Thank you so much for praying!
God heard our prayers for our French tests and we did really well! While we just missed the “Tres Bien” (Very Good) mark, we did get the highest score in the class. Even our professor was impressed by our results. Of course, we thank God for the ability to learn the language and understand it. He has really blessed us with an ability to grasp concepts that others seem to struggle with. Thanks to Him for this gift! We have officially graduated to B1 level (Intermediate) and, according to our professor, we are no longer beginners. (But it still feels like we’re beginners sometimes…)
We’ve been enjoying a break before classes start up next week. We were able to entertain a handful of friends who came by, which was really refreshing to us. Thanks to Jacob and Annet from the Netherlands, Greg and Kori from the Czech Republic, and Sarah from the USA!
August in France presented us with a challenging question: What to do when we have no money, no car, and two little children unable to sit still for any length of time? The answer: Get on our bikes and go camping! We’ve been seeing some of France the cheap and easy way, taking our time going between towns and letting the little ones run around at any parks we may happen across. It was a great time! We covered 150 or so miles. We saw beautiful country and ended at the ocean. We made sure to use our French every day as a sort of language exercise and we discovered that we can actually communicate – how cool!
There are some issues that have been weighing heavily on us lately and we wanted to ask you for your prayers for guidance and wisdom. This has been something brewing for a while, but it was finally made official to us a couple days ago: Africa Inland Mission finally shut the door for us to minister in the Central African Republic. In the opinion of many, including contacts on the ground there, the situation in the CAR after the latest coup is still too dangerous and unstable for a new family to settle there. While the future will obviously bring new reports, right now and for the near future the organization will not allow a family to go there.
Like we said, this was a real blow. We had been praying and expecting that God would open a way for us to be there. But the final word right now is “No.” It’s a little disappointing, to say the least.
Africa Inland Mission has offered us positions in other places, and now we’re praying and considering a couple of them. Please pray with us that God would direct our steps.
Our top two choices are as follows:
- Chad. In the center of Africa with a population of 12 million, it is landlocked but open to ministry. AIM already has a handful of families on the ground in Chad. The majority of people are unreached, but with a sizable Christian minority among some tribes, there are several options in Chad with either church planting work, discipleship work, and/or Bible translation work.
- Mayotte. A French territory in the Indian Ocean between Madagascar and the African mainland. Among its 200,000 people, 99% are unreached, but thanks to French governance, it is open to missionaries. The work here would be evangelism/church planting work among a persistently hard people.
These are the main choices before us. Please pray that God would guide our choice. We have a little while to decide, but as the year winds down, we will have to make a decision one way or another. Our French classes are scheduled to be finished at the end of December, we will need to know our next destination before then. Of course, this is always a hard decision, and one that we would rather make with the support of loved ones and church members around us. We feel a little like Abraham, when God said, “Get up and leave your country… and go to a place I will show you.” We’ve done the first part, but still waiting for God to show us where to go!
Thanks for your partnership in all this! If you want to know more details about our two choices, just send us an email. We love your prayers and your encouragements. Keep praying for us!