Merry Christmas! I can not believe how fast November flew by. It seems like just a few days ago that I was writing the November update, though I’m pretty sure it was longer!!
Right after we arrived back home (on the 31st of Oct) from that trip to CA, our dear friends Rick and Bere Walkley came to visit. Bere is from here in Chiapas and Rick is from Washington State . Her family lives here and they came down for a couple weeks to visit and also start construction of a house for Bere’s parents. Rick asked Nathan if he would help oversee that job (it’s about an hour’s drive from here) since they are not here very often, so Nathan has been going down there once a week to make sure things are on track. On his first trip there, he got about 10 min down the road when it became obvious that the Zapatistas had the roads out of town blockaded! This is a very common way of forcing the government to take notice of your cause down here. It creates quite the stir, not to mention traffic issues! We’ve posted some pictures of that on our website if you are interested. The next day though, the blockade was gone and Nathan was able to make his trip to San Fernando and back without any issues. If you’d like to read more about the Zapatistas, you can go here… http://www.zapatistarevolution.com/ This site has a lot of back ground about the Zapatistas. Obviously we don’t support them or believe that their methods are really benefiting anyone.
As far as office work goes, there is always a lot going on! Preparation continues for the Acts project… we’re still working on getting the voice actors lined up, and we’re still praying for God’s provision of the funding. The Character First! quality that we did this month was about sensitivity. Nathan is continuing the work on our different websites as well. In case you haven’t gotten the addresses yet, here they are!
Our tourist business: www.extremochiapas.com
The audio/visual ministry: www.piedras-vivas.com
We celebrated a semi-American Thanksgiving here with Nathan’s family, as well as 20 other guests! I cooked a turkey just like my dad does it (always SO yummy) and we even imported some cranberry sauce from our last trip to the States. We had a great day with so many friends and family around. We really do have so much to be thankful for! Cloe, of course, was enthralled by all the people everywhere and was so helpful to me in the cleanup process. Praise God for disposable plates!!! Cloe walked around, dragging a trash bag, picking things up and throwing them away. We had to fish out a few pieces of silverware, but overall she was very helpful! The next few days, Cloe and I kept very busy decorating our house for Christmas! That is one of my favorite weekends each year, though it was very different this year… as I looked out the window with lights in my hand, everything is GREEN instead of white!!
In the last few days of November our sweet friend Steve Haag came back for a few days. It’s always like Christmas morning when he comes, since his precious wife Mary always sends fun stuff for the three of us. The whole purpose of this trip for him was kind of thrown for a loop by unforeseen vehicle and governmental issues here, but he was undeterred! Steve has a really neat ministry here and has such a heart for the Zoque Indians. In the end, much of this trip was spent in strategizing for how to best reach this incredibly un-reached group of people. He and Nathan also visited a very old pastor who used to work in that area. We are so grateful for Steve and Mary and the vast amounts of encouragement they have brought into our lives.
Now, Christmas is around the corner! It will be our first one here in Mexico , and I’m excited about doing an open-house for the friends God has brought across our paths here in San Cristobal . So far, God has been so gracious to fill the large home-sick void with a good amount of excitement for our first year here. I pray that continues! It will be strange having only the 3 of us on the couch this Christmas morning, when I am used to 20-something at my parent’s house! But Jesus’ birthday is special in and of itself, no matter where you are or who you are with. I am confident that this year will be one that we establish new traditions and realize again how much our Savior sacrificed to come to this earth for us. We pray the next few weeks will be joyous for you and your loved ones. As always, we love to hear from you!
Julie (for Nathan and Cloe too)
This Month's Pictures
Our Girls at Thanksgiving
Cloe's first look at a Christmas Tree
Crashed out with Uncle Steve