Sunday, March 29, 2009

Libby Sparks Listro

Here she is. The newest member of the Listro family. Her full name is Libelulle Sparks Listro, but we call her Libby. She is a mere 4 weeks old and very very sweet. (Lily Lawrence, we named her 'Sparks" after you :0)

Much better than last week-end

Well, this week was full of the usual ups and downs but for the most part God gave us amazing hope and peace. I am not sure why it seems better, but things at the kids school seem to be going better . . . nothing has really changed except our heart and it is amazing how different life feels when your heart has been encouraged.
We had a busy week of classes, a meeting with Max's teacher, an impromptu visit from Marshall (fellower SAMer from Pucallpa), and 4 day visit from our land lord, and we got a new puppy!!
Last Sunday morning Christian and I were home cleaning up the mess the robbers left behind today I am home with our new boxer pup named Libby. She is a mere 4 weeks old and can't be left alone yet. We went to pick her out yesterday and intended to leave her with her mama a few more weeks, but after we paid we found out that the vet was going to keep her for a few weeks. If they sent her back to the mama the owner would probably sell her to someone else - so we said we would rather bring her home now than leave her in a cage at the vet. She is so tiny. She is like having a new born - she kept me up all night, but I don't mind. Soon she will be huge, frolicking with the kids and attacking robbers that try their luck at our house again.

Thing went very well with the landlord. She was very kind and understanding. She is putting in a new metal door in front of our wooden one and also installing fencing along the side and roof of the house. all the lock are fixed and she conceeded to let us have a dog!!!!

With Marshall came all sorts of greetings, cookies, prayers and even a love offering from our SAM family in Pucallpa. How wonderful to feel Gods love everywhere we go. Marshall flies back to Pucallpa today but will be back in June or July to get in somemore language school.

Many people have asked how they can help, if there is anything they can do after the robbery. Well, first and foremost, pray. I don't fully understand prayer or why god chooses to use our prayers, but he does so please keep praying for safety, wisdom, and a heart of love towards a people and a culture that is so different.
Also, some have asked where they could send a gift to help replace some of our lost items. If you are already a regular supporter you can send in extra with your monthly gift with a note that it is for replacing stolen items. If you are not a regular supporter you can still send a gift to South America Mission and they will deposit it and let us know. If you want a reciept make the check out to SAM and it will go into our service account (that is where the money for a new computer will come from) if you don't want a reciept make the check out to us and send it to SAM with a note that it is a personal gift. They will deposit the funds and let us know. SAM's address is
1021 Maxwell Mill Rd
Ste. B
Fort Mill, SC 29708

Thanks for asking and caring. We are so thankful for all of you.

Sunday, March 22, 2009


We went out to buy some MORE school books yesterday afternoon . . . .after a long and serious talk between Christian and I about how hard things are here, how useless we feel unable to speak the language, how all the changes and stresses of the past 4 years have taken a HUGE toll on our family, yet we are committed to what ever God has for us . . .his best doesn't always come in the package we want to see . . . . So we talk to the kids about some issues happening in our family. Christian and I repent of our own selfishness and anger and then we get ready and head out the door. when we left it was light out. We were gone for about 4 hours. We walked all over the city to find the book stores we needed, we went out for dinner (did I mention most of the city, including our house, was out of water all day which was one of the main reasons we went out . . . no water= no flushing, handwashing, clean dishes, or cooking) so we ate out and then decided to have a treat somewhere because the afternoon was going great . . different than how it has been for a while. We ran to the pharmacy to get vitamin C and then to the grocery store to get yogurt for breakfast. we caught a taxi home and when we got there Christian opened the big wooden door in our front wall (can only be opened w/a key, no latch on the outside) our front and back doors were open, the backdoor was open and all the lights were on.
The kids and I immediately went to Scott and Meghan's and the taxidriver called the police. (we are using their computer to post this.) Christian and Scott went into the house and our computers were gone, the bedrooms ransacked, otherdoors kicked in and broken. Our cash was gone, they took our propane tank, and tried to take the T.V. It looks like they were spoked away because they didn't take the mp3 players from Gabe's room and they didn't get the cable disconnected. All of my jewlery is gone. Stuff I saved from high school, stuff my Gram gave me, my mom's wedding rings, the piece glass from C's first car that I unknowing had carried around for years before I met him (some of you know that story) anyway . . stuff that is meaningless to others but the only stuff I have saved through all of our moves. Our computers were important but they are replaceable, the photos on the computer and on the camera are not replaceable. Christian's backpack is gone too - they probably took it to carry the computers and will have found out later that our camera and my mp3 player were in there.
They pushed in our gatedoor (how w/o being seen baffles me) then they climbed in the den window (at least two of them, one had to lift the other) then they opend the kitchen door, took the computers, someone went out back and kick in a door - -there was nothing out there to find, someone ransacked our room, papers and underwear everywhere. they found the cash but left credit cards, banking info and didn't find the passports - amazing. They attempted to find things in the kids rooms but gave up fast. I'm sure they were dissappointed by our entertainment center that was full of books and card games. Some how they missed the playstation and our CD's.

Christian and I have to go home and clean up the house while the kids go to church w/Scott and Meghan. We don't want them to see their stuff like that, and there are 36 hours of dirty dishes I haven't had water to wash and our landlord could come from Lima anytime today.

God challenged me long ago about my faith - if he were to take something from me, even a child, would I still bless his name . . .I really struggled witht that question. Can I? Should I? I resolved that night 3 years ago that I would. I can trust that God loves me and my family more than I ever could or will. I CAN TRUST HIM. But I can be sad too. We were reading and thinking about Job this morning . . .Job I am not. God thought highly of him and blessed him even more after all his loss, but you can't tell me Job didn't have a huge pain in his heart from the loss he suffered. I thought that last week was the hardest yet. . . but it got harder. Christian is handling all of this amazingly well. If you knew him years ago when his GSX-R was stolen you would be amazed at how God has strengthened him. I am a wreck - I am sad - I find my self wondering what is next. I know that to know the Lord in all his Glory I must also know him in his suffering - but as I said last night -" knowing the suffering sucks" I trust my God, he will bring us through, but knowing him doen't mean a perfect life - it means peace in the turmoil, it means hope when hope makes no sense, it means having a God you can cast all your care, angst, anger, and fear upon.
we are thankful that it wasn't worse and that no one was hurt, but we are also reminded that personal safety is not guarnteed, nothing is for sure except for our creator. God is just as good and in control as he was yesterday morning. The Lord gives and takes away and we will choose to bless his name.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

An Hour Late, But On Time

That title encompasses a lot of life here. How a scheduled plane flight can just be rescheduled that morning and then register as on time when you get in the air and hour and twenty minutes late is one of the mysteries of Peru.

This past week has been a rough one. The adjustment to school for the kids has been difficult. They have some really good days and other days when they cry most of the afternoon because they don't want to go back. It has been a HUGE adjustment for all of us. I have also discovered that the craziness of the last week and a half is common to all Peruvian households when school starts - "March Madness" has a different context down here.

Pucallpa was really great - it is difficult to describe so I am just going to show you a video of downtown. It will give you a little taste of the "city". This video was takes from the truck of a fellow SAMer as he took us to town to get us cell phones. It is of the part of the city right on the river.


Thursday, March 12, 2009

First week of school

The first week of school is almost over. I wish I could say it has been wonderful but that would not be the truth. It has been ok. The kids are troopers and are already picking up some Spanish after the first week.

This last picture is of their gym uniforms. They wear them to school all day on they day they have Educacion Fisica. The extra cutie in the picture belongs to our friends Scott and Meghan. Her name is Rachel and the kids love to have her around and play with her. (notice we dressed her up in an extra shirt).


Sunday, March 08, 2009

More to Come

We returned from the jungle last night. Pucallpa was great. We had a great time at the SAM field conference for Peru. We met up with friends from orientation and made many new ones. The kids loved their time there. It was a very profitable trip. We got to know Pucallpa pretty well and even got a lead/verbal contract on a house. We will see what happens.
I didn't have a good connection in Pucallpa so I didn't post anything. I have many pictures to get up and details to tell you about but right now I have to go grocery shopping, sew name tags into the kids uniforms and art bags, and then make 5 lunches, clean the house, go to bed early, and have everyone ready and at school by 7:20 . . . . I will post more when I can.