earthen vessels, East Africa, and the gospel
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Posts from — August 2012

August 2012 Prayer Update

We are excited that we are less than a month away from our move to Africa. Everything seems to move by so quickly, but it is apparent that God is keeping up with the pace better than I am! What I mean by that is that our heavenly Father is covering the ways in which we recognize our inadequacy and providing for those needs we don’t immediately recognize. Here are a few example praises and prayer requests.

Praises:
  1. We received much help from friends in the process of moving out and preparing the shipping container. God has been good to grant us kind, patient, and productive assistance.
  2. God provided renters for our home in Michigan. We are very happy with the situation and extremely grateful that a long-term lease was signed.
  3. God has truly provided beyond what we have asked. Despite my expectations otherwise, we will be fully supported beginning in September!
Requests:
  1. With our time in the States coming to a close, we’re swimming in logistical details. Please pray that God would grant us strength and wisdom to finish pre-field ministry well.
  2. Please pray that our language acquisition training will effectively prepare us to learn Swahili. The progress of our language learning will be a regular and important prayer request over the next couple years.
  3. Please pray that we may help our family to navigate the upcoming changes. And, please pray that God may continue preparing the relationships between us and our teammates–Beth and the Eads. We will be leaning on them much for support in the upcoming months!

August 20, 2012   No Comments

Longest Road Trip to Date

With all of our things packed up and moved out of the house, we have been living out of our car since July 27. Thankfully, we have had great places to stay along the way. We won’t return back to Detroit until September–just a few days before we depart for Tanzania. Here is a summary of our church meetings since we left Detroit.

We made our first stop to meet with a church in New Jersey on July 29. Parsippany Baptist Church invited us to share our ministry with them on that day. After I offered a presentation and a sermon, we had multiple opportunities for fellowship and discussing theology and missions with the people of the church. I was impressed with how seriously the church evaluates missionary candidates. It was explained to us that the process was intentionally thorough so that the church can make their partnerships lifetime commitments.

We were glad to meet with our partners at Colchester Bible Baptist Church in Connecticut on Wednesday, August 1, to update them on the progress of our pre-field ministry and share a sermon. They were glad to meet Ian and send us on our way with prayer.

From there we took a detour through New Hampshire and stopped in Burlington, MA, to meet with the Church of the Open Bible, August 5-9. Their pastor Dan Winnberg and his family are friends from our sending church. The church gave us four days to meet with them and participate in their church services. We appreciated how eager the church was to open their homes to us so that we may fellowship with them.

We left New England to return to New Jersey and meet with Calvary Bible Chapel of Flanders. I was asked to present our ministry in Sunday School and preach in the other worship services on August 12. Calvary Bible has the unusual distinction of being our last church meeting in pre-field ministry. Laura noted that this may be the last time I preach in English for a couple years–an oddly bitter-sweet thought. At any rate, we are glad to end this part of our pre-field ministry with such a positive experience.

August 12, 2012   No Comments

Retreat on the Kancamagus

Our family enjoyed a getaway this past weekend. Matt surprised me with a short trip to New Hampshire; he had booked a small cabin in Lincoln, NH in the White Mountains. We enjoyed the time as a family as we took time to be with each other.

Among the highlights of the trip was driving on the Kancamagus Highway from Lincoln to Conway, through the White Mountain National Forest. We stopped along the way to wade in the Swift River. Ian experienced his first feelings of river water and seemed to take in the whole experience. : ) We loved the chance to relax and thank God for his blessings.

Matt and I spent some time discussing our goals for the rest of our time in the U.S., as well as our goals for our first year in Tanzania. We also shared sweet time in prayer together. We are grateful for the opportunity to refocus and relax.

August 9, 2012   2 Comments