Praise is due to you, O God, in Zion, and to you shall vows be performed.
O you who hear prayer, to you shall all flesh come.
When iniquities prevail against me, you atone for our transgressions.
Blessed is the one you choose and bring near, to dwell in your courts!
We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house, the holiness of your temple!
By awesome deeds you answer us with righteousness, O God of our salvation,
the hope of all the ends of the earth and of the farthest seas;
the one who by his strength established the mountains, being girded with might the tumult of the peoples,so that those who dwell at the ends of the earth are in aweat your signs.You make the going out of the morningand the evening to shout for joy.
who stills the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves,
You visit the earth and water it you greatly enrich it; the river of God is full of water; you provide their grain, for so you have prepared it.
You water its furrows abundantly, settling its ridges,
softening it with showers, and blessing its growth.
You crown the year with your bounty; your wagon tracks overflow with abundance.
The pastures of the wilderness overflow, the hills gird themselves with joy,
the meadows clothe themselves with flocks, the valleys deck themselves with grain, they shout and sing together for joy.
Today marks our 6th year of arriving in the Philippines.
It has been quite a journey for us. Good and hard.
It is also the USA
Thanksgiving today. Giving thanks makes "the canyon of pain into a megaphone to proclaim the ultimate goodness of God."
I just wanted to let you all know that our plan is to furlough for a year starting June 2013.
"Furloughing for a missionary is not one long vacation. It is a time of renewal spiritually and physically; it's a time of traveling; it's a time to report to prayer and financial supporters what God has done through our ministry;
it'a a time of increasing one's own ministry skills through education and special training; it's a transitioning time for
the missionary family as they send off a child to college;
it's a time of raising needed financial support"
(see attached document for more info)
Mikayla will be heading to college for Fall 2013.
It will be good to spend a year in the states while she adjusts to life in the USA, college. It will be good for us to reconnect with family and friends.
I (Beth) am planning to take a one year masters program in counseling. I'll be able to do the course work on line and just have one week to spend on campus. I'm also hoping to attend the Missionary Member Care Conference held yearly.
Pray for us as we prepare for furlough. We will sell off some of our items here and store others for our return.
We need financial provision for six plane tickets.
Mikayla is deciding which college to attend (either Regent, Taylor or Covenant). We are also looking into scholarships and financial aid.
We are thankful that Kurt's Dad is letting us stay in his house for the year. We have also been provided a van to use for the year while we are in the USA.
James is incredibly excited to come to the USA to ride an airplane, see snow, meet his aunts and uncles and grandpa in person instead of just through skype.
We are all looking forward to time to reconnect, renew, regroup, refresh.
Thank you for all your prayers for us.
We really enjoy a wide variety of fresh produce from the market here. A favourite meal is stirfry vegtables and rice.
We almost always have fruit to snack on - apples, bananas, mangos, oranges, pomelo, rambutan, lansones, etc...
And of course our 'friends' the ants make serving food interesting. If you come over, you'll often find the non-hot dishes in a serving dish sitting in water to keep the little critters from nibbling on our food!
Baby Gabrielle is home. She cries, eats, and seems to be doing fairly well. Please keep praying for her, her parents and sister!