March 19, 2008
Dear Family & Friends,
This past week it was Dan's turn to feel stabs of fear. He's been struggling with a sinus infection and has been worn down working and staying up late to work on preparations for raising support. One evening while the kids and I were gone, he walked around the house asking himself, "Why would I want to give this up?" He told me later that he thought of me and the kids and how he wanted to do the best thing for us. Fear gripped his heart as he thought of the risks we are taking. Later that evening, he shared these thoughts with me. As I listened, I was reminded of something I recently read in my Christ-Life book.
I got my book and read these words to Dan, "How far will you dare to follow God's lead? How much can you trust Him? How far does His faithfulness to people like you who are In Christ, go? Where do you draw the line on how much you can trust Him to look after you and keep His promises to you? Satan drew the line right at the beginning. Adam drew the line sometime after he started. Others have waited for a time and then they decide on a time and place to draw the line and stop. "On hearing it, many of His disciples said, "This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?" Aware that His disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, "Does this offend you? What if you see the Son of Man ascend to where He was before! The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are Spirit and they are Life . . . From this time, many of His disciples turned back and no longer followed Him." (John 6:60 - 66) Where will you draw the line? When will you reach that point of not being able to trust God any further? Will there be a line for you? Will there come a time when you say, "Stop. This is it. I dare not go any further. I dare not trust You for this or that. Enough is enough."
I've watched Dan move through the fear this week and arrive once again at the conclusion that God can be trusted with our family's future. We know that this will not be the last time we visit the valley of fear. However, we do see God's faithfulness as He continues to meet us there and reassure us of His love and His presence. This Easter, we are reminded that Jesus didn't draw the line. Lord, help us to follow Jesus's example of submission to and dependence on You!
Dan is now on antibiotics and slowly recovering. The rest of us are healthy.
God rearranged our plans for the prayer and potluck time on Sunday. We were down to a mother and her two daughters on Sat. night who had committed to come and Dan was not feeling well. We decided that perhaps God had another plan for the day so we called our friend and cancelled which happened to work well for her day too. Instead, the kids and I went to a spiritual retreat center and spent some time in the prayer room listing concerns and prayer requests that they have and then prayed through them. I praise God for a very sweet time with our children and time for Dan to rest. I have attached their list of prayer requests as well as some more personal ones that Dan and I identified for ourselves.
· We are praying that we would hear by the end of this week from World Missions about whether we are officially appointed. We are at a bit of a stand still without an official appointment, and we desire to start the support raising process soon.
· Dan's work schedule in April is very intense - it is quarter end and not unusual for him to get home after 8 pm, sometimes 10 pm and he works long days on Saturdays as well. Please pray for energy and the ability to manage all that he is needing to do right now.
· Next Tues, March 25 we will host couples at our home who are interested in hosting a small group dinner for us. Please pray that Dan and I complete our presentation and are adequately prepared. Pray also for the couples and their availability barring no illnesses or conflicts; pray too that God would give them wisdom to give us feedback about the evening and that they would catch the vision of community that is at the core of the small group dinner.
1) To help us know what to say.
2) To help me and Will make new friends.
3) To help our family be able to live in a house.
4) To help us to get used to the food.
5) To get used to sharing with everyone who sees us.
6) To get used to their ways.
7) To help us to learn Spanish well.
8) That we could help others to live like Jesus.
9) Help us to show love.
10) That we would be safe.
1) To find someone who speaks English.
2) I want to make good friends.
3) For a house.
4) I’m concerned about whether I will like anything besides hamburger and rice.
5) I’m thinking about going to the school (instead of being home schooled).
6) That I won’t die of starvation!
7) That we would be missionaries there.
8) For us to get used to their ways.
9) That people would pray for us and that we would feel comfortable doing their ways.
10) That we would be nice to other people.
1) For a full recovery from sinus infection.
2) For the completion of our presentation for small group dinners.
3) For the upcoming busy time at Aegon in April.
4) God’s guidance for each next step.
5) Praise for Lisa and I working well as a team.
1) That I would consistently make time for Spiritual exercise (time with God in prayer and His Word) and Physical exercise.
2) For energy, focus, and time to work on going through our “stuff”.
3) To balance home schooling Will and tasks related to life and support raising with a cheerful and supportive attitude toward Dan and the kids.
4) Praise for supportive and loving family and friends.
5) Praise for my Mom who spent a couple of days with the kids and me helping us go through all of the kids’ toys. (Kids are better at letting go of their stuff than I am!) Praise too, for my Dad who was Will’s substitute teacher for the day!
Nicaragua has a history of political oppression by dictators and instability as a result of corruption. However, in 1990, stability increased when the Sandinista government handed over the reins to a democratically elected president.
Approximately 90% of students graduating from Nicaragua Christian Academy go on to universities in the US, Europe, or in Nicaragua.