- My nephew Collin has a severe case of strep throat right now. When he was at the doctor's office on Monday, they said his tonsils were so swollen that they were blocking his airway. Please pray for a complete healing for him.
- My mom has been having issues with a broken hand that will not heal. On Monday, she underwent a complete body bone scan to see what is going on. Please pray for positive results from the bone scan.
- My brother-in-law Erich had a kidney transplant last November. He was taken to the hospital yesterday. The doctors think that his body is starting to reject his new kidneys. Pray that the kidneys are not rejected.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Well, on Sunday, the children's classes at the church were a little wild. With a few teachers out due to illness, the teachers that were there had some difficulty controlling behavior while trying to teach the lessons. One class in particular was being more difficult than usual.
The class was nearing the end and the kids were restless. Their teacher, Jean Marco, was having difficulty controlling them and a few tried "escaping" from the classroom a few times, only to be caught by yours truly and brought back to their room. The last time I brought them back in, many of the kids were asking me to speak English, so I told them we were all going to practice some English.
I asked all the kids to sit down in their seats. Then I told all the kids, in English, to stand up. I mimicked standing up and they all stood up. Then I told them to sit down and I mimicked sitting down. They all sat down. Stand up. Sit down. Stand up. Sit down. I was talking to them in English and they were responding correctly. We added a few more. Run. Stop. Walk. Jump. Turn around. After mimicking it just one time, they knew what the word meant and were able to do it with my just speaking it in English.
This is a language learning method I learned at CIT last fall. Its called Total Physical Response or TPR for short. The brain is able to remember more if it has an action that can be combined with the word. Involving the kids physically helped them to be able to learn and remember what they were hearing in a foreign language.
We tried this with language helpers last October. I was learning some Russian. I can still remember the words for walk, run, sit down, and stop in Russian (although I doubt I could say them properly myself and I know I couldn't write them in Russian). However, 5 months later, I would still recognize those words if I heard them again.
The children loved practicing English and it allowed them to focus on something other than running from the room and the teacher for the last few minutes before their parents picked them up from class.
Side note: Jean Marco is an excellent teacher. He is a 16 year old boy who does a great job with the children. He teaches Sunday School every Sunday for 2 services and also teaches on occasional Wednesdays as well. He has tremendous patience with the children and works great with them. I wish there were more teenagers like him to work with the kids.
Monday, February 25, 2008
Even the adults get in on the piñata action after it has been broken.
Monday, February 18, 2008
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
The people I spend the most time with here have been sick for the past week, so I knew it was going to hit me too. Well, yesterday it did.
When the sore throat started, I knew. The headache and nausea soon followed. I tried to convince myself that it was just from being in the cold air of the air conditioning that was giving me a sore throat, but I knew it was more than that.
I rested most of the evening yesterday. When I woke up today, I still had the sore throat, headache, and nausea, but added a few other symptoms. I called my friends to find out how to get some medicine.
Before I knew it, they had called the doctor. Here, doctors still make house calls. It's a form of paramedics who arrive and do the same things that the doctors do during an office visit.
They said that I have an infection that is just beginning. They gave me list of medications I should get from the farmacia, similar to getting a prescription but no prescriptions are needed here to get medicine. One of the medications is in the form of an injection. I don't like shots. However, if it's needed to make me better so I can serve God to the fullest, then it's a small price to pay.
Total cost for the paramedic visit... Bs.F 0 ($0.00)
Total cost for the medications.... Bs.F 60.25 ($28.02)
So, some medicine and rest and I should be as good as new really soon.
Sunday, February 10, 2008
- Makes a person feel good
- Takes away loneliness
- Opens doors to friendship
- Helps build self-esteem
- Helps reduce tension
- Helps with insomnia
- Keeps a person young
After having a tense discussion on "the hug", which included demonstrations on how to hug properly, the group put it to practice. And so began "Hug Fest 2008". The goal was simple- give everyone in the room a hug. This hugging lasted for 25 minutes as people sought out those they had yet to hug.
As somone from a culture where hugging is not exactly the norm for people who don't know each other very well, this was a culture shock. The Venezuelans loved this. They are very much a hugging culture. And, as I observed (and participated) in this hugging, I noticed that the benefits of the hugging were evident by everyone.
Sunday, February 3, 2008
At the beginning of the third service, one of the ushers came up to me and told me to go up by the Pastor on stage where he and his wife sit for the service. This is a seat of honor to be on stage with the Pastor and his wife and I was honored that the pastor wanted me to sit up there with them. Then, I was thinking, I am not worthy of this great honor. I am just a servant who has come to serve God by serving them. But it made me think, this is how I am with God. I am not worthy of His love and affection, of His Grace. But He loves me so much that He has lifted me up out of my unworthiness and made me His child. What an awesome honor and privilege it is to be called a child of the King of kings and the Lord of lords!!