Greetings from Peru!Â We are on our 4th day here in the Peru. We are privledged to have Amy Coffee leading the four of us on a mission trip.Â We hope that we are able to give some insightÂ as to what we are feeling and thinking as we experience being on the mission field for the first time.Â Â We are in our 4th day, and have to say, that I hadÂ two main misconceptionsÂ before I left. The first misconceptionÂ being that of theÂ people. The love and sacrifice that the Peruvians are willingÂ to give of themselves amazes me.Â Â The second being that of the missionaries here. I could never have imagined how much the families have given upÂ to come and share the message of Christ.Â During our stay so far, we have been non stop trying to see all the ministries that are going on at once in the city of Arequipa. Â The first day after a 12 hour flight we went to theÂ Christian school at Hunter Baptist church.Â Being that I workÂ with the children at Vision,Â this place really touched my heart. The children were so gratefulÂ for what they had, even though in terms of what we have in the statesÂ they have next to nothing.Â It was very touching how they honored Brother Pearson for his contribution to the school.Â Next, we visited the Monestary, which was the biggest eye opener for us.Â TheÂ Catholic ChurchÂ has really “BRAINWASHED”Â these people into a false beliefÂ that is leading them to Hell.Â I never understood how powerfullÂ Satan’s hold is untilÂ I saw this for myself. Thursday night, we drove up onto the mountain overlooking the city of Arequipa. We were able to see thousands of lights representing hundreds of thousands of people that have not yet beenÂ reached with the truth.Â We next went to the Rehabilitation Center where God is doing a work with the people who are dealing with one of the major problems of the city, alchoholism. To see men, that have lost their jobs and families, trying so hard to get their lives back together; has made me realize that Arequipa has the same problems that we have in the States. They fight the same battles that we fight. We then had the priveledge of attending the graduation Ceremony for the students that attend the Bible College here in Peru.Â We couldÂ see the pride in the faces of the studentsÂ as they haveÂ completed a chapter of their learning and yet, they realized that their ministry was just beginning. TheÂ Bible CollegeÂ was whatÂ I was looking forward to seeing before the trip because we have heard so much about it at Vision. We were able to hear the testimonies of the teachers before the graduation and learn how they too have givenÂ all of their lives and heartsÂ to this ministry.Â Â Before, the Seminary was just a place where the students “disappear to” for months at a time. But now that we have been able to see the amount of effort thatÂ goes into making it a success, and the teachers who truly have a heart for the students, IÂ have an understandingÂ for the training center here atÂ Vision,Â that was never there before. Seeing it in person somehow makes it a reality. I now understand why Pastor Gardner wantsÂ his members, at some point, toÂ visit the mission field. We were able to see the children’s home and how they have been able to take inÂ abandoned or abused children and give them aÂ home that shows themÂ God loves them.Â Now they are able to growÂ in a Christian atmosphere.Â ItÂ brings joy toÂ my heart to know where these children have come from and to know they will grow up and have the opportunity to become missionaries or pastors. Sunday we attended 3 morningÂ services and we were able to hear our Pastor preach in Spanish to the Peruvians he speaks of with such love in the states. That was a special experience for me personally. UntilÂ the next entry, please pray that we will take advantage of this opportunity that God has given to us. Â Â Â Â
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