It has been a few weeks since I last posted, and since then Danielle and I were able to travel to the south of Chile where we attended the Calvary Chapel Family camp and made stops in Talcahuano, Concepcion, Valdivia, and Lanco. We were so blessed by the places we saw, the people we met, the amazing food we ate, the fellowship we had with our brothers and sisters in Christ, and the teaching of the Word of God at the Calvary Chapel Family Camp. While we have had our very good days, we have also had days that were a bit tougher as we adjust to a new language, new culture, and different schedules. Through good and bad, Danielle and I are anchored by the fact that we know God called us to South America, and opened the doors for us to be here.
One example of having to remain anchored to the Lord was when we rented a car for six people to make the trip that would take about 20 hours or so overall to drive. We were told we were receiving a 7-person minivan with space for luggage, and we thought that would be a comfortable size and it came at a good price. Well, when we received the car it was more like 5 person station wagon made into a 7-seater with less leg room (for those in back) and trunk space than a Geo Metro. None of us were overly excited about spending 6-8 hours at a time in that car, but the Lord reminded me of a favorite verse of mine, “But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.” (Acts 20:24) I shared it with Ricky, we had a little laugh after looking at the car again, and off we went.
We have been beyond blessed to have seen the majority of Chile during our time here, and that we have made real friendships and relationships with our brothers and sisters in Christ from Iquique to Puerto Mont and everywhere in between.
As our time in Chile is coming to end, I think one of the main reasons God brought us here for these 2 months was to meet and connect with many of our brothers and sisters in Christ. We’ve been able to get to know them, hear their stories, listen to their hearts, share the Word of God, and become very close with many. People ask us why we love Chile? While the beaches are nice, the sights are fun, and the south is awe-inspiring; our favorite part is the people we have met and got to know. We will keep our friends, and the work God wants to do here in Chile, in our prayers, and look forward to seeing them again.
Before I finish, I want recount one very special stop we made in Lanco, Chile. Lanco is a small town of about 10,000, and was not one of our planned destinations before we left the US. In fact, I didn’t know we were going there until the day we arrived. As Danielle, myself, and the rest of the group arrived hungry and travel weary we were welcomed into the home and restaurant of our friend Cote and her family. Cote’s family has the best restaurant in Lanco, and they live in the upstairs portion of the same building. When we arrived they had a meal complete with roast, salad, bread, coffee, juice, and dessert waiting for us, and it was delicious. Then as we were getting ready to leave and find a place to stay in nearby Valdivia, they invited us to stay with them in their house upstairs. We thankfully accepted, traded our luggage for Cote, and went off to see Valdivia. When we came back “Once” (Chile’s late night meal) was ready, which means more tea and coffee, bread, fresh picked raspberries, fresh milk, homemade cheese, a German-Chilean dessert called Crugen made with some of those fresh raspberries, and more. Then they made beds for all of us (except our friend Claudio, who had to make his own bed after he didn’t finish his Crugen lol), and sent us off in the morning with more amazing hospitality and wonderful food. And do you want to know what Cote’s mom said when I left? A very sincere, come back. Those are the type of special moments we can’t plan for, but thank God when he orchestrates them.
We are very excited for us next step in this journey as we travel back to Peru and go to Bible, but Chile has been a blessing, and we are going to miss it here
We do have a few prayer requests:
Language: Please continue to pray that Danielle and I would be able to learn the language. We are studying daily, and learning a little more each day.
The Work of God in Chile: Please pray that God would continue to work among his people in Chile, and all of South America equipping and maturing the Body of Christ, and drawing more and more people to Himself. Especially, pray for Ricky and Mayra here at the Bible College and CC Kaleo as we have been serving and staying with them.
Health: Danielle and I have had a few little things nagging us, most notably Danielle’s ear. We have now been to 4 doctors (2 here, and 2 in the states) and we still don’t have a cure or really even know what the problem is.
Love and Serve: Pastor Joey Buran from Worship Generation in Orange County was here in Chile working with Chilean National Surf team, and he was a big encouragement to us while he spent a day with us in Santiago. One of the big things he talked about was loving and serving the people in Chile until they just can’t take it anymore, and ask why we are different. Please pray that my wife and I would have the heart to love and serve.
Thank you all so much for reading, for your love, and for your prayers. We are so thankful and blessed by our family in Christ. God bless you! In Jesus,Cory and Danielle