by: Winterville Baptist
Bonjour de France! (Greetings from France)I (Roy) want to thank everyone for remembering us in your prayers! During our first 5 weeks in France, our family has gone through difficult struggles with health, lack of sleep, and adjustments to the time and language. Because of your prayers we’ve been able to remain faithful and upbeat despite spiritual attacks. By God’s grace we are persevering—and even making some headway in our French speaking!
During our class time we have the opportunity to each share one devotion. I’m always drawn to scriptures with an agrarian theme so I shared from John 15:1-5. In this passage Jesus tells his disciples His role, God’s role, and their role for the kingdom. I shared with our class that the true vine (Jesus) will always bear fruit. We have been given the responsibility to produce fruit. But in order to produce fruit, a grapevine must endure some pruning. It’s a reminder that even though we remain in Jesus, God still must prune us for us to continue to bear fruit. Even though our family is following God by learning language and committing to missionary work in Africa, we realize the road will not be easy. Satan will try to attack us. He will remind us of jobs with better pay back home, larger homes with bigger yards, and even comfortable places to serve where we can speak English and people will understand us. I needed to be reminded of this necessary pruning so I could be patient during our adjustment period. We know the call that is before us—to share God’s message with some who have never heard. It is for this purpose that we are here!
Practical teaching on buying veggies in the market and following French baking instructions
I’m sure you’re all excited to hear just how language class is going for us. We spent a lot of time over the first few weeks reviewing phonetic sounds. Even though some French words look similar to the English word with the same meaning, they do not sound the same at all. We have all learned very fast that just because the letters make familiar words, the sounds are still foreign for us. Our teacher has been very patient with us in training our tongues to make the correct sounds. She recognizes our weaknesses and helps the whole class develop together. Now we are beginning to have the vocabulary to ask basic questions. We have a few verbs we can use to give direction. The last few days we have begun to learn how to use masculine and feminine nouns. And we have begun to work with the verbs “to be” and “to have” in asking questions and making statements. By the end of June we will have had an oral exam. During it, we’ll be given 2 minutes to introduce ourselves individually. We’ll tell a little about our family and where we are from. Our first session ends on June 29. We have a week-long break and then continue for another 5 weeks before having a longer break at the end of the summer.
Abby has been adjusting quite well! She loves her nursery class. After taking her shoes off, she plops down onto a toddler sofa giggling, ready to play with her favorite toys and friends. Her daycare teacher leads all the kids in playing together for the morning hours. They sing songs and do actions to the songs—all in French! Abby loves to color every day with us and with her teacher. She has become quite the climber when we venture to neighborhood parks. She continues to say new words in English and occasionally we think we hear a word or two in French! I’m glad that she has adjusted so well.
Now that we are healthy and have a very basic level of French, we want to accept the challenge to begin speaking with strangers in the neighborhood. It’s one thing to use a few words at the market, but another thing to strike up a conversation with parents at the park or a stranger sitting near the street. So far, most people we have met speak better English than we speak French, so the conversations tend to go to English. We want these conversations to help us grow in our French speaking and understanding. We can use these times to share about ourselves and why we are here so that people may begin to understand there is a God that loves them. I desire to have these conversations with the same people so that as my French grows and my friendships with several people grow as well.
We continue to covet your prayers. Here are some specific ways you can be praying for us:
- Pray for us to have conversations in French that build relationships, and even spiritual conversations that uplift others.
- Continue to pray for our growth in learning French.There are always peaks and valleys in language learning.Pray with us that we remain patient and focused in our studies.
- Remember to pray for our health.We are grateful that we are healthy today. Please pray that our health continues to be good and our energy strong.
- A personal note: We are planning to begin potty training Abby during our short break from school.Pray that this is successful and Abby will adjust to it well in the days and weeks ahead.
Roy, Denise, and Abby
Prayer Card 2018
Please use the following link to download the 2018 Prayer Card:
Thagard 2018 Prayer Card
If you would like a copy mailed to you, please email CVM at PL@cvmusa.org with "Prayer Card" in the subject line.
Please include in the body of the email the following information:
- Which field staff member's prayer card you would like (ie:Thagard)
- Your name and mailing address
Roy, Denise, and Abby
17 Voie de Wissous