Tuesday, December 1, 2009
At Agape, there are great things happening as well. The story of the "Turkey Drop" and God abundance will give you an idea of what happens around the hangar. In order to help the missionaries in Haiti enjoy a comfort of America oversees, Agape does an annual “turkey drop” for the missionaries. Now unlike what you mind is probably envisioning, we do not actually drop the turkeys out of the plane, but we do drop them off for the missionaries to come pick up with their weekly supplies and mail. This year, we delivered 44 turkeys. (BTW-We would like to also drop turkeys in Dominican Republic but the government there does not allow meat to be imported).
To make the “Turkey Drop” happen, the staff at Agape takes the orders for the turkeys, buys them, stores them and then they deliver them in coolers. On the last week of the deliveries, the turkeys were safely stored in the freezer in the hangar, but when the staff arrived on Monday morning, they discovered that 12 turkeys had been defrosted as the freezer when out over the weekend. Now, we have 12 bad turkeys and 0 turkeys ready to load on the plane. Well, here’s where God went to work…in the matter of one phone call, the cost of the replacement turkeys was provided by a complete stranger. And, not only does God provide but He provides over and abundantly as He promises in John 10:10. You see we also received 2 other donations simultaneously which could have bought12 more turkeys. God showed us once again that He is in control. He was not about to let chaos reign, for only He reigns.
John 10:10-11 (Amplified Bible)
10The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it [a]overflows).
Here are our prayer request and praises for this month. Thank you for faithfully lifting us up to the king.
Praise God that we have found a new church to call ‘home”. We were led to New Life Church over 6 months ago by a trusted ministry friend and it is definitely the place we need to be. A place to be fed and not just watered.
Praise the Lord for His provision and abundance in the replacement of the defrosted turkeys for Haiti. It may seem like a small thing but it is huge when you sit back and see how He defeated Satan’s plan to cause chaos.
Praise Him for the increase in the girls faith. They run around the house singing songs they make up for Jesus and they ask tons of questions every day. It truly warms my heart to watch them fall in love with Him.
Thank God for a wonderful Thanksgiving with friends, our Agape family. When pondering what Thanksgiving would be like without our families, we never realized how God would provide amazing friends to fill our day and bring such fun to our house.
Please pray for the staff at Agape. The preparations for Christmas by all the missionaries makes this time of year a time of high demand. It is incredibly busy around the hangar. Please pray for strength and energy for the staff and safety for the flights.
Please continue to pray for the closing of our house in Iowa. God is in control and we trust His timing.
Please pray for our new staff members who are raising support. In this time of financial chaos, we know God will provide for all their needs.
Please pray for the search for a new Executive Director of Agape. God knows who He has called, please pray for that person to hear and respond to the voice of His Father.
We hope you all have a very blessed Christmas and enjoy the celebration of Jesus' birth!
Until next time, stay strong in Him and never give in!
Living victoriously with Christ, Lynn, Lance, Grace and Hope
Sunday, November 15, 2009
The church we are attending has a really neat event every Friday night at the beach. It is a Gospel Sing a long. The sing along is led by some faithful servants that started this 15 years ago and they are still going strong. For some attenders of the sing a long, this is their church, but for many others is it a just a fun Friday night activity that brings them together to praise God. Well, this is also the place and time that they do baptisms.
I have wanted to get baptized for a long time but while we were in Iowa, I never had the chance. I was either pregnant or out of town on the weekends of the baptisms, so when Pastor Randy mentioned the baptism part of the sing along I asked if he would baptize me. So on Friday night, I was baptized in the ocean. It was about 68 degrees outside with a very strong wind but I didn't notice it at all. Even though I have been a believer for many years and saved for 10 years, I have never had the chance to publicly pronounce my faith and my desire to live for Him, so I am very happy that I got this opportunity and I am grateful for Pastor Randy's bravery in the cool weather. Here are the picts of the baptism at the beach. (check out the waves)
My wonderful "towel holders" (Grace and Hope) were very excited about the baptism and the next day they were baptizing their ducks in the bath tub. I'm not sure they got the whole idea but they know what they saw. We had a lesson about baptisms that day during our school work and they are starting to understand. Grace and Hope have already asked me to be their "towel holder" for their baptisms and they would like their dad to baptize them. I am truly thrilled that they are thinking ahead to the day they can get baptized too. Grace says baptisms are "to praise God" and Hope says baptisms are "to tell God, I love you". I think they are starting really get it. Praise God.
Today we attended a huge event at the beach. Nineteen area churches have started a series of events called "One Christ Won City". Lance was at the beach at 8:30 this morning doing set up for the event. The whole premise of the event is to bring the 19 churches together for times of worship, praise, teaching and unity. What a sight it was to see thousands of people on the beach singing to the Lord, praising Him and praying to Him! We were very excited to attend the event today. I'm sure lives were be changed through the prayers and time of intercession today.
Among our daily routine of Lance working and the girls and I keeping down the fort, we have found some very cool things to do down here. The girls and I are now involved with Rainbow clubs at church. It is the preschool version of Missionettes. The clubs meets every Wednesday night for games, Bible verses, crafts, and fun. I have become the assistant leader for the girls' group and I love it. The girls earn badges for completing their lessons and they are very excited to start sewing the badges on their vest. The way they are learning I am going to have to sharpen my sewing needle as I think they will be keeping me very busy. The best thing is the chruch has made Wed. night a family night, so Lance gets to go to church with us and he attends the adult teaching. It is a perfect mid-week boost for all of us.
Lance is working very hard at Agape and some nights he is there way past "quiting time". The server and the computers are really keeping him busy. He also has some neat projects he is working on which I will highlight as soon as he has them done so you can see what he is up to. One project that is keeping Agape busy is the upcoming Turkey Drop. Agape takes orders for thanksgiving turkeys for the families in the mission field and then they delivers them. Last week, Lance was at the grocery store buying 10 turkeys (the store's limit) to store in the freezer until the next flight out. The Agape plane delivered 20 turkeys last week and more will be on board this week and next. What a fun way to bring a little of "home" to the families serving in Haiti!
Well, thanksgiving will be quickly upon us and we are grateful for so many things. Most important, we are grateful for our awesome God. We are proud to serve such a wonderful, powerful Lord and we are humbled to be called his children. "Give thanks to the Lord, call on his name: make known among nations what he has done. Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always." Psalm 105:1-4. We are also very thankful for our families and friends. We appreciate all of you and we know we are blessed richly by your presence in our lives. We pray you will all have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your families.
We will be in touch soon with more updates, until then, stay strong in Him.
In His service, Lynn for the Anderson crew
Thursday, October 29, 2009
I have been without internet most of the month. Also, we have been so busy with the house that I have not had chance to blog or send updates. Luckily, we are getting the internet hooked up soon at the house and I should be able to get on more often.
As most of you know we bought a house this month and were very blessed to find a great deal and a nice home. The only downside of the house is that it was not well cared for by the previous owner so it needed A LOT of work. The house is structurally perfect, but the interior left a bit to be desired. So over the first 15 days of the month, we painted every wall in the house, tore out all of the carpets, had new carpets installed, prepared the some floors for tile, and cleaned every nook and cranny.
The girls and I spent every day at the house working and cleaning. We were very grateful that God put some amazing friends in our path to help with the work. JoDee Martin and the Prachar crew helped as much as they could. It was heart stopping to think that God had this planned all along. We thought that the folks we knew we could count on were all in Iowa and Wisconsin, but God knew who He has lined up to help and they were all right here. He is so perfect in His ways.
It was overwhelming to consider all that needed to be done, but God made it all happen and on the 15th of the month, we moved in. Once again, God brought in the workers to help. Two friends from Agape came to help unload and within a few hours all of our boxes and furniture were in the house. Now we are in the process of unpacking and finding a place for everything. It is another step in the moving process and we are happy it is almost behind us. The next step is to have some visitors come to help us enjoy the house.
- Praise God that our house in FL closed easily and we were able to immediately start the process of cleaning, painting, fixing, and tiling. Also praise God for the help we received and that all of the work was completed in 15 days and we moved in by the middle of the month.
- Praise God for an uneventful Phase inspection on the plane. This means it is certified and ready to fly for another 200 hours before we have to do it again. Thank God for the volunteer mechanics that gave of their time to complete the inspection and all those who donated food to keep them working.
- Praise Him for all the volunteers that help at Agape. These folks do just about any job they are asked to do and Agape could not operate properly without these faithful people He has provided.
- Praise the Almighty that He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. We have been living out of our suitcases and moving boxes since mid-July. It was a challenge for us to live in the “ready to move” stage, “temporary housing” stage, “fixing up the house but not ready to move into yet” stage and the “unpacking” stage. In short, our lives have been CHAOS. We are grateful that He never changes. His love and protection guided us through this very unstable and busy time.
- Pray for the missionary family that Agape serves who through a tragic accident lost their son last month.
- Please pray for us as we continue to find a home church. We want to find a strong church that will feed us and challenge us in our walk. Pray that we will see God’s leading in this and find the perfect match for us.
- Please continue to pray for our house in Iowa to close and for that burden to be released.
- Please pray for Lance as he works at Agape. Every day presents something new and he is working through the learning curve with new projects and systems. Pray that God would give him wisdom and guidance.
- Please pray for the girls and for their schooling needs. We are in the process deciding whether to homeschool and/or find an affordable preschool. Preschool in FL is very expensive so we are trying to make the right decisions and find a place that meets their needs without costing the same as college.
Philemon 1:4-7 says it best, "I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, because I hear about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints. I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ. Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints."
Happy Fall to all!
In His service, Lynn for the Anderson ministry team
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
After we arrived here, we immediately began a search for a home. We actually started searching before we arrived but, until we were here it was hard to get really serious about buying something. So with the help of our realtor, we started looking at houses quickly.
I have to explain that here in FL there are three types of home sales. There are foreclosures, short sales, and individual house sales. The first is owned by the bank. Most of these homes are trashed and in need of a great deal of work. The second type are homes that are pre-foreclosure/short sales. These houses are usually good buys but can take up to six months to close, due to the liens and approvals necessary to close these homes. The third are normal home sales. The market here is all based on the type of house you want to buy and how soon you would like to have occupancy. If you are not in a hurry, you can consider a short sale but typically, they are a headache and can take a long time to get answers and the keys.
With that said, we tried very hard to stay away from the short sale market, until last week. Last week, God led us to a house that was a short sale. We liked the home, we liked the location but we were really not sure we wanted to get into the mess of the short sale. But we prayed about it and gave it to God and waited to see what He would do. Here’s what He did…we wrote the offer on Wednesday, the sellers accepted the offer on Wednesday, and the bank accepted our offer on Friday, which means we can close on the house by the end of this month. God took a normally 6 month ordeal and made it happen in 2 weeks. That is unheard of in this market but not unheard of in God’s time. He is so sovereign. Nothing can compare to His timing and His work. We are very grateful that He is in control and we are so humbled that He cares for us and for the tiniest details of our lives.
So, starting October 1st, we will be moving our stuff into our new home and sprucing it up to make it our own. It needs paint, clean up, carpet, and tile. We will be busy for a while. Come help if you have the time. We will need lots of help.
Here is a pict of the new digs.
That's what we have been up to, so now it is time for the prayer requests and praises.
- Praise God that our tractor sold the day before we left Iowa. It would have been a real headache to try and sell it once we left town. Chalk one up for God’s timing again.
- Praise God for safe travels to FL and travel mercies.
- A huge praise to Him for well behaved kids on the trip.
- God provided the perfect amount of helpers and packers for moving day.
- Praise God for providing our supports and partners. Without partners, we would not be here.
- Praise God for His amazing work on getting us a very affordable home in a very fast manner. That is unheard of in the real estate world today.
- Please pray for the Agape plane this week as it undergoes the Phase inspection process.Pray for all the volunteers who provide this inspection and for their safety.
- Please pray for safe travels for the weekly deliveries with our volunteer pilot and aircraft. Also pray for our weekly flights and the crew.
- Please pray for the misssionaries Agape serves, that all of their needs will be met.
- Please pray for our house in Iowa to close.
- Please pray for our family as we continue to make the transition to Florida and we search for a local church.
Thank you all so much for your faithful prayers and support. We miss Iowa and the familiarities of home but we are adjusting well. The Agape staff is amazing. They have treated us very well and we feel very much part of a large family.
Blessing to all of you. Have a great month.
In His service, Lance, Lynn, Grace and Hope
Monday, September 28, 2009
Monday, September 21, 2009
As most of you know, we recently relocated our family to Nokomis, FL to start work at Agape Flights. The actual move and all the events leading up to move were to say the least, chaotic, but God was perfect in all things and He worked it all out.
The most amazing part of the story of the move for us was the way God worked the sale of our house. The house had been on the market for 6 months (btw-that is the average for a home in our area) and we were anxious to get started at Agape. So, after Lance’s August trip to Florida, we decided that we were going to set a date and move whether the house was sold or not. We prayed for the house and gave over to God for the last time. Within six days of that decision to move, God provided a buyer for our home. It was amazing. The family that was interested in our house wanted to have occupancy in October so that worked out perfectly. The actual closing on the house will not be complete until their house in Georgia sells but we are happy to have them in the house and leasing until the sale is completed.
We did all of the packing and loading of the trailers on Labor Day weekend. We were very blessed to have the perfect moving teams show up. Saturday, my(Lynn’s) dad took control of the trailer and packed it like a pro. Every item was placed and loaded with care and we filled the trailer to the roof. Special thanks to the Damewoods, Wescots, and Victor Buffington for the awesome help on Sat. You guys were a great team. On Monday, Lance’s dad brought his trailer and it too was loaded with excellent care. Larry(Lance’s dad) and his crew of Tom Carver and Louis Hawkes made short time of the job. The girls loved having the Gramma’s around for extra attention and love. Thank you so much for all of the help. We appreciate all you did to get us on the road and we appreciate your families for loaning us you for a few hours of the weekend.
On Tuesday morning, with all the trailers loaded and house empty, we headed out for the long drive. The trip went very well. The girls were extremely well behaved (thanks for all the prayers on that, it worked). They took on the adventure with excitement and joy. They loved having the cat in the car with them. They took turns holding him and wrapping him like a doll in their laps. (note-we don’t normally have a lap cat). Lance was the primary driver for the 1338 mile trip. I tried to give him some breaks but I am definitely not a truck driver by nature. The drive went well but we were very tired when we arrived. We took some rest stops on the way but for the most part we stayed on the road as much as possible.
We could feel God’s protection as we drove and we know He provided the strength we needed to keep going. He kept our eyes on the road and He kept us alert as the miles rolled on. The trip was virtually problem free until we hit the 1330th mile. We could see the exit for “home” but we heard a “pop”. We had a flat tire on the trailer. Thankfully, our former neighbors, the Prachars, and a kindly stranger came to help us and we were back on the road very quickly. We were very grateful to see that even though Satan wanted to derail us again, God put people there at the perfect time to help us out and get us back on the road.
So, after 1339 miles, 32 hours in the truck, and only one major problem, we are here. God was in control the whole trip and we thank Him that we all arrived safely.
(I have picts of the moving teams and picts of the blown tire(thanks to Travis and her trusty camera) but my camera cords are still packed. I will post picts after I find the cords and download the picts.)
I hope all is well with each of you. We will be posting soon about our house shopping adventures and starting work at Agape.
Never give in!
In His service, Lynn, Lance, Grace and Hope.
Monday, September 14, 2009
Just wanted to let you know that we made it to FL. It was a long trip, as we did a straight through run. We stopped just a few times to rest our eyes but we pretty much stayed on the road as much as possible. The girls were complete ANGELS. They never complained or asked to get out to play. They just played with their toys and the cat for the whole ride.
We made it virtual problem free until the 1329th mile, (total trip as 1338 mile) when we blew a tire on the trailer. We could see the exit for "home" but we couldn't get there. Our former neighbors from Iowa, the Prachars, came to our rescue. Travis picked up the girls and I, while Lance, Paul and a kindly stranger changed the tire and got the trailer back on the road. Thanks Neighbors, we appreciate you.
Now, we are trying to settle in. Lance started work today. We still do not have internet at the house but are hoping to set something up later this week. We will be in touch soon.
Thanks for all the prayers.
Never give in!
In His service, Lynn for the Anderson crew.
Monday, August 31, 2009
This month has been another amazing month. August has been a month of preparations and planning. We started the month thinking we would separate in September with Lance heading to FL to begin his work with Agape and I staying back with the house, but after more prayer and consideration, those plans changed quickly.
In the middle of the month, Lance and Chris Damewood drove the first load to FL. While they were there, they looked at houses, attended meetings at Agape, and scoped out the area for schools and churches. They had a very successful trip and while they were gone, God kept leading me to change our plans and go as a family in September. God continually reminded me in that week that He was in control and the house here was His business not ours. So Lance and I talked it over and we decided it was time to go, no matter what. The week Lance and Chris returned, we started packing and planning the trip. We lost focus on the house and let God do His thing. Six days, after making the decision to go, we received the offer on the house. (See previous post). Which by the way, has been accepted and is getting finalized. I believe God had this all planned from the beginning, but it took the act of us stepping away from the house to let Him step in. He is amazing and we are so grateful that He is in control.
So now the plans are in motion for the big move. We are packing the trailers this weekend and heading out the day after all the inspections are complete on the house. We hope that will be Tuesday, September 8th. We are not sure about how many stops we will make or if we will drive straight through. We are leaving those details up to how everyone is handling the drive. Remember, we are traveling with a 3 year old, a 4 year old, and a cat. Oh, please pray for lots of patience for that trip.
With all that being said, I think it is time to get to the prayer requests and praises for this month.
- God has brought a couple to our house who is "ga-ga" over the layout and design. (That's our realtors words, not mine) He created these people years ago and He knew they would love this place. Praise Him that He made this all happen.
- We have sold the ATV. We advertised that ATV for a few months but it only sold this week, so His timing is perfect, once again. We also get to use it until we leave, which makes the girls very happy.
- Lance and Chris had a very safe and productive trip to FL this month. We are very grateful for Chris and Linda's generosity. It was a huge blessing to have someone share the driving with and share the week with in FL. We are so thankful. Praise God for the amazing friends and supporters we have.
- Our temporary housing situation in FL is arranged. God overcame some hurdles for us and gave us a wonderful place to stay while we look at houses and get started at Agape. Lance's parents are allowing us to reside at their home in nearby Nokomis, FL, just 12 minutes from the airport and Agape.
- Praise God that He is God of all things. He has truly made this journey a joy and not a burden. He has take care of every detail and He is providing for our every need. We are so blessed to have been able to partake in all He has been offering to us. We are so thankful that He overcame our material possesions, our home, our fears, our uncertainies, and our less than perfect lives. He has made every step of this journey happen and we are so grateful to be witnesses to all He is capable of doing.
- Please pray that the house will close on time and there will be no glitches that come up. The house sale is on a contigency of the buyers home in GA closing also, so please pray for their house in GA to close on time. God is bigger than any real estate deal in the universe and we are trusting that He will make all things happen on time and in perfect order.
- Please pray for the tractor to sell quickly and easily.
- Please pray for our move to FL. Pray for many helpers on Sat. and Monday to load. Pray for safe travels as we are on the road. Pray for patience, guidance, and alertness as we make the 24 hour trip.
- Please pray for our girls. This move has been something we have been talking about for almost 8 months. They have given up alot and been challenged alot. They are doing great but they are showing some signs of uncertainity as we pack up and make the big transition. Please pray for a sense of security for them and a understanding that we are doing this because of our love for God. Pray that this will draw them closer to Him and help them begin to see the purpose He has in this for all of us.
- Please continue to pray for a hedge of protection over this family. The more we step out to serve God, the more Satan would like to deter us. God has been faithful to shield us and we are thankful for every prayer that has helped to derail Satan's plans. We thank you for every prayer and we encourage you to keep praying that no weapon formed against us will prosper. Sooner or later, Satan will get the message that he has no power and God is in control.
Well, that should wrap things up for now. We are planning on discontinuing our internet in Iowa on Friday so we will not be on line again until we are in FL and are settled into our temporary home. Please feel free to contact us via our cell phones or on the home phone until is it disconnected. Thank you so much for all you have been doing for us. We appreciate every word of encouragement, every prayer spoken at the throne, every hand that helps in the labor of the move and every gift sent to Agape on our behalf. None of this is possible without YOU. Thank you for listening to God's call in your lives and for investing in our lives. You are a blessing and we love you all.
We will be in touch soon.
Never give in!
In His service, Lance, Lynn and the girls.
1 Thessalonians 1:2-3
We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Thursday morning we recieved a call from our realtor that we have a family that is interested in the home and he would like to talk it over with us. So, after talking to the realtor and praying for the potential buyers, we set up an appointment to meet them on Thursday night. They came over that night and we visited while showing them the house. Then at 11 PM, we recieved another call from the realtor that they had written an offer and he would send it over right away.
The offer was acceptable but needed a little tweeking so we countered their offer on Friday and they have verbally accepted our counter offer. After all the inspections are complete and acceptable, they will take occupancy on Oct. 1.
We have decided that we will leave ASAP to begin house shopping in FL and get started at Agape. Lance has already gotten his feet wet while he was there and he is very excited to get fully on board.
With all that being said, we are going to pack the moving trailers this weekend and head out the week of Labor day. We would love any help you can give us, so please check your schedules and let us know if you are available. The plan is to load one trailer on Sat. AM and one trailer on Monday AM. The more help we get the faster it will go. Thanks much for all of your prayers and support. We appreciate each of you very much and we thank God for you every day.
Have a great weekend.
Never give in!
In His Service, Lynn, Lance and the girls
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
This has been the busyiest time of our lives, hands down. Our family has not slowed down since we accepted this challenge back in Jan. We are still in the process of meeting with people and sharing our story, selling off our possesions here in Iowa, showing the house, visiting with family, and packing to move. And in the midst of all the busyness of these days, we are more and more convinced that our path is clear and we are doing exactly what we are being called to do. God makes His presence in our lives evident every day in very tangible and practical ways. He meets our every need and we are very humbled and grateful.
One of the most evident ways we have seen God's hand in our lives is through support raising. We reached our initial goal of support earlier this month. That means that we are 100% funded for the first year to work at Agape. Through the gifts we have received and/or have been pledged, we will be begin working at Agape as soon as possible. Praise God! But, that does not mean we are done, we will still be working on securing funds to help with moving expenses, training/conferences for Lance, and funding to secure the future years. We have reached our initial goal but we are not stopping there. We know that God has provided every penny and He will continue to fill every need. We are trusting Him for all things.
Our next step is for Lance to take a short trip to FL within the next few weeks. While he is there he will visit at Agape to check out the needs of the computer systems so he can begin plannning his work. He will also check on some houses for us and get to know the area. We would like to have a good idea of the market and a few possible houses lined up for when this one sells. That help greatly in the transition process.
We have seen God work in big ways in the past 6 months and we are so grateful for all your faithful prayers. Here is the list of prayer requests for this month:
- God completed the first year of funding for us to work at Agape. What an amazing story in the economy of the world today!?! He is sooo much bigger than the world.
- Doors have continued to open for us to share our story.
- More "stuff" has sold from the house and I believe we are almost out of things to sell.
- The house showings have picked up again and it is prime time for us to sell, now that funding is complete.
- We have had time to have some great family time with Daddy. This time of waiting, since Lance has been layed off to now, has allowed us to spend time together every day and really enjoy having Daddy time. The girls are really going to miss him when he goes back to work. This time has been a real blessing.
- Please pray for our house to sell. We have given this to God. He is in charge and He can move mountians. We are confident He has a buyer already selected for this home. Pray for the buyer to come see it and fall in love with this house.
- Please pray for our travels. We will be spending time alot on the road in the next month. We are traveling to Green Bay this weekend for a family reunion and then Lance will be traveling to FL.
- Please pray for our housing in FL. We are having some issues with where we will stay once we arrive in FL. The timing of the sale of this house and the availablity of a new house will have to come together for the move to be smooth. We are confident God can make this happen.
- Please continue to pray for a hedge of protection around our family. We have experienced alot of satan's tactics to discourage us but we are holding on to faith in our powerful God. Just like Nehemiah, we are not stepping off the wall.
We are grateful for all of you and for your time in prayer for us. We are humbled by all that God is doing and we are thankful to be allowed to be a part of this amazing adventure. Many thanks for all you who are encouraging us and standing with us. We could not do this without you.
Have a great month and stay tuned for updates on the house.
Never give in!
In His service, Lance, Lynn, Grace and Hope.
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
Hope's hospital photo (sort of looks like a mug shot)
Hope finally let me do her hair after almost 2 years.
Hope's favorite part...jumping in.
We are so blessed to have Hope in our lives. I can not imagine our family without her. We named her Hope because we wanted to be constantly reminded of the greatest gifts God has given us. Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." We have hope in the Lord and we are grateful to also have Hope in our family.
Happy Birthday, Hope! We love you!
Never give in!
In His service, Lynn
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
If you ask Grace and her preschool class, "How much does God love us?", you would hear this response, "This much!" and they all outstretch their arms as wide as they can and then they wrap themselves in a big "Jesus hug." Well, this month has been one big "Jesus hug". This month has been amazing and everyday we are reminded of how much He loves us and how much He can do when we trust Him with all our hearts, minds, soul and strength. God has worked so hard this month on our behalf. We are so humbled and grateful.
At the beginning of this month, we checked our database and found that we were at approxiamately 50% of the support needed to begin at Agape. We had exhausted all of our resources of friends, family and referrals. We had completed all of what we thought we could do, so we completely turned over to God the other 50% of the funding needs. We knew that if He wanted us to go, this would be quite clear as the funds would be finished by Him. (BTW-We know He raised the first half, we think He just let us do some foot work to let us feel like we did something :) Well, He secured 40% more of the funding within the next ten days. Over those ten days, we received some incredible seeds into the ministry. Seeds planted by people who heard God's calling in our lives and believed in what God was going to do with this ministry. We are speechless and are in awe of how He can move mountains. We are also extremely grateful for those who have placed their trust in us to fulfill what He is calling us to do. Thank you for coming along side us and for allowing us the privilege of serving Him with our careers and lives.
This month has been full of surprises. We received support from people we don't even know, yet they have heard what God is doing in our lives and want to be involved. We have received support from two churches that got our information before we had the chance to start the process ourselves with their missions boards. And we have received support from friends who are also in ministry but want to continue to be "givers" and support other missionaries. God has been extremely busy working in the hearts of our supporters and we are incredibly grateful for each and every one of you and your willingness to listen to His voice.
So, here we are...... we are in the last mile of the marathon. We are close to finishing the first challenge placed before us. We are in the process of rounding up our unfulfilled pledges. If you have made a pledge and have not started giving yet, please sign up on line or let us know if you need a new pledge card so you can get started this month. We would like to have all pledges processed before we leave. We are also working on finding the last few supporter needed to reach the 100% mark. Next, we will be concentrating on our next challenge of selling our home here and finding a home in FL so we can start moving.
With all that said, it is time to get to those praises and prayer request....
- Praise God for that the support raising is going very well and God has moved mountains for us in this department.
- Praise Him for the addition of the Clear Lake E Free church and Clear Lake Christian Church who have joined us as financial supporters. The E Free church is where Lance attended church for 18 years before moving to Iowa City/CR. The Christian Church is where Lance's parents are members.
- Praise God for the great responses from the Clear Lake Christian Church, Clear Lake E Free church and the Valley Church when we presented at these churches. It was an honor to have these opportunity to speak to these congregations. Thank you Lord for making these opportunties happen.
- Praise the Most High for the large seeds that have been planted in this ministry on our behalf. Thank you God for the contacts you have.
- The Iron Sharpens Iron conference was very successful and lives where transformed that day. 400 men met with God and grew stronger in their walks through that ministry. Personally, Lance met some incredible mentors and we were able to get plugged into some Venice, FL churches through our house guests for the conference.
- Praise God that the girls have had great patience and behavior when we met with supporters and spoke at churches. Everyone we meet with has been sensitive of our children and making them feel at home. Thank you for all of you who have gone out of your way to make our girls feel loved.
- Please pray that God will bring the new owner of our home to the house soon. We have said from the beginning that the support piece and the home sale piece would happen simultaneouly. As we are approaching the finish of the support raising piece, we are ready for the house to sell so we can dive into our new lives as missionaries.
- Please pray that supporters will continue to join us. We are less than 10% short on our annual gifts, so we need to have that void filled in so we can get started. We will constantly be in need of new supporters, since one time gifts will need to be replaced in the following years. Support raising and relationship building is a key part of our ministry. Please pray that we will continue to find joy in telling His story and sharing the amazing things He has done for us.
- Please pray for good weather for the weekend of July 3-4. We will be having a Bake sale/rummage sale for our move to Agape at the Shueyville Methodist Church.
- Please pray for a hedge of protection over our family. The enemy loves to find ways to attack and he is constantly looking for a foothold. Please pray that we will remain strong in Him and listen to His voice.
- Please pray for our girls. Our greatest hope is that they will come to know Him as their Provider, Protection, Shelter and one true Love. Please continue to pray for them to have gentle spirits and open hearts.
This month we have been really clinging to Scripture that points us to the end of this race. We know the end of this race is just the beginning yet this Scripture helps us stay focused on completing what He has called us to do. In Acts 20:22-24, Paul says good bye to the elders of Ephesus with these words, 22"And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. 23I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. 24However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace. " These words remind us that it is not about us or our lives, but it is all about Him. We are trying to stay focused on what God is doing in our lives and share that story with others while giving Him the glory. We are concentrating on remembering this is about the Great Commission and doing our part to share God's good news.
Thank you for all you are doing at the throne of the King on our behalf. We appreciate all of you that lift us up to Him. Your prayers are very important to us so please let us know how we can be praying for you also.
Have a great 4th of July!
Never give in!
In His service, Lynn for the Anderson family
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
1. The month started with the Iron Sharpens Irons conference and some very cool house guests. We had two of the speakers from the conference staying with us for the night. Chuck Stecker and Ray Morgan from A Chosen Generation stayed Friday night before the conference. And even though our visit with them was very short, we loved having them here. Their ministry is about raising Men of Honor and Women of Virtue and it is really awesome. I have listened to Chuck's presentation from the conference and let me tell you that man has a message every parent needs to hear. I highly recommend that you check out their website and blog at www.achosengeneration.org. I wish we would have had more time to pick their brains but none the less, we were honored to have them with us for the short time they could be here. Did I mention that they are experts on Venice, FL? They totally plugged us into the Venice, FL area with churches and men's ministry leaders. Go God, he did it again! Now, we have 10 new websites to check out from our favorites and we can start church shopping before we even get there.
2. The Solon garage sale was a bust because of rain but we all survived and Goodwill will have full shelves for a few days.
3. Last week, we made a surprise visit to the Wisconsin High School State soccer tournament. Since it was only 120 miles off the beaten path to some business in Indiana we decided to surprise my family with an appearance at the game. If I would have been on the ball, I would be inserting some great picts here but since I was so busy keeping the girls from blowing the surprise, I failed to capture the look on my sister, Dad's and Mom's faces. Just imagine, what their expressions were when Grace "sneak attack hugged" them from behind in the crowd of hundreds. It was priceless. It was so worth the extra miles and hours in the car to see the family and to see Katie play an awesome game. The girls dragged Colleen away from the game every minute they could to roll down the hill and play in the grass. Thanks Colleen for being so patient with the girls.
4. The day after the game we spent 14 hours in the truck, driving to Indiana and then home. It was actually only 9 hours of driving time but with traffic delays and brief stops, it took us 14 hours. The trip was a real test of how long we can go on our drive to Florida when we move. The girls were perfect and they were a blessing as they only had one incident of whining. God really took care of us and we know He was our protector and our peace. We had a great trip and although we were tired the next day, it was nice to have that business out of the way.
5. This weekend was very eventful on the support raising front also. We recieved notice from the Clear Lake E. Free church that they will be supporting us at Agape. Praise God!
6. As we sat down and analyzed our database, we realized that God is closing the gap on the support front. We are over the 80% benchmark and are close to finishing up the race. We have plenty of work to do to finish this task but God is constantly reaffirming the direction He has for our lives and He is always showing us He is in control. Praise Him that He knows what He is doing with us even when we can't always wrap our heads around it.
So, there you have it.... that is what we have been up to lately. Praise God because He has done most of this and we have just been along for the ride.
Now, here's a little thought to close with....last night, the girls and I were playing with the bumblebees in our front bush. (Don't ask why..my girls just love bugs?!) After we caught the bee and looked at him for a while in our bug catcher, we decided to let him go so we opened the end of the bug catcher. The bee struggled and struggled trying to find a way out. He rammed his head into the plastic over and over. He did not realize that we had opened the other end and all he had to do was fly away. He struggled for almost a full minute before he finally saw that he was already set free, he just didn't know it. How many times have we tried to find our own way out of a situation? How many people do you know that are ramming their heads into the plastic of this world? Many times we try to force our way out rather than seeing that God has already shown us the way out. We often fail to see He has opened the door. As it says in Galatians 5:1 "It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery." Yes, Christ is the way to freedom and He is the only way to be set free. No matter how big or small your problems, He will deliver you if you place your life in His hands and trust Him with all your heart.
We hope you are having an eventful month too. Please pray for the new owners of our home. We are ready to have them discover this house and come to make an offer.
Never give in!
In His service, Lynn for the Anderson crew
Saturday, May 30, 2009
Before I get to the prayer requests/praise, I would like to fill you in on a few of the exciting things that we have done this month. We had a very successful garage sale on the first weekend of the month and followed that up with a Ministry Moment at the Shueyville United Methodist Church the second weekend of the month. The next week included a trip to Clear Lake for a missions team meeting with the church Lance attended before moving to Solon 6 years ago. We were happily pleased to find out that someone had submitted our information to the missions board on our behalf before we had a chance to do so ourselves. The meeting went very well and we are awaiting to hear whether they will be able to support us at Agape.
Grace had a very busy month at preschool. She went on a great field trip to the Uthoff farm. She chose Daddy to be her driver and they had a very eventful trip as a calf was born while they were at the farm. I thought that was pretty cool but Daddy said some of the preschoolers were not impressed, just confused. She also had a bike day and park day. Thankfully, the teachers included Hope on those days so she got to have some fun also.
On Memorial day weekend, we went to the Shivers farm for a bonfire and some farm fun. The girls adored the puppy, dogs, cows, horses and of course the calves. They had a chance to bottle feed a calf that was abandoned by its mother. I'm sure if we were not on our way to FL, Grace and Hope would have convinced Daddy to allow them to bring him home. They also loved the trampoline and Mom's ATV driving through the fields and creeks. It was a great day of fellowship and fun. Thanks Larry and Chris for the hospitality.
Yesterday, we were given the opportunity to present at Valley Church in Swisher. The presentation went well and we spoke with several folks after about Agape. Pastor's message on spiritual gifts was incredible. It spoke directly to our hearts about what we are working on and how to use the gifts God has given us. It's all about being available to God and letting Him use us to accomplish what He desires. He reminded us that is it is all about Him and not about us. What a timely message and great reminder.
Now, here are those prayer requests and praises...
- Many divine appointments have taken place because of God's timing and provision.
- Clear Lake E. Free church is considering us for support due to the leading of our prayer captain who gave our information to the missions team.
- The number of sponsors is growing. We are very close to 50% and should be there by the end of this week. We are almost over the hump.
- We received some great responses from our presentations at Shueyville United Methodist Church. And the girls did great through 4 services.
- The camper sold this month and the rummage sale went well. God continues to help us move out the "stuff" we don't need.
- The girls have been given some extra special treatment from our family and friends. They have been really well behaved during our meetings and they are being rewarded for their patience. They have been given toys, horseback riding, balloons, and lots of love. Thank you to all who have taken the time to love them so much.
- Pray for strength to continue running this marathon. It is exhilerating to work for Him and He is so faithful to take care of us. We need prayer to remain at His side and rely fully on Him. Satan loves to try to derail us so pray for protection from the enemy over our hearts and minds.
- Pray for the Solon rummage sale day on June 6. Lance will be working at the Iron Sharpens Iron conference so it is up to my friends, the girls and me to handle the sale. Please pray for strength to get everything done and sold. Also pray for good weather.
- Pray for more sponsors to join us. We have many outstanding pledge cards and we are praying they will come back soon. Please pray for God to complete those connections.
- Pray for the sale of our home. We are trusting God for His timing. We know He has the perfect buyer and the perfect time. We just need to be patient and wait on Him.
- Pray for doors to continue to open for relationships to grow. We are now fully involved in God's network. We are taking every opportunity He places before us and seeing His hands in everything. He is bringing people to us that we would not have ever contacted on our own, so we know He is working on our behalf. Please pray that we will continue to have our eyes open to see His hands at work and respond when He calls us.
- We will be speaking at the Clear Lake Christian church on June 21. This is Lance's parents church. Pray for the ears of the congregation to be open to hear how God is calling us and how He will use us at Agape to accomplish His will.
- Please pray for the Iron Sharpens Iron men's conference on June 6 in Cedar Rapids. Pray that God will meet with the men that attend and He will draw them closer to Him.
- Please pray for the Clear Lake E.Free church as they make their decision about support and a Ministry moment at that church. This is Lance's home church for 18 years prior to his move to Iowa City/CR.
- Continue to pray for our girls. They are really starting to grasp all that is happening and to hear them talk about missions, Agape and moving is very fun. Please pray for them to have gentle spirits, lots of patience, and that they will be drawn closer to God through all of this change.
As I close I would like to leave you with some Scripture that we are clinging to on this journey. Proverbs 16:3 says "Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed." When we are committed to follow God in all we do, He will take care of the rest. It is not up to us to finish this race He has set before us. He will accomplish all He desires. What we are asked to do is be available to God for His purpose and allow ourselves to be used by Him. He will accomplish His will in His time. As we continue on the journey of support raising and relationship building, we know God is in control of every appointment and every meeting. He leads the way and we follow. We are constantly amazed at what He is asking us to do but we are trusting Him and watching Him work. When we align ourselves with the Creator of the universe, all things are possible. (Even raising $50,000 for support in hard economic times.) Praise God! He can do whatever He desires!
Thank you all for lifting us up to the King. We are praying for you as well. Please let us know if you have specific requests.
Have a great month and stay strong in Him.
Never give in!
In His service, Lynn, Lance, Grace and Hope
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Devotional Daily Devotions … Faith to Faith
Step Out of the Boat
And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water.
– Matthew 14:28-29
It's easy to be so afraid of making a mistake that you never get around to stepping out on faith. You can spend all your time wondering, "Is this faith? Or is it presumption? What if I exercise my faith for something and find out later I've missed God's will?"
Don't worry. God can handle any mistake you can make. I know because I've made plenty of them. When I did, I'd just go to the Lord and He'd tell me, "Stay on the Word, son. Together we'll overcome this thing." And we always did.
If you act on the Word out of the sincerity of your heart and you steadfastly stay with the Word, Jesus will never let you down...no matter how many dumb mistakes you make. He proved that the night Peter jumped out of the boat in the middle of the lake.
Have you ever stopped to think about that incident? Peter hadn't been praying or seeking God's will before he did that. On impulse he just blurted out, "Lord, if it's You bid me come."
What was Jesus supposed to say? He couldn't very well say, "It's not Me." I suppose He could have said, "Wait a minute now. You don't have the faith to get out here. You'd better stay in that boat or you're going to drown for sure."
But He didn't say that to Peter--and He won't say it to you. If you want to get out and walk by faith, He'll get out there with you and pick you up when you start sinking. He'll walk you back to the boat if He has to.
It's better to risk being presumptuous than to waste your life in the boat of unbelief! If you have to, just dive into the water and say, "God, help me!"
Don't let fear keep you from taking that step of faith. Come on, get out of the boat today!
Scripture Reading: Matthew 14:22-33
Friday, May 8, 2009
Just an example of the amount of STUFF we sold
Happy and busy salespeople
That little girl on top is Hope
Happy riders and the beautiful horse
That happy girl on top is Grace
This weekend was equally busy with 4 presentations at Shueyville United Methodist church. It was a productive day and it was great to share with our friends there what God is leading us to do. Following the last service we headed to Clear Lake for Mother's day and some more meetings.
The time with family and friends in Clear Lake was fun as Grace and Hope both ventured out on the bike trail and cycled with the big people. Grace was a very fast rider and Hope was determined to catch up to her, even with the training wheels holding her back a little. That tenacious 2nd child showed me the way we are to be for Christ. We are to keep pressing on and pushing harder and harder until we accomplish what He has put us here to do. Even though her big sister passed her and got back first, Hope kept a "can do" attitude and she never gave in. As the Bible says in Philippians 3:12-14,
12Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Once again, Lance and I continue to learn from our girls and the Bible, we continue to press on and keep running this marathon before us. Satan would like to derail us from every angle but we keep staying the race. God is still providing for our every need and He promises that no weapon formed against us will prosper. (Isaiah 54:17 "no weapon forged against you will prevail")Please continue to pray for a hedge of protection around us and for strength to keep running.
We hope you are all having an exciting month as well. Enjoy the spring weather and keep pressing on for Him.
Never give in!
In His service, Lynn for the Anderson crew
Friday, May 1, 2009
We have been on the road a lot this month. We took a trip to Green Bay for Easter. We made it in time to see Katie's team win their soccer game. After the game, Grace and Hope stormed the field and tackled Katie in the dirt. That was the highlight of the game for G and H. They also thoroughly enjoyed playing their own soccer game on the side of the field with Colleen and Aunt Re. We also celebrated Grace's birthday with family and had lots of fun. And staying at Gramma and Grampa's is always fun since there is always something going on.
The following week we went to DesMoines/Pleasant Hills to meet with Lance's family. Our time at Rising Sun church brought back lots of great memories of Lance's childhood. It was wonderful to spend time with the family and Lance's Sunday school teachers of his early years. Both trips were great. We got to meet with family and share hours of laughs with folks we don't see often enough.
Lance's parents stopped by this month on the way back to Iowa for the summer. The girls really enjoyed time with Gramma Sharon and Grampa Larry. They got to witness Grace putting the final touches on her feat to ride with no training wheels and also experience the tears of her kindergarten shots. That was painful to all of us and caught us off guard since she is one year from being a kindergartner, but that is another story. Hope liked having more people to show off her scooter skills and push her on the swing. It was a good visit.
This past weekend, we had the privilege of being interview before the congregation at our home church, Parkview. It was absolutely wonderful. We had been praying for such an opportunity and we are so grateful to the Mission's board and Sheldon Schroeder for making it happen. After the interview, we had a table set up so we could meet with folks and share with them what we will be doing and get more folks involved. The turnout of support was amazing. God blessed us richly on Sunday with many words of encouragement and well wishes as well as divine appointments that would not have happened without God's hand interceding. We need to give a special word of thanks to Linda and Chris for all their help through the day. You two are a huge blessing in our lives.
So now that I think we are done filling you in on the details of all we have been up to. I guess it is time to get those prayer requests updated.
- Many divine appointments have occurred that we could not have arranged on our own. We are truly entering into His network and not ours. He is connecting us with the right people at the right time.
- Many generous gifts have been pledged and the number of supporters continues to grow.
- Parkview church is in the process of building their budget and we have received preliminary notice that they are close to finalizing financial support for us.
- We are making progress on our support raising and we are now officially over 1/3 of the way to our goal. Yeah, God.
- God lifts us up every time we start to slow down and He fills us up with new strength.
- The girls are doing great and really getting used to the idea of moving and can almost recite our whole story if asked. The other day I asked Grace, "Where is Daddy going to work next?" Her answer, "Agape". Then I asked her "Why is Daddy going to work there?" Her answer, "Because God wants him to." From the mouths of babes, it could not be much clearer than that. Hope has made us an "Agape Song" which she sings at our meetings.
- Please pray for continued strength as we keep running this marathon.
- Please continue to pray for the sale of the house. The showings have slowed down so now it the time to pray for more traffic to get through the house and bring the right buyer through. This house belongs to God so we know the timing will be perfect for the sale of the house and support to be complete. Pray for us to have patience and watch Him work this out.
- Please pray that more partners will join us with monthly/yearly support. We need to secure funds for this year and for the years to follow, so monthly/yearly supporter help us to know the funds for the future. One time gifts are also helpful but monthly/yearly support is what we need the most of.
- Saturday, May 2nd is Swisher garage sale day and we will be selling lots more stuff. Please pray for great weather and a successful event.
- On May 10th, we have the opportunity to share a Ministry Moment at the Shueyville United Methodist Church for each service. Please pray that God will open the hearts of the people who hear our story and create divine appointments with the people of SUMC.
- Please pray for God to continue to open doors for relationships to be built and for stories to be shared. That is what makes this adventure so enjoyable. We love hearing the God stories of the people we meet and getting to share ours with them.
- Please pray for our big items to sell. We have sold one ATV and are now working on the camper and other ATV.
- Please continue to pray for our girls. Even though the little ones are starting to "get it", being on their best behavior for every meeting is getting to be hard. Please pray for them to have a gentle spirit and patience with us chatty adults.
As this adventure continues, we would just like to thank each of you for sharing this time with us. We are so grateful for all of you would read this blog and for those who lift us up in your prayers to the King. We are lifting all of you up in our prayers as well so please let us know of specific requests you have so we can join you at His throne.
This is a very busy time of year for many people, including ourselves, so let me leave you with one thought from Galatians 6:9 to remind you to keep going and never give in. "9Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up." This is a hard race, so keep moving forward and keep pressing on for Him.
In His service,
Lynn, Lance, Grace and Hope
Saturday, April 4, 2009
Her first Packer outfit..
My favorite picture of Daddy and Grace, both in Arctic Cat gear.
The girl had lots of hair... I just couldn't stop playing with it.
Just hours after she was born....
Today, Grace is a very healthy and active girl. She loves to play horses, dollhouse, checkers, "baby school" and anything outside. She is learning to ride without her training wheels on her bike and can almost go the length of the driveway by herself. She loves preschool and her friends she sees twice a week. She is a great big sister and loves her baby sister (most of the time:). She adores her dad and takes every opportunity to get him involved in wrestling on the living room floor, aka "tickle touture". She is definetly my daughter as it can take her 10 minutes to tell you about one small thing that happened in her day. She loves roller coasters(w/dad), horseback riding(w/mom), water parks(w/ all of us) and carousels(w/Hope). She is quite a kid! She is our hugger and everytime we meet with friends she insists on sending them out with bunches of hugs.
Here are a few of her latest picts....
Look at the smiling girl in the 3rd car with her daddy...
Just like her dad, she loved her Arctic Cat snowmobile.... She was a crazy girl on this machine.
Playing "doll school" with Hope...
At the beach in Florida during our Agape visit...
Grace was the name we chose for her so we could always be reminded on the greatest gift God has ever given us. His grace is the greatest gift of all so we thought naming her Grace would be a constant reminder this gift.
We are in Green Bay for Grace's birthday this year so she will be getting the grand treatment from Gramma Rita and Poppy Dale for her special day. Not to mention extra attention from the aunts, uncles and cousins.
So, all there is left to say is "HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRACE! WE LOVE YOU!"
He is risen indeed!
In His service,
Lynn for the Anderson crew
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
It's the first of the month and as promised I am updating our current prayer requests and praises. It has been a very busy month. As I sat in the classroom this morning across from Grace, I saw her very tired eyes and I realized...we have been going like crazy lately. I never even noticed how tired we all are getting until I looked at her this morning. It also made me think of what the Bible says about growing weary. Isaiah 40:29-31 says it best...
"29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." That is one of Lance and my favorite passages. It will be our theme as we press ahead through the next months. The Bible also says in Habakkuk 3:19 that ..."19GOD, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the deer’s; he makes me tread on my high places." These scriptures are the strength for the journey.
This month has included many individual meetings, letters, phone calls and small group presentations; as well as Bible studies, Perspectives classes, Financial Peace classes, house showings, and a tiling job for a friend. Like I said, we have had a full calandar. It has all been worth it though as we have met with many friends old and new. We have gained many partners and also watched God work in great ways. He opens doors we have not even knocked on, and lifts us up when to tasks seem too great. When we look at the finish line, we know that all this will be worth it. The chance to work for Him and increase His kingdom with our work at Agape Flights will be well worth this investment of our time and our efforts.
And now for those prayer requests and praises...
Thanks so much for all the prayers and support you have each offered us. We are so grateful of your willingness to pray for us. Please let us know how we can pray for you also. We would love the privilege of lifting you up to the Father as well.
We hope you all have a blessed Easter. He is risen!!!
In His service, Lynn, Lance, Grace and Hope
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Note: These are not exact quotes but rather paraphrased as fast as he could write.
Mary Slessor- Scotish Missionary
"Lord the task is impossible for me but not for thee. Lead the way and I will follow. Why should I fear? I am on a mission for the King."
William Carey- father of missions, pioneer missionary to India
"To know the will of God, we need an open Bible and an open map."
“Expect great things from God, attempt great things for God.”
“The future is as bright as the promises of God."
Hudson Taylor-missionary to China
"The Great Commission is not an option to be considered; it is a command to be obeyed"
"God's work done in God's way will never lack God's supply"
Brad Buser-missionary to Papua New Guinea 20 years
"Christianity has turned upside down. 1980 years you Looked in the Word. Now, we look inside ourselves."
"If you are Living for your Dreams, you are living in Sin. Live for His Desires."
1. Thank the Lord at all times.
We have experienced a lot of positive responses in our attempts to raise support and we have also experienced some negative responses. We are learning every day that we need to thank the Lord for both. We know ALL things come from Him and He is the one who is ultimately the provider of our support. We realize that some people will be called to financially support us, some will be called to prayerfully support us and some people will not be called at all. We will praise Him for each person we encounter on this journey and we will thank Him for each one of them. For only He knows the reasons of each person's heart and we trust that He will bring each person we need to contact into our path. We are grateful for each person who will hear our story and for each person who challenges us. The challenges only give us more time to honor and praise Him who we are working for. The opportunities to defend Him and His calling on our lives are our testimony.
2. When one door closes, another one opens.
God has been very faithful in this process. When we feel discouraged and start to get distracted, He opens a door we were never expecting to be opened. The other day, for example, after a disappointing meeting we were welcomed home by a friendly phone call which lifted our spirits and fed our souls back up. He has been surrounding us with incredibly supportive friends who are constantly encouraging us and helping us. And only God knows how the perfect timing of a phone call can be just what we need to keep us going. As it says in 1 Corinthians 10:13 "God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear." When we are tempted to get off track and allow situations to discourage us.... we know God will be faithful and pull us back on track. Everytime we have gotten into a situation that challenges us, God has been there to open another door and keep us in line.
3. The economy may change but Jesus is the same.
Hebrews 13:8 says "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever." No matter what happens in this world, God doesn't change. Even though the news media wants everyone to believe that the economy is in the tank and big changes are going on in the world. The fact remains that God is the same and if you stay focused on Him and not the world, you will land on your feet and prosper. We have learned how to fully rely on Him through all of this and we are much stronger for it. Our prayer is that everyone can stay focused on Him and see His provisions in their lives as we have seen Him provide for us.
4. Prayer works.
Even though we have always believed in the power of prayer, the fact that we are seeing prayers answered everyday is such a reminder of its power. Since we have started posting our prayer requests and praises, we have just been watching the prayers be answered. We have such amazing prayer partners who are lifting us up and we are so grateful. God is listening to all of them and working them out one by one. In Mark 11:10, Jesus says, "Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe you have received, and it will be yours." We are witnesses everyday to the power of prayer and we are so amazed at what He can do when we ask. I think sometimes we have just forgotten to be faithful and ask.
After considering all of these lessons, we also wanted to share with all how exactly the support building is going. We have been blessed with many, many prayer partners who have agreed to join us. We are so excited to have all of you on board. We have also had many folks who have agreed to financially join us. The exact numbers are hard to pinpoint because many commitment cards are still out. But for now, we have 16 financial supporters. The numbers are growing everyday, so we will keep you posted as we moving forward.
Many thanks to all of you who God has called to walk this journey with us. We appreciate each of you.
Never give in!
In His service, Lynn and Lance, Grace and Hope
Monday, March 2, 2009
Since it's a new month I decided that today would be a good time to update our prayer list and praise reports. I am going to try and stay on a monthly schedule for now and update the lists on the 1st of every month. As needs arise, I will update the prayer requests and praises more often. Thanks to all of you on our prayer team. We appreciate you very much.
- We are all healthy again and feeling much better.
- The parade of potential home buyers keeps going. We are having many showings of the house and are very excited about all the action. Sunday is an open house.
- Meeting with support team members is going well. We are receiving a lot of encouragement and positive responses from the folks we have been meeting with.
- Still selling lots of "stuff" If you need anything for your home or garage, give us a call and we'll make you a deal.
- Quick and easy sale of house
- Our home church of Parkview will become a sponsor
- Relationships will continue to grow as we meet with potential sponsors.
- Patience as we run this marathon of team/support building and remembering this is not a sprint.
- Our families, that they will come beside us and walk with us on this journey of faith
- That the work of Agape will help spread the gospel and love of Jesus to many hunger and needy people
- That our hearts will listen to God's leading and we will be obedient to His will and calling as we go through this process.
- For our girls, that they will be patient with us as we make calls, stop to visit with friends and talk alot. In the end, we pray that their hearts and minds will be focused on Him and He will be their provider.
Thanks for all of you for lifting us up to the King. We appreciate you.
Also, thanks to Megan and Hannah for the fun "chicken playdate". The girls can not stop talking about our morning at the farm. :)
Never give in!
In His service, Lance, Lynn, Grace and Hope
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
I am copying this blog from our friends Travis and Paul who headed out to the mission field one year ago. They suggested that I add a FAQ section to answer some of the questions that keep coming up to us. I have adapted some of the answers to match Lance and I’s journey but all of the information on Agape Flights is courtesy of Travis and Paul and their blog.
Thanks, Travis and Paul for walking this road ahead of us. We love you!
Q: Who and what is Agape Flights?
A: After hearing from missionaries in Haiti in 1980 about the need for dependable mail and delivery service, a group of friends in Bradenton, Florida gathered in Keith and Clara Starkey's living room to pray about a way to help. The result was Agape Flights. On November 15, 1980, Agape’s inaugural flight left the Sarasota-Bradenton Airport, bound for Cap Haitien. The small Cessna 411 was loaded with donated emergency supplies and mail for about 25 families. Today, for about 350 missionary families in Haiti and Dominican Republic, Agape Flights is a lifeline to family, friends, supporters and supplies. Agape Flights serves Christ by serving His missionaries on some of the most challenging mission fields in the world. Agape serves over 350 missionary families in Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Agape’s regular weekly flight leaves Florida just before daylight each Wednesday morning, delivers missionary mail, packages, supplies and volunteers in four cities and returns to the U.S. on Thursday afternoon.Round trip flying time for each weekly flight in Agape’s Cessna Grand Caravan is 13 hours. Volunteers are the backbone of Agape. Every year, over 150 local volunteers donate over 7,000 hours to Agape. Missionary families donate 5,000 hours per year as they meet the plane, process supplies and people through customs and immigration, deal with airport, customs and other government officials and paperwork and organize and staff the distribution centers in Haiti and the Dominican Republic. During the last fiscal year, Agape received and distributed to missionaries and local organizations donated goods worth $740,000. The economic impact of Agape’s ministry in the local community exceeds half a million dollars each year.60% of Agape’s financial support comes from individuals in all 50 states and several foreign countries. 33% comes from churches and religious organizations and the balance from businesses and other organizations. Agape hosts volunteer mission teams from around the U.S. each year who spend their time working at the hangar and in other local ministries. Agape arranges short-term mission trips for individuals and groups to Haiti, the Dominican Republic, the Bahamas and other Caribbean countries. The plane lands in Cap Haitien, Les Cayes, Port au Prince, Santiago, Santo Domingo and Eleuthera.
Q: Where will you be living, working, and attending school?
A: We will be located in Venice, Florida. Agape is located at the Venice, Florida municipal airport. The offices are at the hanger, and all administrative and logistical activities occur there. I will work at the hanger. The children will attend a Christian preschool once we are settled and find the one that is closest to the house. There are several preschool options. Housing, school and work will all be within ten minutes travel time of one another.
Q: What will your work be at Agape?
A: Lance will be the IT Director for Agape Flights. His job description was something we got to create. It was fun to use all of the skills God has given him to serve this organization. Here is the job description we have arrived at:
IT Director/ Web Manager/ Facilities team member:
- Maintain Agape's Small Business Server system
- Support and revise as necessary Microsoft Access database for shipping and receiving and the Sage 50 fundraising software.
- Finish requirements for new financial system and supervise the development of the new system.
- Design new user reports.
- Train and Support users with Microsoft products.
- Assist as needed the missionary community with their computer/network issues.
- Integrate new applications.
- Manage the web page and oversee the Web Design team
- Develop a Volunteer Database – interview and enter volunteers into the db.
- Maintain the telephone system for Agape offices.
- Work as needed on the Facilities management team when construction skills I have are needed.
- Assist Volunteer Coordinator by leading bible study small groups, counseling, or 1 on 1’s.
- Lead groups to Haiti or DR when needed.
- Assist Facilities Manager in the same way.
- Minister to Agape staff
- All other Duties as needed.
- INTEGRITY: "Conduct yourself in a manner worthy of the Gospel of Christ" (Phil. 1:27)
- EXCELLENCE: "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord" (Col. 3:23)
- STEWARDSHIP: "The earth is the Lord's and all that is in it" (Psalm 24:1)
- DIGNITY: "God created man in His own image" (Gen. 1:27)
Q: How long will you stay with Agape Flights?
A: This is a full time, permanent position. We do not envision an end to this service, and potential moves to other countries in cooperation with Agape Flights are possibilities.
Q: When do you plan on moving?
A: We have a target date of July 1, 2009. Two things must happen for us to move to FL. Our house must sell and we must build our financial support. We know God will make these things happen on His time but we have a goal for ourselves to have our part complete by July 1.Q: What do you need from a supporter?
A: First and foremost we need your prayer. Please pray for guidance, and ears that will hear God when he speaks. We need your participation in the form of encouraging phone calls, emails, notes and the like. Visits and service trips are encouraged for all supporters. Our home is open to you. Finally, we need financial support from team members willing to partner with us on a monthly basis. We need to raise every dollar that we cost Agape Flights. (Medical insurance, employer and employee taxes, workers comp insurance, overhead costs. etc.) I will go over our detailed budget with you if you desire.
Q: How do we give?
A: Electronically from your bank account, credit card or on line at http://www.agapeflights.com/. We have pledge cards available with details for EBT’s (electronic balance transfers). Checks can be made out to Agape Flights (Anderson family in the memo) mailed to: Agape Flights 100 Airport Avenue, Venice, Florida 34285