Return to North Africa

Since going to North Africa last September, I had been dying to take Lesa there, to see if she’d feel the way I felt, to see if the experience would be a dramatic for her as it was for me. It certainly was different experience this time… especially travelling with our 1 year old. Fortunately, Sydney did a pretty good job on the whole trip. She slept when we slept, and we brought a lot of baby food with us so she ate pretty well, too. Lesa’s sister Katie came with us as well, and was a huge help with Sydney and our 8 suitcases and giant guitar flight case. We were quite a sight at Heathrow trying to ride the tube between terminals carrying all of our stuff and Sydney. We arrived in XXXXX, Friday evening, and got checked into our hotel room around midnight. The next morning our group toured the medina, and went and visited with some other American workers there who run an college program. Sunday we taxi’d somewhere in XXXXXX, and met with the youth group for an incredible time of bi-lingual worship. We played songs that were known in both english and arabic, and they sang a lot of songs in arabic, and I played along on the guitar. Afterwards we had lunch and spent the afternoon playing games and hearing their stories. Really amazing stories, every one of them. I remember one girl said she had been following Christ for 3 months, but she wished with all her heart it had been 3 years. She was the only Christian in her city....

Prayer letter (Spring 2006)

We want to tell you about the really big thing going on with us. Probably the biggest reason that we are going on the Africa trip is that we have sensed that God is calling us to full-time ministry overseas. We are specifically considering Africa and are hoping this trip will help us with clarification as to where God would have us go next and how He is calling us to serve. We have been seriously praying about becoming missionaries for about 6 months – not to mention we have been considering it for many years, as many of you know. As far as what we see ourselves doing on the mission field, we’re not exactly sure at this point, but we are hoping that you would join us in praying for direction. We do have some basic ideas/visions: 1. To use our God-given abilities/resources to help lift people out of poverty and share the love and message of Christ with them. 2. To use our God-given abilities/resources to encourage and build up local national churches. 3. To inspire, equip, and mobilize American churches (and specifically musicians/artists within those churches) to join us in #’s 1 and 2. We are hoping to learn several things on our trip: 1. What are the needs of North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa that our God-given abilities may be able to meet? 2. Is there one place or people group that God is directing both of our hearts towards? 3. We will be meeting with leaders from two different agencies, as well as missionaries from many more, and talking about specific needs and...

A Night in North Africa (a week actually)

Here begins a crazy story that is still being written… a story about how God has called my wife and I into overseas missions… a story that began a long time ago and as of Dec 29,2005, doesn’t have a specific direction! My wife has always been interested in missions… I’ve always been reluctant because I always thought of a missionary as someone living in a grass hut in a dirty dusty village trying to teach people without clothes how to grow corn. I know that didn’t really cover everything that happens in foreign missions, but I seriously thought that was a large part of it. I didn’t have much of a desire to live somewhere where I didn’t have internet, where I couldn’t speak English, and where people didn’t know all the words to The Joshua Tree by heart. My wife majored in missions at Sterling College, I majored in Computer Science and Music. She went on to study it in seminary while I raked in the cash as a web developer. At some point, God got our (mine, particularly) attention and called us unmistakably into full time ministry. We left our home in Kansas City and moved to South Riding, Virginia to work for a church, where Lesa and I serve as Creative and Technical Arts Directors (respectively). We love our church… really can’t stand the thought of doing something else. But God has a funny way of changing your heart and placing burdens in it that weren’t there before. Ha ha. We’re still figuring out the details, but here begins the story of my first overseas...

From the Sahara to DC in a day

Sleeping in the tent, shoulder to shoulder, the wind flapped the tent and the smallest of the sand particles somehow made it through the berber carpet walls and plastered themselves onto me (remember, I was sleeping against the wall). When I woke in the morning, I looked like a ghost. I was completely covered in sand as fine as flour, and had it in every crevasse and orifice of my body. It was days after I arrived back in Virginia before I couldn’t blow any more sand out of my nose. At least the wind had died down, and I could open my eyes and enjoy the camel ride back. I couldn’t believe that I’d be home tomorrow afternoon after having done this today. The guides cooked us bread and coffee over the fire, and we packed up the camels and went back. Drove about 6 hours back to XXXXX, then 1.5 to XXXXX. We were all exhausted by now (8pm) but had an evening of activities planned, including finishing packing B’s apartment and getting to the airport by 5am. We also went to B’s friend Muhammed Ali’s house and had cous cous with his family around midnight. He lives in a very poor neighborhood (called “popular city”, which I guess means “populated” not popular in the fashion sense) and is pretty poor himself. In XXXXX, most people retire early, not because they have the money but because their kids are old enough to work and I guess people just get old quickly. Muhammed was probably my age, was in college or had recently graduated, and was struggling to...

From the Sahara to DC in a day

Sleeping in the tent, shoulder to shoulder, the wind flapped the tent and the smallest of the sand particles somehow made it through the berber carpet walls and plastered themselves onto me (remember, I was sleeping against the wall). When I woke in the morning, I looked like a ghost. I was completely covered in sand as fine as flour, and had it in every crevasse and orifice of my body. It was days after I arrived back in Virginia before I couldn’t blow any more sand out of my nose. At least the wind had died down, and I could open my eyes and enjoy the camel ride back. I couldn’t believe that I’d be home tomorrow afternoon after having done this today. The guides cooked us bread and coffee over the fire, and we packed up the camels and went back. Drove about 6 hours back to XXXXX, then 1.5 to XXXXX. We were all exhausted by now (8pm) but had an evening of activities planned, including finishing packing B’s apartment and getting to the airport by 5am. We also went to B’s friend Muhammed Ali’s house and had cous cous with his family around midnight. He lives in a very poor neighborhood (called “popular city”, which I guess means “populated” not popular in the fashion sense) and is pretty poor himself. In XXXXX, most people retire early, not because they have the money but because their kids are old enough to work and I guess people just get old quickly. Muhammed was probably my age, was in college or had recently graduated, and was struggling to...
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