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Genesis 3: 8-13

Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”

He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”

 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

 The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”

Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”

After the first couple broke the one commandment that God had given them, they hid, perhaps thinking that God would not see them. God enters the scene with a series of questions, all of which would be obvious to Him, an all-knowing deity. With His final question He asks, have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?

His question resembles the question of a parent, frustrated with a child who has spilled a glass of milk for the umpteenth time, “WHAT DID YOU DO?” Clearly Mom or Dad knows what the child has done. What they really want to know is “why did you do that?” God knew the answer to His questions. Seems that what God wanted to know is why they had done what they did.

The couple had perfect living conditions, a great job, the best Boss and lived together in perfect harmony.

Why would you risk that by not obeying?

Did God not know why they did it? Hard to say. The question why hardly ever has a simple answer.

In this ministry, we are often asked why questions. Why would you leave your family and friends? Why would you move to another country? More recently, why would you resign the Area Director position?

Over the next few weeks this blog will consider its own series of questions:

Why we are anxious to return to Mexico?  What we will be doing once we get there? Where we will work and with whom?

We will be back with some answers.


About Paul and Sandy

Paul Kazim was born and raised in a nominally Muslim family in New York City. He was the first in his family to come to Christ, when he met God in His word, just as he finished High School. He studied Chemistry at Queens College of the City of New York, before spending three years on staff with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship on the East Coast. He later received his M.Div from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, in Boston. He earned a Ph.D. in Intercultural Studies at the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary in 2017.

Sandy (formerly Woodworth) was born in Santa Clara de las Villas, Cuba, and was raised by two giants in the faith, who themselves served in Latin America for all of Sandy’s childhood. She has a bachelor’s degree in nursing and a master’s degree in family medicine.

Paul and Sandy married in 1987. Both are ordained AG ministers, with credentials from the Southern California Network. The Kazims have been with Assemblies of God World Missions in Latin America for the past 25 years, first in Peru, and in Mexico since 2000.

Paul with his first Hebrew Diploma cohort

Recently, Paul resigned as the Mexico field’s Area Director after eight years in order to dedicate more time to his teaching ministry. He is involved in pastoral education in local Bible institutes, and bachelor’s (ISUM) and master’s (Facultad) level TEE (Theological Education by Extension) programs. His goal is to develop hermeneutical communities with a wide variety of experiences and backgrounds which will produce indigenous reflections on the Scriptures.

The bulk of Sandy’s time is spent discipling Mexican health care providers to participate in medical outreaches to new and developing churches, and be self-sustaining and self-propagating. She helps organize and carry out several medical outreaches each year, particularly to isolated or disaster-impacted areas. Sandy also teaches on issues regarding identity, family dynamics, and the prevention of sexual abuse, and helps coordinate pastoral counseling seminars on these topics for church leaders.

Sandy on a recent medical outreach with the phenomenal MISAD team (Ministerio Integral de Salud de las Asambleas de Dios)

Paul and Sandy have three adult children who grew up on the field with them. Hannah, Stephen, Stephen’s terrific wife Emily, and Andrew now live in Long Beach, CA.

From left- Stephen, Emily, Paul, Sandy, Hannah, and Andrew Kazim

Paul and Sandy love living in Mexico City, and getting to enjoy its vibrant culture, food, and community. They can’t wait to get back, and pick up where they left off!

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