Thursday, March 22, 2012

Beautiful Feet

A year ago I bought a pair of sandals as I prepared for my trip to Africa.

These shoes walked the dusty roads of a distant village, carrying the good news of Jesus to all who would listen.

These shoes traversed across a field to a partially built church to worship in expectation of what God would be doing in the hearts of those who would one day worship in that simple church.

At the end of the week, the shoes left those precious people, wondering if they would ever make it back to be covered in the beautiful dust of Africa.

This week, as the temps warmed up and I slipped on these sandals for the first time this year,  I couldn't help but to smile.  What a tremendous difference a year following the Lord can make.   

This week, looking down at my feet, my heart ached to see them covered once again with the dust of Africa, carrying the good news of Jesus to all who would listen.  

For now, they will carry me well here as we prepare and wait for God to move as He raises up our team of prayer and financial supporters. 

For now, I will look down and remember to pray for the precious people I met on my last trip.

For now, I will look down and pray for the people God is preparing for us to meet in Mozambique. 

For now, I will remember
How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? 
And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard?  
And how are they to hear without someone preaching?   
And how are they to preach unless they are sent? 
As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

A Sneak Peak

A brief look at two of the ongoing translation projects in Moz that David will hopefully be supporting...

Notice all the computers??  Yep.  Keeping those working will be his job.

Notice all the joy?? Yep.  That is what it looks like having God's word in your own heart language.

Notice anyone missing?? Yep. That would be our family.  (We can hope and pray not for long though!)

Friday, March 16, 2012

A Day of Coleslaw and Irises

Ten years ago, a most wonderful man asked me to be his bride.  Our friendship grows stronger daily as God draws us closer to Him and to each other.  We are not perfect and definitely have had our share of rough times in our relationship, but God has been gracious to us to redeem those times.  I am excited to see where this adventure to Moz takes us and would not want to go with anyone else but my love and my best friend! 

Below is a repost from 2009 of our proposal story.  Hope you enjoy it as much as I remember that day of coleslaw and irises!

Seven year ago this week, David asked me the greatest question of my in honor of that proposal, I thought I would share with you the story of how he did it.

March 16, 2002 dawned like any other day in Alexandria, VA (right outside Washington, DC). David and I had been dating for six months (we had known each other for a couple of years before that though.) and had planned a picnic in the mountains to celebrate. Early that morning, the doorbell to my apartment rang. David was at the door with a huge vase of purple irises, my favorite flower! He quickly handed them to me saying, "I will see you in a couple of hours for the picnic" and left.

As I got ready, part of me wondered if something more than a picnic was up. When we had started dating, we both agreed that this was not a casual thing and that we both knew that it was heading toward a permanent commitment. So on the way to church the week before, I had tried to talk to David about the timing of this whole proposal thing.

My lease was coming up for renewal in August and I knew I needed at least 6 months to plan a wedding, so in my eyes, we were pushing the whole timing thing. David totally brushed me off that Sunday morning and so I assumed that nothing was going to happen on this day because he just was not where I was in the relationship. (I was VERY wrong! David had bought the ring and talked to my mom by the time of the church parking lot conversation.)

So, that morning I got ready for a nice spring picnic. It was fairly warm in the city and I thought we would have a great spring day. David picked me up and we drove about an hour out to the Skyline Drive of the Blue Ridge Parkway. We found a cute picnic table and David proceeded to unpack our yummy KFC lunch.

Sitting down, I started to realize just how windy and cold it could be on a March day in the mountains. David had brought another large vase of irises, which the wind toppled over, spilling water in my lap. Then, as he went to open the coleslaw, wind caught it and splattered it all in my hair- romantic I know. By the time lunch was done, I was shivering and ready to be back in the warm car.

David had other plans..."Let's play a game," he said. "Let's play it in the car," I said. Nope. We were to play the "ABC's" of David and Wendi at the picnic bench... A was for Animal Planet, etc. Well, when he got to W, he asked, "What do you think it is for?"

"Wendi, of course," I said. No, it was for "Will you marry me?" As he got down on one knee and pulled out a beautiful ring, I cried out "ARE YOU SERIOUS?" and proceeded to cry with joy although I was wet, coleslaw covered, and shivering.

A little less than six months later, we were married. While we have had days of joys and struggles, I am so blessed by the awesome man God picked for me to marry.

Love ya bunches, my love!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Welcome Spring!

windows open
birds singing
laundry drying on the line
the perfume of flowers drifting in
hours spent playing outside
a girl could get used to this

Friday, March 9, 2012

Tool Time (March Newsletter)

**This is our March newsletter and was sent out by postal mail this past week.  If you would like to receive one of the prayer magnets it refers to, please contact us!**

As this past month has been full of kitchen remodeling and house repairs, tools of all kinds have been used. These tools have enabled David to successfully accomplish his goal of new cabinets and other various needed fixes.  We can all agree, the right tools are a very important part of any project.

Prayer is one of the greatest tools that God has given us in our faith relationship with Him.  Prayer is full, unhindered access to the Creator of the Universe and the Lover of Your Soul.  John Piper writes in Let the Nations Be Glad, “Prayer is the open admission that without Christ we can do nothing.  And prayer is the turning point away from ourselves to God in the confidence that He will provide the help that we need.  Prayer humbles us as needy and exalts God as all-sufficient.” (p. 79)  

Without prayer, we will not make it to Brazil for language school or to Mozambique to serve.  Without prayer, we truly are powerless.

To that end, we are so very excited to send this prayer magnet to your family this month.  This magnet is a tool for you to daily remember us, calling your heart to pray for our family.  Please put it in a place of prominence in your home and lift us up in prayer whenever you pass by it.  Maybe you can even print our monthly prayer emails and hang them up by it, so you can specifically direct your prayers.  Wait, you are not receiving our monthly prayer emails?  Make sure you go to today to sign up as a prayer partner and you will start receiving the emails next month. 

Piper goes on to write that while prayer is the power behind missions, the proclamation of the gospel through the Word of God is the work of missions. (p. 84)   So, while we are on our knees praying this month, we will also be on our feet proclaiming the gospel, working hard to get our support team together in order for us to serve in Mozambique.
This month we will continue to speak with small groups and church groups.  We will also be meeting with families to discuss their role in our ministry.  (Have we met with your group yet?  Would you like us to sit down with your family?  Email or call us to schedule something today!)   We will be traveling again to northern Virginia to speak at Braddock Baptist Church in Alexandria, VA.  We are very excited for this opportunity and to see how God uses this growing relationship for His glory.  

We will hopefully finish up our remodeling and get our house on the market soon!  (If you know of anyone who is looking, send them our way!)  We have lived in this awesome house for 7 years now and have many great memories here...It is where our boys took their first steps and where we took our first steps into full-time missions.  We adore our neighbors, one of which is truly Caleb’s best friends.  We are praying for a quick sale, but also for a kind, Godly buyer to continue to minister to our neighbors and friends.

As we wrote in our prayer email last month, we are at a critical point in developing our partner team. “We are at our four month mark of developing a team of financial and prayer partners and things have slowed down considerably.  We know God is faithful and that He is working to accomplish this goal according to His purpose.  We believe that He will provide and that we will reach the faith goal of leaving early Fall 2012…But the Bibleless of Mozambique are waiting.  The critical need of technology help remains unfilled and we eagerly wait to be used by God there.”   

May this magnet be a tool for you to be drawn into prayer for us at this critical point.  May God use it powerfully to direct your thoughts and actions for His glory.  We are truly humbled and thankful for your support and prayers! 

Prayer & Praises 

Praise God for:

We are at 20% of our monthly funding!
New prayer warriors and financial partners joining us on this adventure!
Opportunities to speak at our home church and another church in Alexandria, VA!
His specific, timely provision and encouragement!

Pray for:
Us daily to know and seek God intently.
Our house to be market-ready and to sell quickly.
An increasing number of regular and financial partners.
David and his current work position.
Our boys as they face big changes.
The role of you and your family in our ministry serving the Bibleless of Mozambique

David and Wendi

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


The sun is barely peaking over the horizon as I stumble out of bed.  I settle on the couch, nestled under a soft blanket.  Saying a quick prayer, I open the Bible, my eyes struggling to focus on the page before me. 
A stark white page stares back at me.  Blank.
I blink and wipe my eyes again, thinking it is just an illusion.  Still blank.
I flip through the pages, slowly at first, but quicker and quicker as I seek to find just one word.  Just one word from the one I know as Father and Creator. 

I find nothing but empty page after empty page.
I struggle to think back to what the Pastor said on Sunday.  The little of what I do remember, my heart fails to understand.
A tear slides down my cheek…and the page is no longer blank as it fills with the dampness of my tears. 
No, this is not how I started my morning, but it might have been how one of the 350 million people who do not have God’s word in their language might have started theirs.  I am one of the blessed ones in the 7% of the world who has complete and easy access to God’s word.  I sat on my couch and opened one of the many translations that exist in my own heart language. I was able to read it, study it and apply it in a way that changes me.

I want this for the world.  Every language. Every nation. Every tongue.  No more blank pages, but pages full of God's word coming alive through those who are able to hold it and read it in a way that speaks to them for the very first time.

For the first time in history, this goal seems attainable.  It is estimated that a new Bible translation project is being started every 5 days.  By 2025, it is the goal of Wycliffe that every translation that is needed would be started.  My heart rejoices in the knowledge that the blank pages are slowly beginning to fill with the colors of God's love.

But so many will seek to open God's word this morning and find nothing but a blank page.

Would you pray about joining us in the endeavor to change this reality?  

Would you pray that the pages in Mozambique would no longer be blank? 

Monday, March 5, 2012

My Kindle Freebies

The Kindle (or your ereader of choice) is God's gift to the missionary...seriously...or should I be more specific and say my Kindle is definitely one of God's gracious gifts to me.

I LOVE to read with a passion.  If I had the time (and a maid, chef and personal assistant), I would spend hours happily buried in a book.  While David is not as avid a reader as I am, my boys both have inherited the love to read gene and spend much of their day looking over books as well.

Needless to say, books are treasured in the richly supplied household.  In our home there are 6 or 7 large shelves that at one point were stuffed to overflowing with books.  As we have been preparing for the mission field, those shelves are slowly emptying as I have begun the process of going through and paring down on the books.  A friend asked, "Doesn't it break your heart to get rid of all your book?"  I answered, "Yes, but it is ok.  They all went to really good homes."   Seriously, I love books.

Well, enter in the Mender of Broken Hearts and His gift of the ereader.  One tiny device, 1000's of good books.  God is good.  AND not only do we have the Kindle, but Amazon is full of great FREE books that you can download or read on their Amazon cloud.  Shakespeare, Little Women, Robin Hood, the list goes on and on.

After I spent much of Saturday evening exploring the free books on Amazon while David worked in the kitchen, I posted on FB that I had downloaded 89 books from Amazon.  Several people asked for the list, so here it is...all of the great free books that I have found on Amazon.

Now, for the disclaimer- I have not read them all, so I don't know if they are all good yet AND this list is no where near exhaustive...Amazon has several more by most of the authors below...I just got tired and wanted to go read.  Enjoy and happy reading!

A Child's History of England Dickens, Charles
A Collection of Beatrix Potter Stories Potter, Beatrix
A Journey to the Centre of the Earth Verne, Jules
A Midsummer Night's Dream Shakespeare, William
A Short Method Of Prayer Guyon, Jeanne Marie Bouvier de la Motte
Adventures of Pinocchio Collodi, Carlo
Aesop's Fables; a new translation Aesop
Alaeddin and the Enchanted Lamp N/A
American Fairy Tales Baum, L. Frank (Lyman)
An Autobiography of Buffalo Bill (Colonel W. F. Cody) Bill, Buffalo
Animal ABC's Jade, Em
Around the World in 80 Days Verne, Jules
Beautiful Stories from Shakespeare Nesbit, E. (Edith)
Beauty and the Beast Unknown
Beowulf: An Anglo-Saxon Epic Poem N/A
Birds Every Child Should Know Blanchan, Neltje
Black Beauty Sewell, Anna
Buck-Naked Faith: A Brutally Honest Look at Stunted Christianity Eric Sandras
Budding Reader Book Set 2: Wit and Kit (Ten Books) Ferrell, Melissa, Thompson, Melinda
Bushido, the Soul of Japan Nitobe, Inazo
Canadian Fairy Tales MacMillan, Cyrus
Chasing China; A Daughter's Quest for Truth Bratt, Kay
Child's Own Book of Great Musicians: Grieg Tapper, Thomas
Child's Own Book of Great Musicians: Handel Tapper, Thomas
Child's Own Book of Great Musicians: Liszt Tapper, Thomas
Child's Own Book of Great Musicians: Schubert Tapper, Thomas
Child's Own Book of Great Musicians: Verdi Tapper, Thomas
Children's Stories in American Literature, 1660-1860 Wright, Henrietta Christian
Christmas is Not Your Birthday Slaughter, Mike
Cinderella Hewet, Henry W.
Craving God: A 21-Day Devotional Challenge Zondervan
Crime and Punishment Dostoyevsky, Fyodor 
Curious Myths of the Middle Ages Baring-Gould, S. (Sabine)
Daniel Boone The Pioneer of Kentucky Abbott, John S. C. (Stevens Cabot)
Don Quixote Saavedra, Miguel de Cervantes 
Earth and Sky Every Child Should Know Easy studies of the earth and the stars for any time and place Rogers, Julia Ellen
Emma Austen, Jane
Fairy Tales of Hans Christian Andersen Andersen, H. C. (Hans Christian)
Fairy Tales of the Slav Peasants and Herdsmen Chodzko, Alexander
Famous Stories Every Child Should Know Various
Five Children and It Nesbit, E. (Edith)
Folk Tales Every Child Should Know
Frontiersman's Daughter, The: A Novel Frantz, Laura
Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death Henry, Patrick
Gulliver's Travels (Classic StartsTM) Swift, Jonathan
Hana Rescues Misty Mehdi, Azra Z.
Harding's luck Nesbit, E. (Edith)
Hero Tales from American History Lodge, Henry Cabot, Roosevelt, Theodore
Heroes Every Child Should Know Mabie, Hamilton Wright
Heroines That Every Child Should Know Tales for Young People of the World's Heroines of All Ages Various
Holy Parenting: Making the Common Sacred Kerns, Benjamin
Horse and Hen Count to Ten. A Learn With Horse and Hen Book Daniels, Maisy
In Name Only Gable, Ellen
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl Written by Herself Jacobs, Harriet Ann
Indian Fairy Tales N/A
Is It Nice? Manners For Kids Chapman, Casey
Ivanhoe Scott, Sir Walter
Jake Bakes Cakes. A Silly Rhyming Children's Picture Book Hawksley, Gerald
Japanese Fairy Tales Ozaki, Yei Theodora
Joyful Momma's Guide to Shopping & Cooking Frugally Eddy, Kimberly
King Solomon's Mines Haggard, Henry Rider
Kipling Stories and Poems Every Child Should Know, Book II Kipling, Rudyard
Legends of the Gods The Egyptian Texts, edited with Translations Budge, Sir E. A.(Erner Alfred) Wallis
Les Misérables Hugo, Victor
Little Women (Sterling Classics) Alcott, Louisa May
Lord, Teach Us To Pray Murray, Andrew
Mansfield Park Austen, Jane
Mary's Son: A Tale of Christmas Nyznyk, Darryl
Men of the Bible Moody, Dwight Lyman
Money, Possessions, and Eternity Alcorn, Randy
Myths and Legends of Ancient Greece and Rome Berens, E.M.
Myths and Legends of the Sioux McLaughlin, Marie L.
Nature Myths and Stories for Little Children Cooke, Flora J. (Flora Juliette)
New Treasure Seekers or, The Bastable Children in Search of a Fortune Nesbit, E. (Edith)
Organized Simplicity: The Clutter-Free Approach to Intentional Living Oxenreider, Tsh
Peter and Wendy Barrie, J. M. (James Matthew)
Poems by Emily Dickinson, Three Series, Complete Dickinson, Emily
Poems By Walt Whitman Whitman, Walt
Popular Tales from the Norse Dasent, Sir George Webbe
Powerful Prayers for Troubled Times Omartian, Stormie
Rikki-Tikki-Tavi Kipling, Rudyard
Russian Fairy TalesA Choice Collection of Muscovite Folk-lore Ralston, William Ralston Shedden
Shakespeare's Sonnets Shakespeare, William
Stories to Tell to Children Bryant, Sara Cone
Tales of Wonder Every Child Should Know
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer Twain, Mark
The Applause of Heaven (The Bestseller Collection) Lucado, Max
The Arabian Nights Lang, Andrew
The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin Franklin, Benjamin
The Basket Woman A Book of Indian Tales for Children Austin, Mary Hunter
The Beginner's American History Montgomery, D. H. (David Henry)
The Big Book of Nursery Rhymes Various
The Blue Fairy Book (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books) Lang, Andrew
The Book of Missionary Heroes Mathews, Basil
The Burgess Animal Book for Children Burgess, Thornton W. (Thornton Waldo)
The Canterbury Tales, and Other Poems Chaucer, Geoffrey
The Child's Book of American Biography Stimpson, Mary Stoyell
The Children of Odin The Book of Northern Myths Colum, Padraic
The Children's Book of Christmas Stories
The Crimson Fairy Book Lang, Andrew
The Green Fairy Book (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books) Lang, Andrew
The Grey Fairy Book (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books) Lang, Andrew
The Heart of Abundance: A Simple Guide to Appreciating and Enjoying Life Paull, Candy
The Heroes, or Greek Fairy Tales for My Children Kingsley, Charles
The Holiness of God Sproul, R. C.
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version (with Cross-References) Crossway Bibles
The Iliad Homer
The Journals of Lewis and Clark, 1804-1806 Lewis, Meriwether, Clark, William
The Jungle Book Kipling, Rudyard
The Last of the Mohicans; A narrative of 1757 (Leatherstocking Tales) Cooper, James Fenimore
The Legends of King Arthur and His Knights Knowles, Sir James
The Life and Adventures of Robinson Crusoe (1808) Defoe, Daniel
The Life of Abraham Lincoln Ketcham, Henry
The Lilac Fairy Book (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books) Lang, Andrew
The Magic City Nesbit, E. (Edith )
The Magic World Nesbit, E. (Edith)
The Man Who Would Be King Kipling, Rudyard
The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood Pyle, Howard
The Mouse and the Christmas Cake (ILLUSTRATED) Unknown
The Night Before Christmas and Other Popular Stories For Children Various
The Norwegian Fairy Book Stroebe, Clara
The Nursery Rhyme Book Various
The Odyssey Homer, Pope, Alexander
The Olive Fairy Book (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books)
The Orange Fairy Book (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books) Lang, Andrew
The Person and Work of The Holy Spirit Torrey, R. A. (Reuben Archer)
The Phoenix and the Carpet Nesbit, E. (Edith)
The Practice of the Presence of God the Best Rule of a Holy Life Lawrence, Brother
The Pursuit of God Tozer, A. W. (Aiden Wilson )
The Railway Children Nesbit, E. (Edith)
The Red Badge of Courage Crane, Stephen 
The Red Fairy Book Lang, Andrew
The Religions of Ancient Egypt and Babylonia Sayce, A. H. (Archibald Henry)
The Republic Plato
The Ridin' Kid from Powder River Knibbs, Henry Herbert
The Rough Riders Roosevelt, Theodore
The Second Jungle Book Kipling, Rudyard
The Secret Garden Burnett, Frances Hodgson
The Sleeping Beauty Evans, C. S. (Charles Seddon)
The Story of Our Country Every Child Can Read
The Story of the Amulet Nesbit, E. (Edith)
The Story of the Treasure Seekers (The Bastable Children) Nesbit, E. (Edith)
The Swiss Family Robinson; or Adventures in a Desert Island Wyss, Johann David
The Three Musketeers Dumas, Alexandre
The Time Machine Wells, H. G. (Herbert George)
The Ugly Duckling (Illustrated) Andersen, Hans Christian
The United States Constitution United States
The Velveteen Rabbit Bianco, Margery Williams
The Violet Fairy Book (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books) Lang, Andrew
The Wind in the Willows Grahame, Kenneth 
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Baum, L. Frank (Lyman Frank)
The Yellow Fairy Book (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books)
Treasure Island Stevenson, Robert Louis 
Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea Verne, Jules
Uncle Tom's Cabin Stowe, Harriet Beecher 
United States Bill of Rights United States 
Viking Tales Hall, Jennie
Welsh Fairy Tales Griffis, William Elliot
What The Fox Learnt (Illustrated) (Four Fables from Aesop) Aesop
When Cows Fly Watson, Tom
White Fang London, Jack 
Wuthering Heights Brontë, Emily
You Make Me Proud Shukla, Umesh

Friday, March 2, 2012

Something's Missing

Are you missing from the efforts of Bible translation?

(The Seed Company is a partner of our sending organization, Wycliffe.)
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