2,254 miles

From Loving TX to New Mexico, back to Loving and then to South Padre Island and back.  2,254 miles of deep conversation, loud music, and seeing God move in the hearts of many during our 2 week spring break.

A good friend of ours Ben Edfeldt, who is the director of the Midwestern State University’s Baptist Student Ministry, asked me if I would be interested in serving as a driver for Beach Reach this year down in South Padre.. Of course I said “YES!” without really even looking or asking what I would be getting myself into or how long it would take to get there, or even what to bring. This was before our church’s youth leader invited our family to go skiing in New Mexico.

So scheduling a week for skiing, completing a final for my eschatology class on the road, and then going down to the beach somewhere to drive college students around sounded “easy.” The skiing was great we had an awesome trip with the youth group. I cannot say enough about the students and how wonderful they were to our kiddos. Aydin and Calyn enjoyed their first time skiing so much that they would get on the bunny slopes before we could even get our skis on. After the ski trip I spent one night at home in my own bed and then a convoy of 3 large church buses filled with 27 students and 2 other drivers picked me up to head south for the next 7 days.

Our trip down consisted of the students hopping from van to van asking and answering questions that were preplanned out by Ben to stimulate conversation and get their minds and hearts focused spiritually for what they were about to enter into. The students had already dedicated to a weekly training that aided in their preparation to have these sometimes deep spiritual conversations. Incase you are unfamiliar with Beach Reach this is a brief summary form http://beachreach.org/ :

“Beach Reach South Padre began in 1980 with 20 students who had a vision to reach their peers during Spring Break. It has progressively developed into the extensive ministry that it is today. Now during Spring Break, hundreds of Christian college students join together to verbally share the gospel of Jesus with those they encounter as they seek to meet their physical needs for food and transportation.”

So the student’s task each day and late nights was to interact and engage in spiritual conversations with college students that have traveled from all over the country to “cut loose” and “burn off some stress.” To do this we would have to be up when they are up so our group would go to a worship service/meal for “Beach Reachers” each evening at about 5pm and we would mostly be up until about 4:30 am. We would typically wake up about 10 and nap when we could. We stayed in Port Isabel at the First Baptist Church just on the other side of the bridge to South Padre. They were so amazing and hospitable. I think this church housed about 150 or so of us. Some facts and figures from our trip: about 1,000 BSM students went with 95 vans to give about 20,300 college Spring Breakers free rides that lead to about 9,700 spiritual conversations, leading to BSM students praying with and for 8,800 students which led to 140 New Believers. It was truly one of the most amazing experiences I have witnessed so far in my life.

A short story to share happened right outside of our van before we went on our shift. Three men approached our van and asked for a ride. I eventually said “Sure but I have to wait till we go on shift in like 5 minutes” so they waited. Standing there they began to chit chat about being Christians and how they grew up in church. I asked “Then what are you doing here?” Our conversation continued and about anhour later I heard form another BSM student that those young men after being dropped off by us quickly caught another bus home. I don’t know what happened to them after that but I pray that moment was the moment the Holy Spirit wrecked their world and made them run back to Him to find that He never left. Something that was also inspiring and amazing is how these BSM students had intentionally sacrificed their time and finances to proclaim the Gospel to their peers. Instead of relieving their stresses from school serving themselves, they chose to serve others in the name of Jesus Christ. Serving alongside young men and women who are on fire for the Lord you can’t help but come away inspired.

On our way home I got to truly reflect over the last week and thinking of all the conversations and efforts that had gone into Beach Reach2017. The Lord really showed me that it’s not us who saves anyone, it’s the Holy Spirit. We can lay out the message as perfect as we want but it is not up to us. All we are to do is be obedient in proclaiming the Gospel to the world and leave it up to Him.

Please be in prayer for these BSM students. That they would continue to follow wherever the Lord will lead them. Both of these ministries (the BSM and Beach Reach), and thank God for our new brothers and sisters in Christ that they would be able to get plugged into a ministry on their campuses, and for volunteer drivers and vans for Beach Reach 2018.

February update

Just so you know this is Chris not Meegan so miss spellings and grammatical error are in your reading experience’s eminent future. I really wanted to thank everyone who has joined us on our journey. We have truly been blessed with the kindest and most loving friends and family God has truly been apart of bringing us together. Folks have gone above and beyond to host us in their homes, small group meetings, and churches so that we can proclaim God’s glory and desire to reach those who have never heard or have no access to Him through His Scripture. It is amazing to see the reactions, much like ours was first when we heard that these people groups still exist in the world we live in today.

Going along with our thankfulness we also have something to celebrate with you all! God, being faithful and equipping us for this task, has provided us with commitments for 32 % of our monthly budget for the training. So that leaves 68% for others to pray about their involvement in. Just a tid bit of information on fundraising: it is an absolute JOY to spend time in fellowship with other believers. Some other missionaries that have been guiding us along this process told us once that they love the fundraising aspect of missions. For me at that point the thought of having to speak in front of people and ask them to partner in the ministry that the Lord had led us to was without a doubt terrifying and foreign to everything I had ever known. For us when we needed or wanted for something we simply worked harder or longer hours to be compensated with funds. Well as you may have guessed, we can’t do that anymore, we have to rely on the Lord to provide us with the resources. Its all apart of His wonderful planning to make us fully reliant on Him and thus far its really been freeing to do the work by sharing and watching the Lord move in ways that we have never experienced before. Hebrew 13:20-21 comes to mind while writing this : “Now the God of peace, who brought up from the dead the great Shepherd of the sheep through the blood of the eternal covenant, even Jesus our Lord, equip you in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen”

On another note Meegan and I are finishing up the last semester of seminary school with Grace School of Theology. We graduate in May 2017 and are prayerfully waiting the day when we can look back on our 2 years and see how each of us has grown in our faith. The kiddos are doing well. They have been reading about Amy Carmichael and other famous missionaries. We both thoroughly enjoy involving the kids with God’s desire to be known to the whole world. Aydin understands quite a bit more than Calyn but I pray that will come with age and nurturing. Meegan is absolutely wonderful when it comes to teaching our kids. Her soft heart for our children to be raised up to follow the Lord in obedience above all other things truly shows through her time and efforts spent with them. The kids are also involved in Soccer this spring. Aydin decided that since there is a soccer field at the NTM Missionary Training Center he should concentrate his efforts toward that instead of baseball. He is under a great coach and Godly man who is also apart of our church.

Here are a few photos from our dates yesterday. We love taking the kids out separately so that I had a date with Calyn and Meegan had a date with Aydin.
img_6106 img_6108

img_6120 img_6118

img_6102 img_6096

If you are looking to pass some time or God has gifted you in being a prayer warrior we would ask that you would pray for:

  • Meegan and I to finish GSOT strong
  • Pray over the 68% left to fundraise, Praise Him for providing the 32%!
  • For Aydin and Calyn to continue to thrive and prepare for the home schooling schedule in Missouri
  • For our future team mates
  • For the people He is leading us to
  • For guidance on using our current house for His glory

Have a holly jolly Christmas!

JoyfulFront
2016christmascard2

We are ending off this year thankful for the Lord’s continuous provision and thrilled to see what lays ahead in 2017!
We have gotten the ‘official’ acceptance to the New Tribes Mission’s Missionary Training Center and look forward to our move to Missouri this coming summer. We have just paid for our last semester at Grace School of Theology and we look forward to a busy but growing time learning more about God’s Word and completing the requirements for NTM. The seminary school has been incredible so that we could live in our home debt free, work, and figure out the whole home schooling thing at the same time. The Lord has blessed this season of our lives in countless ways!
As we move in to the new year we are using our small break from school to pray and diligently seek the Lord in the next step of partnering with others in order to move to the training center. We know He will provide and we are excited about the time we will get to have with friends and family, sharing the burden for un-reached people groups the Lord has placed on our hearts. Please get in touch with us if you would like us to set up a time to share more in detail with you, your church group, or friends! Our God is moving in a mighty way!!

Wishing you all the very best Christmas season! “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:14

Special thanks to my friend Julia for taking our family pictures and being the hands and feet of the Lord to us!
weaverfamily-1-3 weaverfamily-52 weaverfamily-167 weaverfamily-190

weaverfamily-273

Learning to receive

When you are used to working and earning the money you need for all of your needs/wants it is difficult to imagine what it will be like to fully rely on the Lord, without the ability to earn an income. We aren’t there yet…. but it’s coming. Of course all the work we get to do for income is from Him as well and He provides the job and the ability… but it still feels different when you wont be earning the income through a regular job. I finished up my photography appointments this weekend and will officially be closing down my business of 10 years in December. We will get used to living solely on Chris’s fireman income until we move to Missouri this summer. It is bitter sweet but the Lord has placed a new path for our lives on our hearts and its time to give it my full focus.

One thing I know… The Lord will provide.

He is teaching us to receive from others – it is very humbling and He is constantly reminding us of His faithfulness.

We just finished up another garage sale for a fundraiser. We ended up reserving winter/Christmas items for a Fall sale since they didn’t sell last Spring. We had a great sale hosted at my moms in Wichita Falls a couple weeks ago and then at our friends’ house in Graham this weekend. We had a handful of people donate items for the sales and their generosity was overwhelming. I wish I could repay them all in some way but I know their reward is in Heaven. I can’t say enough how humbling it is to receive from others but I know their gift is to the Lord and then from the Lord to us.

We did a donations only sale both times and it was the most rewarding experience. We constantly got to share with others a little bit of how God was leading us and what He was doing around the world. A lot of people didn’t understand why we wouldn’t give them a price but allowed them to choose how much to give for their items. Many gave so generously. Complete strangers said they would be praying for us and gave above and beyond the value of the item in order to be a part of the Lord’s work. We trusted the Lord to provide while some bought a lot for little  and some blessed us greatly. It was a growing experience to turn our thoughts and prayers to hope the people who donated little would be blessed by those items they were purchasing so cheaply. I think its natural for our flesh to say they are taking advantage but the Lord knows their needs and He will provide for ours. He is the source.

As we ease into the life of living off of the support of others… God is filling us with His faithfulness and our trust is in Him. We have no doubt He will provide. And for those who are already giving or have donated… our hearts are overwhelmed with thankfulness and joy of watching the Lord move in people’s hearts to partner with us and I know its only the beginning.

If you read this far then you get to enjoy some of the cuteness parading around this weekend’s sale.
garage-sale-2

 

garage-sale

the beginning of lasts

I can’t help but start to think “this will (potentially) be the last time we are here (in Loving) for this or that…” We are past the one year mark and will no longer be here ‘next year.’ Different things bring on nostalgic thoughts such as Aydin and Calyn playing soccer on a team for the last time, Calyn participating in the Ranch Rodeo stickhorse race… just the daily routines and activities that bring about the reminder that in a year we will be in a completely different place. I know this will really set in next summer when we move but already it seems weird to say oh next year we wont be here for this or that…

For now we are in full swing with this year’s homeschool curriculum, Exploring Countries and Cultures. It is the perfect study for us as we learn about God’s love for all people and His desire for all to come to know Him. We will learn all the countries and experiment with their foods and artwork, while learning their religions and customs. Already the Lord has been faithful to plant a desire in the kid’s hearts to reach others. They get it… there is a lost and dying world full of people who have never even heard of Jesus.

Here is Aydin’s collage of people from around the world that God sent His Son to die for. img_3489

We have also submitted all the application paperwork and medical evaluations for the Training Center. We are anxious to hear back and get interviews started and the ultimate confirmation that this is where the Lord is leading us.

Our seminary classes are also well under way. We are very thankful we have had the freedom and ability to attend online courses throughout this process. Classes are all set for us to finish up in May.

In the mean time we got to attend a Perspectives class at Howard Payne University in Brownwood last night. Our New Tribes Mission rep Doug Schiable was the guest speaker and it was such a treat! He taught on God’s Mandate for the Nations. Although we know this truth it was encouraging to read many of the Scriptures declaring His love and desire for all to know Him, that one day representatives from every tribe and language will worship in His presence for eternity. Jesus gave the mandate to share the Gospel with the world to His believers. We are His chosen way of spreading the Gospel and He will not go about it in any other way-It is our purpose, whether that is where you are or where you go.

Would you please join us in praying for
-the application process to go smoothly so we can begin the next steps in raising support
-God would bless us through our seminary classes,growing and molding us, and that we will have the endurance and understanding we need.
-ministry opportunities and that we will be in tune to His leading to use us where we are

 

Where did the summer go?

Summer has flown much too fast for us this year, however the Lord has blessed it immensely.  We were able to tack on a few Bible classes this summer to help alleviate the load this next school year and plan to  finish seminary by May. God continues to walk through this journey of school with us, strengthening and providing. It has not been easy but He is always faithful to show us the necessity and purpose of this step in the journey. We are enjoying a small break and then start the Fall semester on the 15th.

In the last post we mentioned getting to do youth camp which then followed with VBS.  It was such a joy to get to be involved in the lives of young kids and see how the Lord is moving and teaching them. Chris was able to help with the 3rd-5th grade class and I got to be a part of the Missions class all the kids rotated through. I loved getting to share God’s heart for people around the world, our similarities and differences, and how everyone can be involved in sharing His love for others. The kids learned that God knows them, loves them, and saves them and that they can be involved with missions though going, giving, and praying for others around the world. DSC_0031-frame

DSC_0030
My friend Mindy and I had so much fun dressing up and sharing how the Lord is moving in people’s lives on the other side of the world. Her and her husband have been a true gift from God of wisdom and encouragement to us. Pictured below is Chris being his amazing goofy self and doing all the dance moves to the songs.
IMG_2286 IMG_2333

At the end of July we got to take the kids to Children’s Camp at Chaparral. It was a blast!!! The Lord used the camp staff and Kolby King with Three-Thirty Ministries in a powerful way to bring the joy and beauty of the Gospel in an understandable and clear way for kids. We could all benefit from singing praises to Him in such a fun way and getting on their level to have a child-like faith. “But Jesus called the children to Him and said, “Let the little children come to Me and do not hinder them! For the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, if anyone does not receive the kingdom of God like a little child, he will never enter it.” Luke 18:16-17IMG_2967 1 copy
IMG_2990 copy

It was truly a blessing to attend and love on kids for a few days. We couldn’t help but get a picture where Chris and I were married 11 years ago. He made this cross  for our ceremony and it’s still out there (right in the middle of a disk golf field)IMG_2980 1
Overall, this summer has been a humbling and blessed experience as Christ has surrounded us with support and ministry opportunities in the midst of completing classes. We are enjoying the break but look forward to our next set of classes and to start the official application process to attend New Tribes Mission Training Center next August.

Please pray for us for:
-Fall Semester-wisdom in time management, diligence in school work, endurance and focus in the frustrating times to remember His purpose.
-Ministry opportunities for our family
-The application process and fundraising for New Tribes Mission Training Center.
-The kids new homeschooling year

Falls Creek 2016

This past week our family got to serve at Falls Creek Youth Camp with our church. Although sleep deprived and poured out, we survived and loved every minute of it. We chose to take the kids with us because when we go to the field, they will be a part of our everyday ministry.

IMG_1998

My prayer was that they would be a blessing and not a distraction at the camp and it was really neat to see how the Lord used them. Several girls attached themselves to Calyn and  took it upon themselves to watch out for her and play with her. One told me that Calyn played a part in her salvation that week. She knew Calyn was watching and imitating her which burdened her to stop pretending she was Christian when she wasn’t. It blessed my heart to know how the Lord had used my four year old.

IMG_1992

Aydin ran around with Chris’s group of boys and thankfully they took him in as well. Aydin did amazingly well listening to all the lessons and worshiping with all the kids. He was overwhelmed and outwardly praising God for all the salvation decisions taking place at Tabernacle. One night He said, “Look Dad, isn’t God awesome. Look at all these people accepting Christ that will be in heaven with us.” Another time he was sharing with one of the boys about how great God is, saving all these people etc. My heart melted watching him lift his hands in genuine worship to God all week. To collect pins he shared his testimony with the Christian bikers, other people in the missions village, and talked about where God is leading us to go. At the age of eight, God has truly gotten a hold of his heart!

IMG_2058

IMG_2022

Our group got to baptize 2 boys in the creek and Aydin and Calyn were so excited to watch them get baptized! The Lord moved mightily through our group and it was such a joy to watch in awe.

IMG_2053 IMG_2080

The Missions Center was an amazing place where all the kids got to learn about upcoming mission trips, get tracks to help them share the gospel, and pray and learn about God’s heart for the nations. One worker was doing Henna Tattoos that tell the story of God’s creation through Christ’s return. I’m praying for opportunities to share that story as people are interested in what is on my hand.

Overall, it was a challenging week of growth for us. Chris literally poured all of himself out to those boys and God used him abundantly! I got over fears and became more confident in leading others. We have one more year left in Loving and I am so excited to see how the Lord will continue to prepare us for the journey ahead.

Please join us in praying:
Pray for those that made decisions to follow Christ this past week, that they would not be distracted and pulled away by the world, but would be strengthened by the Lord to draw closer to Him.
Pray that all would boldly share Christ with their friends and family.
Pray for those that the Lord is still working on their hearts, that are still unsure about Him.
Pray for our family that we would have the time and be used to minister to others while balancing our last year of seminary and work.
Pray for our kids, that they would be used by Him and continue to be excited about the journey God has for us in missions.

 

small taste of a bush plane…

Monday was an exciting day for us!! We were overjoyed to get to see our friends (The Richerts) that we met on our trip to Missouri! They are headed to New Tribes Bible Institute this summer and plan to meet up with us in 2017 at the Missionary Training Center! Brad is pursuing their Missionary Aviation program and we couldn’t be more excited for them.

IMG_1649

Since we were blessed with an abundance of donations for our fundraising garage sale we turned around and passed on what was left to them for their garage sale. We drove up to Oklahoma to drop it off and spend some time with them. I am so excited for how the Lord is already preparing and providing for them on this journey as they move this summer.

I also got to snap some updated photos for their prayer cards.

aren’t their darlings precious?!?!! I just want to squish their cheeks!

Brad surprised us with offering to take us on a couple small flights. The kids were ecstatic and LOVED their first plane ride! When it was my turn I was a little nervous since Chris was getting to take the reigns-thankfully Brad is a great instructor and we survived! =) I imagine we will have to get used to small planes in the bush since locations are so remote! Tribal Church Planters are dependent on missionary aviation pilots for supplies, getting in and out of the tribe, and so much more.

IMG_1693   IMG_1694 IMG_1704     IMG_1676

We have been so blessed by getting to know them and look forward to seeing how the Lord is going to use them in a mighty way! If your reading this please be in prayer for them as their family adjusts to moving and taking Bible classes at the New Tribes Bible Institute for the 2016-2017 school year. God is good!!!!

“The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore to send out workers into His harvest field.” Luke 10:2

Our first fundraiser

God is so good!! He has given us some incredible friends and family that He used to bless us abundantly this past weekend.

We decided to do a garage sale now that we have a better idea of what we don’t need in Missouri for the training. We mentioned to a few people that we would love to take any donations for the sale if they had items they wanted to get rid of and we were blown away by their generosity. My sister-n-law worked her tail off picking up donations in her town for us. Overall we were blessed with a whole yard and garage FULL. I’ll be honest it was a little overwhelming with how much we needed to organize but overall the feeling of extreme gratitude came from the Lord.
-friends and family donated so much for the sale-the Lord provided opportunities to share what He is doing with strangers at the sale
-friends came just for the purpose of donating money

FullSizeRender(1)

lastly we had a lot left over that we are going to be able to take to our new friends who will also be going with New Tribes Mission for their aviation program. Please pray for the Richerts Family as they prepare to move this summer!! **UPDATE They shared their touching story of their garage sale fundraiser here

We just wanted to express our thankfulness for all of you that prayed for our sale, gave, and shopped! It was a weekend full of hard work but the Lord got us through it and provided so much more than we planned. He is our faithful provider!

Psalm 118:1 Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever.

We are going to be…

Missionaries!!!

The Lord has been doing some amazing things and we are thrilled that He is leading us to become missionaries with New Tribes Mission.

About a year ago the Lord started burdening our hearts and drawing us towards missions. You can read more about where it all began here.

Since then we have been in Seminary with Grace School of Theology. We have one year left before we graduate with the per-requesites for NTM’s Missionary Training Center. You can read more about their program here.

We took a trip up to Missouri at the beginning of this month to check out the campus and ask a ton of questions. The Lord just continued to give us confirmation that this is indeed what He is leading us to do. We are so excited about this journey and we pray that you will partner with us through your prayer and financial support.

In the near future we will begin fundraising through different ways and also looking for individuals and churches that would like to partner on this journey of what the Lord is doing. If you or your church is interested please contact us!

12967324_10208044189196977_7006292926011432674_o