It's Not Good Bye and It's Not Easy
We are back in Madagascar and what a journey it has been to get back to our home. Leaving the US was probably harder the second time around. Some of the excitement and just overall novelty of going across the world as missionaries didn’t seem to be the motivation for us actually boarding the airplane. Our hearts were torn and knowing the amount of time we are going to be gone made us just want to soak in the moments and seconds we could get in the States. It is funny to think that as we left we weren’t thinking about missing the great food, convenience of life, amenities of living in the US but instead we were thinking about you all. Our family and friends.
We absolutely enjoyed our time in the States and you all made it very difficult for us to want to leave and come back to Madagascar. So why did we come back? The answer is simple. Obedience. That is why we have come back to Madagascar. We simply want to be obedient to what the Lord has for our lives. We don’t say this as a self-serving statement but to let you all know why. We know that the Lord has called us for this task at this time. We don’t know what all will happen or how things will go as we work for the Lord but we do know that He (God) is worth it. God has a plan for the Antandroy and Antanosy peoples and we are just privileged to be a part of His plan. We simply just desire to be faithful in the little things that the Lord has called us to be a part of. Our prayer is that we would just walk each step by faith.
Stepping out in obedience can be a hard thing. Just because you desire to be obedient doesn’t mean that everything will go smoothly. We bought more things than we could really take to Madagascar. We desire a recliner but can’t seem to jump through all of the hoops to get it here and have possession of it, we gave away things that we had just bought, and we didn’t get to sit together on all of our flights and thus had very little sleep on the trip back. We had a delay in Nairobi and after saying good bye to the girls we had to see them three or four other times to say good bye all over again. Our hearts almost couldn’t take it. We arrived a little late to our meeting and lived through a week of information as zombies. Thankfully nobody tried to kill us. We were able to get new tires for our vehicle (thanks for giving to missions) and then proceeded to have three flats in our first attempt to drive home. We left Suzie, Baylee, River and Rachel (co-worker) on the side of the road as Adam caught a taxi back to a town to get a tire fixed. Due to this delay we ended up staying at four different places over four nights which means we loaded and unloaded the car several times. Our second attempt to leave went well but we spent more than 30 hours in the car to reach our destination. We will not even mention the terrain we drove through.
Enough of the sob story. Even with these setbacks and personal difficulties the Lord has been so faithful to us. Our parents were able to go through security and wait at the boarding gate with us. An absolutely special treat. We had a friend meet us and buy our breakfast and then made a new friends and prayer partners as we waited at the gate. We had extra time with our daughters we didn’t plan on and made some sweet memories of River saying bye to them over and over again. All 19 of our suitcases made it to Antananarivo (Waiting for 10 to make it to FD). We had some amazing times of worship at our meeting and the Lord was faithful to speak to our hearts and encourage us. We were able to enjoy the spoils of Tana for a little while longer. We had some sweet times with our SoMad teammates. We enjoyed hanging out with Rachel and getting to know her better. We absolutely enjoyed seeing our friends as we drove and seeing them so happy that we came back. Many of them just praised the Lord that He answered their prayers for us to come back. We didn’t have any major setbacks in the bush part of Madagascar. Our house was well taken care of by our workers and we have begun settling in.
So we say all of this to make sure you all know that we haven't said good bye but just see you later. Also, we hope to help you remember that the adventures ahead for us will not always be easy.
- SWBTS Team coming to join us at the end of May.
- Ministry to resume easily and for us to be able to give clear vision to our teammates and national partners.
- For our Face 2 Face students coming to join us.
- For our language skills to pick back up and allow us to communicate clearly
- For our vehicle and all the little issues it is having
- For Phoebe, Emma and Baylee in school and for River to continue to grow.
- We and all of our belongings made it to Fort Dauphin (just picked up the last bags today)
- We made it home safely despite a few setbacks on the road
- People are ready to know more about God
- Everyone is settling into a new chapter of our lives.
- Adam had a good Birthday.
Dedicating River to the Lord
Just fun times with family and friends
Sunrise in Kenya during our delay
Taking off on a long trip