This is the first of regular emails updating our friends and supporters on our progress moving to Zambia and our life in country. I hope these emails will not only help you know how to pray for us, but also encourage you. The language of “partnership” comes up again and again in Scripture. Partnerships benefit both parties. You are partnering with us—both financially and in prayer—and we are patterning with the churches in Africa.
What is it like for us now?
This is the time in between. We are convinced, and we have been for some time, that God is leading us to Zambia, so I can teach at Central Africa Baptist College and Seminary, for at least a year. This is the time of preparation. I enjoy Maryland, but it won’t be my home for much longer. The house I’m living in is mine, and yet everything we do is filtered through the lens of how will it prepare our house for renters. We don’t make plans in Maryland more than 6 months out, and I have events on my calendar for when I arrive in Zambia in the beginning of January (Teacher orientation January 19th-23rd). Our destination in Africa shapes so many daily decisions—do I buy this book in kindle or hardback, do I replace the coffee grinder, or can we do without it? And yet we are not actually there yet. So sometimes it is hard for me to think about Zambia as real.
As I reflect on this, I’m struck by the way our unique situation reflects the Christian life in general. This world is not our home. Sure, it’s where we live for now, and many of its blessings should delight us. But everything we do must be filtered through the lens of our destination. Our daily decisions about holiness and hospitality should reflect the wold to come (1 Peter 4:7-10, 1 Cor 10:11). And yet, we haven’t yet arrived. For that reason, it is sometimes hard to for that to feel real. This is why the Bible so often encourages us to reflect on the transience of this life and calls us again and again to set our minds on the things above.
What are we up to?
The next few months are going to be busy. We have preaching engagements and meetings with churches scheduled for about half the Sundays between now and the end of September.
How can you pray for us?
We are encouraged about our level of support raising, mostly because several churches and a number of individuals have expressed their desire to partner with us. In terms of what has actually been pledged or give, we are at about 25% of our monthly support. We have a small percentage of the one-time set-up costs. So we still have a long way to go. Please pray that God would raise up individuals and churches who would desire to parter with us. Our departure date is January. Please pray that God would raise up our support quickly.
Pray that God would work out what feels like logistical gymnastics for us get to our family of 7 from Maryland to Zambia. Our family resembles an aircraft carrier not a speed boat in terms of agility. There are a number of things that need to come together for a transatlantic move. Our friends and church family offered to help, and we will take them up on that. But please pray that we would have wisdom to orchestrate this move.
Pray that God would continue raising up pastors, church leaders, and missionaries at Central Africa Baptist College and Seminary. In the midst of all the work to be done, we must not loose sight of why we are going: there is a growing church in Africa that desires greater theological depth and wants to be equipped to take the gospel to unreached people groups throughout Africa. We are excited to parter with them.
Thank you for your prayers. If you want to partner with us financially, you can go to our church’s website here. Our church is our sending organization. They will provide support, accountability, and encouragement. All funds will go through them. Also, do you know people who would like to get these emails? My email list is relatively small, but I would like to see it grow. Legally, I cannot add anyone to this list without their written permission. Feel free to forward this to your friends and encourage them to sign up.
Thank you for partnering with us in the gospel.