This month’s update does not have much news, as we are preparing a year-end review to mail out next month that looks back on our year of ministry as well as some news from Ethnos360 church planters around the world.
I (Kathy) just wanted to share a short, simple lesson that I continue to learn in my life. The simple truth? It’s not all about me.
This year of teaching has been one unexpected event after another. We have not had a consistent week in my classroom since the year began, due to illness, quarantines, class schedule changes (for the parents’ classes), etc.
In the first week of November, it felt like we had finally settled into a routine in my room. But I got a call midweek that my classroom would be shut down for at least a week, and that my family and I needed to quarantine after an exposure to a potential positive COVID-19 case. My first reaction was frustration (and yes, a little bit of complaining). My ministry is to serve the parents, teach their kids, and make sure that couples are in training classes together. Quarantining in my house while parents had to stay home with their kids and listen to classes online was frustrating and, in my mind, not good.
God used a few things to change my perspective. Maybe the situation wasn’t “good” for me and my classroom goals. But I heard from two of my students’ moms who said that their time at home, one-on-one with their child, was so special and such a blessing to them.
Another thing God used was an update from Ethnos360 missionary Bill Davis, a linguistic consultant. He explains how language learning software has advanced during coronavirus, which allows it to spread to more church planters in unreached people groups. He shares, “So the Gospel is truly going viral… and will be spread even faster, in part because of the coronavirus! God is taking what looked like delays and frustrations and turning them into opportunities for the Gospel.” (read the whole article here blogs.ethnos360.org/bill-davis/the-gospel-goes-viral/ )
I realized that something might inconvenience me, but it may bring about something good for others. I say I am willing to serve God, but sometimes my attitude shows that what I really want is to serve myself. It was so humbling to realize that God is at work even when things are not going “my way.” And God is so gracious that He even brought good during our quarantine. We had gorgeous weather and spent a lot of time outside as a family. Nick continued to work because he could easily maintain distance from others outside on a 350-acre campus! The girls enjoyed helping him remove branches as he trimmed trees during one of our nice days.
I am back in my classroom this week, just in time to celebrate some birthdays with my students. Please pray for health and safety on campus. We are taking every precaution, and I know that it is tiring for our leadership team who is staying vigilant about every angle of the situation.
We look forward to sharing our 2020 review next month and praising God for how He provided for our family this year in our ministries. Stay in touch, share your prayer requests, and know that we love hearing from you and praying for you.
As for God, His way is perfect: The Lord’s word is flawless; He shields all who take refuge in Him.Psalm 18:30