Thursday, June 16, 2011

May/June Update

When you have to live by faith, it is a great encouragement when you get some confirmation every once and a while that you are doing the right thing. Lately we have been struggling to keep making decisions that will hopefully get us closer to PNG. We want to do what God wants us to do, but we hesitate when we have to step out into what seems like empty space. Not knowing whether the money will be there, where we will live after our house goes back to the bank, whether we will even be able to leave as planned in January to name just a few of our questions, has been hard on our family.
However, in the last few weeks we have experienced God’s provision in unexpected ways. We are once again buoyed with hope and faith.
We have benefited from:

·          A wonderful story of following God’s lead in a friend’s up-coming trip to Kenya. This story of how God was opening doors for her, showing the right way to go, made me realize God has been doing the same thing when we need it most.
·         New Financial and prayer partners
·         Unexpected very generous one-time financial gifts
·         A trailer found by chance on craigslist to transport our things we are shipping to North Carolina. We were also blessed that we spent $1,000 less on it than expected, so those funds can toward other needed items.
·         God has brought to mind some people who we are contacting and praying will be a positive connection point for more partners
·         Through an inquiry about an ice cream maker on craigslist we are meeting with a man in Washington this week to tell him more about our mission and he’s giving the ice cream maker to us for free!

In the meantime we have been filling the rest of our days with packing up our house (one way or another we will be out by August), helping our sons grow and learn, and enjoying the remaining time we have here in the states. A couple of weekends ago, we were able to go spend time with my (Liz’s) parents and Aunt in Ocean Shores. From there we drove to Seattle to see Evan’s brother Richard and also his brother Jon (whom we haven’t seen in several years) and his partner Laura (whom I was meeting for the first time) who were visiting from Chicago.
We have a few events planned, hoping to add more…

·         June 26th we will be at McMinnville Covenant
·         Sometime in July we will be giving an update presentation to our home church, Sunset Covenant
·         Also in July (hopefully) we want to host a BBQ for partners and anyone else who would like to come and visit with us, here more about our mission and just have a good time (details to come if we manage it before we have to leave for JAARS)
·         October 16th we will be speaking at Shores Community Church in Ocean Shores, WA

Prayer updates:
First praises:
·         We had a delightful birthday party for Liam in May, with lots of laughter and fun. Even though the iffy weather forced us to make last minute changes to location, it all worked out as it should have, because the changes allowed Liam’s  granddad (who was on call and could not leave McMinnville) to be there and we had a wonderful time afterwards at the Children’s Museum in Salem (which normally did not take such a large group on short notice (less than 24 hrs) but they did not have as many parties scheduled as they usually did and so we were allowed to come).
·         We said our goodbyes to our niece Charlotte during a beautiful ceremony where her mom and dad spread some of her ashes, planted a rose in her honor and several people shared some thoughts and memories. The weather was as lovely as we had prayed for.
·         We had a great time traveling up and visiting with my former roommate Amanda and sharing with her church in Port Townsend, WA.
·         We have part of our travel plans resolved with the gift of the funds we needed to cover all our costs, and we have the dates we need to be there as well as a trailer to haul everything…now we need continued prayer for our fundraising as we need 50% pledged monthly support to be cleared by our supervisor to attend the training. We have approximately a month to raise that support.

So on to the prayers:
·         Continued positive connections with partners and advocates
·         Wisdom to continue to make the right decisions regarding our next steps
·         Health for the whole family as we continue to have erratic and busy schedules
·         Positive outcome from our upcoming speaking engagement at McMinnville Covenant

Blessings to you all as the summer heats up and we all can get out and enjoy God’s world!
-The Larson family