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Showing posts from 2012

Thanksgivings

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Andrew and I have been working as children and youth leaders in our sending church, Grace Baptist Church, and we are enjoying it sooo much!  This morning I taught a group of 19 3-5 yr olds during church. My voice is worn out, but my heart is full.  I love each one of them.  Andrew was able to teach Romans 15 to the children's church kids at the same time.  We're thankful for these teaching and discipleship experiences.  They are keeping our minds sharp and our hearts tender for the work we will be doing in Togo!
Thankful for Grandparents!  Harry & Bea Ward have been back from Togo since October 22nd.  It's been so wonderful to be able to take advantage of the free babysitting, but also just the EASY access to them!  Skype is just not the same as an across the table chat.

The last month has brought us to 40% of our needed monthly funding!  We've seen the side of the church building below when it was empty of stones.  Now it is almost halfway completed!  We've lov…

Florida Trip

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We just made it back home from a long trip to Florida.  Our travels took us from Chattanooga, Tampa, Naples, Miami, Deerfield Beach, Daytona Beach, and finally back to Chattanooga.


We left our house at 4am on Sunday morning arrived in Tampa in time for the evening service at Starkey Road Baptist Church.  Andrew and I gave our testimonies at the church on Wednesday night and we were able to share our vision and goals for Togo.


On Thursday morning we drove down to Naples, to visit my grandparents.  It was a Thanksgiving day, eight years ago that Andrew and I were engaged on THIS BEACH during a sunset- just like this one.  We hadn't been back down to Naples since then, so we really enjoyed reminiscing about that special evening.

We arrived at my other grandparent's home in Miami on Saturday, and spent Sunday morning with Southwest Community Church.   I had forgotten how friendly the church family at SWCC is.  They made us feel sooo welcome.

We arrived at First Baptist Church of…

His thoughts are not our thoughts!

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Over the last few weeks we've seen some amazing answers to our specific prayers for financial partners. Three particular partners have joined us to make up parts of $50 and $100 stones!  The thing that really gets us is that they were not even people whom we were thinking of to partner with us!  God is really showing us that He has all of our financial partners picked out already regardless of our plans.  He says in Isaiah 55:8, “For My thoughts are not your thoughts" and He keeps proving it over and over again.
 We're still praying, more than daily, that God will continue to bring people along our path who will adopt our heart for Togo.  Our real purpose, though, is to connect believers with the blessing, the joy, and the eternal reward of becoming the expression of Christ to the Nations!

From August to August!

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This has been one action packed year!  We started our journey to Togo last August after ABWE appointed us as missionaries in July, 2011. Here we go into our second year of raising partners for our ministry in Togo!  Please pray for us! 
Here's a breakdown of what the last year had for us.
August-December-  Andrew worked at Costco full-time and took 2 doctoral level classes at UTC.  I tried to keep my wits together raising two boys under 2 years old.  We had just become a one-vehicle family, so I mostly stayed home with the boys.  We had a few church meetings and prepared for our survey trip to Togo.

January- Andrew and I left the boys with his older sister and headed to Togo, West Africa.  We were there for 2 weeks.  I regained some of my sanity.  We met a lot of people and saw first hand the great need for Christian Education in Togo.

January-April- Andrew took 2 more classes at UTC and continued to work fulltime at Costco.  We gave our presentation countless times and visited man…

Grace Baptist Tabernacle

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Grace Baptist Tabernacle this past Sunday-Wednesday evenings. The services started at 7pm and never got out before 9:10pm.  On Sunday night we showed our ministry video and Andrew talked for a few minutes about what we'll be doing in Togo.  
On Monday night I sang and Andrew played guitar for me.  Since they didn't have nursery worker scheduled, I had to figure out what to do with Cyrus.  Let him roam free?!  Hold him while I sang?  At the last second I asked for a volunteer to hold Cyrus while I sang.  One of the choir members in the front row gladly held him.  I imagined him screaming during the entire song, but he was soooo good for her!  We left Manny sitting on a pew playing a quiet game on my old Ally phone.  

On Tuesday night the church had a fellowship dinner before the service.  During the service Andrew gave a 15 minute talk from Titus 1 and we also played a guitar-violin duet.  Before we went up to play I passed Cyrus to Calvert Dixon, a missionary friend of ours.  Cy…

Togo: Building the Church

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Click on the 'Partner with Us' tab to see how you can help.



Togo: Why We're Going (2)

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To God from Idols

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I doubt if any of you have ever been to an idol burning service, like the one Sharon Rahilly attended this week.  Sharon is a missionary nurse in Togo and sent us these pictures.

Three men from the village of Kpetagan, Togo professed Christ and wanted to publicly burn their idols!  The first two men had several idols and burned them near the local school where this small church meets right now.  This was a testimony to the entire village that the men had   "turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God (I Thess 1:9). 


The other man owned many different idols.  He led the group of Christians from the school to his home and laid out his idols outside of his house.  Then he explained the purpose for each of them: anything from healing snakebites, matchmaking!  He shared a wonderful testimony of how God had saved him from fear and hopelessness of the life he had lived.  Now he has the peace of God and assurance that his sins are forgiven!  


We can't wait to be a part of …

Why We're going (1)

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Watch the video below to find out why we're going to Togo, West Africa.

Ministry Partners Needed!

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We would like for you to pray and consider helping us serve in Togo.  We are in need of monthly or annual giving.  Any amount will help!



His Wings are the Warmest Refuge

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Today Andrew and I celebrate our 6th wedding anniversary and my 3rd Mother's day!

Tonight we visited one of our supporting churches, Pleasant Hill Baptist Church.  It's been a while since I've heard Andrew preach, since I'm usually in the nursery with Cyrus.  This church has a nursery in the back of the auditorium so I could hear and see Andrew preaching a great sermon from Ruth chapter 2.  It was a good reminder to me that God is sovereign over all things and cares about the smallest details of our lives.


Missions Conference at Mt. Paran

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This past weekend we spent time with the church family at Mt. Paran Missionary Baptist Church.  On Saturday morning and Sunday morning we attended their first ever missions conference!   Just Friday night Andrew was not feeling well at all.  Thankfully, He felt well enough on Saturday morning and was able to rest all afternoon once we got home.  We all still aren't 100% health-wise, but slowly on the road to recovery from this long lasting cold.  
We met 9 other missionaries who are involved in ministry, in Chattanooga and overseas.  Since I grew up in Grenada, West Indies, it was interesting to talk about the surrounding islands where several of the missionaries have ministries.  Andrew was able to give our presentation on Saturday and teach a class on Sunday morning while I watched the boys in the nursery.
Please pray for us as we continue to form new friendships and work our way towards Togo!

Hauling Stuff

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About once a year we are recruited by Harry & Bea Ward to gather, package, and transport supplies for shipment to Togo.  One year Andrew drove a load all the way up to Michigan.  Last week we took a trailer full of computers and educational supplies to Greenville, SC.  Those boxes will be loaded onto a container which should be headed to Togo by next week.  From there the boxes will travel North to Adeta where the Wards live.  Their little house will be packed with boxes until they can sort through it all.  Bea will distribute the educational materials amongst the Christian Elementary schools.  Harry will work to restore the computers and then give them to national pastors and church leaders who will use them in their ministries. Even though it's huge undertaking to prepare the shipments each year, we feel privileged to already be a part of the ministry in Togo!

Keeping busy

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We've spent the last few Sundays visiting churches and making new contacts .  Andrew was asked to give his testimony one Sunday morning! So, God is opening doors for us to share our heart for Togo, even when we're not in a scheduled meeting!

Andrew requested to go to part-time work about a month ago.  Costco is still working to find a replacement for him so he can switch to another department.  Please pray that the transition will go smoothly!  We know God will work it out in His timing.

The Story of His Glory!

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This past week has been one of great encouragement for us. We participated in the missionsconference at Mile Straight Baptist Church, Soddy Daisy, TN. Since we live in Chattanooga we got to spend the nights in our own beds!
On Sunday Andrew and I talked about Togo in Kidzworld(Sunday School), and we were able to give our testimonies to the entire church family during the evening service. On Tuesday night we showed our ministry presentation video and Andrew talked some more about our passion for Togo. I was able to just pour my heart out at the ladies' luncheon.
This church family just made us feel soooo welcome. One of the ladies of the church treated all the missionary wives to pedicures! Another lady gave us all haircuts- Cyrus' first! I was sure to save a clip of his hair for the scrapbook I'll make 10(?) years from now.

It's was hard for me to believe that God could make me feel any more excited about Togo and encouraged by other believers, but He did!

Onward, Upward, Always- the Ascent

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This past week we've been overwhelmed by the generosity and hospitality shown to us by Heritage Baptist Church in Prattville, AL. Not only were we fed really, really well, but they also providedexcellent childcare whenever we needed it. They took all of the missionaries to a nice restaurant for lunch on Monday. On the last evening they had us stand on the platform while they read a long list of things they were providing for us as a church. We're still recovering from the shock of being so richly blessed, exceedingly, abundantly, above what we could ask or think! The theme for the conference was on God's Faithfulness. It was wonderful to leave with a renewed assurance that God will bring in our support according to His perfect timing. He is faithful!

We're back!!!

We completed our survey trip on Wednesday, Jan 18 and flew into Atlanta on Thursday. After only5 days of being back we are still a bit jet-lagged. Thus, we feel like we really accomplished something by putting out this newest prayer letter so quickly! So, go read it! :-) You can find by clicking the "Updates" tab above.
Some pictures from our trip are on our Picasa Account here.

Update 7- (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday)

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TUESDAYToday we got into Sharon Rahilly's car and drove back to Kpalime. On the way there I snapped this picture of this van. Too bad you can't see from this picture how many passengers there were.
Dave & Doris Totman, Geuntan(a Togolese), Jim Gerhart, and Sharon were holding a BATA (Baptist Academy of Theology in Africa) meeting to which they invited us. It was interesting to observe and hear them fine tune what we want it to look like. BATA is still being developed to offer bachelor's degrees. There are currently 2 students taking BATA classes in Ghana.
Before we left, Patience, the seamstress, delivered the clothes we had made.
We got back to Tsiko around 2pm and napped, naturally.
Judy Bowen and Sharon Rahilly had Kevin & Emily Hall and us over for dinner. Our first homemade TOGOLESE food! It was great!
WEDNESDAY We met a few of the Mango Team missionaries this morning as they were all assembling for Togo Team Meetings on the Hospital Compound. Then, o…

Survey Trip- Update 6 (Sunday & Monday)

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SUNDAYOur 2nd Sunday in Togo we attended the Tsiko church. This church uses drums and we sat right next to the brass players. They were really loud! There were two different choirs, one on each side of the platform and each sang a special. During the specials, many women of the church danced down the aisle and dropped an offering in the basket at the front of the church. I sooooo wanted to follow the line of women down the aisle. . . I’ll have to stop being so self-conscious when we move! Andrew and I played a combination of Because He Lives, and Amazing Grace on borrowed instruments and then he preached on Ruth chapter 1. The missionaries living on the hospital compound get together every Sunday night for a service. Andrew preached Ruth chapter 2 and we played another special number.MONDAY We visited four classes at the public school in Zongo this morning. We drove by two mosques on our way there. Some of the spots on the road were was pretty hard on the car. At the school …

Survey Trip- Update 5 (Thursday, Friday, Saturday)

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Thursday morning we visited the Agbale Pedogan Christian school. There was a girl from Germany with a group giving assistance to Togolese Schools for a few months, I think. The group was all split up into different Lome Schools. The kids loved her. They also loved the camera! We visited Concord supermarket and the Wards picked up groceries. They bought a lot of screw-in 60w light bulbs. Apparently, those aren’t always available. We stopped in the market for a few minutes and bought a ton of fruit. Then we started the drive north. We reached Kpalime around 1pm and had lunch at Chez Fanny again (I had curry shrimp, gotta love my curry!!!), then we continued on to Tsiko. Laundry was the first thing we did when we arrived. FRIDAYI felt sick (no need to go into details). Sorted through pictures and videos. Andrew cracked open a coconut for us. Even though I've lived in the tropics since I was 5, I'm still not a fan of coconut. We also tasted some of the star fruit. N…

Survey Trip- Update 4

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Thankfully my voice returned by this morning. I saw (and killed) my first mosquito in the middle of the night. So far I've only been bit once, which surprises me. I cover myself in DEET every morning knowing how attractive mosquitoes usually find me. Since it's the dry season here, though, there aren't as many around. We visited the Be Christian school this morning. From there, Kujoji and Joseph Akakpo accompanied us to the public school. Joseph is national who is also with ABWE. We really enjoyed getting to know him better and look forward to working with him when we return.
We drove by the Atlantic Ocean in the afternoon. The road is pretty far removed from the beach. We had dessert after lunch- ICE CREAM CREPES. Absolutely delicious!We returned to the customs office to pick up our passports. It was not as easy as we assumed it would be. There was a crowd of 20 people at a table. Two officers had a box of foreign and Togolese passports. The first officer picked thro…

Survey Trip- Update 3, (Tuesday, January 10th)

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We visited a Public school (near Becky's house) in the morning. As on Monday, Amenyo and Roger were our translators. Amenyo teaches at the Kpegolonou Christian elementary school and Roger is the principal of La Lumier.The teachers at the public school were on STRIKE! The kids were running around unattended. The principle was the only responsible adult there! This would be unheard of in the states. For some reason, I wasn’t thinking how strange it was at the time, though. In this case I’m only noticing the difference in culture in retrospect. Just a note to anyone visiting to Togo schools- show your camera and you will get swarmed! The kids love having their pictures taken, which makes for really blurry pictures because they are constantly trying to get closer to the camera!We hit the Kpegolonou Christian school (near Beky's house) around lunchtime. I hung out with the kindergartners. About the only phrase I could say in French was "Qe'est-ce que c'est?&…