Hello everyone, figured I would start with an apology for again staying out of touch, but have been working through a lot and waiting for the details to be worked out. Though everything is not concrete, we have a plan and we would like to share it with you all. I am sure many of you have already heard some news but most likely not all.
We will be headed to the US this year for a long Furlough. Our current plan is 1 year, though that is one of the many things still being worked through. There are several things that we would like accomplished prior to return, if they take more or less time we are ok with that. There are several reasons for this furlough, but the main reasons are we are TIRED, and our kids are getting older, Joey is 18 and Jacob 16. Many missions organizations require furlough much more often than we have had, several even require 1 year off for every 4 on the field. By our arrival we will have been 7 years on the field. When we returned June 2016 our plan was to focus on and complete turning the fellowship over to men that we have been raising up and return after about 1 visa (15 months), though we only told a few people. That is basically still our plan so let me lay it all out.
With our children getting older and becoming adults we feel there are things that we as parents need to provide. Jacob for instance has a very strong desire to finish his education in the US at a High School then continue on to college. This has been a desire of his now for several years and this is something we support and want to facilitate as best as possible.
Jacob is enrolled in school that begins in August. Sarah, Jacob, Marissa have purchased tickets to fly back July 28. This allows for about 1 month to prepare for school. Unfortunately, Tyler and myself will need to stay back a few months until help arrives. We know this is not ideal, but as of now this is how it is. We have been in talks with a very good friend named "Chaz" that lives in San Francisco and works closely with Francis Chan. He will be coming to continue training up the leaders and supporting them in their new found roles. He isn't available until the last week in Sept. or first week in Oct. thus the delay in our departure. Tickets are actually least expensive Oct 13-14 so at the current that is when we will return. Chaz's ministry is to make disciples, training them to make disciples and continue on down that path. That will be his focus here as well. Training the guys here to evangelize, make disciples that would then go out and make more, while supporting them as the New leaders of New Beginnings Calvary Chapel Patong. This is really an exciting time, Jack who I have been working with now for almost 3 years, has recognized the calling on his life and is willing to do whatever the Lord wants. As we were talking tonight he just kept on saying "here I am". He speaks Nepalese, Burmese, English, Thai, and Hindi. Though he cannot teach in all these languages he can speak them, his vision for ministry is to reach the Burmese/Nepalese community here in Patong and "plant" a fellowship. Aland is a Chinese Malaysian, he mostly speaks English. He will be taking my place as the leader of the International "English" portion of ministry. While we finish out our time assisting this change will be our main focus.
Upon our arrival we will be seeking employment to support our family needs during our time Stateside, I have already sought and found "as I need" employment. We will "furlough" (no ministry, fundraising, seeking speaking engagements etc.) for several months, getting some rest and much needed family time. In February, we will return to Phuket, checking on the work here and also we would like to "scout" some different areas of ministry. There are several places on the radar right now, India, Cambodia, as well as several different locations here in Thailand. It is our desire to do this trip with a team of people that can help us assess the different opportunities and pray for direction. Upon return from this trip with the direction of the Lord we will begin to work on our relaunch and return to the field. We will not, aside from an act of God, be returning to Phuket.
We understand this most likely creates many questions, please feel free to send all questions to my email; firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have several areas of prayer
As of last week Chaz needs an accountability partner to launch. The man that was to join him turns out... is not able.
Figuring everything out.
Change of Leadership
Strength and courage for Aland and Jack
Details, details, details...
Proverbs 16:3 Commit your works to the LORD And your plans will be established.
Proverbs 16:6 The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.