twenty fifteen

twenty fifteen

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6 God has provided abundantly for every need for our family over the past year: jobs, church, friends, ministry opportunities, and renewed closeness as a family. All glory and praise to Him for providing everything we needed, at the perfect time, and for keeping missions and His kingdom close to our hearts. We needed to send everyone our updated mailing address and phone numbers, but thought we could take the opportunity to also share our joys of the past year. This year has held many changes for our family, one of the biggest being that we are homeowners again, for the first time since 2007. We found a lovely 1973 split-level home that had been foreclosed, flipped, and unoccupied for the past year and priced to sell. We have a guest bedroom and love to have company, so if you are ever coming to Colorado, please look us up! Our new address: 3125 Raindrop Drive Colorado Springs, CO 80917 Our new phone numbers: Andy: 719-663-6551 Lesa: 719-663-6651 (Our email addresses remain the same: andy@, lesa@, robbie@, avery@ and sydney@ brownfamily.ws) Andy, Lesa and Robbie have gotten involved in music at our church, Village Seven Presbyterian, and can be found occasionally on Sunday mornings playing in the orchestra or helping lead the band. It’s the largest church we’ve ever been a part of, and an exceptional music program. We also were involved with Village Arts, an arts organization started by our church,...

A new adventure

Dear friends and family, We wanted to write to you to give an update on our lives here in Colorado Springs. God has been so faithful to us – He has brought us into a “spacious place” (Psalm 118:5) and we are amazed by His goodness and His sovereignty in our lives. Since we last updated you, Andy has started a new job and the rest of us are settling into a new routine of life here, making friends and getting into activities (more on those things below). Life is slowly starting to feel more “normal” for us and we are truly spending everyday in awe and thankfulness to our God who has been with us every step of this journey. The biggest news of the year is after months of searching and many rounds of interviews, Andy landed a job with Compassion International as Communications Manager for Global Advocacy. And there was much rejoicing in Colorado Springs at our house. Compassion, one of the largest Christian NGOs in the US, is best known for its excellent child sponsorship program which serves 1.5 million children in the developing world through holistic child development. Global Advocacy is the newest strategy for Compassion, working in areas where Compassion has not been able to reach and in creative ways outside of the traditional donor-beneficiary support model. Andy is starting the first communications position in this strategy, working with local media producers and churches around the world to raise the flag of advocacy for holistic child development. The next few months will find Andy in Myanmar and South Africa on video productions. It’s a...

twothousandfourteen

Dear Friends and Family, As we sit here in our cozy new home in Colorado Springs, with a gorgeous view of Pikes Peak out the windows and a warm fire going next to us, we are blown away by God’s goodness and faithfulness to us. We have a home we can call our own and furniture to sit on! Our kids are in excellent schools with teachers that care! We have found an amazing church to attend and hopefully plug into with our gifts! We are sitting here in this moment, applying for jobs, praying like crazy and reminding ourselves to take deep breaths. Putting one foot in front of the other. To be honest, sometimes we feel a bit like Israel in the wilderness – waffling between being grateful and being fearful. We know we’re on a journey towards something good (because that is what He has promised!) but we really don’t know what it is and we are really struggling sometimes to believe its actually going to happen. Each day we have new ideas, new dreams, new fears and still renewed hope in the Lord, whose gifts and calling are irrevocable, who makes all things new, who has plans for us and who will be faithful to complete the good work He began in us. Healing In the past few months, we have gone through intensive counseling for missionaries, we have sold most of our belongings in Kenya and packed up the rest, we have rented a home in Colorado Springs and we have gotten “settled in” to a new life here. Each of us has undergone...

7 years

Dear friends, It’s hard to believe our 3rd term in Africa is coming to a close. In a little under 2 months, Andy leaves Kenya, followed shortly by the rest of the family, for home assignment. Home assignment is a funny term. It used to be called furlough, which infers a time of rest, but as any missionary will tell you, it is not really a vacation but a temporary ministry re-assignment. To home. And what is home? For the past 84 months, Africa has been our home. Having spent only 5 months in the US in those past 84 months, and 2 years since our last visit, the feelings of being “home” are a bit akin to Marty McFly stepping into a future version of his future life/city/culture in which he has missed the progression. 2 years since we’ve watched a commercial. 2 years since we’ve driven on the right side of the road. 2 years since we’ve been a place where we could blend in and be anonymous. And so, with great excitement and a little nervousness, we will re-enter life, briefly, in the US this summer. Our time will be filled with grandparents doting on our kids, catching up friends, family, supporters, churches , and traveling between DC and Denver and most spots in-between… 4400 miles. We’d love to see as many of you as possible during this time… contact us and let us know how we can get together! Below is our basic travel itinerary. May 17: Andy: Kenya to Chicago May 28: Andy in Northern Virginia at DCC June 9: Lesa and kids arrive...

A Banner Year

In many ways, 2013 was the highlight of not only our 6+ years of ministry in Africa, but of our lives. Every year is better than the last, and we can’t imagine what could be in store for 2014 in God’s kingdom work and our small part to play in it. Come, take a short walk with us through the past year of ministry, movies, maasai, and mobilizing the African church. January began with a party to celebrate the completion of production (filming) of Andy’s directorial debut movie, The Distant Boat.  47 days of filming across a good swath of Kenya produced 80 hours of footage that would now need to be edited into a 2 hour movie. Lesa also led a group of 20 high school students on the annual CFS (Cultural Field Studies) trip to Olepishet, our Maasai village where we partner with the local church to do community development. We can’t remember what happened in February. Our family photo album contains photos of legos and deformed faces so apparently the kids weren’t getting enough homework. Andy helped lead worship at a conference for workers in creative access nations. During our first 6 months in Kenya (2007) we lived through the harrowing experience of a deadly and violent election, which saw a thousand people killed and a quarter of a million people displaced. Our home at the time was on the border of Kibera slum, and riots, gunshots, tear gas were sometimes literally a block away. This March was the first presidential elections since 2007, and in preparation for an uncertain time we stockpiled food, fuel, water,...

Westgate, terrorism, and a loving God

This past week has been an extremely bizarre and difficult one. The events at Westgate Mall and the unfolding of the story continue to shock and sadden us. It was a place where our family would sometimes go grocery shopping or out to eat. We had a date night there only a couple of weeks ago. We would nearly always take guests there, so those of you who have visited us will remember it most likely. It’s hard to imagine a place where you frequently go becoming a war zone, and now much of it is in a pile of rubble. You see photos and think, “that’s where I walked last week,” “that’s the table where I sat” or “that’s where we often park our car, now it’s destroyed.” It was an upscale place where we couldn’t afford to buy much other than food or a movie, but where we enjoyed some peace and the sense of getting away from everyday life. However, much more important than the minor losses of comfort and familiarity, we are in a city that is in mourning over the loss of many lives. Our school community lost two parents and had two students injured – both families from the middle school. Everyone knows people who were there and most know others outside of our school community who were either killed, injured and traumatized by being there. The miracles and horror stories of last week continue to be brought to light. There were no high school students from our school caught up in it. Most were on a retreat (that Lesa was on). That is...
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