Words Can't Explain

As many of you know, we recently took a trip to Northern Philippines. To Bagabag specifically.
We had gone up for Peer Debriefing Training.

Goofing around the last day of class!

It was also a blessed opportunity to see more of beautiful Philippines, praise God for His Handiwork, (we are standing on a rice terrace at Banaue Rice Terraces in the first photo of this blog)

A rare quiet mother/son moment at a river near Bagabag!

be reminded of the importance of SIL's work in the lives of those who have never heard of His love, make new friends, visit with a dear 'old' friend,

Learning a Thai Dance!

Leena and Kirsten!

Leena and Ben!

...and so much more....it is hard to put into words.

Needless to say, Kurt and I will be blogging frequently about our trip over the next few days!

At SIL airport in Bagabag!!

Peer Debriefing Update

Well, we finished our training. It was very good.

We also experienced many 'firsts' for us in the Philippines....riding a bus for 8 hours, seeing Banaue Rice Terraces, going to a church out in a village.....once we get home we will be posting many pictures. It has been a wonderful trip.....more soon!!!!!

Peer Debriefing

Kurt and I were asked to take a week long training on Peer Debriefing.

So, I can hear the question "What is Peer Debriefing?"

Debriefing is often referred to as "emotional first-aid" for someone who has been through a traumatic or difficult experience. It is NOT counseling or therapy, but rather a helpful process to walk through with someone (... a peer of yours who has been trained). The goals of debriefing are to mitigate the negative impact of the event as well as help the person recover more quickly and more fully than they would otherwise. In many ways, debriefing is a very practical & effective way of putting into practice the Biblical mandate to "bear one another's burdens," particularly with traumatic events.

Psalm 23 (God's loving presence) along with Psalm 22 (God's absence when one is suffering) and I Cor. 12:12, 14, 25-27 (need for one another) remind us that we are members of a body. We need one another, and when one member suffers, we all suffer. God is indeed our Shepherd, but even the Lord Jesus felt distanced from God the Father at times. And he chose the disciples, not only to train them, but to have them with Him as friends (Mk. 3:14).

On Friday July 13 we are flying up to Manila and then taking an 8 hour bus trip up to Bagabag where the training will be held. Our children are traveling with us. We look forward to seeing more of the Philippines. We will be in Bagabag July 14 - 23.

Monday - Friday we will be in training while our kids will be with a child care worker swimming, playing, etc. After our conference is over we will be visiting an allocation with a National Translator and also seeing the infamous Banaue Rice Terraces.

Banaue Rice Terraces - 8th wonder of the world.

Pray for us while we travel, for safe travels, good health, that we learn what we need to at our conference.

17th Wedding Anniversary

The Lord is my shepherd....and He leads each of us on the path he wants us to go!

Kurt and I just celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary on July 7th.
I am so thankful God led my path to Kurt's path and that we have become one.

We've walked through valleys, up hills, enjoyed sunshine, had rain, dark times, but our journey is always lit by His love and Guidance.
I enjoy this adventure we are on. I am so glad that Kurt is my husband!

I pray Grace and peace to Kurt from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. "I thank my God every time I remember you.
4In all my prayers for...you, I always pray with joy
5because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now,
6being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."
Philippians 1: 3 - 6

It is quite an adventure God has us on in this partnership....I look forward to hopefully many, many more years with Kurt!

Language Learning Update

Well, Beth and I continue to take weekly language lessons and "hinay-hinay lang", we are slowly learning Cebuano. In fact, we have recently stepped up our learning cycle with the addition of some Cebuano coaching lessons weekly too. The Filipino office workers are speaking more Cebuano to me to help me learn as well.

Here is what I just learned today. There are three different words in Cebuano that are spelled "baga". One means lungs, another heat, and the last the word for thick. The difference between them is that baga for lungs has a emphasis on the first syllable and a shortened last syllable (bágâ). Baga for thick has a shortened last syllable without an emphasis on the first syllable (bagà). Baga for heat does not have a shortened last syllable (baga). I still don't know how to reliably pronounce them correctly but once I do I will practice by saying, "My lungs feel thick because of the heat" (Akong bágâ ning bagá tungod sa baga).