Meet the Sheets Family!

Jason & Sarah Sheets are now serving and living in Arequipa, Peru with their family!

Family Introductions

Jason & Sarah Sheets were born and raised in Salem, Oregon USA.  They spent a year in Costa Rica where they attended language school for 4 hours a day, 5 days a week before moving to their current location in Peru.  They have been married for almost 14 years and have been blessed with 3 children who daily teach them more about who they are as individuals and challenge them to grow and love more like Christ.

Sarah describes her children.  “Nathan (11.5) loves all things Lego and Star Wars. He has a passion for animals and an extremely high sense of justice. He says he would like to be a zoologist when he grows. Evelyn (9.5) is a friend to almost everyone. She loves little kids and enjoys to help them in anyway she can. At 9 she clearly shows love through helping others and has taken it upon herself to be my sous-chef in the kitchen as well as to organize her drawers according to the newest fad! Andrew(5) is a fun loving energetic little guy who completes our little family of 5. He LOVES to cuddle, read and play in the dirt. Andrew loves people and enjoys making new friends with almost everyone he meets, thankfully he is also very keen on staying with mom or dad while out in public, so we don’t have to worry too much about him wandering off.”

Why do you live in Peru?

We are church planting missionaries in an area called Ciudad de Dios, “City of God,” We work with a TEAM founded church from the center of town. Jason, my husband, pastors the church plant.  Right now the church is more of a Bible study for adults (Slowly growing into a church) and Sunday school for the kids.  We were accepted to participate in the Operation Christmas Child program this year with Samaritan’s Purse and just received all the boxes!   We hope to kick off the 14 week discipleship program that accompanies that here soon!  

Currently the church has 2 services.  We are also working on community outreach programs to reach not only the spiritual needs of the people but also the physical needs as well.  One way we are working on that is through the start-up of a community garden.  My husband also goes out 2-3 more times a week to be present, visit families and youth in the area and to disciple the volunteer leadership that we have.  He also works in the church in the city (17 yrs old now), helping out in various ministries there.  

What is your kids schooling like in Peru?

Our kids are schooled on a Peruvian schedule which means it is currently summer (January until March). I home school my 2 oldest (for 2 years I have only homeschooled the oldest, but starting in March will be schooling both Nathan and Evelyn) and the youngest attends a local private Christian Peruvian school. We hope to have Nathan and Evelyn both take art, music and PE classes at the school where Andrew attends (schedule permitting) this year to maintain the friendships they have had with Peruvian locals as most kids are shut up inside all evening doing homework during the school year.
 
I am using primarily My Father’s World but have veered from their suggestions for Math and Language. I will be using Teaching Textbooks and Total Language Plus this year for those. I love how I can teach both kids using MFW in the core subjects, that the Bible is integrated so much into the studies and how attainable the lessons are for our days. I also love that the day can be completed in a reasonable amount of time allowing for more flexibility in our ministry life.

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What has been the best part of living overseas?

The best part of living overseas has to be the opportunity to have a wider worldview! Our kids understand the blessings that we have from the Lord and just how big the world is due to our travels. The kids would definitely say getting to see things like Machu Picchu and the jungle as well as volcanoes and deserts and all the different animals is one of the best things. I love that they are also fluent in 2 languages.  What a blessing it is to be able to communicate the love of God with twice as many people in their heart languages!
 

What has been the hardest part of living overseas?

We are blessed to live in a big city, so many of the typical “comforts of home”are accessible. HOWEVER, the hardest part of being here is that we are so far from our family and friends who love and support us. We returned from home assignment 8 months ago already but at times it seems like so much longer. For our oldest the hardest part at first was adjusting to the culture of school life. We originally had him attending the Peruvian school but the educational system is so incredibly different than in the states that he HATED school. Every day was a battle which is when the Lord really called me to start homeschooling at the very least him. This past year I felt the Lord asking me to do the same for Evelyn. Andrew honestly didn’t remember the states and the hardest thing for him is probably being stared at because of his incredibly BLOND hair. Just yesterday he commented that he should have worn his hat when we were walking to church so people wouldn’t stare at him so much.
 

What would you tell other families moving overseas?

Living overseas is sometimes like being on a roller coaster: there are highs and lows, enjoyable times and scary times, times when you never want the ride to end and times when you just want to get it over with. It’s worth it though, the grace of God is sufficient to get you through the hard times, and He blesses you through it all. Your kids are kids, no matter where you live, treat them as such.  Don’t expect them to suddenly be different just because you’re living in a different country. If you are able to adjust well, seeing the blessings through the tough times, so will your children.
 
One of the best things you can do for yourself is to keep a journal of your time while deciding to move overseas. We wrote down our calling to the mission field, how we saw God clearly making the way for us, providing funds, resources and encouragement along the way. When we came to harder times in our first couple of years here re-reading that was what kept us going, remembering WHY we are here and HOW God brought us here was such an important thing for not only my husband and me but also for our children.
 

Do you have a fun story to share?

My daughter told me one of her favorite memories of living overseas happened while we were in language school in Costa Rica. During the rainy season it was not uncommon for the kids and dad to walk home from school in pouring down rain. One day the rain was so hard that there were literal rivers in the street. My 6 year old daughter had to lift her knees so high just to walk because the water was up to her knees. Meanwhile my husband had the umbrella and 3 large backpacks slung across his body protecting them from the torrential downpour. When they arrived home I greeted them at the door with towels and had them get out of their sopping wet clothes in the carport before entering the house. It made for a fun memory for sure!

What are your prayer requests or praises for the prayer warriors out there?

Please pray for the ministry that we are a part of in Ciudad de Dios, for the kids and adults who attend church services to know and understand the love of God. We are doing a summer program of 14 weeks discipleship. Please pray for the supplies to arrive (as they are stuck in customs) and for the participants to understand what it truly means to be a disciple of the Lord. We work with many kids from broken or abusive homes, please pray for wisdom and guidance to help break the cycle of poverty (spiritual, emotional and economical) in the area.
 
 

Want to keep up with the Sheets Family?

Check out the Sheets Family Website!  You can find out more about their ministry as well as ways to get involved!  

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