January 1, 2008

A Blessed Holiday Season in Brazil...

So, here we are…the Gilpin family… living in Belém, Pará, Brazil. Tara and Matthew are currently on a short break from language school and the two little Gilpin’s are getting ready to start a new school year on January 15th. We had a wonderful holiday season. We were able to spend time with friends and mission family for Christmas and New Years, each of these days being both enjoyable and somewhat sad because we miss so many friends and family.

On New Years, we were finally able to have the whole mission family (19 counting the Gilpin clan) over to our apartment for it was finally in order. Those who did not have church commitments stayed till after midnight and watch fireworks from the roof of our building (one of the best site for viewing in the city). Even little Lydia Jane stayed up for the new years. Samuel on the other hand did not make it to all the fanfare. He actually slept through all the commotion. For those of you who have not been in Latin America during a holiday (especially New Years) the fireworks and celebration make the neighborhood sound as if it is in the middle of a warzone. So, the fact that Samuel did not wake was a blessing.

As we begin a new year, we look forward to how the Lord will work in each of your lives and how He will use us to work in the life of others. We expect great things from Him for He is our wonderful Savior who has already given us so much. We are blessed to be called into His service. We have watched our family grows closer to each other and to the Lord. We have been in the presence of many godly men and women who serve our Lord daily. We live in a wonderful mission supplied apartment, drive a wonderful mission supplied truck, and live comfortably in a developing country and for this we thank our Lord and Savior and those who he prompted to give so generously.

Finally, we know that the question has rose in your mind of what has been our experience so far. How does life differ from life in the States? Over the next few weeks, while things are still new to us, we will attempt to clearly communicate what it has been like to transition into a new culture.

Sam crawed into bed with his sister
in the middle of the night...