Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Eshes Are Leaving Ecuador

Greetings dear friends and family. We are terribly sorry that we have not kept up more regularly with our blog. We lost our computer's hard drive in late December and sending out emails is difficult when you have lost all of the addresses. So if you did not receive an email from us, please send your contact information to joneshleman@gmail.com so that we can add you back to our list. However, that is no excuse, we apologize for not keeping you more up to date on all that has been happening here at Casa Victoria and in our lives here in Quito.

We'll keep this update as brief as possible. After a lot of long talks and a lot of prayer, we have decided to fulfill our commitment of 9 months and then come home. This means we will be leaving Quito on April 8th and heading back to Orange County. The visas we originally acquired afforded us the opportunity to stay in Quito up through the beginning of June (which would total about 11 months). However, we really felt that it was in our best interest, and the interest of the ministry down here in Ecuador as well, that we cut our time to just the original commitment of 9 months.

As we finish up our final days in Ecuador, we are excited to take the young men living in the house on a 3-day outdoor adventure retreat just outside of Quito. We look forward to a time of bonding and debriefing as we challenge ourselves on the ropes course, share meals together, and sit around the bonfire in the evening. For the South American guys, this will be an experience of a lifetime, as not one of them has had an opportunity like this. For the North Americans, we anticipate an incredibly rich time together, centered on the person and teachings of Jesus.

You may be asking, "What's next for the Eshlemans?" In all honesty, we are asking the same thing. For the last couple weeks, we have been coming to the Lord in trust, asking Him what He has next for us. We are looking at opportunities in Southern California and Washington D.C. where we have wonderful communities of friends. Anna is excited to get back into the classroom teaching elementary school and Jon is prayerfully seeking a job in full-time ministry. Though we're not in the states at this point in time, we are well aware of the poor economic situation and the lack of job opportunities. We are sure that you are all feeling this economic strain in one way or another. We covet your prayers as we seek out what we will be doing for jobs in the near future.

Above all else, we praise the Lord for our experience in Ecuador these last 9 months. What an incredible adventure He has given us! Though we experienced many difficult moments, we are already beginning to look back in thanksgiving as we see the direct result of the Lord's grace and mercy in bringing us through each day in victory. Each experience here has shaped our hearts and minds, brought us closer to one another, and ultimately drawn us nearer to our Creator. We are excited to share more of our personal experiences with you when we return to the states.

Thank you for being such an integral part of our journey here in Quito. Thank you for your prayers on our behalf and your prayers for the ministry of Casa Victoria. Please do not cease praying for this place. The 30 kids that come each day for homework club, the single moms that gather together on Wednesdays to share stories and life, the young men that are living and learning together in community, the 13 families that receive educational scholarships through Casa Victoria, the numerous neighborhood schools that visit each week - these things are evidence of God's faithfulness in this community - these things need your prayers.

Thank you also to those of you who financially support our ministry. Never once have we been lacking. Your generosity surely enables us to give of ourselves freely to the people of Ecuador and the world over. Thank you for giving of your life to make it possible to give of ours. As we return to California and look to engage our own culture as well as the work world and economic crisis, we ask that you would continue to pray for us as we make this transition back to the United States.

We look forward to times together in the future, when we can share more pictures and stories of God's incredible love for this place and all that he has done in and through us during this time!

Lovingly in the name of Jesus Christ,

Jon and Anna Eshleman

Our contact info in the U.S.
Jon cell: 949-285-1409
email: joneshleman@gmail.com

Anna cell: 949-280-1492
email: annaeshleman@yahoo.com

Address: 21 Hancock Street, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

THE ESHS ARE COMING HOME!! HEYYYYYYY-OOOO!!!!

the dictator

Carolina said...

Hola Amigos,
Thanks for everything! We hope you have been blessed by this time here. We are sorry for the difficulties you may have had, it is always hard to live far away from home. It is a challenge to adapt to a new culture: the language, the food, everything! Yet, it is always worth it if one is willing to open one´s mind and heart, without judgement, to these new experiences. Isn´t it wonderful God created so many different cultures and races? I remember when we met, sitting right next to eachother in Novemeber at Mt Hermon! It was such a "Coincidence" it must have been meant to be! Thanks so much for all you have done for Casa Victoria and our community! Thanks for coming down to our beloved country. God bless you, we know you will be a blessing in your lives in USA.
un abrazo, Carolina, Jose Luis , Julia Isabel

Jessidy said...

Hi Jon and Anna,
Jesse and I think of you guys often. I am filled with excitement anticipation, and a tiney tiny bit of understanding as you make your transition back to the "American Life". I know Jesse and I were only in Ecuador for two months, but the transition back was good, but also difficult. I cried on the drive home because I was overwhelmed by the nice sidewalks . . . I know that you will be forever changed and better because of your time in Ecuador. I will DEFINITELY be praying for you two as you make the transition back to the states.
Love,
Cassidy Scherba