One things is for sure about our time on the field. The constant separation from the family causes great stress on us. We do better when we do things together. We have learned to function within the circumstances we currently live in but they do wear on us. This past month we have had many days apart. These days were for a good reason as Suzie was able to visit Phoebe and Emma but all the trips add up. We are thankful that our kids get to study at a great school and they are happy but honestly not being all together is a sore subject for us.
Despite the limitations set upon us from being a family living in two different countries we continue to press on. We continue to train up leaders and hear the stories of how God is using them for His glory. Honestly, not being able to go out to the bush because of Adam's back and seeing these things first hand really hurts. God is at work and we desire to be right in the thick of things but as of now we are just coaching from 60+ miles away. Even though we're not there we are encouraged with how the Lord is allowing His Kingdom to progress in the Anosy and Androy regions. We dealt with some serious issues with our national partners head on through much prayer and love. We also just walked through the Word of God together and worked hand in hand on planning for the future.
Adam's back is getting stronger and healthier but during one of the trainings there was a small disaster in one of the homes we are caring for and as Adam was going to check on things he fell down the stairs. He probably missed two or three steps and landed on his left hip pretty hard. Since this fall he has had some pains in the areas of his disc replacement. Praise the Lord it wasn't worse and he is beginning to feel stronger and healthier again. He has a check up next week and we are praying that he will be released and be able to go out to the bush again in April.
We also have been seeking to finalize the large part of our food distribution. Nothing is simple where we live. Last month the roads were in terrible condition and the Lord answered prayers. This month we are dealing with sections of the road being closed for repairs and seeking to find ways around them to make sure the food makes it to those in need. We have planned, prayed, organized ourselves and implemented a way to distribute these goods in a way that will cause the least amount of conflict and benefit those who need it most. Thus far, the complaints are few and the words of thanksgiving are many. God has been so good to us all.
Living on the mission field takes a toll on the kiddos as well. Yes, they will have experiences that will shape them in ways that the average American kid will never understand but at times I think our kids would rather just be another average kiddo. The constant good byes to people they learn to love has a great effect on them and as they grow older they need to learn how to deal with these emotions. We have seen firsthand that the struggles are real and we are doing our best to ensure that they will remain healthy physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Our kiddos are awesome and we are so proud of them. They truly are seeking to honor the Lord.
We aren't trying to be gloomy on this update but we want to give you all a sense of the reality in which we are living. God is still on His throne and we are dedicated to serving Him. Today's struggles will be an encouragement to others in the future. To God be the glory in the good times and the difficult times. Finally, we are so thankful for the love and support we have from our family and friends back home and on the field.
We were able to train up leaders from the bush and the reports are amazing. God is doing great things.
Suzie had a safe trip to Kenya and was able to spend some quality time with Phoebe and Emma
We got in state tuition for Phoebe at TAMU.
Our food distributions have been received with thanksgiving.
We were able to set up the house and have things in order for us to go to South Africa. We made it safely.
For our family to heal physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Phoebe and Emma to finish off their terms well and have a great learning experience in their next excursions before Vac.
The harvest fields (physically and spiritually) in the South of Madagascar to produce much fruit.
Our local churches in Mada and in the US to stand strong and be obedient to God's Word.
Unexpected training but good time with Brothers.
River has been puny this month but still creative
The rear brakes had issues but thankfully it was an easy fix overall. Now we need to order parts.
River the photographer at one of our training times
Suzie with Phoebe and Emma at Banquet