October 2012 Update
Pedro & Stephanie Garcia (2002)
Dear Praying Friends,
Have you ever looked forward to something for so long, only to find that in a blink of an eye it is all over? That is exactly what we experienced this past week as Stephanie's family (parents, sisters and husbands, nieces and nephews) gathered on the island of Chincoteague in Virginia for a family vacation that was many years in the making. What a precious time it was as old memories were relived and new ones were made by the twenty-one of us sharing a beautiful rental home together. On Sunday morning we met in the family room for a special time of worshiping God together through songs, Bible stories, Scripture, skits, and prayer. Each family prepared a unique presentation linked to the theme "The Family of God" and we closed our time together by praying for one another by name - from the youngest to oldest - with laughter and tears. Our hearts are full and grateful for this special gift of time with those we love and miss during our years overseas.
Tomorrow is a new day, however, and the adventure of daily life continues. We feel like a train at full steam ahead, with family members running in all different directions during this second half of furlough. We are sure many of you can relate! Alec and Ian are now attending a Christian pre-school each morning, and they are loving it. Eva, Isabel and Owen are back to the homeschool books with a bit less enthusiasm. Pedro is diligently studying for his upcoming ordination, and Stephanie is scrambling to try and organize "life" and keep up with teaching, chauffering, household tasks and paperwork that never seems to end. This week we hope to schedule passport appointments for the seven of us - one more important task to check off the list before returning to Chile!
We love to hear exciting reports from the ministry in Iquique, which is growing and planning for the future. Please continue to pray for God's blessing and leading in our church there, and for His clear direction and preparation in our lives as we seek to return and serve Him with renewed vision and strength!
Because of Christ,
Pedro & Stephanie
Pedro & Stephanie Garcia
October 8 Update
Years ago there was a song with a chorus that said, "Can you reach my friend? You're the only One who can. Lord, I know that You love him, please help him understand ..." These lyrics came to mind tonight in response to a Facebook posting by one of our unsaved friends in Iquique. Her words reflected sadness and hopelessness as she wrote about climbing the “pyramid” of mental/spiritual evolution. These were her thoughts:
“… in the process of evolution you are ever more alone, meaning the loss of physical company but with a great consciousness … it’s like a pyramid, the base is full of people just “existing” … the higher you climb the pyramid, the more alone you are …”
Her words remind us that the work in Iquique is far from done. As the seasons turn here in the United States, so too we feel our hearts turning back to our place of life and ministry. We are so thankful for the time God has given us to share our hearts with supporting churches and individuals stateside, yet we are eager to continue the work He has for us. Please pray for our friend, and so many like her in Iquique, who are seeking fulfillment in this life apart from Christ.
As you can see by the shortened calendar, our furlough travel schedule is almost complete! This does not mean, however, that life has slowed down too much. Pedro continues to diligently prepare for his upcoming ordination and preaching opportunities. Our little guys, Ian and Alec, have entered pre-school five mornings a week. Four of our kids have had the fun blessing of participating in some community sports during these fall months in Delaware. And the challenge of homeschooling our older three continues! We are truly grateful to those who have specifically prayed for and encouraged us in this area of homeschooling, as it has been one of the hardest transitions of this furlough year. Please continue to pray as we earnestly seek God’s wisdom and direction for our kids’ future schooling upon our return to Chile.
Paperwork, paperwork, paperwork. We arrived to the United States with a lo-o-ong list of paperwork to complete during our months in country. Adoption certificates, birth certificates, Social Security cards, new passports – you name it, we’ve probably worked on it! It has been somewhat time consuming, but we see the end in sight and ask for your prayers for good organization and completion of these items which, while not exciting, are extremely important to our return to Chile.
Good news from a distant land … It has been a joy to talk via Skype with colleagues and church folks from Chile, and to hear how God continues to bring forth fruit! We praise God that it seems He would have our colleagues Hugo and Débora Armijo remain with the ministry in Iquique for a time. We look forward to working side by side with them once again!
As you can see from the photo at left, family time has been precious to us these past couple of months. This year of furlough ministry has allowed us to be with our loved one in moments of great joy and also deep sorrow. Many who read our prayer updates also know, love and pray for our families – please continue to do so! Our families struggle with those challenges and losses that are common to all, yet sometimes it is difficult to do so while separated by miles and continents. How thankful we are to serve a great God who is always present with us, wherever we are!
We close with an update on our financial standing, praising God first of all that another individual supporter has joined our team! We do still lack several hundred dollars of monthly support, and must be at 100% support to receive clearance to return to Chile. Thank you for praying that God will supply this need – we know He is faithful!
Because of Christ,
Pedro & Stephanie, Eva, Isabel, Owen, Ian & Alec Garcia
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