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Missions Stories

January-February Update

Today is our quadrennial extra day of the year (aka Feb 29th). However, if you are like us, it was quickly eaten up with activities. We have been very busy here in the Springs and even missed last months update; sorry. At the same time we are enjoying the fellowship, teaching, and serving opportunities. We both are attending men’s/women’s bible studies as well as marriage studies. Karen is involved with Moms in Prayer and Howard is tutoring math as part of a church outreach; plus much more.

We Love it here in Colorado Springs

We have been encouraged by both Rocky Mountain Calvary (RMC) as well as Calvary Church (Calvary Aurora). RMC has agreed to let us do a missions presentation at a Wednesday night service; we let you know when that will be. And Calvary Aurora is going to be having us do a missions update on the Wednesday night of April 1st. We are looking forward to seeing everyone.

Please continue to pray for us and our financial support; we are about 15% short of being able to start at LightSys. Also pray for the LightSys annual “Spring Break Code-A-Thon for Mission” that is taking place throughout the month of March. Fifteen projects will be being worked by 20 teams making it the largest code-a-thon to date. Also pray for us to maintain balance as we serve, raise support, work, and establish our routines.

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Missions Stories

December Update

Happy New Year. It is hard to believe that it is the year 2020. It is hard to believe we have a house in Colorado Springs. It is hard to believe that we are plugged in at Rocky Mountain Calvary and have a good circle of friends building there. It is hard to believe we are able to meet regularly with our fellow servants at LightSys. However, it is awesome how God is continuing to reveal and unfold His plan for us.

Howard often says that if you want to hear God laugh, tell him your plans for your life. Proverbs 16:9 says “We can make our plans, but the LORD determines our steps” and that is what He is doing here. We had our idea of how this would all come together but sitting back and letting God work has been amazing. From opening the door to come house sit here in the Springs to orchestrating which house we would buy he has been sovereign. We moved into our new house on 12 Dec and Howard’s job gave him lots of time off for the holidays; what perfect timing.

We look forward to having an open house in the future and inviting all of you to come by. Meanwhile, please continue to pray for us to settle in, to raise the rest of our financial support, and to discern when and where to serve.

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Missions Stories

November Update

We are so thankful for all of you! Your prayers and financial support are such a blessing! With the end of the year rapidly approaching we do want to let you know that if you are planning on doing any year end giving, https://blog.initforjesus.com/partnership/ has all information on how. We are getting closer to being fully funded and we expect to see more progress once we get settled into our new home next week. Meanwhile, if you know of any mission minded people that may want to know about what we are doing, please send us an email.

 We had a wonderful Thanksgiving with family that are in Denver and Kansas City. The grand kids were able to make it so we had lots of fun. We got to have grand kids over for a sleep over for the first time and were reminded how busy life can become with kids running about; sometimes we can forget. We also got to enjoy a carriage ride with the grand kids to see the famous Christmas lights in K.C.

Howard has been working on moving our blog and website to a new hosting service so that will be looking different as it progresses. The web address will stay the same, http://initforjesus.com/, but there will be various visual and navigation updates over then next several weeks.

Karen has been working in the LightSys office a couple of time per week. She has been entering in a lot of student information gathered at recent college visits. This information is vital for the upcoming ‘code a thon’ in March as well as the summer and gap year internships with LightSys. We are very excited to be a part of mobilizing IT students towards missions. 

We will be closing on our house next week and moving in. One step closer to being fully established here.

Please keep praying for our financial support, our move, LightSys, and our ongoing transition into ministry.

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Missions Stories

October Update

Wow, it is hard to believe we have been in the Springs for only one month; and quite a month it has been.

We would first like to thank all of you at Calvary Aurora for your support in sending us out earlier this month. We were very encouraged by all that stopped by our table as well as praying over us during the service. Here is a link to the video of that for any of you that missed it. Pastor Ed had a lot of fun with it. https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=570686023737694

Calvary Aurora Commissioning

After having to walk away from the 1st house we had a contract on, we now have an even better house that we are in the process of buying. It looks like all the major hurdles have been cleared and we await to close in early Dec. We did have to learn to ‘lean not on our own understanding’ and not to idolize a house as we trust God in providing the right home.

We have been getting settled in and engaged at Rocky Mountain Calvary. It has been very comforting to be able to walk into a new congregation and feel so at home and safe. We have been able to join various groups and studies and start building new relationships. RMC has been very welcoming and gracious; reaffirming that they are behind us and what we are doing here.

Please keep praying for God to reveal to us what we should do in raising the rest of our support as well as speaking to the hearts of those that God will send to us to as financial partners.

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Missions Stories

September Update

Praise be to the Lord, it is an exciting time! Calvary Aurora will officially be sending us out this weekend at all 3 services. They will have us come up (during the services) so the entire church can pray for us. It will be streamed to the web at https://calvaryaurora.churchonline.org/ and the service times are Saturday evening at 6 and Sunday morning at 8:45 and 10:45 Denver/Mountain time. Along with setting up our missions table in the foyer, one of the co-founders of LightSys (Tim Young and his wife Patricia) will be there alongside us.

At Action International

This past month has been very busy. Early September, we went to Seattle to visit Action International. They are currently using one of LightSys’ larger software packages that Howard will be coding once we are fully funded. On that trip, we were also able to visit Howard’s daughter in Oregon and Karen got to visit with a friend from college that she had not seen for over 10 years.

Unloading In the Springs

The rest of the month has been consumed with packing, moving, settlin g in, and house hunting. Thank you to Buck and ‘Most Excellent Way’ for helping us load our moving truck. Thank you to Pastor Todd and ‘U-turn for Christ,’ and our new family at LightSys, that helped us unload the truck. If you did not know, we are currently house sitting for one of our fellow LightSys missionaries while we wait for God to give us our permanent home here in Colorado Springs. We do have a contract on a house so we are praying that everything goes smoothly and closing will be early November as scheduled.

Praise / Prayer Requests:

  • Praise God that Howard was given permission to work 100% remotely from home
  • Pray for more hearts to give to missions – and that we would be fully funded soon
  • Pray for flexibility as we navigate the transitional “new normal” pattern we are currently in
  • Pray for relationship building at our sister church, Rocky Mountain Calvary
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Missions Stories

August Update – Time to Move

God has opened the door for us to go ahead and move to Colorado Springs. There is an article on our blog titled “It is time to break camp and move on” that tells the story.

It was just last month we were talking about abiding and waiting and now we are moving. That is what happens when we surrender to God and let Him take the wheel. God is continuing to build us up in faith, one step at a time.

Please keep us in prayer as we prepare to move and navigate this new tract of our journey. Pray for provision as we still have quite a bit of support to raise to start being full-time at LightSys. Also pray for us as we travel to Seattle for a week to work with LightSys and Action International just before we move.

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Missions Stories

“It is time to break camp and move on.”

Sunday, August 18, 2019

As we have been progressing into going to Colorado Springs to serve as missionaries with LightSys, we have often been unable to see how it would finally happen. Knowing we are called, and that God was behind this, we continually pray and seek God for any changes in direction or steps we needed to take. Mostly, we heard ‘abide and wait’. As we have been abiding and waiting, God was strengthened our faith a well as our confidence in our calling. He has also been teaching us to not be paralyzed trying to perceive His will but that it is okay to step out and let Him change our course as need be. Like in Joshua 3, as the Israelite’s cross the Jordan on dry land, the priests had to first step into the water before the waters backed up to reveal the path to the other side.

Last weekend we started seeing the doors open to move to Colorado Springs. We felt that doors were starting to open that could allow us to buy a house earlier then expected. Howard’s new job has a very lenient work from home policy so he started asking about working remotely. At the same time, a job opening at Compassion International for a part-time software developer was revealed to Howard so he started pursing more information about that.

While still waiting to hear about working remote, as well as the part-time work, another door opened up last night. A fellow missionary couple at LightSys contacted us letting us know they would be out of town for the majority of the next 6 months and asked if we would be interested in house sitting for them. Blown away, we went to church, in an attitude of prayer, and the message was partly about stepping out in faith. We also, went forward for prayer about this and again the word was to go through the open door. Although we are both in one accord about are calling, it is rare that we are immediately in sync about what we should do. However, on this, as we left church, we both felt we needed to step out in this and call our landlord and put in our 60 day notice. We went home, let the couple know that yes we would house sit for them and proceeded into our evening devotions together. As we finished up reading the book of Numbers, Karen turned the page to put her bookmark in Deuteronomy and noticed that she had previously highlighted verse 1:7. In the NLT version, Duet 1:7 starts out with “It is time to break camp and move on.” WOW!!! Looking at other versions of that verse, it also refers to going south, to the mountains, and to the foothills; Colorado Springs. Today we put in our 60 day notice to our landlord.

How could God be more clear. We step out and He parts the waters. We are stepping out in faith in this knowing that God is in control and that His plans are greater then ours.

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Missions Stories

July Update

One of the toughest things that God has been revealing to us, repeatedly, is to abide and wait. This is a hard thing to do in the fast paced culture we live in today. Nonetheless, we often find ourselves teetering between when to step out and when to wait; continually praying for God to reveal His will in which to do. Right now we are in a time of waiting on God’s provision while we trust Him to show us what our part is in facilitating that. We are encouraged that God has provided over 1/3rd of our ongoing support and we are over 1/2 way to being able to move to Colorado Springs and start working with LighSys full-time.

We were blessed to be able to spend the first week of July with LightSys at the annual family retreat in Colorado Springs. We were able to get to know  some of our fellow missionaries on new level. They made us feel like part of the team and it was encouraging to see the whole group together in one place. Prayer needs:

  • Work out details of our upcoming trip to Action Intl, in Seattle 
  • Open more opportunities to share our vision (new contacts, referrals, etc)
  • Prepare us for the next step in this journey
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Missions Stories

June Update

First we would like to thank all of you for your prayers, financial support, and encouragement through our process of becoming full-time missionaries. This month we went over the 30% mark on our financial support and we give praise to God for those who are supporting us and will be supporting us. We are seeing the results of all your prayers as things unfold in way we would never have imagined. Please continue to lift us up in prayer. Our desire is to submit to God’s will through obedience and awareness in EVERY aspect of what we do.

We just got home, last night, from a 12 day road trip to attend ICCM (International Conference for Computing and Missions). We started the trip by heading south to visit our grandkids in Arkansas and Tennessee then went up to Hannibal, MO (via St Louis) for the conference. On our way home, we were able to stay with family (in Kansas City) and spend time with some them.

Each year, LightSys hosts the US version of the ICCM conference. It brings together the IT departments from different mission organizations so they can develop relationships and network. Howard led two sessions in the software development track and Karen got to build several new relationships with other missionaries. We were encouraged in our support raising and also received some pointers from veterans. One of the missionaries, from an organization that is now using the LightSys software, is taking our information home with him to see how his organization might be able to stand behind us.

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Missions Stories

May Update

May has swam off like a sail fish!

Last month’s “sender’s” meeting left us encouraged and energized to press on. We appreciate your physical, tangible support.

Here is what God has been doing in our lives this past month:

God was working on Howard in areas of pride and humility as he navigated some tumultuous situations regarding is work. But God always prevails and is opening doors and providing new opportunities for Howard to learn technologies that will be beneficial when we start at LightSys.

While reading through Levi Lusko’s “I Declare War” – God spoke to Karen about her “down” time. He asked her to use it for his glory and she has replaced it with additional spiritual habits. New fruit is beginning to appear as a result – and His work is encouraging. God is taking control of her tongue and she is showing more compassion and has time to serve others.

There are a lot of things that can distract us throughout our week. It’s easy to identify and skip the bad things – but not so easy to prioritize the “good” things. Any time with the Lord has a 100% return rate. We would like to encourage you to evaluate how you are spending your time – and keep us posted with your updates.

Prayer & praises –

  • We have worked hard as if it all depended on us, and trusted God knowing it all depends on him. We continue to grow in our support and are humbled by how God is working through people’s lives for missions.
  • Pray for guidance as we wait on the Lord and pursue additional avenues of raising support.
  • Pray for housing that will be in our price range. We’ve taken a sneak peek at what is currently available in Colorado Springs and find it sparse and expensive.