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You Know You Have Been Camping/ On The Road A Lot When...

Friday, October 9, 2009

- You want to tell your little one about heaven and say: “... and someday we’re gonna go to...” and she interrupts and shouts: “CAMP!”

- You pull up at somebody’s house where you’ll be spending the night and your youngest says with wonder and amazement in her voice: “We’re gonna sleep INSIDE?”

- You overhear her murmuring as she falls asleep: “Danku Desus (Thank you Jesus), I have a bed.”

- Your kids wake up in the morning and ask you where we are today.

All that said, though, our kids have been real troopers, and we have all very much enjoyed traveling to various camps and churches. It has been a real blessing to meet so many new friends and supporters. If you would like to hear us speak at your church please put us in touch with your pastor.

Our New Home

Monday, October 5, 2009
As if all our travels in September weren’t enough to keep us busy there was also another time consuming question in our lives: where to move. You may recall that the parsonage we have been living in sold much more quickly than anybody expected, and we now need to move out by Oct. 31. With such a busy schedule, and sorting and packing to boot, we didn’t have much time for house hunting. But God provided once again in a way that just amazes us and fills us with gratitude for Him and His people. The Charlemont Free Methodist church has offered to let us live in their vacant parsonage - rent free! What a blessing that is to us! On top of that, we can also keep our dog until we move to Malawi, which is an especially big blessing to the kids, AND, for the first time in 11 years we get to live close to family again, if only temporarily. We actually lived in that area briefly and attended Charlemont before we moved to Deep River. So, in a sense, we are leaving home in Deep River and moving “back home.” Isn’t God good? God’s provision for us and His timing in so many different areas of our lives continues to amaze and encourage us. Thank you for your prayers! And thanks to the Charlemont congregation for being so welcoming and generous!

September

Wow, it’s hard to believe it is already October. September has truly been a whirlwind. We arrived home from our vacation just in time to attend Maple Grove’s 49+ retreat. What a wonderful bunch of people - what a wonderful weekend. We felt very loved, and appreciated all their encouragement, support, and prayers. Below is a picture of our kids sporting their new Maple Grove t-shirts.


After Maple Grove we came home for two days after being gone for 1 ½ months, just enough time to do some laundry, check the mail, and think about leaving again. Then it was off to Wesley Acres for the 50+ retreat. Again we received a wonderful welcome, many opportunities to speak and share what God has been doing in our lives, and much encouragement and support. A definite highlight for our two sons was when they got to participate in a high ropes course and zip-lining! But I think the highlight for us was at the closing service when Pastor Dave Dyer asked everybody to stand if they wanted to make a commitment to pray for us - nearly the whole room stood up. Many then came forward to lay hands on us and pray for us. What a wonderful
time of friendship, fellowship, and mutual encouragement!

Our next stop was the Frankford FMC, where we got to reconnect with friends we had just made at Wesley Acres, but also made many new friends. Pastor Brandon Shillington was excited that many things I mentioned in my sermon fit beautifully with what he has been preaching recently.

Though we had previously connected with some of the people from Bracebridge, our sending church, we finally met the congregation. On Sept. 27 we enjoyed a service of heartfelt and lively worship, and shared some of the amazing stories of how God has been leading us, and putting together the details in a way that gives wonderful confirmation. Through their partnership with us, this church is an integral part of those miracle stories - one of which is the fact that their treasurer, Jeanne Tucker, championed the idea of coming alongside us even before she knew that we were headed for Malawi. Amazingly, Jeanne herself has been a missionary to Malawi! It was inspiring to hear Jeanne say that our going to Malawi is an answer to her prayers for new missionaries there.

After a delicious potluck in Bracebridge, several of us headed for Barrie to meet with John-Mark and Loreli Cockram, who have been missionaries to Ghana, Africa. They shared so much good advice with us, and helped us to understand the administrative details better. They were also very encouraging. It was good to hear reassurances coming from those who have “been there and done that.” We also enjoyed connecting again with Sterling and Cheryl Cooper, whose church in Hausey’s Rapids is partnering with ourselves and Bracebridge in this venture of faith. It is so good to be part of the Body of Christ. We cannot do this by ourselves. And, indeed, we aren’t. We are grateful both to God, and to His people, for so many wonderful things that have happened.