Friday, November 30, 2012



 Whenever it comes time each year to write an “end-of–year” update on our family’s adventures,   I always spend a fair amount of time just sitting and staring blankly at the screen. I mean, really, how on earth can one possibly condense one entire year of a family’s life onto one, blank, white sheet of paper? It is always so very difficult for me to summarize and pick out the few significant moments to write about. At first, I had the brilliant {ridiculous} idea that I would just do a photo album of our year for you – here, on paper! Ha, ha, ha!!! Three full pages later of tiny, squished-to-fit photos with captions I came to the wise conclusion that not one of you (ok, two…mom and MIL!) would appreciate receiving a 3 page Christmas newsletter and would promptly throw it in the trash, and that if anyone REALLY wants to see that many photos of our year, we will kindly direct you to visit our facebook pages :o)
  December marks our 1 year, 9 month anniversary of being in Bolivia. Just a few short months from now we will celebrate 2 years. Some of you who know that our minimum commitment here was 2 years may be wondering what our next step is.  For now, we continue to do the work that we feel God led us here to do, which is leading the worship and student ministries of Cochabamba Intl. Church. We are continually praying that the Lord will lead us and guide us into what HE has for us. We are open and willing to do whatever He calls us to do, whether that be to stay or leave. At this point, we do not feel a strong, clarifying pull either way, so our tentative plan is to come home for a 3 month visit next summer, and return to Bolivia, for as long as God has planned. There is much work to be done here, that much is evident. There are also many effective ministries, projects, foundations, and opportunities in place for one to serve, volunteer, or devote their time to. In addition to serving at the church, we try to help out in several of these various ministries or projects as well, as much as we can.
  We went back to homeschooling the kids this year so they no longer attend the MK school, Carachipampa. There are positives and negatives to this choice, as with any. We must make more of an effort to get out and get “into” the culture and use our Spanish. It does afford us the opportunity to get involved in more projects during the week and obviously guide the kids’ learning more. There are several other missionary families that homeschool so we get together frequently for good social time (not to mention support and encourage each other!)
  How can we possibly express our gratitude to each and every one of you that have loved us, prayed for us, supported us, and given to us financially to make this journey possible? There just will never be words enough to say how humbled and thankful we are for your sacrifice and gifts. We do not ever want to forget that we are here because of your generosity! That we “get” to live this journey and adventure that God has us on with your help. And no other way! We love to pray for our supporters and thank God for you. We humbly ask that you continue to support us in this mission, and that if you feel led to give a one-time end of year gift, please do so using the information below or click on the "give" button above.
  We look so forward to keeping you updated on what God is doing here in Coch and in our lives!

Feliz Navidad y Bendiciones  por el año Nuevo!                 
The Ballew Family - Lowell, Shay, Aidan, Liam, Jude, & Olivia

Stateside address (non tax deductible gifts):           Mission address (tax deductible gifts):
Ballew Family                                                           Ripe For Harvest
P.O. Box 293                                                            P.O. Box 487
Frost,TX 76641                                                        Monument, CO 80132
                                                                                 *NOTE acct. #304 Lowell Ballew on check*
Field address (notes, cards, packages only)
La Familia Ballew
Casilla #6505
Cochabamba, Bolivia
South America

1 comment:

  1. Those boys are growing Shay! Have a great Christmas.