 people. We also have
coloring sheets for the kids and a multivitamin for them (the chewy
kind). All of this meets such a small need for them, but at the same
time it’s huge!! I’ve never been more fulfilled in my entire life, just
by seeing their grateful faces. I’ve never seen a kid here say “no, I
don’t like that” as a matter of fact they usually come back for seconds
I want to close this blog by saying Thank You/Salamat!! Without you
and your prayers and financial support, we would not be here. I hope you
know just how important you are to the work God is doing over here. I
wish you all had the chance to join us, even for a little while, just to
see the awesomeness He is doing here. I feel as though our family has
so many areas in which God is using us here and none of that would be
possible without your obedience to HIM. WE praise Him and give Him all
the honor and Glory for everything and every day.