In any venture the people are its most valuable resource. Wise business leaders know that taking care of their employees will retain those resources and increase productivity. This should come as no surprise, since God tells us that we were designed to live in a mutually supportive community. The “one anothers” of the New Testament tell us help other toward both godliness and kingdom productivity.
For missionaries that gets a bit complicated. We have moved away from our state-side Christian communities, where we had pastors, counselors, Amazon online for Christian resources delivered to our door and friends in our Sunday School class who could help out with meals in a crisis or just an empathetic listening ear. In our host country we may or may not have access to those types of resources. Add to that our unique set of challenges as we must live and work between two worlds, and you have a recipe for missionary melt-down. It happens all too often. Continue reading
What are you waiting for?
Scenario A, the nightly news: the anchor asks a question of the on-location reporter. We wait. The reporter stares blankly for a second. Finally he nods and begins to respond.
Scenario B, the Mission Field: a Costa Rican asks a question of professor Gary or Karen. There is a “hang-time” of ½ to 2 seconds, a blank look. They then react and give a response.
The speed of light isn’t fast enough!
What causes A? The anchor’s words go up to a satellite, maybe bounce over to another satellite or two, and then down to the reporter. The question travels only (only!) at the speed of light. Then his answer travels back the same route. Very quick, but not instantaneous – at the very least it’s 1/3 of a second either direction and it’s noticeable.
And what causes B? Well, that’s a bit more complicated! Here are two options:
Missing Spanish Word: “Gary, this pastor told me that ____ is ___ the church. What do you think?” Amazing how a sentence falls apart when the subject and the verb are Missing in Action. Continue reading
We still need to raise $973 per month, which will bring us to 100% in all areas: living expenses, work expenses, and remaining debt to the mission. We still have a special gift from Cuba that will go to the person who puts us over the top!
Interested donors can contact WorldVenture by clicking www.worldventure.com and looking up our name. Click MAKE A COMMITMENT for a regular donation or GIVE NOW for a one-time donation to our Ministry Account.
1. For Sammy, especially his education
2. For Gary as he balances teaching, writing a Spanish-language commentary on Romans, and serving as academic dean.
3. For Karen as she balances teaching Sammy, ESEPA work, and moving her
Blessings! Gary and Karen
We are working through some major family issues. The most worrisome is that Sammy is having trouble in school, due to behavioral issues that can probably be traced to his early environment. Local public schools lack the supervision and education quality we need, and Costa Rica isn’t very open to homeschooling. We are further pressured by limited resources and time to implement a decision. Please pray for God’s wisdom, strength, and provision.
Then there is my mom’s health. Thelma broke her knee about 2 months ago, and she came to Costa Rica for a month with us during her recovery. Continue reading
Four months ago, we still needed to raise $1400 per month before we could return to Costa Rica.
As of today we only need to raise $473 per month, which will bring us to 100% in all areas: living expenses, work expenses, and remaining debt to the mission.
We still have a special gift from Cuba that will go to the person who puts us over the top!
Interested donors can contact WorldVenture by clicking HERE. Click MAKE A COMMITMENT for a regular donation, or GIVE NOW for a one-time donation to our Ministry Account.
Thank you to Jim and Diana, Donald and Donna, Susan and Paul, John and Gail, Dave and Amy, Jimmy and Kristal, Reformed Baptist, and several anonymous donors for special gifts!
And Bart and Carole, Joan and George, Roger and LuAnne, Barry and Patti, for new or increased support!
Gary is serving a year’s term as Academic Dean of ESEPA, planning the courses and working with the professors so that we give the best training possible. To start the new academic year, he spoke how we serve as models or patterns for our students (see a similar article of his here).
Karen’s mother broke her kneecap, and so Karen went to Philly and brought Thelma here to live with us during her recuperation.
Young Sammy has started school at Sojourn Academy, where our four kids attended; it’s just a few blocks from the house.
** Special Prayer Requests **
One: Gary was asked to write a short commentary on Romans and because of circumstances, to turn it in within a few months. He has preached and taught much of Romans and published a few articles on the letter, but this means that he will have to write at top speed.
Two: we now have two new families from our mission working in Costa Rica, and we need God’s grace now more than ever as they go through their first year. Pray for our new team!
Three: Karen was recently asked to prepare a missionary kid retreat in Costa Rica at the end of the month, for 15 children, ages 1-17. God has been good and provided workers, so pray for Karen as she writes and plans the program. Please pray for Karen’s mom Thelma, that she will enjoy her time here with us in CR, and that her body will quickly heal and gain strength
Dear friends, As of six weeks ago, we needed to raise $1400 per month before we could return to Costa Rica.
As of today we need to raise only $828/mo!
Thanks to our new donors: Bill and Karen, Brandie, the Johnsons!
Gary is going to Costa Rica for graduation, and Karen will follow; she is spending a couple of weeks with her mother, who is recuperating from a hospital stay.
If you were ever considering donating to our work, this is the key moment to do so, so that we will go at 100% supported!
And again, whoever puts us over the top will receive a special gift from Cuba!
Interested donors can contact WorldVenture by clicking HERE
Blessings! Gary and Karen