Fell off the face of the earth?
No, we haven’t, in case you’d wondered. Yes, we know we haven’t sent an email since March 5. No, it’s not because the rainy season knocked out the internet to all of east africa. Yes, it’s because we’re busy and sometimes lazy and forgetful, and often both at once. Consequently, since we skipped a month, we have a TON to tell you about!
During the past two months, we have moved to a transitional home on a AIM missionary compound. Also, Lesa had her wrist surgery which ended up being fairly significant and is taking a while to recover fully. Praise the Lord that it is doing better every day!
Mom & Dad
We began our journey over the past few months with the visit from Andy’s parents over Easter. We had a wonderful time with them, somehow squeezing in trips to Kibera, an overnight ride on the Lunatic Line (go rent “Ghost in the Darkness“), a few days at the beach, a move, visits to the Rift Valley and Kijabe, and a game drive. Read the full story here.
The OFM has been PDB (pretty darn busy) serving AIM throughout EA – East Africa (we are an organization that loves abbreviating).
Andy’s got a few more stamps in his passport, and some great photos and stories as well.
In March, Ted and I (Andy) went on a trip. We met some amazing national believers, some amazing Christian workers there, got spat on, rocks thrown at us, and all kinds of frontier-missionary kinds of stories to tell. Get our photos here, and read Ted’s story here.
Earlier this month, we went to northern coastal Mozambique, to work with a family there who are working among an unreached people group there. We flew about 3 hours to Pemba, drove 6 hours (way past the end of the paved roads!), and spent 2.5 days among the Mwani people there. Get photos here.
We are very very excited that Tim Lang will be joining OFM as an intern this coming fall. The Lang family are great friends of ours, and we’ve had the pleasure of getting to know Tim quite well over the past 6 years at DCC. Tim will be spending his gap year with AIM, doing videography and traveling with OFM. Please pray for Tim as he is raising his support over the next few months.
My involvement in the Inbound Program, which brings/receives/trains short-term and now also full-term missionaries from around the world to AIM International Services is growing and going well. I’m so grateful to now have a team of 3 others working with me and we are in prayer for the Lord to send us someone with administrative skills/time to lend to the work. It is such a blessing to introduce people to Kenya and to missionary life.
A new development for me (Lesa) was just finalized yesterday. I’m going to be volunteering as the high school drama director at a school similar to the Robbie and Avery’s school (yet larger and older). It has an international student population made up of Americans, Kenyans, British, Koreans, etc. Their current director is returning to the States and leaving behind a well-established program. We are excited about this as a family – to be involved heavily again in the lives of teens, have an outlet for our creativity, and to be involved in teaching/promoting the arts in this community where exposure to the arts can be limited.
Rehearsals will be 2 – 3 days a week after school and we’ll produce a play in the fall and a musical in the spring!! I’m seeing this as a move back to my original vision in college of teaching the fine arts on the mission field. Isn’t God incredible?
Robbie and Avery have one week left of school. They have both had an amazing year at West Nairobi School. We have been so impressed with the quality of teaching and how much the boys truly like school! Robbie will be going to summer camp for a week this summer, and all three kids will be attending VBS at their school for a week. Sydney has been doing some home-school preschool with Mommy at home. She loves learning and calls Lesa, “Teacher.” It’s so cute! All three kids have loved living on the compound, as there are many other children here and they run and play all day long.
How We Are Doing… Really
The past two months haven’t been the easiest, but things have been getting better. When we lost our last “permanent” home in April, the adjustment to living in yet another house, along with Lesa’s surgery, and some other random incidents, our spirits dipped pretty low. But, He has also remained faithful through it all. We’ve been learning more and more of His great love for us – even when we doubt and especially when we struggle. He has provided for us what we see as the just the right home to settle into (of course, permanence takes on a whole new meaning here). It is located near our old neighborhood, and is the home of some of our new friends who unfortunately are leaving the field. They have done some amazing improvements to it during their time here! We will be moving there in early June.
It takes a miracle each and every month to keep us here. It’s really amazing and encouraging to us to see how God provides the $5500 each month that is required to live here. Thank you to all who have continued to give sacrifically.
Truthfully, we are slightly undersupported, as the support rate was raised this year in accordance with cost-of-living inflation… including the boys’ school tuition. We trust God to continue to provide. In addition, if we raise any extra monthly support, we would like to put Sydney in a Kenyan preschool here in the fall – we think she would greatly benefit from the social interaction – especially getting to know Kenyans. Some of you supported us abundantly last spring with a one-time check when we were leaving for the field. Would you prayerfully consider renewing your gift this year to help us continue our ministries here?
Also, thank you to all who have given to our vehicle project. We have almost paid for the 1973 Land Rover we agreed to purchase from the Delorenzos. You’ve provided $4500 of the $6500 we need to finish paying it off and making some necessary repairs (radiator, fuel tank, rear shock). If you’d like to give to this project, click here and type in our name, select “project” and enter “Vehicle” as the project name. Thank you!
* AIM AIR incident: This past month, our AIM IS community had a shock when one of our planes crashed on take-off in Sudan. Thankfully, no one was seriously hurt. We do ask for prayers for the pilot’s family, friends of ours, who are continuing to process the incident, and also for the several passengers who were on board. Full story here.
* Kenyan people: Following the election crisis, life here has certainly returned to some level of normalcy. However, food and gas prices have sky-rocketed and the poorest people have been affected the most. Please pray for the inflation to cease and for prices to lower.
* Our upcoming move – our 4th house here. (Enough said).
* Our support needs
We close this, our 11th newsletter in 12 months, with the words of the apostle Paul in Romans 5:
And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us.
Andy, Lesa, Robbie, Avery, Sydney