To the ends
"You will be my witnesses ... to the ends of the earth."
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Dear family and friends, both old and new!
We haven't given too many details about our plans in our previous newsletters, so this time we'll provide a brief update about where we've been, where we are, and where we're going.
- We visited Morocco in October on a survey trip and felt God saying "Yes!"
- Since June 2014 we've been meeting regularly with our Missions Pastor and his wife, we've both taken the course "Perspectives on the World Christian Movement," completed an online course on Islam, and have read a half-dozen pertinent books about missions.
- We've spent two separate weeks at Pioneers in Orlando doing training in a variety of areas to include: cyber security, caring well for children overseas, conflict resolution, working on teams, leadership, and church planting methods.
- Most recently we celebrated Emma's 2nd birthday! We went to three different parks, had cupcakes, and spent two days opening presents. She was most excited about blowing out her candles and her new dress-up outfits. Every day she fills our lives with indescribable joy and love, and is a constant reminder of God's goodness to us.
- We are sharing our vision with potential partners, and praying for God to lead us to people and churches who may be interested in joining us in the work that He's called us to do in North Africa.
- We are both engaged in one-on-one discipleship with mature, experienced, missions-minded leaders in our church.
- We continue to lead a small-group Bible study in our neighborhood and are reading several books as part of our training program.
- Our tentative departure date for France is August 24th, about 5 months away!
- We are going to a suburb of Paris to a French-language school that was founded more than 40 years ago to train missionaries going to French-speaking countries. Since French is heavily spoken in many of the major cities and is widely used in business, education, and government, it has been strongly recommended that we learn French first and then dive into learning Arabic once we are in country.
- Depending on how quickly we learn, we plan to be in France for 10-12 months.
- We are anticipating to move from France to North Africa in the summer of 2017.
- We have much to do before we leave in August, please pray for good time management and perseverance to complete everything while maintaining an attitude of joy!
- Most Moroccans hold the view that choosing a faith other than Islam is not even an option, which is so contrary to our western ideal of Freedom of Religion. Pray that the Holy Spirit would work in Moroccans to free them of the belief that they are born Muslim and will die Muslim.