In late June we will be leaving our home in Bolivia to move back to the UP. We have a big transition coming up, and hope to have our support raised in order to be on campus by late August, in time for Orientation Week.
BLESS is a volleyball team that is part of the sports ministry run by WorldVenture Bolivia. Currently there is a men’s and a women’s team, and this year there are plans for more!
For four days, 20 college students and 7 WorldVenture missionaries attended sports camp to worship together, hear from God, and (of course) play sports. It was a great week!
Murder. It happened at the BLESS Volleyball Camp we attended this week. And I (Lindsay), was involved. Gasp!
Two months into my freshman year of college, I auditioned for the Michigan Tech Troupe, an improv comedy ensemble, because my friend Matt asked me to. Not expecting to be accepted into the group, I agreed and had what I thought was a horrible audition. Little did I know, the group was excited about my audition and I was in.
The more I learned about improv, the more I grew to love it and Troupe playtimes soon became huge stress relievers during my crazy semesters. But as I continued Troupin’, I started to wonder if God wanted me to be part of the group. There were many opportunities I had to turn down with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship because I didn’t have the time, party because of my involvement in Troupe. I worried that I wasn’t being a good witness through the choices I made while improv-ing. I wondered if I had made a mistake when I joined the group. I hadn’t prayed about it, asked anyone about it… I had just done it…
The Plot Thickens
The year after I graduated from Tech, I received a phone call from my close friend Christina, who told me Brandon (one of the guys with me in the Troupe) had just become a Christian! He later came up to me, gave me a huge hug, and thanked me for the example I had been while being part of the Troupe. I was stunned.
A few months later another member of the Troupe (one who joined after I had left the group) became a Christian, partly due to Brandon’s testimony. I began to wonder if I had missed the work God was doing in my life…
The Plot Thickens Even More
We moved to Bolivia as missionaries. I started having the desire to perform improv again; I didn’t really understand it, but wished we were still in the U.S. so I could start a Christian improv ministry. Then I started dreaming about using improv as a ministry tool right where I was, in Bolivia. But the dream died as I continued studying Spanish. I couldn’t speak well enough to teach Bolivian college students how to improv, could I?
Well… it turns out I can. At the BLESS camp, four students and I played Murder and God re-awoke the passion I used to have for improv.
My dream is to form BLESS Improv – a group of Christian college students that use improv as a way to share the gospel and to grow in their faith. I used to wonder why I was part of the Troupe and if I should continue with it. Now I’m excited to see what else comes from my experience!
Murder, She Wrote
For those who have not had the pleasure of attending an MTU Troupe show, here’s how the game of Murder works; it’s a lot like the game of telephone. One person knows what’s going on (specifically, where the murder occurs, the murderer’s occupation, and the murder weapon). This person conveys the information to a second person – but there’s a catch – no words are allowed, only gibberish. After the second person knows all of the information, he “kills” the first. This is repeated with a third person and the game ends when the third “kills” the second and each person reveals what they thought was the location, occupation, and weapon.
In my opinion, murder is one of the hardest improv games to play (in fact, I used to avoid playing it when part of the Troupe) but the students did a really good job – especially because they had never improv-ed before!
And yes, the murder was committed by a flight stewardess, in the bathroom of a gym, with a Coca-Cola flavored lollypop!
Yesterday was an exciting day! While walking next to the cow pen at Hans’s grandma’s farm, we received a phone call from Mallory at WorldVenture. Mallory called to give us the clearance to buy plane tickets for Bolivia (she gives clearance to mid-term missionaries when they are at 90% of their monthly support).
But the news was even more exciting than we thought: our support level is at 99%!!! We are excited about this and are so thankful that God has given us our support so quickly.
Our departure date it set for June 4th: We leave Minneapolis-St. Paul at 6:35 a.m. and arrive in Santa Cruz at 9:30 p.m., with a layover in Miami. We will be joining a short-term mission group as they spend two weeks in Bolivia. Our first adventure with the group is an 10 hour bus ride from Santa Cruz to Cochabamba. We’ll be with the group until they leave and then get started in language school.
Thank you for all of your prayers and support! We look forward to sharing more with you in the future about what God is doing in our lives!
It has been a while since I last posted, and a lot of things have changed in our lives! We attended training in Colorado this past week with WorldVenture. While we were there, we had an interview and are now endorsed as mid-term missionaries.
“Mid-term” missionaries spend between 3 months and 3+ years in the field, and Hans and I plan to spend three years in Cochabamba, Bolivia. We will be joining a family in Cochabamba and hope to work alongside them as they encourage and teach leadership skills to Bolivians. At this point, we don’t know a lot of details about what we’ll be doing… but we’re both very excited about what God is doing in our lives!
The training we attended was great! We both learned a lot about what we will be doing in the future (before we get to Bolivia) and tips and strategies for how to adapt to the culture when we get there. There were a bunch of incredible people at training and we look forward to seeing how God uses them in the future.