Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Some Random Updates

  • In the last few months, I have not blogged near as much as I used to. That is partly because we have been very committed to CPx and partly because of some of the things the Lord is showing me.  I am learning that not everything I think is worth sharing with the world. Been feeling the Holy Spirit keeping my motives in check.  I could see myself falling prey to "online arrogance" - I best not convince myself that everything I write is worth you reading. 
  • We are CPx graduates! After 5 months and lots of learning and stretching, we are done. We have made a long term commitment to All Nations Cape Town.  We look forward to sharing more about this soon.
  • We move out of Silver Palms Guest House on Sunday, after living here almost 6 moths.  We will live nomadically for a month.  We move into our own place on August 1. Thank you JESUS! 
  • On Sunday, Tricia, Davis and I will leave for a week and a half away together.  We will stay most of the time at a campground about 5 hours away.  We really look forward to connecting as a family alone!  And not in community with 18 other people. 
  • We are overwhelmed at the way the Lord is providing for our car to be repaired.  God has basically paid for it.  It will be about a week before it is repaired, but it looks like the Lord has provided for it to be repaired. 
  • We will be releasing another Newsletter within a week or two.  Please let us know if you are not on our email list and we will be glad to add you!

Grace and Peace, friends!


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Attention Pastors: Take a Sabbatical!

It was two years ago right now that Tricia, baby Davis and I were embarking on an experience that would change the trajectory of our future--and today, I (still) find myself overwhelmingly thankful for that experience we had.  After about 5 years on staff at CCF (the church where we were Pastoring), we were granted a 2 month sabbatical.  It was in our contract- a real blessing from our church. 


I just want to take a moment to share a brief encouragement with Pastors (or anyone for that matter).  The sabbatical I took in 2009 changed Tricia and me in the deepest way--inside of us.  I saw the church differently than I ever had before.  And I feel like I got a glimpse of God's heart for humanity in the first three and last three chapters of the Bible-- that changed me forever. And the change inside of our hearts gave us new spiritual eyes.  Those spiritual eyes gave us new sight of the future.  Two years later, we live in Africa where we are planting churches and living into our calling at deeper levels than we would have ever imagined possible.  


Can I encourage you to consider taking a Sabbatical?  A break? Stop, reflect, seek, reset, refresh, renew, realign.  It cannot happen in a day.  It can't happen in a week. And it definitely can't happen on vacation!


If it is not in your contract or ministry agreement, I can help you find a way to suggest it to your church.  I have some documents I could send you and more thoughts I can share with you.  Just contact me.


If ONE person ends up taking this advice, this blog post was worth my time.  


PS- I have a fundamental beliefe that sabbaticals are good for Pastors, but even better for the congregation. It helps Jesus get His glory when the church realizes that they do not NEED you to function and you realize that you do not NEED them for significance. 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Baby Kaye on the Way!!

After over two years of trying, one miscarriage and at least five prophetic words about it (in America and Africa)...




Tricia is almost 9 weeks along with a baby in her belly. We got a wonderful healthy report at the doctor and he is very happy with the way the baby is establishing.  Tricia is pretty sick in this first trimester, so please pray for her.  


There are two pictures attached to this blog.  One is our sonogram from a little over a week ago.  The other is a picture of 4 acorns. Here's the story behind the acorns: 

On our last Sunday at CCF (our home church), two different men whom we respect approached us individually and shared a prophetic word.  Both were about our second child.  Both told us that the child would be born in Africa.  One said that the new baby would be symbolic of the new work and calling in our family.  He said that we would come back new people.  The other brought me 4 acorns from the church lawn.  Each decreased in size. He told us that the fourth and smallest was a prophetic symbol of the new child that the Lord would bring into our lives.  We held those acorns as precious reminders.  We placed them in a special bag my Mom had given me, and brought them across the world with us.  They have been hanging in our little room as a reminder.  The night we learned we were pregnant, the very first thing we did is get the acorns out and begin to thank the Lord in prayer and celebration.  We believe that they are signs of the strong tree of faith that this child will be-- like the words of Psalm 1:3...a tree planted by living waters, always yielding fruit, never withering and always in blossom! 


We were not sure along the way whether this child would come from Tricia's womb or be adopted (which were open to).  We met with someone we respect here in Africa in March and they spoke over us that the baby would come from Tricia's womb.  So....we've been expecting just that...because we are learning two things more and more every day:

  1. We can and will believe the report of the Lord!
  2. All of His promises are yes and amen! 


Rejoice with us and pray with us during this time.  We love you and thank you for your support and care. 


PS- I have always had a special place in my heart for African Americans.  Now, we will have one as a child!!  ;-)  And yes, we will have the baby here in Africa. Many babies have been born here! 

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Making God's Dreams Come True

One of the things that the Lord has shown me in Scripture over the last few years is that I/we can help make God's dreams come true.  There are things that God dreams of for his earth.  And yes, you can help make them happen. We can help bring them about.


It is God's will and his dream that:

  • The hungry be fed.
  • The oppressed be delivered.
  • The captives be set free.
  • The poor be cared for.
  • The widows be honored.
  • The orphans be nurtured.
  • The blind see.
  • The deaf hear. 
  • The lame walk.
  • The dead live.
  • We love one another.
  • Care for one another.
  • Submit to one another.
  • Prefer one another above ourselves.
  • We love the Lord our God with all our hearts, souls, mind and strength.
  • We love our neighbors as ourselves.


And it is God's dream that his Kingdom come and his will be done on earth as it is in heaven!  It is how Jesus told his disciple to pray.  And he wants to use YOU right NOW to make that happen.


And ultimately, it is God's will that we GO and make disciples of ALL NATIONS baptizing people and teaching them to obey that NONE should perish, but that all will have eternal life.


I believe that these are the dreams of God's heart and he wants to use us to help him make his dreams come true.  What an honor.  Will you join Him?

Thursday, June 2, 2011

South Africa Facts & Vocab

Here are a few fun (and at times not-so-fun) things we have discovered about South Africa that some of you friends back home may find interesting. 

  • It is so wild to me that we can get in the car and drive to Namibia, Swaziland, Botswana or Zimbabwe with relative ease.  Want a harder drive?  We could drive to Kenya, Ethiopia or Egypt.  Whack!
  • Some things are cheaper, and other things are more expensive. 
  • You can go out to eat for very close to what you would pay to eat in...sometimes even cheaper. 
  • Food is generally much less than back in the states. 
  • We can buy a bag of fresh tomatoes, potatoes, green beans, onions, oranges, apples and pears for about $7 (for all of this).  I think that is FAR less than what we paid in the US.
  • We drive on the left hand side of the road and the right hand side of the car.  Totally used to it. 
  • Tip is typically 10% at restaurants. 
  • Every parking lot has attendants that watch your car, load your bags into your car, take your cart for you and assist you in backing out of your spot.  You pay them about $0.25 after they help you back out. 
  • I got a tail light replaced today for $1.10 (parts and labor). That was cool.
  • Cars are extremely expensive-- about 40% more than in the US. 
  • The majority of the cars here are very small.  Think Toyota Yaris. 
  • Which is great since petrol (gas is called petrol here) is about R10 a liter ($6.00 a gallon).
  • There are as many automatics here as there are sticks in the US.  It is the exact opposite. Almost everyone drives a manual transmission vehicle. Which is great for all the mountains we have here.  
  • Electronics are super-expensive here. 
  • Almost all mobile phone usage is pre-paid. And you can buy airtime at the grocery store.  Or the gas station. 
  • Weirder than that is that you also must buy prepaid electricity for your home.  You can buy that at the grocery store too!
  • Because calling is so expensive, most people SMS.  
  • Which reminds me, it's SMS here, not text.

While, I'm at it, here is some more vocab...

  • A robot = a traffic light.
  • A bakkie = a pick-up truck.
  • Takkies = sneakers. 
  • Biscuit = cookie.
  • Boerewors = Sausage.
  • Braai = BBQ or Grill.
  • Howzit = How are you doing?
  • Nappy = A diaper.
  • Shame = a broad expression denoting sympathy. 
  • While in America, "just now" means it recently happened in the past, in South Africa it refers to the future...anywhere in the near future (1 hour, 5 hours, or more).


Well, that gives you a small window into some of life here.  We are so thankful to be here.  It is starting to feel like home!