As we take time to celebrate our Savior’s birth, we reflect on the significance of God’s greatest gift to mankind. We are so grateful to the Lord for the privilege we have to walk in fellowship with Him, all because of the birth of His Son, Jesus.
We are in the middle of our 6th year serving on staff at the Missionary Training Center in Missouri where we help equip missionary candidates for life and ministry in cross-cultural settings. Teaching classes, mentoring and interacting with students, providing resources for and communicating with missionaries world-wide and networking with others involved in family and MK (missionary kid) ministries are some of the responsibilities that fill our days.
We have both been treating Lyme disease this past year. After so many years of chronic Lyme, Melanie still has a ways to go in healing, but continues to see improvement with her treatment. John has done well with his treatment and is feeling really good. We thank the Lord that we have both gotten help and had improvement in our health, which enables us to better function in the things God has given us to do.
We are so blessed and thankful for our growing family. Here is a quick update on all of our kids.
Charity continues living and working in Chicago, IL. She still has employment as a nanny, although she had a change of families. This year she has also become a distributor for a cosmetics and skin care company, SeneGence, which has been a stretching but good experience for her. She has been treating Lyme disease over the past year and a half and has seen improvement, although still has a lot of ups and downs with it as her body tries to heal and recover from the damage to her body over the many years she had it for.
BJ & Carissa concluded their time in Chicago when BJ graduated from Moody Bible Institute in May. Carissa experienced some major health crises and was diagnosed with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome in July. Their future ministry plans have been put on hold while they figure out her needs and get her stabilized, which is gradually happening. They have settled in Lynchburg, Virginia, where Carissa’s parents and sister and family are, and the Lord is opening up doors for ministry there with their organization, Chosen People Ministries. They are looking into adoption and we are very eager to find out (sooner or later) about their little one to come that will be joining our family!
Bethany & Zach, Mason (3) & Evalynn (1 ½) moved to Missouri in August and have been living with us while they transition. Zach works remotely from home for the same IT company, AIR Technology Services, in Waukesha, WI, that he worked for last year. We love having them with us and adore having little people in our house. They are a joy! And we are all excited to welcome Baby #3 (a boy) sometime in March! We count it a privilege to have these grandkids and their mommy and daddy with us for a season.
Josh & Sarah completed their commitments as interns at the Bible school in Waukesha, WI, in May and moved off campus in June. They have continued working for the same bus company, First Student, and Josh began taking college classes for Mechanical Engineering in September. We are thrilled with them that they are expecting their first child in July! However, Sarah has been quite sick, needing IV therapy for dehydration due to extreme nausea and vomiting. We trust she will be over the hump soon and will begin to enjoy the pregnancy experience.
We are thankful for the opportunity to walk in fellowship with Jesus even in the midst of challenges and difficulties that we and many friends and family members are going through. We have so much to be thankful for and are so blessed! As we look forward to the coming year, we hope that you may know and experience the peace and joy that come by walking with Him, no matter what you are going through.
MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY NEW YEAR!