Saturday, November 16, 2019

A Time of Thanks

It is hard to believe it is already November. We have one more week of school, and then we have a week off for Thanksgiving. I am thankful to be spending most of the cold months in Puerto Rico this year. Most of my family has had snow and freezing temperatures, and I have been enjoying warm sunny days.

School continues on, and there aren't a lot of "big" events going on, but I'll share some stories and prayer requests. I am learning that some of my students have an aptitude for acting. We have been reading The Prince and the Pauper which is divided into parts like a play. The kids are loving playing their parts and even put on accents.

We began science class a couple weeks ago. One grade is studying bugs, and the other is studying plants. I asked the students to bring in bugs so we could see them. We ended up with three spiders one of which had an egg sack which hatched. I was not very excited about these creatures being in my classroom. The rest of the students brought in dead bugs.

I have three students who need prayer. One girl has been ill for most of the semester. One of the boys has a back problem which is giving him pain in other areas of his body, and another boy had a bike accident and broke his arm. The school is also in need of prayer for the reconstruction project to be finished.

Thank you to all who pray for me and support me, and for those who have supported me in the past. Without the prayers and support of you, I would never be able to go and help people as I have been. I am amazed at the opportunities I have had because of people who trust God enough to entrust me with bringing in fruit their account.

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Fall, Winter? What are those?

After having heard from my siblings how cold it has already been in their states, and one reporting snow, I am rejoicing in the 90 degree temps here in Puerto Rico. The last two weeks have been busy. My friend Cassie has been here helping me in my classroom by grading, giving spelling tests, cleaning, and caring for the students.

The last two weeks have been very rainy. This past week, I saw four rainbows. That is the most I have seen since being here. The last one I saw spanned from somewhere in town all the way to the top of a mountain near the ocean, and and the arch was right over our property. These rainbows keep reminding me that God keeps His promises. The reconstruction is still on hold, but God is still doing a work here in the lives of the students.

We have had several great soulwinning weeks. One of the ladies I have been going with has had the opportunity to lead two ladies to Christ, and this past Saturday, another lady was able to witness to a girl who is very mixed up because she has studied many religions.  The young lady asked us to come again. Please pray for her. The pastor's wife was able to help a lady gain assurance of her salvation and the lady's friend trusted Christ the same day.

I already shared that two of my students have trusted Christ. A few Sundays back, another of my students trusted Christ in Sunday school, and this week a first grade student trusted Christ in Sunday school. That is four kids who have trusted Christ. Please continue to pray as I still have a few students to speak with.

With all the bad news in the world, I am thankful that GOd allows me to be part of making good news and giving good news. Please pray as I continue to teach here in PR. I have two students dealing with major medical issues, and another girl in the school is also dealing with major health problems.

Continue to pray for my mom's heart health, and for my two sisters who are pregnant.

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Report Cards Tomorrow!

It is hard to believe the first nine weeks of school are finished. We have had a busy and exciting few months with two near misses with the hurricanes. The last couple of weeks got very busy with finishing tests and putting in grades.

My friend Cassie from my church in Maine has been here week, and is planning to stay until Christmas break. It is a blessing to have her helping me in the classroom. It is also a blessing to have her in my house to chat with... We will be heading to Vieques on Sunday to spend Columbus Day with another missionary family.

Today, I was finally able to have my classroom set the way I have wanted since school started. There is a lot more space, and all the students should be able to see the board well. I have also decorated the bulletin board, and I will try to post a picture tomorrow.

My kids sang their first series of Bible verses in chapel last week. They learned most of the verses to the Roman's Road, and now we are working on Psalm 1. They have also memorized eleven other verses. Please pray that kids will continue to trust in Christ.

Please pray for me to have wisdom for the many different types of children in my classroom. If you teach you know that there are students who learn easily and quickly those who struggle to learn, and in a second language setting, you have those who do not always understand due to the language barrier. Balancing workloads can be tricky. Every time I teach, I learn something new about people.

Please pray for two of my sisters who are expecting. One is dealing with some leg pain, and we are praying is not a blood clot. The other is due in December. Please keep my dad's church in prayer as they continue to grow. They have seen many people saved in the last few weeks and many visitors in the services.


Thursday, September 19, 2019

Storm Season

Here in Puerto Rico, we are in hurricane season. The last one passed by without anything but rain for us. There are more brewing. After a storm, there is always some rebuilding to be done. Life and ministry also have storm seasons. Please pray that God will use the current storms in life and ministry to help us and the ministry to grow. Please pray that the reconstruction can be funded and finished soon. Satan does not want this building finished, and he is doing all he can to throw a monkey wrench into the work.

I spoke to another student today about salvation. He told me he remembered trusting in Christ when he was in K4 or K5. He gave a very clear testimony of what the teacher said and asked and what he did when she asked who wanted to trust in Jesus. It is a blessing to know that At least four of the kids in my class are saved. Please pray as I continue talking to them individually.

Please pray as I continue to plan for next year's trips. Right now, plane tickets to England are pretty pricey. I'm looking forward to spending time with people I grew to love while I was there.

Praise: Wednesday night we had 14 young people in our church service. It is such a blessing to see teens coming to a midweek service. No special promotion, just good Bible teaching.

Please pray for a boy in my class who has some back problems. He is seeing an orthopedic. Please pray for my siblings as many of them are going through some financial changes and job changes. Please pray for my dad's church, Anchor Baptist Biddeford, ME, as they have a soulwinning marathon on Saturday.

Friday, September 6, 2019

Praises and Prayer Requests

Last week, our chapel sermon was on Heaven and Hell. The Pastor Bro. Harmon, a fellow missionary here, gave very vivid details about Hell and Heaven from Scripture. I know there are several students in my class that are not saved. One of my girls raised her hand during the invitation to show that she was not sure of her salvation. During our playtime, I had a high school student watch my kids, and I gave my student the plan of salvation. She has been in church, so she knew many of the answers and verses already. When we got to the end she prayed and asked Jesus to be her Saviour. When she finished, I asked her "If Jesus stood in front of you right now and asked you why He should let you into Heaven, what would you say?" She responded, "Because Jesus lives in my heart." Please pray for this little girl as she is very sick right now.

My students are learning many Bible verses, and I am excited that we are almost finished with the Roman's Road verses. We will be singing these in chapel in a few weeks. We have been studying the book of Ruth and I tied it in to the story Stay in the Castle. The kids held on to every word of the story, which we finished today, and have enjoyed learning about Ruth. Monday will be our last lesson on Ruth.

Please pray that I and my students stay healthy. I have already had a cold, and with a student who is very sick right now, I am praying no germs have spread. We do not have a lot of people who can substitute, so getting sick can create difficulties for staffing.

Please pray for an unspoken prayer request which is extremely important. Pray for wisdom for those involved, and for right to prevail.

Please pray as I work on my trips to England and Europe next year as well as my future plans. I am always waiting for God to open and close doors, so that I know what my next step should be. Please pray that God will give me wisdom.

Please pray as I continue to witness to each of my students. I have ten, and only four have given testimony that they are saved.

Sunday, August 25, 2019

School is a learning process, even for teachers.

Something I have learned about school, is that I have not learned everything there is to know about school. Why? because each year gives me something new to deal with. Each class has different abilities, and each student in that class has different abilities. All these challenges must be met using different techniques. For instance, I have a student who can spell orally, but not on paper. I have students who speak English fluently and others who can barely understand me. Learning to tweak the way I teach or test a student is not easy. Tweaking the schedule to make sure the students get the knowledge they need in each subject can be be stressful, but I am learning and growing through each test. One thing I can say for my students is that they are pretty obedient which helps with keeping the class moving through the day with very few hiccups.

I have been teaching on salvation over the first couple weeks, and I have taught about three missionaries. Each week, I ask questions to the students about the missionaries and about the sermons which have been preached in chapel. I teach the students Bible verses to song. So far they have learned 1 John 5:13, Romans 3:10, 23. They have also learned to quote three other verses which are set up by alphabet letter, Isaiah 53:6, Revelation 3:20, Jeremiah 33:3. By the middle or end of September, they will know all of the Roman's Road. Each week we cover a character trait, and a quote. Since we studied Jim Elliot last week, I will be putting his quote on the board. "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." Please pray for my students. Only three raised their hands that they were sure of their salvation. I hope to have time in the next couple of weeks to talk with each one individually about salvation.

Today we said goodby to Pastor Martinez's sons, Luis and Jose. They are attending Hyles-Anderson College. This is year two for Luis and freshmen year for Jose. Please pray for them. They both have a heart for Puerto Rico. Pray also for the Martinez family and the ministry because these two will leave some big holes in the deaf ministry and teen ministry.

Please pray for Puerto Rico this week. I have been told there is a hurricane brewing which could affect us this week. If it does, it could mean a delayed return for the Martinez family, and missed days of school as well as other worries. I'm not real excited about expierencing a hurricane down here. :-)

We had a good crowd in church today. I didn't get a count, but the auditorium was full. One visitor trusted Christ, and we had four or five other visitors. Please pray for the ministry that it will continue to grow. Pray also for the building which is still under construction. Over $40,000 is still needed to finish this phase. If you would like to help, please contact me or send any gifts to Pastor Martinez PO Box 215 Ceiba, PR 00735. Label the gift for reconstruction.

Please keep my family in prayer as several of my siblings are dealing with financial and health difficulties. Please pray as I continue to make plans for my England and Europe trips next year. I need to find good ticket prices for flights.

Monday, August 19, 2019

School-Late nights, Early mornings

A full week of school has passed, and I can tell. This week has been a busy one with trying to structure my 5th and 6th graders so they get the most out of each class. It isn't always easy to make sure there is enough work for the fast learning students and yet teach slowly for the  ones who struggle with English...

I am tutoring three students three days a week in spoken English and reading comprehension in English. I used to hate stundying English in high school and college, but now it is actually my favorite subject to teach.

This week, I began working in the after school care program. Some of the kids are here until 5-5:15 and trying to keep the littlest ones occupied after they finish their work isn't always easy. Thankfully, someone invented playdoh, coloring books, and bubbles.

Sunday, was a good day in church with almost 50 in the service. I had one little girl in Sunday school, and God must have meant it to be that way. I have been teaching through the Wordless Book, and had already passed baptism and growing Christ. This little girl wasn't in church that week, so I taught it to her this week. I asked if her if she ever remembered asking Jesus to be her Saviour. She said yes, and described where it happened and how. I then asked her if she had been baptized, and she said no. I told her that if she wanted, I could talk to the pastor and schedule a time for her to be baptized so that her family could come see her. She told that would be ok. Please pray that her baptism can be a tool to bring people under the sound of the Gospel who may never hear it otherwise.

Please pray that I will stay healthy, get rest, be prepared, and help my students to learn to the best of their abilities.

I have many missionary friends, pastors wives, and other friends going through difficult health situations. Please pray that God will heal them.