All the Stuff

I think most of us would be quick to say that our stuff is not important; it’s our family, our friends, our relationships that matter to us.  It could all burn down tomorrow, and as long as we are all safe, and the people we love are close to us, we know we’ll be fine.

It’s one thing to say that . . . it’s another thing when it stares you right in the face.

We’ve started the huge process of slowly sorting through our things in preparation for our move.  And we know that most of this stuff, these odds and ends that have surrounded our lives for years, will either be sold or trashed.  We can take very little with us to Ethiopia (shipping is outrageous and baggage is limited), and we realize that storing stuff that we may or may not need in the future is a waste of space and money.  So we’re sifting and sorting, and I find myself packing boxes in my mind and envisioning our future without a trampoline or a food processor.  Yeah, it’s ridiculous, especially to see it in print, but I’ve found the prospect of this process more challenging than I expected.

Casey and I actually had a conversation about his shop vac the other day; yes, his shop vac, Continue reading

What’s it called?

IMG_0646Over the years, as we’ve tried to explain the ministry we’re a part of to others, we’ve found that all the different names and places can become quite a stumbling block to those unfamiliar with the work.  We’ve even found ourselves tripping over the details from time to time.  Because of that, I’d like to tell you a little about how the ministry in Ethiopia is structured.

The schools that you’ve heard us talk about so much, have been operated and overseen for the last five or six years by Gary and Peggy Ifft, and their ministry called Misgana Ministries.  The Iffts had been in Ethiopia for several years working on other projects when they were invited to assist a local church in Ziway with their small preschool.  Soon after Continue reading

Baby Steps to Ethiopia

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Click to View our Prayer Card

We’re busy at work here, knocking out a huge “to-do” list to get us to Ethiopia.  I thought I’d share a bit of a timeline here, so you can follow our journey.

Over the past year, we’ve already completed most of the preliminary steps with Lifesong, including applications, references, and a Missionary Readiness Assessment (a type of psychological evaluation).

Since we received final approval from Lifesong in July, we have been putting together our budget and preparing to begin our support-raising efforts.  We have just finalized our budget, and you can see some of the details on our “Prayer Card.” Basically we have two support categories, Start-Up Costs and Monthly Support.  Preparing all of that has taken several weeks of research.  We’ve had input from three current Ethiopian missionaries and Lifesong, and we feel confident that our budget will allow us to serve effectively.

Continue reading

Groaning

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A few months ago, we had an incident.  It was one of those moments that haunts mothers . . . a second I’ll never escape.  We were at the cabin (my parents’ house on the river) with some friends, and we took the kids down to the dock to fish.  The water was high and moving fast (the river is dammed and rises and falls as they open or close the dam), not optimal conditions for fishing, but the kids had begged, so there we were.   Because of a shortage of life jackets, Caleb didn’t get one.  He’s pretty cautious in “dangerous” situations, so I wasn’t worried about him. Continue reading

To think that I can barely cope with the small slice of the world’s current suffering that I’m aware of, and yet HE, He carried all the pain, the sickness, the death, the sin of all humanity for ALL TIME on His shoulders. He knew every tear, every cry of anguish, every moment of gut-wrenching fear and loneliness. And that burden was so great, but He was greater. He has defeated it, and He is making ALL THINGS new. Take heart, weary friends; we are not forgotten; give that burden to Him. He has overcome.