Dear Pastors and Praying Friends,
We are here! I am so thankful to report that the trip down here went very smoothly. None of our thirteen bags were lost, and we passed through customs with no problem. Maybe they felt sorry for us as we juggled everything. Probably the main challenge of the trip was keeping Josiah entertained. When he slept on the plane, he just stretched out over both our laps. (I think he slept better than either of us did.) The day after we arrived, he learned how to crawl but he can only go backwards, so most of the time he just scoots on his bottom. He is into everything! It is a good thing that all this moving around wears him out, so at night we can have a chance to catch our breath.
What a blessing it is to be here beginning the work that God has called us to do. The first days were almost unreal. In addition to being very tired from traveling, we could hardly believe that we were actually here. Our Spanish has been put to the test right away (Thank the Lord for language school!). We began our Spanish classes on Tuesday, July 22. Please pray for us as we continue this important step in the training process. Please pray for our teachers as well.
We are so grateful for the kindness and hospitality of the missionary families here in Peru. One young couple, Micah and Katie Smith, graciously allowed us to stay in their home and helped us while we were looking for our own house. Julio and Joy Soncco, missionaries here in Arequipa, have helped us much in finding a home and getting settled. During this time of year (winter), there are usually not many houses here available for rent. Thank the Lord that He knows all about the situation and had everything worked out. After less than a week’s time, we were able to view a house that was exactly what we were looking for, in a good area, and available to move into immediately! What a blessing! Also, the rent was a good deal cheaper than we had been expecting. Thank you for praying, and thank the Lord for answered prayer.
We are starting out working in “La Iglesia Bautista Fe” (Faith Baptist Church). It is so encouraging to see the Word of God going forth in power and touching the hearts of people. Just hearing the Spanish preached makes me want to do it myself. Please pray that I will be able to effectively teach and preach in Spanish very soon. Please also be in prayer as the annual Youth Congress is held August 5-8 at the Bible College. We are anticipating the Lord working in a mighty way as hundreds of pastors and young people come out for this week of preaching and training. Sara is doing well getting to know the ladies of the church. Josiah, well he doesn’t know Spanish just yet, but everyone we know loves him and his blond hair blue eyes.
The Lord gave us 3 more supporting churches just before we left. We are now at 95% of our need support. God has marvelously taken care of each need. Thank you for allowing yourselves to be the vessels by which the Lord conveys His blessing.
We see that the job here is great, and we are thankful for I Thessalonians 5:24 which states, “Faithful is He that calleth you, who also will do it.” I am so thankful that God has called us into His service, and I am even more thankful that He is the One Who leads us each step of the way.
May the Lord bless you!
Hasta el proximo (Until next time),
Robert, Sara, and Josiah Stover