Is it urgent, or is it important?

Dear Prayer Team,

Happy June! Can you believe we’re in the sixth month already? It feels like New Years Day was just a few weeks ago.

Looking Back:

I came back from my visit with colleagues on Monday. I’m grateful for the chance I had to connect with some good friends and mentors, and participate in a mini-course called “Culture Meets Scripture.” I also started helping with planning the distribution of digital Scripture media resources for a few upcoming Bible dedications in related languages. This particular aspect of ministry isn’t yet well-developed, so we are blazing new trails!

Something that I am learning is that the most urgent issues are rarely also the most important priorities. As I consider which task to spend my time on, I need to ask myself, “Is this urgent, or is it important?” It’s often better to pick what is important.

I almost extended my visit by another week to participate in a second mini-course, but decided it was more important to advance my Quechua language learning. However, when I got back I found that my Quechua family’s schedule didn’t line up, and that I wouldn’t be able to go to the village. I was immensely discouraged that day. Even so, I reminded myself that I needed to make the most of the situation and started to think of the ways I could advance my language learning in the city.

But even so, other urgent matters came up. Emails. Errands*. Planning for coming events. I did spend two days at the Bible translation office with colleagues and was able to visit a bit with Quechua family members in the city. I heard a few new words and phrases. But I found it really hard to “switch gears” and engage with those isolated utterances in the hustle and bustle of the city. I didn’t manage to learn them.

Meanwhile, my first trip back to the States approaches, and I feel like I haven’t progressed enough. As I write this, I realize that this mismatch between my expectations and my progress is a new stressor.

Looking Forward:

This week I’m in Lima, where the partner organization will be providing training to about 40 people of local Bible translation organizations from all over Peru, Latin America, and even the world.  Then I’ll have about four days at home before leaving again to the jungle city Pucallpa, where I will actually be helping to facilitate a mini-course.

Looking to God:

Please join me in praising God for a great time with colleagues last week. Also, for happening to find just the right bookshelf to put in my kitchen, freeing up a lot of working space. Sometimes, the little things can make a huge difference!

Please pray for:

  • Wisdom to decide between what is urgent and what is important.
  • That I and my team members would be able to take in all that is taught next week. For me, that I would be patient in the areas that are review for me as a linguist.
  • For healthy goals and expectations
  • That I would have a healthy balance between work and rest, while keeping up with my various responsibilities.
  • I have been fighting various skin infections since September. This last one has been proven to be quite stubborn. After more lab work, my dermatologist just started me on my third or fourth medication! Please pray that this 30-day treatment would work. 
  • For language learning progress, in whatever ways possible.

Please also pray for my colleague Solia Rios. She was going to go with the team for this training, but had to drop out due to a serious illness.

Thanks so much for being a prayer warrior and an encouragement. I couldn’t do this without you.

God bless you,

Alex

*Life here consists of so many errands! “Amazon” may be in our backyard, but they don’t deliver packages.


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