Merry Christmas! We hope you are all enjoying the cold weather back in the States! We must admit that the warm weather here is quite nice, though we wouldn’t mind bundling up and throwing a few snowballs around every once in a while! This is the time of year here when the weather gets continually hotter – the hottest time will be January/February. I guess it helps us remember that Christmas isn’t all about a season, decorations, stockings, and cookies, but is about something much more profound and permanent – a God who loves each individual on earth so passionately that He came to earth personally to bridge the rift between us and Him – to live among us, teach us, touch us, and to eventually lay Himself down for us that we could live. That is something worth celebrating!
Things are slowing down for us a bit. Andy has returned from his trip and had quite the tropical island experience! They had some incredible opportunities to film in this creative access country at locations which are usually closed off. Check our website soon for stories and photos from that trip. His team doesn’t have any more trips planned for the near future, but will settle in to work on several video projects that they have been assigned, including one about their last island trip, an AIM orientation video, an AIM medical ministries video, an RVA (AIM’s boarding school) video, among others.
The boys’ school is wrapping up this week with Christmas parties and such. Robbie’s class gets to take a field trip to an orphanage to share in Christmas activities with the children there, which should be a memorable experience for him. His first band concert went quite well, too. He’s quite the budding saxophone player! Sydney and Avery are as busy as ever – we just keep the band-aids flowing. We stay busy leading worship for various events, helping to lead a youth group, and meeting once or twice a month with the “Inbounders” (short-term and first-term missionaries with AIM) at our house for fellowship. We are all looking forward to the visit of our friends, the Lang family, in January.
Lesa’s first play at school is over (click here to see photos of Little Women) and she is taking a break before next semester, when rehearsals for the next show, The King and I, will begin. There will be nearly 50 students involved in the cast, which is quite a daunting, yet exciting challenge. Our family is looking forward to the next school year, which will bring many changes, as our kids will begin attending this school and Lesa has been asked to teach drama/fine arts full-time. We will keep you posted on all that this will mean for our family, as we are in prayer about if and when we may need to move nearer to school.
We also want to bring you up to date regarding our friend, Wycliffe, and his 5 year old son, Brian, whom we told you about in our last letter. Much has developed since our last letter! We had known that Brian needed some medical attention to address possible hearing problems, as well as developmental problems, so we have been taking him to doctors. As far as the hearing issue (which the doctors advised us to tackle first), we are actually picking them up from the hospital today after surgery to get tubes in his ears. The ENT doing the procedure thinks that this will potentially solve his hearing problem. If it does, then the next step will be speech therapy, followed by physical and occupational therapy. We will be looking for a special school for him (special education is not typically a part of the schools here). Including this surgery, Brian’s medical expenses have reached $1,000. In faith, we have been covering these, but need help after this surgery (it’s on our credit card)! A few of you have indicated that you would like to help with the costs (thank you!) and we are praying that God would raise up more to help sponsor Brian on a one time or on a regular basis. If you, your church, or someone you know has a heart for children with special needs and would like to help out, please email us.
God has been so faithful to put it on many of your hearts to pray for us continually and to support us financially. Thank you so much for your faithfulness, it is what encourages and keeps us going. At this point, though, we are under-supported around $1,500 per month. We have an AIM savings account of sorts that makes up the deficit each month, but that will run out by May or so. What this means is that if we don’t find more people to support us monthly, we will not be able to return to Kenya after our trip to the States next summer. Will you pray for us that God will lay it on more people’s hearts to commit to supporting us monthly? Would you also consider talking to your church about potentially supporting us (if it doesn’t already)? We completely believe that God has placed us here for purposes of His own and that He will make it happen. He proved it before when He got us out here and He will do it again, we know!
5-Jan: Andy’s birthday and the 1st half of the Lang family arrives.
19-Jan to 23-Jan: We’ll be vacationing with the entire Lang family on Kenya’s coast
24-25 Apr, 1-2 May: Lesa’s 2nd show as drama director: The King and I
15-May ?: We begin our 3-4 month home assignment, setting foot in America for the first time in almost 2 years (for most of us, anyway)
Only five months until we’re back in the States for a few months and we know that we will be so busy that the time will fly. We can’t wait to see each of you! Have a very Merry Christmas!
All our love,
Andy, Lesa, Robbie, Avery, and Sydney