Sunday, July 26, 2009

Summer 2009

One of our "jobs" as missionaries is to open doors for other to experience our life. We can try our best to describe it to you, but until you step into our world, there is no way to paint an exact picture. Every summer our team hosts a group of college students for two months. This year was no exception. They experienced life daily with, eating, playing, ministering, praying, waiting, frustration, joy, team life, Togolese culture, we didn't hide anything from them. They were a great group to have in our homes and our lives have been impacted by them. Thank you to their friends and families that sent them to us with your blessings. God will continue to use their experiences here to shape their futures and we're thrilled to be able to watch Him work.
Jacob, Matt, Tyler, Josh, Abbie, Chelsea, Allison, and Maleah, thank you for blessing our lives.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Update On Antoinette (and my life)

Antoinette returned from Tsiko with more waiting ahead. The blood analysis machine at the hospital there was broken so they suggested she return on Aug. 15th. In the meantime, they sent her home with meds to help with pain, depression, and energy. It’s now been two months that she has been sick. I’m getting more frustrated every day.

Picture your life like’ve got a quaint little bakery that is within walking distance of your house. The next closest grocery store (of any kind) requires the use of your car to get there. But you don’t mind, you like your trusty little car. You have your weekly routine of strolling to the bakery twice a week for fresh white bread, banana bread (with the occasional zucchini bread), tortillas and tortilla chips, pie crusts and pizza crusts. You’ve become such good friends with the baker, that she shares other things with you like fresh squeezed lemon juice for lemonade or a delicious ham and cheese quiche. On Tuesdays you make your weekly trip to the grocery store with the occasional stop off at other place for a few staple items. Then imagine that suddenly your bakery closes. You don’t know why and you don’t know if or when it will reopen. Now you have to find a new place to buy your beloved bread items...or you could make them yourself. You don’t mind making these items, you just can’t make them as quickly or abundantly as your baker-friend. You’re watching your life become slowly more difficult. It’s Tuesday, grocery store day. Guess what? your car won’t start so you’ve got to find some other way to get to the store or your family won’t have anything to eat this week. Then, your dishwasher breaks. Are you getting the picture?

Now, obviously, I’ve exaggerated things a bit for you to get a glimpse of my life right now, but it is frustrating. I really don’t mind doing the extra baking, and actually enjoy it, but it’s difficult to do that with 2 toddlers demanding my attention. It’s taking a lot more planning in order for our week to run smoothly. With Antoinette, I could call on her at a moment’s notice to help me with, cleaning, taking care of children, running to the store for me...I just can not do this with anyone else as easily as I can with her.

Please pray for Antoinette’s health and my (April) perseverance as we wait for answers.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Pray for Antoinette

Antoinette, our wonderful house helper, is leaving at 5:00 AM tomorrow morning to go to Tsiko, the Baptist Mission Hospital south of here. After a month or so of illness, her health continues to be a mystery to us and we ask that you join us in praying that the American doctors there can give her (and us!) some answers. Pray for health of safety of her three children that she is leaving at home.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Time for Survey

It's that time of the year again, time to pack up the trucks and head to Mali to survey the Dogon people. So what's a survey? Good question. A survey is a trip to learn more about the need for missionaries among a largely unreached people group. In addition, we take a look at the logistical aspects of missionary life: what's available, how much it costs, what the government requires of missionaries and so on and so forth. Survey trips have resulted in mission teams locating to many fields all over Africa and the world over the last 20 years. As I write, in fact, there is a team of 10+ students at Harding University who are making plans to live among and minister to the Dogon people, a direct result of survey trips to Dogon land that our team has been undertaking since 2004. This is the 3rd year that I have been involved, and it has been eye opening to say the least.Please pray for our safety. Anything can happen on trips like these, and it usually does, and we are asking God to go before us and make our paths straight, in the West African understanding of straight at least :) Pray also for April and the boys, as they we be without me for 10 days. I praise God for my family and the strength that they have that allows me to make these journeys. May the Kingdom expand as a result of our efforts!