Saturday, June 21, 2014

Jungle, Building, and a Funny Well Story

I will be going to the jungle tomorrow for a week to translate for a medical campaign.  I will be going with our friends, who are staying with us, Jake and Jaynie Chandler, as well as close to 100 more people.  I believe around 65 medical doctors and students are coming from the United States.  We will be going to Puerto Maldonado, which is in the Amazon east of Cusco.  I believe the main tribal people in the area are the Manú people group.  The Church the doctors are working with in Puerto Maldonado is bringing in different villages each day for medical care.  We will have the opportunity to share the gospel with tons of people!  Please pray for us this week.
At our Church in Cusco, we have been building offices again.  Because of the growing Church, we have been looking for a bigger building.  We found one a little bigger right next door from the same owners as our current building.  We got it for the same price, but we must build again.  We are so grateful to God for the growing Church and the new building.
We have not been working much at the land because we have been so busy in the ministry.  We did, however, try and dig a well.  Like everything in Peru, to do something legally takes a lot of paperwork and money.  We had to hire an engineer to do a hydro-geological study as part of the paperwork.  We must pay this guy about $1500 to do drill test holes and write a report on his findings.  This sounds very scientific, but this man's science involved walking around our property and looking for wet spots.  He insisted there was water and suggested to dig a well by hand.  I opted for hiring a backhoe.  The backhoe dug two, 15 foot holes and found nothing.  We are now back at the drawing board.  There is only one guy in Cusco with a drill rig to make a real well and he charges a fortune.  I would hire him if I knew we could find water, but he uses the same scientific method as the engineer. The driller will literally show up at our land and ask us where he should drill a hole. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

How do you answer a fool in his folly?

Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest you be like him yourself. Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes.  - Proverbs 26:4-5

These two verses have been used by atheists and skeptics to say there are contradictions in the Bible. This, however, is not the case. These verses teach two appropriate ways to answer the arguments of the foolish. We are told not to answer a fool according to his folly, which means we are not to stoop to his level and mimic his foolishness. If the fool exalts himself, we should not respond by boasting about ourselves. If the fool slanders, lies, mocks, and utters all kinds of evil against us falsely, we should not resort to the same tactics. If the fool reacts instantly in his emotions, we must patiently pray about our response.
On the other hand, we must avoid the temptation to ignore the fool, lest he be wise in his own eyes. Sometimes if we remain silent and don't answer the fool, he becomes justified in his folly and his foolishness only increases. It takes great discernment to know which position should be held in each situation.
When we think the point of an argument is to win at all costs, we fall into the same folly as the fool. We can be completely right about a matter, but handle the discussion in such a poor, sinful way that we have already lost because we fell into the trap of folly, and have become a fool. A good principle to follow when discerning how you should answer a fool in his folly is to not respond immediately, but to wait and pray for three days. Often times your potential response will radically change after three days when your emotions subside. After seeking God in prayer, studying how Christ responded to fools in their folly, and letting time pass, you will have far greater discernment of how to answer the fool, and therefore glorify God.