We made it! We are finally home! The daily grace of God has been abundantly evident over the past week.
Last Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday were spent making a few more hurried trips back and forth to Santos, the port city, to iron out the last of the details of the arrival of our container. We were quite surprised to find out that our container would NOT have to go through an inspection as we were expecting. Because of our visa status the Customs office simply looked through our paperwork and approved our container. This took at least a day, perhaps more, off of the processing time, allowing us to get our container a little bit quicker. We were highly motivated to receive our container before the Easter holiday. Here in Brazil, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and the weekend are all “holy days.” This means most offices would be closed in respect to the day. Well, our container was being rented for 10 days after its arrival, and that 10 days would expire during the holiday. So rather than paying more we wanted to get our container out quickly. One of our missionary friends was able to locate a trucker very quickly who was able to bring out container to us on Friday morning.
Another huge praise in all of last week was the condition of our container. Last week as we were working through some of the paperwork one of our friends brought to our attention some comments made on the condition of our container upon its arrival. They described our container as having been crushed and the contents questionable. This was a little concerning, but when our container arrived on Friday morning it was in excellent condition and the only thing showing any signs of wear was Emily’s guitar case…just the case. The guitar was fine.
There were about 8 Brazilian friends who came at 5:00 in the morning on Friday to help us unload our container, as well as a couple of our fellow missionaries. We were very thankful for the help. It made the move go very quickly. Our house is now full of containers, and slowly being put together. We got internet hooked up last night, as well as a phone. We actually had a phone number before we had a phone!
Easter Sunday in Moraes Prado was full of music, singing, and great food. Then in the afternoon the church had an outreach to a local orphanage. One of the young men there at the orphanage made a profession of faith, and came to church that evening! What an encouragement. One of the guys from the youth group quickly jumped in and began discipling this new believer. It was very encouraging to see.
We’ll spend a good deal of this week unpacking totes and getting the house settled. It’s very strange to be in our own place after four and a half years!
Thank you for all your prayers for us.