We have reached the halfway point of our home assignment and thought that we would share with you some facts from our home assignment. Several are praises, some are information, and others are prayer requests as we anticipate what God has in store these coming months.
- Speaking Engagements: We are blessed to know many people all over the province of Alberta! So far we have spoken at six different places and shared with many more small groups. We are blessed when we meet with so many people and learn their stories. We know that God continues to use these churches in the communities that they are in with growing, vibrant Christians. We do have a few available speaking times available in April, May and June so if you are interested in having us come and share what we do or to be challenged in missions, we would love to do that.
- Travel: In the past six months we have traveled about 20,000Km traveling to different parts of the province to speak at churches and visit many individual supporters. Living in Lethbridge is not the most geographically central place to all of the areas that we go. It is a daunting task but we are so thankful for a reliable vehicle and fun family adventures. We have also been blessed with very good weather that has given us clear and dry roads to travel on.
- Trip to BC: No time in Canada would be complete for us without a trip to BC. We are looking forward to making this trip July 11 – 26 traveling to Squamish where Todd grew up and making stops along the way in the Okanagan. We will be visiting family, friends, and churches in those areas. We might also try to get to Vancouver Island as well. We will see what gas prices are like – so far, this has been a wonderful praise.
- Activities: This has been such a fulfilling aspect of our lives here. We were not sure how this would look while we were back in Canada, but we have been blessed with so many opportunities. Cassidy has been playing indoor field hockey and has been receiving exceptional training and coaching. Titus is getting more interested in badminton and is playing at school. Both Cassidy and Titus have been participating in youth groups at the Evangelical Free Church in Lethbridge. Ella has been in swimming and is quickly moving through the levels. Kylie has been getting connected with Field Hockey Alberta and is leading introductory sessions for field hockey with elementary students in Lethbridge. We have all loved getting involved in our church’s ministry to international students and families living in Lethbridge through gym nights & potluck suppers.
- Monthly Support: This continues to be an area of need for us. We are so grateful for the partnership that many people and churches have had with us for so many years. There are no amount of words that we can say to express our thanks to those of you who have enabled us to answer the call on our lives. It is truly a sacrifice to have done what you are doing for God through us these past several years. We do, however, currently have a shortfall in our monthly financial support. The amount that we receive each month we are able to use for not only our living expenses but also for hosting students in our house at the school and helping those in the community around us in water collection projects to school fees to buying food for those who are in need. We are currently averaging 80% of what we need each month in order for us to be able to live in Kenya. God has been faithful to us in always providing for what we need. However, we are not able to return to Kenya without being at 100% of our target support amount set by Africa Inland Mission. We are in need of an additional $1,000/month. If you are reading this please prayerfully consider what you can do to help in this area of our ministry even if it is $10, $20, or $50/month. Information on how to give is located on our website for both online giving and approved withdrawal options through Africa Inland Mission who provides charitable tax receipts.
- Work: God has prepared our time back in Canada with unbelievable opportunities to work. Arriving back provided that much needed time for rest and decompression after living in at a fairly high state of busyness and security awareness. Todd was able to work the first several months for a renovation development company which was an amazing opportunity that gave that feeling of accomplishment after a good day of manual work. In December he applied with the local school district to be a substitute teacher. Within two hours of getting on the sub list he was called to sub for a teacher the next day. By the beginning of February he was hired by a local school a few blocks away to teach a half time position in the mornings. These jobs have been helping make up the shortfall in our monthly income from AIM and is allowing us to save a little bit more towards our RRSP and RESPs.
- Professional Development: Coming back to Canada allows us to participate in activities that recharge our professional batteries so to speak. Having been employed by the school district in Lethbridge Todd gets to participate in teacher professional development activities. Both of Todd and Kylie have also been achieving NCCP coaching certification and attending leadership conferences that have proved to be very good.
- Return to Kenya: Having passed that invisible line of the halfway point of being back in Canada this year we are shifting in mindset to looking ahead and preparing for returning to Kenya. This causes us to be excited in our conversation with each other and those that we talk to. It also causes us to wonder how we are going to see family more and what we need to do by certain timelines. We would like to set out for Kenya again at the end of July.
- Family: We arrived back in Canada to find many changes in our families. New additions with babies and marriages and getting to know those people as well as the deaths of people that we held dear and not being able to visit with them again. We are glad for the good overall health of our families. We are beginning to feel that as we look ahead to leave again that everyone is doing well which allows us to leave with a good feeling.
- Big Events: We are looking at some milestones this year. Cassidy turns 16. As a result, we are already starting to look at options here in Canada for when she graduates in a few short years. Titus turns 14 and might just be getting his learners drivers license in a few months. Ella turns 9 and would like to have her learners drivers license as well. Todd and Kylie will also be celebrating 20 years of marriage in July. It seems to be just a few years ago that we were all a young family with us learning how to parent (we still are learning – we just are not so young anymore).
We are so grateful that we serve the sovereign Lord of all. We would appreciate it if you could keep these things in prayer for us. Perhaps praying for one of these a day for the next ten days could be something you can commit to for us. Also, if you get a chance we would love to hear some facts about your lives as well.