Dear Praying Friends,
It seems an eternity since we last wrote back in April, and for sure these last weeks have been filled with much prayer, discussion and planning. Then when we tried to write, we found our address book had been wiped, something related to the icloud not synching properly, so we’ve spent the past couple weeks trying to build up our distribution list from former emails chains that we have sent out before.
In our April letter we had asked for prayers for Paula, and if you follow us on Facebook, you will know that Paula succumbed to her sickness and is now with our Lord Jesus Christ. As we were in El Salvador at the time, Jan was able to attend the funeral and passages were read from the nawat New Testament that Paula had so faithfully helped to work on. We pray for her three children and grandchildren as they continue to mourn the loss of their dear mother.
Paula’s passing caused us to consider the language work, and ask God for guidance as we continue with all that is planned. Her loss to the team will be greatly felt; she was the first Pipil who joined the team for the translation work and being a strong believer, she was always a great support for checking and rechecking phrases and wording. With her passing, we have a greater sense of urgency about the work with the languages and their use in scripture translation and want to be able to dedicate more time and effort to that.
While we have been praying over the past months, there has been a convergence of factors that we believe are within the orchestrations of God’s will answering our prayers for guidance. A young couple who worked with us when we lived in Africa recently returned to the US. Kristen, the wife, has started work in an adoption agency in northern Virginia. It is a private agency and therefore the fees associated with adopting are very high, but after the many years using the social services system with no further matches, we would like to try one last time if maybe through a different agency God would provide a sibling for Valentina.
So, after discussion with our leadership at SP, we are taking a hiatus from the work there for a period, and will be moving to Virginia. We are at peace with this decision, and believe that even if God doesn’t fulfill all of our desires, that the move is still within His will at this time. Virginia has many Salvadorans living here; and so there is good potential with the language work and may move things along. It is where Kristen’s agency is located, so maybe having a friend on the inside may help. Thirdly, with all the meetings Jan has attended lately in the DC area, he has made many contacts and so can pick up some paid advising with occasional international trips which would help to offset the costs of a private adoption. We feel this gives us the best options for supporting the nawat and lenca language work at this time where there has been so much upheaval in the past months among those groups of people and also our best chance doing everything we can from our side for potentially growing our family.
As we look around the world, it seems to us that there is a greater sense of urgency than ever for believers to reach out to the lost with the news of Christ and His sacrifice for us, and we want to do our part as much as possible to share the gospel with those we’ve been given a burden for; through the use of our professional skills, through making His word available in the heritage language of people we have come to love dearly, and through opening our home if it be His will.
Serving together with you,
Jan, Flor and Valentina