Half Finish

Four weeks to go! The end of this semester marks the halfway point until the completion of our training with NTM!

We completed our Animism class in mid-March, which included a short module on Folk Religion. A Folk religion is a blending/merging of a high religion (such as Christianity, Islam, or Hinduism), and an indigenous/animistic religion. Refer to our March blog entry ("the D.R.D.O.") for an explanation of the Animism class.

Grammar class was a favorite for Lisa, but not so much for Noe (by his own admission). :) Rather than focusing on the English language, we worked out phrases, clauses, and morphemes for at least two languages (national or tribal languages) each day. The reason this is important is that the syntax, word arrangement, varies from language to language. A classic example is: English - big house, and Spanish- house big (casa grande).

Field Fair
In mid-March, we had a short break from classes for the annual "Field Fair". Representatives from all of the countries where NTM works came in to Missouri for a few days and shared the needs and opportunities in each country. It was encouraging (to see opportunities), sobering (to see how many language groups are still without the gospel), and confusing (so much information, where do we go?)! We are still leaning toward Papua New Guinea, but we are not firmly committed at this point.

We have been doing some small group studies from the book of Romans, discussing how we might answer some of those big, but maybe tough questions. Below are a couple of the questions we discussed:

  • Can Christians please/displease God if they are already "made righteous/at peace with God/justified"? (Romans 6)
  • How might you help someone who struggles with believing that an intangible God really loves them? (Romans 8)
  • How might you explain to a new believer: "offer your body as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to Him"? (Romans 12)
We also have completed both the Parenting & Education class (discussing homeschooling and other options on the field), and Biblical Parenting- in which we read and discussed from Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp.

This week we will begin a Biblical Peacemaking class (conflict resolution among other concepts), and also to carry us through to the end of the semester is the CLA Methodology class. (CLA = Culture & Language Acquisition) We will share more about this class in next month's blog.

at the GO! St. Louis Half Marathon
In family news, Naya lost her first tooth on April 30th!
Also, Lisa completed her first half marathon in St. Louis on April 15th!

Next time you hear from us, we will be on our way or in Seattle! THANK YOU for walking this road with us!!

~the Martinez family