Saturday, July 17, 2010

Unexpected Blessings

Most of you know that we had planned to be in language school in Costa Rica by the end of April and were very disappointed when it didn't not work out. Since then we have come to see that the Lord knew better. He still has work for us to do before all of our funding is raised and we are released. That became imminently clear within the last couple weeks.

Right after Independence Day, we packed up the van and drove to Indian Springs Holiness Camp in Flovilla, Georgia for 10 days. Once again, we worked in the Children's Tabernacle each day, Troy as the leader on the Missions Porch and me as the Blue Team leader (or more appropriately, the Team Heavy or Bouncer). There were a few people we are able to share with about our ministry, new missionaries we were able to meet, and familiar faces to greet as well. There were times when some of the children or situations frustrated us. But then there were the rewards as well. For example, today, Troy and I are both sporting pink hair. Now, that's not necessarily a reward for US, but for the kids for exceeding our missionary offering goal. In the past the highest amount raised was around $700. This year the kids--with the added incentive of seeing 6 of their team leaders, three of them men, with pink hair--raised over $1,100.00 for a new Children's Center in Zambia, Africa! We were humbled and overcome to see these children go door to door every day in the heat--sacrificing their free time in order to raise more funds for the missions project. Humbling. On the Missions porch, there were several children who told Troy that they had made the commitment to God to go anywhere or do anything He wanted them to do--some even thought that might mission work! Awesome! Another reward was mine today. I got to pray with one little boy in particular who asked Jesus into his heart and life. How awesome to be the vessel used by God to reach this precious life. Again, how humbling.

Over the months we have been frustrated by our lack of progress, like we were as team leaders at camp. But then, also like at camp, God showers us with unexpected blessings that overwhelm and humble us--reminding us again and again of His faithfulness to us. We are at approximately 35% now. There is a long way to go, but we are resting in His promises that as HE HAS CALLED US, He WILL PROVIDE.

When you are facing times of frustration in your own lives, when things do not go according to your plans, think of our story, and remember that God is faithful to provide all our needs according to His riches and glory in HIS time.

Thank you for your prayer support, your financial support, and your friendship. We could not do this without you.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Weekly Update - June 19

Please keep Troy in your prayers today (Saturday) as he is flying to Montana with a group of men from the Jackson area to help do a build for a church there. They flew out of Jackson early this morning into Houston only to discover their flight from Houston on to Denver was cancelled due to mechanical issues with the plane. After some juggling, they were able to get a flight around 2 PM to Seattle where they will then fly (after a 4 hour layover) into Montana, arriving at their destination between 11 PM and midnight tonight. Please pray for safe travel for the men. Please pray that their luggage reaches the destination with them. Pray for Troy as he leads the men in daily devotions. Finally, please pray for safety as they work and for the Lord to minister to them as a group this week.

We have a date for our Mexican FIESTA here in Iowa. It will be Thursday, June 24 at 6:30 PM. Please pray for a good turn out and for the Lord to speak through Jenny as she shares with those who attend.

Thank you so much for all your prayers and support. This two week period of separation as a family has been kind of rough, but it's been really nice for Jenny and the kids to have this time with her family. Everyone will be thrilled to see Troy next week when he flies into Des Moines on Saturday.

Happy Father's Day to all of our friends and family members who are Daddies! We love you!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Weekly Update - June 12

Jenny and the kids made it safely to Iowa despite the rain on Friday. Thank you for praying for their safe travel.

We had an awesome meeting in an Independent Methodist church on Wednesday night and were welcomed by the church members. Troy will be speaking again tomorrow morning without the family. Please pray for him as he speaks.

Jenny is still working on putting together a Mexican Fiesta for our friends and family members in the Oskaloosa area while she and the kids are in Iowa. Please pray that they are able to secure a location, find a date and time that works for the majority of the people, and for a good turn out.

Pray for Troy as he is by himself this week in Mississippi. There is more calling for him to do, but 2 1/2 weeks without the family is a long time.

Thank you so much for your faithfulness in praying for our family. We love you!

Saturday, June 05, 2010

Weekly Update - June 5

Thank you for your continued prayers. We truly could not do this without you!


1. Continue to pray for Troy as he calls to make meeting appointments--both with individuals and in churches.

2. We will be speaking in a church this Wednesday (June 9) and Troy will be speaking in the same church again next Sunday (June 13). Pray that the Lord will speak through us and that those who hear His message will be receptive.

3. The kids and I will be traveling to Iowa on Thursday for a few weeks with family. The journey will take two days. Please pray for safe traveling mercies.

4. I am putting together a Fiesta for some friends of ours while we're in Iowa. Please pray that all of the details will come together and that we'll have a good turn out. It will be an evening of fun but also a chance to share with our friends what the Lord has been doing for our family these last few years.

We hope you have a great week!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Weekly Update - May 29


1. We are officially out of the 20th percentile and into the 30s! We are so thankful to see some forward momentum.

2. We've already been able to schedule some meetings and have received some contributions as a result of our latest bulk mailing.


1. Continue to pray as we continue calling for meetings with individuals.

2. Please continue to pray for our Mexican brothers and sisters as well as our teammates on the field as they mourn--and celebrate--Ernesto Rivera's Homegoing early Friday morning. Pray for his family, friends, church family, and all of our missionary friends who were close to him.


Troy and Jenny will be traveling separately in June. Please pray that we each are able to set up meetings with individuals at each of our destinations.

Thank you for all your prayers and support. We love you all!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Weekly Update - May 22

Thank you for lifting our family up in prayer list week! We NEEDED it! For those who don't already know, both of our boys came down with fevers on Thursday--Cody's spiking at almost 104 degrees! Praise the Lord, the fevers came down before bed time and were completely gone by Friday morning. Praise the Lord, no one else in the family got sick!

Another praise for the week was that we received a very significant check from some donors on Monday and received another pledge that will help boost our percentage out of the 20s once the paper work is finalized at HQ!

Prayer Requests for the week:

1. We have a meeting with a couple tomorrow night.

2. There are several people we are contacting about scheduling meetings with during this coming week. Please pray that we'll be able to make connections and that everyone's schedules will be accommodating.

3. At the suggestion of our wonderful funding coach (thank you, Robin!), we just sent out a large batch of letters to individuals. We send these letters to people making them aware of our intention to call them and request a meeting. The purpose of sending these letters out first is so that we are not necessarily making a "cold call", and to give the individuals an opportunity to look over their schedules before our call. Please pray with us that these letters are well received and that we are able to fill our schedule this summer.

Thank you! We hope you have a blessed week!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Weekly Update - May 15

While this is mostly a ministry blog, our family life is a very real part of our ministry. And so we want to take a minute to thank the Lord for 12 years of marriage together that we will be celebrating tomorrow (May 16). It has not always been easy, but Jesus never promised us "easy", did He? Over the last 12 years we have learned a lot about each other, about ourselves as individuals, and about what Jesus wants to do in and through our marriage.

We have one main prayer request this week. Following a suggestion made by our funding coach at OMS, we'll be sending out a batch of 20-25 letters this week to individuals, asking for a meeting. Our goal is to fill as much of the summer as possible as early as possible. Sending out a half dozen letters at a time generally leaves us with entire weeks not filled because schedules were not compatible. Please pray with us in advance for these letters and for the families who will receive them.

Thank you for your continued prayers and support. God bless you!

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Weekly Update - May 8

Once again, it seemed like the enemy was attacking our family earlier this week with health issues. Last Saturday night, Troy developed flu-like symptoms and then Sunday afternoon, Cody began running a fever. With such a busy week planned, we immediately sent out requests for prayer. PRAISE THE LORD, Cody's fever went away within hours and stayed away. PRAISE THE LORD that although Troy had to miss work on Monday, by Tuesday he was feeling much better. PRAISE THE LORD, no one else in the family got sick. PRAISE THE LORD, we were able to have one of our meetings that we've been trying to schedule on Wednesday evening before church.

Some requests for the week:

1. There are two couples in particular we're still trying to make contact with. Please pray we'll be able to get in touch with them and schedule meetings.

2. We sent out a new batch of letters this week and will begin calling to schedule meetings on Monday night. Please pray that those we contacted will be favorable to a meeting and that our schedules will mesh.

3. We have a meeting scheduled for Monday night. Please pray that the Lord will speak through us.

4. Please pray that the Lord will help us to know which churches to contact about meetings on weekends.

5. Please begin to pray with us that Jenny will know whom to contact to schedule meetings with while she and the kids are in Iowa next month.

Thank you again for all your prayers! We could not do this without your help! And to all of our readers who are mothers, Happy Mother's Day!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Weekly Updates

I realized today that we haven't done a very good job of keeping you, our faithful supporters, updated as to what is going on in our ministry. How can you pray for us if you do not know what the need is? So beginning this week, I will be posting weekly updates on how things are going or items that need prayer. I know we do not say it enough, but we are grateful for all of your support and prayer. We really could not do this without you!

I think I will try to update the blog on Saturdays, but since it's already Thursday, I'll go ahead and let you know what you can keep in prayer for the rest of this week and through the next as well.

1. There are about four couples we are trying to set up meetings with for next week. Please pray that everyone's schedules mesh and that we're able to meet with each of them at some point next week.

2. Our goal is to send out a batch of letters to six couples/individuals each week requesting meetings. This way, we have a consistent schedule of at least 3 meetings each week. So please pray each week as these letters go out that the Lord will speak to the hearts of those who receive them.

3. We are trying to fill as many weekends this month with church meetings as possible. Please pray for contacts and open schedules.


This last weekend we were invited to participate in a missionary conference in Milton, Florida with three other missionaries. It was a privilege to hear the stories of these other workers called to God's ministry on foreign mission fields, and we were blessed with the chance to make new friends in the church as well. We left the conference Sunday morning to speak at a church in Mobile, Alabama (we were blessed to have both the morning and evening services in which to share) and made more new friends there as well. Upon arriving home, we had an encouraging meeting with some church members who shared their testimonies of God's provision in their lives. We both agree that the meeting was as much for us as it was for them (perhaps even more so). What a great blessing to have brothers- and sisters-in-Christ who can relate to the daunting task of relocating to another country and culture and the joys and issues that arrive from such a move.

As always, if there is something that you'd like us to pray for, please don't hesitate to let us know. You may email prayer requests to or Have a blessed week and we'll see you next Saturday!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Prayer Request

We've received some discouraging news about the status of our account that we would appreciate prayer for. Due to the increase in insurance costs, our MSR (the breakdown of expenses we'll have over the course of our 5-year term) has risen by almost $1,000 per month. This drops our percentage raised to only 21%. Obviously, our dream of leaving for language school this spring is out the window. We are now praying that the Lord will supply the remaining 80% by the end of the summer so that we can go to language school in the fall. We would also like to attend Cross Training (now extended an extra week--basically the entire month of July) this summer. But this raises some concerns. In order to attend this training session geared toward preparing us for living in another culture, we have to be at 30-35% (I don't remember exactly which) by May, and at 50% by July. Perhaps a bigger issue of concern is this: if we want to go to language school this fall and will not be able to use any of July fund-raising, we essentially need to be fully funded (or nearly fully funded) by July. That's a mighty big prayer request. We believe that the Lord can work miracles and are trying to do our part to make this happen. We've made plans to attend Cross training. We are busy scheduling as many one-on-one meetings during the week as we can. We are also still trying to travel to area churches on weekends.

There are so many decisions to be made and so many what-ifs. Right now we can only handle one thing at a time. So we are asking you to pray that the Lord will bless us with a full meeting schedule. We are also asking you to pray that we will be able to attend cross-training. Finally, we are asking you to pray for the Lord's timing in all of this. He has a perfect time for us to be funded. He has a perfect time for us to attend language school. And He has a perfect time for us to reach Mexico City. Thank you in advance for continuing to lift us up in prayer. We appreciate it!

Spring Break Trips

This month has been extremely busy! A couple weeks ago we drove to Indianapolis for the Evangelical Methodist General Conference and saw a few friends at OMS headquarters on our way. Allow me to say here that I am extremely thankful--not only for a husband who knows about car repair, but to the Lord for allowing our fuel pump to go out BEFORE we got on the road (as opposed to breaking down ON the road). What was originally supposed to be a 5 AM start time was delayed about six hours while Troy dropped the van's fuel tank and replaced the pump, then had to put everything back in its place again. Some of our delay was from waiting until part stores opened--the rest was due to the massive size of the fuel tank! And I think we all know how much help *I* was... ;-)

After our weekend conference, we drove to Wears Valley, Tennessee in the Smoky Mountains for 5 nights and 4 days of income-tax-refund-sponsored family vacation. We stayed in a beautiful cabin overlooking the foothills and enjoyed the wonder and beauty of God's creation each day as we participated in fun activities as a family.

From there we drove to Reidsville, North Carolina to speak in the EMC church our friend Aaron Withrow and his wife Annette are pastor of. We spent the weekend with a wonderful family (Clayton really enjoyed the opportunity to play with another little boy close to his age) and had the opportunity to share in worship with the church Body and one other missionary to Mexico, Wycliffe missionary Kevin Cline.

We arrived home Monday night and have already made several phone calls to establish appointment times for individual meetings. Please pray with us as we intensify our meeting schedule with these one-on-one meetings over the next couple months.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


The last three weeks we have been privileged to participate in a webinar course on Biblical fund-raising offered by One Mission Society, and taught by Patty Collins. During the course of the three weeks, we've had to closely examine our attitudes on fund-raising (something that was extremely uncomfortable), learning to replace them with what the Bible says about fund-raising. We've learned how to craft stories to tell during our face-to-face appointments and have had the opportunity to practice these stories with the purpose of gaining confidence in our funding. Today we will also meet our coach who will discuss with us (via internet) each week our progress in making contacts and scheduling meetings. He or she will hold us accountable and answer any questions we have regarding the process. We are very blessed and thankful we've had this opportunity. Our only regret is that it didn't come sooner!

Please pray with us as we begin to prepare a list of individuals to call. We know that the Lord has already provided the needed funds--He's already appointed individuals who will partner with us financially. Help us begin to pray for them now. Thank you so much for lifting us up in prayers--they help us more than you can possibly know!

Travel Schedule

We have a few meetings coming up that y'all can pray with us about. This weekend, February 20-21, we will be speaking at Love EMC in Ackworth, Georgia (just north of Atlanta). We'll be driving over on Saturday, speaking on Sunday morning, and returning home Sunday evening.

Next weekend, February 27-28, we'll be speaking at Family of Faith church in Circleville, Ohio. When we leave for Ohio will greatly depend upon the weather. If snow is expected, we might drive part of the way on Friday after Troy gets off work. Otherwise, we'll be getting up at dark-thirty and making the drive in one day. We've been invited to stay with Ryan & Holly Adkins (the family of some friends of ours from seminary) on Saturday night and we are thankful to them for graciously opening their home to us. We'll be speaking Sunday morning. We are looking to see if we can also schedule another meeting for Sunday night in an EMC church, so please pray with us that Troy is able to do so.

We'll be home the first week and a half of March for the girls' birthdays, but will be attending the EMC General Conference in Indianapolis the weekend of March 12-15.

In all of our meetings, please pray that the Lord will speak through us and those He has appointed to support our ministry will obey His call. And of course, please pray for safe traveling mercies--particularly in traveling around the snowy Midwest! Thank you!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Big News!

OMS International becomes One Mission Society
One Lord. One Life. One Calling.

In early January 2010, OMS launched a new name, tagline, logo and mission statement. These changes were designed to help One Mission Society better communicate what it has stood for since its inception in 1901 as The Oriental Missionary Society.

One Mission Society’s sole reason for existence as a mission organization remains steadfast―to see the Gospel of Jesus Christ spread throughout the world and to see God glorified in all that is said and done. This is the command of the Great Commission. This is their “One Mission.”

God has blessed OMS by using it as a tool in His hands for more than 100 years. Today, One Mission Society is seeing, on average, one person come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ every two minutes. In recent years, thousands of new churches have been planted and tens of thousands of people are actively participating in discipleship programs.

These are historic times to be involved in missions. As never before in the history of the Church, One Mission Society is poised to take the Gospel to the ends of the earth. Make no mistake; the task is huge. OMS recognizes that it is only a small part of the body of Christ and that it joins with many other individuals, churches and like-minded Great Commission organizations called and equipped together for One Mission, God’s mission. This is the unity in mission to which all Christians are called in Ephesians, chapter 4 by our one God and Father of all.

One Mission Society currently works in 50 countries. It was founded on the principle that the most effective way to share Christ is by training a nation’s people to lead and multiply their churches. That principle still fully applies today and is the basis of their dynamic four-fold focus: intentional evangelism, church planting, training leaders and strategic partnerships.

OMS currently has six international offices from which missionaries are recruited and sent out: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the Untied States. Today, One Mission Society has 430 missionaries and is a member in good standing with the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.

Here is One Mission Society’s new mission statement: By God’s grace, One Mission Society unites, inspires and equips Christians to make disciples of Jesus Christ, multiplying dynamic communities of believers around the world.