Dear friends and family,
July in Bolivia is often cold and seems to happen slower because of it. July is when the Bible School students go on vacation, leaving the property empty after a bustling first semester. July is also a month of preparation, getting ready for the next semester, taking trips and relaxing a bit, yet in my case I’m preparing to open a coffee shop in early September. There is a lot upcoming for me and the need for the Lord is stronger than ever. He often allows us to feel overloaded and helpless, since the reality is that we are always in constant need of Him. Our pride and independence try to make us forget this reality, but we do well to humbly look for the Lord in all circumstances.
I pray because I can’t help myself. I pray because I’m helpless. It doesn’t change God – it changes me. – C.S. Lewis
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Housing Project: Just this afternoon I was over on the property, talking with the builders about the construction project and seeing what details need to be finalized in order for a family to move in Monday or Tuesday. The bathroom is almost done, the main floor will be poured on Monday, and the three bedrooms are nearly ready to go. The rest of the kitchen, roofing, etc. will be next, but is not needed at this time. The first family to move will be our students from Uruguay who were split-up in the dorms while the construction was being finalized. The hope is that this housing will give opportunities to many future students and families from out of town to find a safe and comfortable place to live. My dad has been a huge help hauling material with his pickup and guiding the workers.
“Mattix Café”: Rudi Booher and family, who will be running the coffee shop, plan on arriving in Bolivia in late August and we are scheduled to open the first week of September. That means I need to get the place ready with the proper equipment, decor, and furniture, not to mention getting the legal aspect ready and hiring the right people to do the necessary installations. Thankfully all of this is already underway and we are very excited for the opening. May the Lord use this coffee shop as a door to share the gospel, teach good business practice, and bring in income to help support other ministries and national workers.
(Pictured: The rented location for the coffee shop – it will look different soon!)
Trips & Activities: In the last several weeks I took a couple trips to Santa Cruz to speak at several churches, as well as a trip to Villamontes down South. Glad to see the brothers again and get back into a more regular routine after my long trip to the US & Europe in March and Peru in May. I also taught my second module of four at the Bible School, working through “Church History” which every year becomes a larger challenge for me as I continue to learn more on this impossibly large topic. I’m so thankful for the students this year, they are a sharp, attentive group and it makes it so enjoyable to teach them.
(Pictured: A selfie of most of the 2016 student body right before winter break)
Upcoming: From Monday to Thursday I will be in Villamontes, Lord willing, giving five messages on Christian Worldview at a youth conference. I also have a couple more trips scheduled to Santa Cruz to visit a few assemblies and do some shopping for the coffee shop. My preaching at the four churches I help at here in Camiri continues on as usual, preaching Friday’s at my home church, Wednesday at a small Baptist churches, and off and on at two others. So thankful to the Lord for all of these opportunities! I’m also in the process of recording a 31-message study on Revelation at the radio station, from there it will be made available on the website and in CD format.
- For the construction project to continue on smoothly and that we might find a family or student to rent the last available room
- That I might be able to steadily prepare everything for the coffee shop in time for it’s opening
- For my upcoming trips to teach and preach in various places, that Christ might be glorified first and foremost
- That the Lord would fill me with His strength and peace during this important time
Thank you for the prayers, encouragement, and support.