Dear Friends and family,
Note from Vanessa: Thank you so much for responding to our letter last month. I love to read your emails and hear the latest news. It is so uplifting to know that you are praying for us. December is here and it has been crazy already. Fernando, an Agua:Yaku employee, got married and Danny and I were in the wedding as the padrinos. It was a lot of fun. I am so humbled they chose us and I pray we will be a good example. The best part was that Danny and I got to dance the waltz! I absolutely loved it! And also this month we celebrated our 12th anniversary. How generous, forgiving, and loving is God. He has kept his promises in my life through His Son, through his Spirit and has been a loving and protective Father by giving me Danny. Danny's simple and strong faith has carried me through moments of terrible worry and pain. And his arms have been God's arms to me when I have needed comfort. I am so grateful and pray that the Lord will continue to bless my husband and will give him many more years of life.
This month also, Luciana will turn 15 – FIFTEEN!!!! Where do the years go? She is growing into a beautiful, thoughtful and loving young lady. Please pray for extra blessings for her as she starts to deal with new challenges in her life that she will continue to make Jesus her priority and that it will be God who designs her destiny and not her herself.
The boys are also doing great. It is such a blessing to have Nathaniel here with us; he is such a huge help with Isaiah and is such an encouragement to him. Isaiah loves the our new house (we now live in a gated community) and he looks for any excuse to walk around the street. Please pray for him, as his best friend Daniel leaves and then Nathaniel goes to college, that the Lord will hold him through this difficult time.
We have a new intern working with us, her name is Sara Stanford, she is a dear friend that first came here on a team from our home church (Crossroads in Kentucky). She just got here and is getting acquainted with the currency, transportation, food, etc. Her Spanish is wonderful already! She will be working at the transition house with the girls, teaching them cooking and freezing, and developing crafts that the girls can make and sell. I am sure she will also be a blessing as she shares her testimony and listens to them. Please pray that she will be safe during her time here and that the Lord will use this time to strengthen their relationship even more and will show her His amazing love.
Thank you for supporting us financially and with your prayers. God is blessing us and the people we minister to through you. You are a huge part of what happens around here. And sometimes ministry just happens any day, at any time of the day!
Note from Danny: I just wanted update you on Agua:Yaku, our water well drilling project. Our team just got back from Cochabamba where we participated in a training workshop at a local university on how to measure water quality and evaluate community water systems. The knowledge we gained will be invaluable as we continue to expand the services we offer families and communities throughout Bolivia. Water wells are a great way to bring clean water to people right in their homes, but unfortunately it's not possible to drill wells in every part of Bolivia. In the mountains we run into impenetrable rock and in other places the water it too deep to reach with our drilling rig. Alternatives to water wells include capturing spring water, rain water, or treating surface water from rivers or lakes so that it will be clean enough to drink.
We are excited about a new partnership in 2010 with a Canadian Christian NGO called The Water School (http://www.thewaterschool.org/). The Water School promotes a solar disinfection technology called sodis—a simple way to disinfect water using 2-liter plastic drink bottles, and the sun. Instead of boiling water, scientists have recently discovered that heat and UV rays from the sun are more than sufficient to kill any disease or sickness causing pathogens in water—including bacteria, parasites, viruses, etc. Water stored in plastic bottles is safe to drink after it has been exposed to the sun for one day (or two days if it is cloudy). In 2010 Agua:Yaku will begin teaching the sodis technique along with hygiene and sanitation in communities where clean water is not yet available through wells or sanitary distribution systems. Did you know that over 5 million people die from waterborne diseases each year and that the majority of preventable deaths are a result of the water they drink? Something as simple as teaching people how and why to drink clean water will save many lives in Bolivia. The task of teaching sodis will afford our Agua:Yaku team a wonderful opportunity to travel to many new communities in Bolivia where we can work with local pastors and teachers, sharing the love of Christ as well as providing clean water. Of course we will continue to drill new water wells wherever we can. I have no doubt that our work teaching sodis will reveal many needs and new opportunities for drilling wells. Pray for Agua:Yaku as we venture into this new form of ministry and sharing God's love.
Thank you to everyone who is already partnering with us financially and in prayer. I have no doubt that God is blessing your commitment to missions and ministry around the world. (Have you read a book called "The Hole in Our Gospel" by Richard Stearns? If not, pick it up for yourself this Christmas.) If you are thinking about supporting our ministry—just go ahead and do it. You probably won't even miss a couple of dollars a day from your family budget. Even a donation of $30 or $50 a month could make a lifetime impact on a family here in Bolivia who benefits from clean water and who hears about the love of Christ for the first time.
Vanessa and Danny Beams