Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Danforth MAF video!

Join us for 3 minutes to see what God has called us to with MAF!  A huge thank you to those of you who are already on our team, and a huge JOIN US for those of you who haven't yet but want to!  Let's work together to be the hands and feet of Christ until the last one has heard!

Click the link and check it out:  Danforth MAF video

"Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them singing, 'To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power forever and ever!'"  -Revelation 5:14

Many thanks to Honor Heindl and MAF for such awesome photos!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Back on the Farm...

enjoying sweet days with Josh, Kimia, Maddie, and Maia.
Popsicles in November

"Hey Mom, can we have a cardboard box?"

Cats always get the raw end of this deal. 
Deer, deer, and more deer meat to process.  YUM!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

"Soldiers had arrived...a day's travel from us..."

..typed my mom-in-law on gmail chat the other day as I sat in a Starbucks.  She had my rapt attention.  Over the years, I have pieced together stories of Sam's family's two evacuations from the war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo, but this was one of the first times I was hearing the story from start to finish on their 1997 evacuation. 

"Half the missionaries left in December, including one of the missionary doctors because he had many young daughters.  We moved from our village to Karawa where Josh and Sam were in boarding school so they could remain in school, as their dorm parents and some teachers were also leaving.  We kept having meetings, those of us who were left, and had a list of trip wires." 

"What are trip wires?", I asked. 

"Trip wires are if a certain thing happens, then you split", she continued.  "For instance, IF President Mobutu was killed in a coup d'├ętat or IF General Kabila's rebel soldiers took over the town of Kisangani or IF the advancing army got too close.  Around February 7th, the advancing soldiers arrived in Bumba which was a day's travel from us down the river.  That did it.  We were about 25 people that had to get out.  We flew out by Mission Aviation Fellowship plane to Bangui (Central African Republic) and flew on to the United States.   The rebel soldiers roughed up the people in our various mission communities and put mines and grenades on the surrounding roads.  A dear Congolese friend of ours was in hiding in the rainforest when he encountered some Chadian soldiers and was bold enough to welcome them to our mission and we think that's why the Chadian general who inhabited our house after we left our village took pretty good care of it, unlike most other village's mission houses that were pillaged by the soldiers.   Many other friends of ours hid in the jungle for weeks and wouldn't venture out for fear of the soldiers.  The soldiers wiped out everything and stole everything.  The cattle were eaten, the donkeys, goats, chickens, guinea pigs, crops, everything.  People were afraid to go home or even venture out to their gardens.  They went hungry in the jungle....for weeks.  The war continued and we were unable to return permanently."

Sam's family evacuated from civil war in the D.R.C. both in 1991 and 1997.  Only Sam's dad, Roy, and brother, Josh, have been able to re-enter the country for short visits.  MAF played a major role in evacuating many to safety.

MAF continues to work in the Democratic Republic of Congo delivering the message of hope in Christ, goods, and medical relief to people trying to rebuild their lives after continuing devastation of civil war.
An MAF plane delivers medical supplies to combat a cholera epidemic in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
(Idaho Press Tribune)
Sam's brother, Josh, hesitantly checks him out shortly after birth in Congo.

Sam's "mokolo na libatisi", or day of baptism by his Congolese pastor.

Sam's parents, Roy and Aleta,  continue to work in the Central African Republic with Covenant World Mission.
Josh's wife, Kimia, and her family also evacuated the D.R.C. and she later led me to Christ in high school.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Thanksgiving Grace Brethren Church style...

means going out into the nooks and crannies of the neighborhood to find several hundred who need the taste of turkey and potatoes and might not otherwise get some.  It was such a joy to work alongside our brothers and sisters to serve families in need at such a tangible outreach.

Athena and Addison started work at 6 a.m.!  We joined at 8 :)
Some of the ladies who make this happen!

Cute mashed potato servers 
Amber has a servant's heart with some pep!

Dean delivered milk, clean trays, and a friendly smile!
Sawyer, Lucas, and Dawson serving rolls. 

Friday, November 16, 2012

waiting for my country assignment...

this trepidation
       positive dread
       anything-but-listless feeling

these butterflies

these minutes and hours
         days and weeks

when you anticipate
                                  with sweaty palms and wonderful fear

the news you've been
waiting for
preparing for
moving for
changing for

the news you have
prayed over
cried over
giddied over
           your whole adult life

the news of What Next
                    Where Next

am i the bride before the wedding?
where these wide-eyed moments are sweetest?

will i be the bride
                       after the wedding
when the Event is over
and she finds herself wondering
                                                 where it all went.

all these God-given
  u  t  r  l  e
b  t  e  f  i   s
that keep me afloat
waiting for
The Next.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Weight of The Word...

"This is what each of you keeps on saying to his friend or relative: 'What is the Lord's answer?' or 'What has the Lord spoken?'  But you must not mention 'the oracle of the Lord' again because every man's own word becomes his oracle and so you distort the words of the living God, the Lord Almighty, our God."  -the prophet Jeremiah 23:35-36

These Words may be as meaningful as reading a telephone book some days.  Not today.  These Words weigh on me, these Words of the Living God who declares, "Is not my word like fire?".  These Words don't look like oj(*&#$nsetO*&%#NJkjbadfg to me today.  They are fire in my heart.  My heart flumped crazily in my chest when I read these Words.

"every man's word becomes his oracle and so you distort the words of the living God"

Have I done that?  How many times?  How many times have I offered advice or spoken a word adorned with a flippant verse here or there claiming it to be the very Word of God before searching my heart and His Word for true meaning?  The Word of God that is like Fire?  Fire.  Word.  Am I equally sober in handling the two?  Because when the one is distorted it leads to death, but when the other is distorted it leads to Death.

Thank you, Living and Almighty God for using your Word even in my foolishness.  Make me understand the weight of your Word and give me your Holy Spirit to speak freely and carefully of it.

Speak freely.  Speak carefully.  There is Weight in these Words that bring Life.

Help me, Lord, to be your humble servant.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

From the President of MAF...

"Support raising is a remarkable exercise in faith for each new MAF missionary family. They begin by determining how to chip away at the financial goal, but they finish with incredible faith, overwhelmed by the love and support they’ve received and confident in the direction God has for their lives. Thank you to all those who stand alongside an MAF family."
-John Boyd, President of Mission Aviation Fellowship

John Boyd, President of MAF

For the full blog entry click here.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Dear Jason and Doni...

We know that you must somtimes miss "the familiar" while serving in Thailand as an extension of our church, so here's our way of inviting you to the church potluck today :)  And hopefully, someone at GBC will know how much WE will long to see pictures of "the familiar" and will be OUR camera creeper when we're overseas ;)

There had to have been a dozen different types of meatballs.

A few of our behind-the-scenes people!
Testimonies; the best part.

"Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts," - Acts 2:46

Saturday, November 10, 2012

MAF Homework...

We got our Mission Aviation Fellowship "homework" in the mail today.  Over the last three months, we have finished the initial reading requirements and homework, so here is what we will be filling out and reading over the coming weeks.

"The Expert Expat is essential reading for anyone moving overseas."  We shall soon find out!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Creative Interactions...

Though Sam and I are both Third Culture Kids (TCKs), we do NOT have it all figured out to raise our own soon-to-be TCKs.  We DO know that one key element for smooth transitions is COMMUNICATION.  This is going to require some creativity on our parts and the parts of our friends to ensure that interaction happens between Little Danforths and the friends they have made around the globe so far.  Today was the first of Creative Interactions.  Featuring the Lego Face Time Play Date between Sawyer and Washington buddy, Ezra!

Monday, November 5, 2012 unto the Lord for one Momma...

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord..." Colossians 3:23

In an effort to avoid public nightmarish images in the developing Danforth brains this year, we had a Fall party at home with the cousins!  From a momma's view, here's what I dig:
1.  Choosing and controlling the amount of sugar intake.
2.  Choosing and controlling the images seen and not seen.
3.  Simplistic fun and one less over-the-top holiday.
4.  One more night claimed for family time.

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart" does NOT mean that I spend my time worrying about how others celebrated October 31st.  It means for ME that I want to foster an environment where Little Danforths are...
1.  easily impressed with 3 pieces of candy instead of a whole bag that I'd throw away anyway.
2.  able to think much of a home-made sign rather than huge and expensive decorations.
3.  not troubled in wee hours of the night by ghoulish costumes.
4.  satisfied and fulfilled with simple things.

Fairy and Pioneer Girl