Wednesday, July 30, 2008

New 4th's verse to "Yours"

God never ceases to amaze me...never. In fact, in an earlier post, I listed a song that has meant a lot to TJ and I as we gear up for our trip to Kenya in September.

We just bought the tickets for our trip....making it "official". However, I find myself anxious when I think about going-mostly because we are leaving our kids behind and knowing we are going to an unstable place. So, I have been praying for God to help bring me peace in this area as both of us know that this is what we are supposed to be doing.

As you may know, Steven Curtis Chapman recently lost his daughter in a horrible accident earlier this summer. Since, he has written a 4th verse to the song "Yours" that will be his next single. The verse goes like this:

I’ve walked the valley of death’s shadow
So deep and dark that I could barely breathe
I’ve had to let go of more than I could bear
And questioned everything that I believe
But still even here in this great darkness
A comfort and hope come breaking through
As I can say in life or death
God we belong to you

I feel that God gave us this song as a source of comfort and strength as we go on this journey. We know that no matter what, we belong to Him and God has gone before us and has our lives planned. Our response is to simply obey. I pray that TJ and I continue to walk in obedience even in the toughest of times and soley lean on Him for direction.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Garage Sale Saturday!

Hello everyone!

Just wanted to give you the latest update with our family.As you know, we have been pursuing bringing Priscillah, who lives in Kenya now, over to the States in 2009 to go to college in MN. Since, we have learned that she will not be eligible for financial aid due to her being an international student, meaning we would be responsible to pay cash for her tuition. After researching different options, we have decided that the best option is for her to go to college in Kenya at a great Christian University and pursue her career there. We have a trip planned to visit her in Kenya the end of September.

...which leads me to further requests for support and prayer......

TJ and I are meeting with the missions board at our church to see how we can make it work to pursue us living in Kenya full time. The word "missionary" makes it feel too wierd, as we believe we are in the mission field whereever we are. TJ and I have felt for a long time that the Lord has been drawing us to serve Kenya in some way. We also are meeting with the missions Pastor from Bethel to discuss our upcoming trip (he was involved with our trip to Kenya in 2003).

The biggest reason we feel we need to go to Kenya this fall is to meet a young missionary couple who already live in Western Kenya (with a small child) named Bud and Kimberly. They are missionaries through Katalyst Ministries, based in Texas and through the Imagine Network. We will be attending a conference in Uganda, called the Watoto Conference for 4 days and also looking at the different non profits already in place with the hopes of starting our own non profit to help support what is already out there. One of our ideas is to have a camp for children with disabilities.

One of the first steps TJ and I feel we need to do is practice the art of living simply and downsizing. This Saturday we are holding a garage sale to majorly downsize what we currently own. I, Lindsay, have had a particularly emotional week going through our belongings and trying to justify why we need to keep something. Our goal is to have only enough 'stuff" left over from the sale to fit into a 2 bedroom apartment. Those of you locals, please come!!! Ben will be selling goodies and coffee all day...that he has been working so hard to make all week. He'll tell you he is selling them to help kids buy food in Africa :)So, we are asking you to be our prayer support as we move forward in this exciting, but yet, scary journey.

Below is a list of things to pray for:

1. Pray that we would remain obedient to what we feel God is asking us to do, even if it doesn't make sense to us at the time - even obedient to God saying "no".

2. Pray for peace as we start to downsize our home.

3. Pray for a family to rent our home who we can trust and for us to find an affordable place to live.

4. Pray for wisdom and discernment as we travel to Kenya in September.

5. Pray for the right people to come to our garage sale this Saturday and that God would use it to bring Glory to Himself!!!

6. Pray for wisdom on how to answer the hard questions Ben brings up about us moving.

Thank you for being so encouraging thus far in this journey.

In Him,

TJ, Lindsay, Ben and Collin