These photos were taken between June and August 2012, when we first arrived on the east coast at YWAM Tamatave, and when Matimu had food poisoning (including a short trip to the capital city).
(08/10/2012, 65 Photos)
I had an awesome week at the global YWAM Frontier Missions regional leaders' conference! It was our first time to be at a gathering like this and it was so encouraging to be with people who share with us the same passion for reaching the unreached and the same vision for seeing disciples and churches multiplied among them. We had so many great times of prayer and fellowship and discussion and feedback with one another.
Many of you know that we've been discouraged lately with the circumstances of the work in northern Madagascar and we've felt very much alone in our efforts. But being with our co-workers in YWAM Frontier Missions this past week has helped us see that we're not at all alone (even if we're often distant from others) and we can see that God is doing amazing works around the world! We also learned that it's not uncommon for many places and people groups to take many many years (many more years than we've already invested) of difficult work and perseverance before disciple-making movements can begin, yet God is faithful! So it's been so encouraging for us!
It was also my privilege to serve at the conference by being the primary driver for taking people to/from the airport, and to/from the conference facilities each day. During the last 9 days I drove over 2,200 km (1,350 miles)! And I was still able to participate in all the meetings and group sessions each day (and Lora Willard and the kids were able to join me for the last few days). So it was a very full week, but very much worth it! God is blessing us in this time! ... See MoreSee Less
We had a really great time at the staff conference this week at YWAM Worcester! It was so refreshing to hear from others who've been led by God to pioneer new ministries in very challenging and sometimes dangerous situations, to hear of their perseverance and God's faithfulness to them and through them, and to hear about the principles and truths that God has taught them throughout it all. Much of it were things we've also learned over the last 5 years or so, but it was so great to also hear it from others, and to hear of the great results that God eventually accomplished through them, and to be encouraged to keep moving forward ourselves.
And this coming week I'm very excited to help support the global YWAM Frontier Missions regional leaders conference! It will be full of people whose passion and efforts are specifically geared towards reaching unreached people groups all around the world and who use the same sort of strategies and who have the same vision we do. I've already met a few of them and they've been super kind, and it's already been similarly refreshing to hear their stories of hardship, perseverance, and God's faithfulness. So I imagine a whole week with them will be awesome! Please pray for Lora and the kids though while I'll be gone for a week, because they aren't able to come with me this time. ... See MoreSee Less
This is an *excellent* article about fully discipling our children, and considering what that means even when following Jesus is hard. Out of the few articles I've read that have considered similar topics, this is probably the best I've read. And though the writer is living in the US and not talking about overseas missions, her principles and practices still apply to us pretty much exactly the same.
If you have kids that you want to raise to follow Jesus, or if you ever consider what it means to "involve kids in ministry" (whether you think that might be positive or negative), then you should definitely read this!
David had his first day of school (pre-school) today! Here at YWAM Worcester they have both a pre-school and elementary school on campus, so both David and Matimu are attending while we're here. David was so excited to go to school and he's informed us that he's a "very big boy" now! It seems like they have a really great preschool program with lots of other kids for David to befriend and the teachers said he did really great on his first day today. Look at the last picture posted here for a humorous look at what the pre-school's first activity of the day was! ... See MoreSee Less
We made it to YWAM Worcester! The train was only a few hours late and we hardly noticed. The time (27.5 hrs) flew by as it was definitely the most comfortable long trip we've ever made. We could fully stretch out in the comfortable bunk beds, and there was even a hot shower in each train car! The overall scenery wasn't as varied or great as hoped for, but the last hour or so was spectacular as we drove past vineyards and jagged mountains. I got this picture of our train going into the mountains shortly before arriving in Worcester - very scenic!
So now we're settling in here at the YWAM base, meeting people, figuring out what our next few months will look like, and really getting started with our sabbatical. We're expecting it to be a great time! ... See MoreSee Less