Dear friends and family,
It is with joy and excitement that we would like to finally announce to you the direction that our family has prayerfully chosen to follow.
Over the past month or so you have faithfully kept us in prayer as we sought to know where the Lord would have us serve, and live, and worship as a family. When we left Ecuador we never intended to leave kingdom work behind. On the contrary, it is our growing desire to see the spread of the Gospel go forth, and our greatest desire is to play a role in such a ministry
Therefore, we have joyfully and prayerfully chosen to remain with the ministry of Reaching and Teaching as stateside missionaries. For the past month or so, we have been in constant communication with the leadership of Reaching and Teaching, and both the leadership and our family have been in prayer as to what remaining as stateside missionaries would look like for our family and for the organization. We believe that God is still calling us to the work that He is doing worldwide through this amazing organization. And we are taking a step of faith to be a part of the spreading of Gospel and the training of pastors through this ministry.
We are currently discussing the specifics of my role, but most likely it will involve 2 primary aspects: Developing pastoral training sites in Latin American countries where there is currently no missionary on the ground, and developing church partnerships here in the states that will commit to the training of pastors and leaders around the world. The ministry of Reaching and Teaching is growing at a tremendous rate. We are not only in Latin America, but now are starting to develop strategies and partnerships in Asia and Africa. So, I will be traveling internationally several times per year as I help develop training sites in various countries, and I will be traveling domestically several times per year as I meet with churches and church networks to share the vision and mission of Reaching and Teaching. The scope of our involvement in global missions has just grown in a major way and we could not be more thrilled!
Since this role will allow us to work from any location within the states, we have chosen to live in Knoxville, TN. Our family has always loved the southeast part of the states, and after exploring several options we have chosen Knoxville because of its location, affordability, and beauty. We are renting a home in the western part of Knoxville. We welcome any one of you to visit if you are nearby. Our doors are always open to you! I also am planning to enroll at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary to start pursuing a Masters of Divinity. And I just learned that Southern has a satellite campus in Knoxville. God is so good!
In order to continue with Reaching and Teaching we need you to continue your monthly support. This is still a role that requires us to raise all of our own support. We cannot not do this without you. You have been a faithful partner in our work for many years, and have believed in the call that God has placed on our family. This is not something our family gets to do alone, but rather something we all get to do together for the glory of God and because He is worth it. The work that the Lord has entrusted us is not our family’s alone, it is yours too! For the scripture clearly declares that “he who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor. For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field, God’s building.” (1 Corinthians 3:8-9 ESV) In order to make this happen, our family is making some changes too as Maria is now working from home in order to supplement our income. We humbly ask that you would continue your partnership with us in this exciting kingdom building work.
In the next few months I would love to visit with you and share more about this new ministry direction. We want you to be excited about it too because we believe in the ministry of Reaching and Teaching and how it is seeking to spread the Gospel of Christ through training, discipling, and making His name known throughout the earth. We want you to be a part of this work, especially in light of the events we see in the world today. I would love the opportunity to share with you or your church personally about the ministry and how you can be directly involved.
Let us be busy about His kingdom. Let us joyfully put our hands to the plow without looking back. And let us stir one another to good works. We truly don’t want to waste our time nor our lives on things that do not have eternal value. We want to be found faithful doing what He has called us to do here on earth. And let us pray because “the harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few”. (Matthew 9:37 ESV) May the Lord be glorified as we continue on in His plan to make His glory known among the nations.