Thanks to everyone who prayed for us last month. Our four days of exams went smoothly. We eagerly awaited the results to see if our first three months of language study had been effective or not. Finally, the results were out: We passed! The professor’s note on our report slip was “Tres bien! Continue comme ca!” (Very good! Keep going like that!) A “Tres Bien” on your grade is the envy of everyone here; “Bien” (Good) is common; and pity the person who has “C’est dommage” (It’s a shame) written on theirs. So, we did better than we expected and we want to thank God for helping us get this far in our studies.
We’re excited that we’ve reached a point where we can actually start understanding people in public. We still have a long ways to go to be even reasonably proficient in French, but the progress so far is encouraging. It’s even more encouraging when we compare ourselves from the first day to now. We came here speaking little to no French and now we can have short conversations, describe likes and dislikes, and ask basic directions.
Thanks for all your prayers as we do this. God has been answering them. He answered our prayers during the test, and he is still answering more prayers. One of our prayers has been to have French people to talk to who will be patient with us as we learn how to speak. And God, in true form to His providence, has given each of us language partners who are native French-speakers and who are excited to help us learn French. Please pray that God would use these relationships to help us grow not just in language ability, but in wisdom and character too!
News out of Central Africa
Finally, there is bad news coming out of Africa right now. About 6 or 7 weeks ago, the government of the Central African Republic was overthrown by rebels. It is something that had been brewing for several months and it finally came to pass. Almost all of the missionaries have left the CAR right now because lawlessness is the rule and missionaries are targets of looting or worse. The current situation is grim and the near future isn’t much better. The general feeling by those who understand the situation is that it could be a while (several months or more) before things get sorted out and a long time before peace and stability return to the C.A.R. As you know, we have had Central Africa in our sights for a couple of years now. The latest news is something of a blow to our hopes of bringing the gospel there very soon. We don’t know all the ramifications of the recent events, but we have been informed to “be flexible”. We’re struggling to understand God’s leading in this, but, as is often the case, the light of His guidance only shines a couple steps ahead of us and we must follow by faith. It may be that God has led us thus far to bring us to a place only He knows where. We want to ask you to especially pray with us about our future in Africa. Africa Inland Mission has open positions in other countries and if the door to the CAR is closed, we will have to consider a different posting. Please pray that we would have the faith to follow God as He leads us step by step, whether that be the CAR or somewhere else in Africa.
Thank you for all your prayers and encouragement! God still answers prayer and we can testify to that!
We’ll keep you updated as events unfold.