Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Visit to the Rio Grande Bible Institute

We are at the Rio Grande Bible Institute! It is so exciting to be here after so many years, even if we will only be staying a few days.

One of our goals is to get pictures and video of the work being done here so that when we are presenting we can do a better job of showing churches and individuals what God is doing here and how He is doing it. Billy spent the day meeting with people and taking video and photos of classes and the students recording them.

It seems as though everyone here already knows who we are and has been praying for us. What a blessing! The kids and I have been a little under the weather, but what interaction we've had with the students and faculty has been so sweet! Both Mary and William loved being surrounded by so many sweet people. We're trying to help Mary add "hola" to her vocabulary. William already knows the universal sign for "high five" so he got along great with his smile!

It is still our hope, prayer, and plan to move down in time to start Language School in January! Our second goal of this trip is to smooth the transition between now and when we come down for good. Being here for a visit has only strengthened our desire to come. Please continue to pray with us that God will provide and the last pieces will fall into place!

Monday, September 12, 2016

When Staying is Serving

This week Billy is serving with Steppin-Out Missions to help repair homes damaged by the flooding in Louisiana. I am so very, very proud of him! Hopefully he'll get a chance to take a few pictures and give you your first interesting blog post in a while! Haha

A year ago last month, if you recall, he went to Pennsylvania to serve with To Be A Blessing for a week, and I promised myself that he would never leave me behind on a mission trip again. And yet, here I am in Missouri while my love is in Louisiana, and I was the one that encouraged him to go!

Before we were married I would daydream about working in missions with Billy. I'd see us side-by-side, working ourselves to exhaustion, drinking strong coffee, making a difference in this world, and enjoying life to the fullest. Those daydreams never took into account the other daydream of us having a family, however, and it has taken me more than two years to accept and embrace reality.

When Billy went to Pennsylvania I wanted him to go, but I also found it extremely difficult to be missing out on the adventure. I hated being left behind.

The Lord has helped me to see, however, that there is a big difference between being left behind and staying behind.

I would push myself to extreme limits to take care of someone else's children on a mission trip. I would work into the night and get up early. I would try to make everything better than it was when I arrived, because I truly believe that is a Christian's responsibility.

But at this moment, the kids that will be pushing me to extreme limits (with no daddy coming home to make me sane again) are my own. The work I do will be in my home, or with people that I already know well. The area I make better will be the same area I try to make better every day (while a toddler and a 9-month-old follow me around tearing it all back up).
And that's my mission and my ministry.

At this moment my calling doesn't sound very exciting. It is noble work, but you just don't read about diapers and sippy cups in books of missionary stories.
Yet this week changing those diapers and filling those sippy cups is having twice the impact! Not only am I nurturing the lives of two beautiful image-bearers of God, I am making it possible for my Love (my Heart, my Better Half) to go and serve others to the glory of our Father.

I may be in Missouri, but God is still using me to care for His people in Louisiana!
What a generous God we serve!

For sticking with me through this whole post, I have a treat for you, haha!
Mariposa wanted to tell her daddy that she loves him, and the video is so sweet I just had to share it!

Grace and Peace,
Sarah Jackson

P.S. Next week we'll all be visiting RGBI!!! It's a busy month for the Jacksons! Stay tuned!