God is good! (As if that were new news)
Over the last two months God has been reminding us over and over again that all of our victories come from him. He has been teaching us that this time of raising up ministry partners is just as much ministry as what we will be doing in Japan. He has reminded us that not everyone is called to join with our ministry, but all are called to join some type of mission in some way (giving = going = sending (yes, the equal signs are on purpose)) In the midst of this time of refocusing he has continued to bring us opportunities to share, and has brought more support in. Last week we tallied things up and found that we were at 28%. Woohoo! Steps in the right direction for sure!
Then just yesterday we received an email from home office with an adjusted budget. Apparently, the cost of living in Japan has come down a significant percentage in recent months. Add to this an insurance rate adjustment in our favor, and we are now sitting at 30% of fully funded. The real kicker is that we are at 43% of the minimum required budget. That’s almost halfway to Japan! While we feel there is much wisdom in shooting for the recommended budget, it’s so encouraging to know that God is bringing us closer to the day when we are on a plane headed to Tokyo.
To add to this excitement, God has been challenging us in our personal lives and walks with him. We have experienced some difficult growing pains, but feel like he is enabling us to walk more in step with him each day. I’ll share a bit more about this in a future blog post, but by far these lessons hold the most value to us, and there’s no percentage to gauge that progress by.
“Thank you” never seems quite enough to say to all of you wonderful people, but we say it anyway. Thank you! Your prayers are already carrying us through challenges, and your donations continue to bring us closer to the destination.
We have some things we would like continued prayer for
- That we could be at 60% of fully funded by June so that we could attend a special departure training. This would involve extra training and preparation for our girls and is something we deeply desire.
- That we would continue to expand our network of connections. We feel God is calling us to invite other churches and areas to partner with us. This is scary because travel means time away from work and school, but is exciting because we get to meet new people and invite them into missions! Plus despite being scary, travel is still awesome.
- That God would continue to bring people into his Kingdom in Japan. There are great ministries functioning in Japan and we don’t want to wait until we get there to pray for them!
We thank God every day for you, and are keeping you in our prayers as we feel led. Know that you are loved by us.
Chris, Tracy and the girls