Small Daily Blessings: As I write this, I’m enjoying hearing the spring birds sing outside of the window right now. We’re staying in Ohio staying with Laurel’s brother David and his wife Melissa. We’ll be here for a for a week while Joshua helps out at at a church in Dayton. This is our second chance to enjoy spring in the last two months! Summer is already well on it’s way down in South Carolina.
Upcoming Travels: After this week we head to North Canton, Ohio where we’ll base for about a month and a half, so spring may be extended even a bit further. We’re doing quite well with the support raising in spite of the economy. If funding keeps the same pace that it has, we anticipate being in Romania this time next year or before. This summer we will be attending pre-field seminar. After the classes, Joshua will be going to Romania with three other people who are exploring the possibility of working with us. We really hope that they join us. One has already done some work with orphans in South America and is currently taking some classes on early child hood development and special needs children and another has a masters degree in theater production and another degree in publishing He has been an editor for many years. That may sound like a crazy skill set to use for working with orphans, but he has done a lot of volunteering with teaching small children in creative ways especially in Sunday School, and an editor would be very helpful when it comes to the behind the scenes paperwork part of ministry. It’s exciting to watch the Lord interest people with different gifted-ness in what He is planning to accomplish in Romania. Joshua will also be doing some logistical work while he is in Europe, such as scouting out housing for us and exploring legal paperwork needs. We’ll try to let you know the outcome of the trip in a few months.
Athan’s Adaptation to the Road: Athan is three months today, and he is so wide eyed and alert. He is growing so fast and smiles more and more everyday. I love being a mother. And oh, how it makes me appreciate my own mother more. It’s more work than I ever imagined, and a very different kind of work than I have ever done before. It is impossible to keep a rigid schedule. I am learning to go with the flow. Everyday is a new adventure that brings surprises. And in general the more we travel, the more numerous the surprises and opportunities to develop flexibility.
One surprise we’ve had from traveling with a baby is how popular Athan is. It seems that all the small children at churches want to meet him and become his friend. Athan doesn’t mind the attention in the least. In fact he seems to revel in it. He especially enjoyed meeting four- year old Ryan and his sister three- year old Kaitlyn in Pottsville, PA. Just looking at their faces seemed to bring out ecstatic euporia. I’ve never seen him laugh so much.
First week on the Road: We really enjoyed our last two meetings. The first was in Sellersville, PA at Bethal Baptist. That was especially fun, because Joshua was able to reconnect with Pastor Joel Mosier. Joel and Joshua were roommates during Joshua’s first year of college and Joel had a huge impact on Joshua’s life by encouraging him to seek Goddaily in the Bible. It was also a delight for Joshua to meet the senior pastor. Pastor Campell and Joshua graduated from the same public highschool. Although they graduated in different decades, it was still a fun connection to discover.
After leaving Sellersville, we headed down to meet the warm and friendly congregation of Victory Baptist in Whitland, IN. The couple who hosted us, the Stutsmans, sure know how to make a family feel welcome and how to make a feast for breakfast. In addition to gaining a few pounds and meeting many like minded brothers and sisters in Christ, we were expecially thrilled to meet Ricky/Buba Mitchell the son of our dear friends the Mitchells who have welcomed us into their home repeatedly when we are in New England.
Before setting out on our first big trip with Athan, both of us were feeling a bit of trepidation, but the Lord has once again proved that He will enable us to do anything He has called us to. And what a joy it is to us, when He does it through His people and churches all across America.