Dear Family and Friends, December 2014
The Lord keeps bringing to mind this verse Andrea has been teaching the little ones: “Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks.” (1 Thess. 5:16-18) In the midst of life’s ups and downs there is always so much to be thankful for!
The big event this year was traveling across the country to visit supporters and grandparents. After four+ years away we had hoped to see even more people, but got a little overwhelmed with so much time on the road–Ken drove 10,000 miles in seven weeks! In between weekend meetings with churches, the kids got to see the Creation Museum, Carlsbad Caverns, the Pacific Northwest, and Yellowstone. What awesome, vast expanses!—they bear mute testimony to the Great Flood.
Ken and I were thankful to find side jobs when we got back, as our savings had gone into the big trip. Ken does odd jobs for people around town, and Andrea took on a light cleaning job three evenings a week at an office building nearby. (Supplementing is part of being a stateside missionary—few families have 100% of their support.)
We are really thankful to be in our 14th year with New Tribes Mission, the latter half at New Tribes Bible Institute here in south-central Michigan. Andrea still works with little ones so moms can be in classes; children’s ministries at church are growing too—most of the new kids are being brought by grandparents, or walking in from the neighborhood. Ken serves in the dining hall at the Bible College and teaches/preaches occasionally through our local church and a weekly prison ministry. We feel privileged to be raising our kids around 150+ young adults and families who are excited and eager to be a part of what God is doing around the world!
The kids have a few milestones to report. James (13) has passed up his mother in height, and Samuel (5) started kindergarten at the same school as his sisters. James exchanged last year’s homeschooling for a small charter school. Tap is providing an outlet for Christina’s (11) boundless energy, and Sarah (9) helped do her own fundraising to be able to take Irish Dance and Violin lessons.
We are thankful to have so many friends both nearby and across the country. Most of all we are thankful for our God and Savior who forgives our sins and whose incarnation we celebrate each December; no matter what the New Year holds, He promises to bring something good out of every situation life brings our way (Rom. 8:28). We pray His hope and joy and peace are yours this holiday season.