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August 20th, 2019

Praise, glory and honor be to the most-high God. The God who loves us with an everlasting love , in the good times, the bad times, the lost times and times of change and transition.

I have some very important news for you. I will be joining a new Church Planting team in September! My main ministry goals have not changed but the people group has changed. I will no longer be working amongst the Susu but now the Konyagi.

A few months ago our Field Leadership started talking with me about joining a new team. They felt that I would be better suited there and that I would be a blessing to that team. You probably may be wondering what happened to my other team members. Well the family that I was living with are still on Home Assignment and hopefully they will be able to return in September. They have been gone for nearly a year and they have had some health issues, including two surgeries this month. Please be praying for their health. The other couple that was working in a different area will not be coming back to the country in the near future.

 I have been asked recently about how I feel regarding this huge change. There are so many things- leaving the old and familiar to go into the new and unfamiliar. After investing time into learning a second foreign language, I will now be embarking on my third. I don’t feel angry with God about this change, nor do I view all this time spent here as a waste. I am grateful for all the relationships that I have built and the Christian testimony that I was able to share with my neighbors and friends. I pray that the seeds that were planted would take root and grow.

 Some important things to know

This new team is very far from where I am currently although it’s still in Guinea. It will be a different people group having their own language and culture. The language is quite difficult as it belongs to the Atlantic language group, with noun classes being one of its defining features. It's also not as green and very hot. I will be joining 2 other married couples with their kids. One couple is German and the other is Canadian/Italian.

They have all been with this work for a couple of years. One couple has finished learning the language and the wife is working on translation. The other couple is three quarters way through in language learning. I have been told that it would not take me too long to catch up with them, given the right circumstances (I add). Please be praying for my mind that needs to now learn a whole other language. And no, there aren’t that many people that speak the Susu language out there.

There was a third couple, but they left the team about 2 years ago. They left a few essential things in their house that they are willing to sell me, such as their solar panel system, freezer and a few other major items which are very costly. Additionally, we need to figure out how I can move into the village and living conditions. Originally the team was thinking that I could move into the vacant house but this may not be able to happen. Please be praying for wisdom as we plan to discuss what my other options are when I get there. It is very difficult to say how long it will take to figure this out, when and if I may be able to build my own house and where. Cultures can sometimes be very tricky and we want to make the best decision. Sometimes the thought can be overwhelming but pray that God remains in control of the situation.

Because of the location of this village it was recommended that I get my own vehicle which must be a  4x4, either a pickup or landcruiser. Public transport is difficult and using a motor cycle to go beyond the village is not a possibility. The closest town is 45 minutes away where some basic stuff could be bought but the team usually has supplies brought in every couple of weeks from Dakar. Since the village is closer to the border of Senegal, it is easier to spend an entire day driving to Dakar, the capital of Senegal, than to go to one of the major towns in Guinea with extremely bad roads which would take just as long even though the distance is much shorter. Either way, it will be a challenge. Please pray that the Lord would provide a vehicle.

 

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Some things that have constantly been evident to me are my weakness and inability. I have a desperate, constant need for God. My body is so weak and fragile, literally and sometimes I feel like I do not have the physical strength to go on even if I wanted to. I have been blessed to have my family come visit me in July and then my dad stayed on for several more weeks whilst the others returned. I didn’t just need emotional encouragement, but also physical help! My dad helped me with so much of the cleaning and gave me a little brake from taking care of the animals. I was also able to visit the doctor who gave me some medication to regain some strength. In addition, I celebrated my Golden birthday- I turned 29. It was a day of happiness and sunshine amidst all this rain. I am grateful for another year of life and I thank God that he is the one that continues to order my steps.

Right now I am working, to the best of my ability to pack up my things to move. It is not easy, so please pray that I can get it done. Pray that I would also find time to eat since I have lost quite a few pounds that I do not have to spare! Pray for my upcoming travel schedule. I need to find a willing soul that would take my things out to the new location from the Guinea side. I will not be attempting to try that extremely laborious route during this rainy season in a taxi. But please pray that the Lord will give the person the strength to endure and that they would not have too many shut downs and getting stuck in mud holes. Pray for me as I make my way back to the capital, fly to Senegal and then go with another missionary who will also be driving down most of the way to the new location. I will have to get a taxi somewhere and then my new co-workers will pick me up somewhere. I know it sounds a bit tedious, but we don’t have the luxury of grey hound, mega bus, subway lines etc. When the Lord says go, we say yes and then figure it out afterwards.

 

On a more cheerful note, I am looking forward to joining this Church Planting team and sharing the gospel with these people. Tis the reason why I am in Africa, no matter the cost, no matter how long it takes and regardless of the many detours. May God find us all faithful.



Thank you so much for your continued prayers and support! 
Yours in Christ,
Leah.
Copyright © 2019 Leah Joslyn, All rights reserved.


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