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Jul 8, 2013

Real.

Things are getting real around here. Josh and I went to PFO {pre-field orientation} last week, and spent ten days learning about the ins and outs of NTM, how they work, and how to transition from culture to culture well. I almost can't believe it. In my mind, going to PFO was the "end" of my summer, the turning point in the year when everything started to change. I guess, in a way, that's still true.
We were on information overload as we sat in session after session given by people who serve the Lord through support ministries, and have served overseas in a number of capacities, who have a tangible joy and excitement in what they do.

We met several other couples, one of which is going to Papua New Guinea, too. We bared our hearts, and saw theirs. We ugly cried, and laughed together. We learned about each other, and ourselves. We prayed, we ate, and we grew to love. In my sentimental heart, that's worth more than gold. I can't wait to see what the Lord is going to do in the lives of these beautiful people.
I also found a new joy in the mission of New Tribes Mission. Something deep and absolutely moving. A love and excitement for tribal people all over the world. These are God's children, too, but they don't know Him. They don't know His love, or His joy, or His fellowship. They don't know His word, or His people, or His Son. Because His word is not in a language they can understand. And if they don't get to hear the name of Jesus, and put their trust in Him, then frankly, we won't be in eternal fellowship with them in Heaven. It sounds harsh, and painful, and it hurts. Good. It's supposed to show you how important it is that they hear, too, and spur you into action.

In Papua New Guinea alone, there are over 880 language groups. Not 880 tribes speaking the same language, just hard to reach - 880 totally different languages which no one understands. Across the globe, there are 2500 people groups who don't know Jesus Christ, and the eternal love He has for His children. And we can help! In Matthew 28, Jesus commands us to "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you." For Josh and I that means furthering the Gospel through aviation, providing a means for those missionaries to get to and stay in the tribes to teach them about Jesus and His love. You can help further the Gospel, too, by becoming a prayer or financial partner. If that is something you want to get involved in, just send me a message and I would be glad to send you some more information!
{Update: There is a page at the top of this page, titled "Join Us!" which has different ways that you can partner with us and NTM!}

Now, we have almost exactly one month before we load up our U-Haul van, and drive across the states to a small Bible school in Waukesha, Wisconsin. It just blows me away how the Lord works, and provides. He has been preparing us for this our whole lives, through countless experiences and relationships. This has been the desire of our hearts since we were children, and now... it's real. The wheels are turning, and we are getting to do our part to further the Gospel, bring glory to God, and further His Kingdom. How cool is that?! It will be hard, and it will hurt to leave the people and places we love here in Ocala, but you know what? God is worth it, and He will take that hurt and make it something beautiful.

He can turn ashes into a beautiful crown, remember?

Our time there was a tremendous blessing, through the information we learned, and the joy that was infused into every single experience and person. It doesn't matter how big or small a thing is that we can do, God can use that to further His Kingdom. What comfort we can take in that!

"And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose." -Romans 8:28
"[Romans 8:28 is] a trumpet call to follow Jesus in the risks of love, no matter what it costs. Because whatever it costs will work for your good." -John Piper