WE ARE ALMOST THERE, BUT WE NEED YOUR HELP!!!
We have learned two important lessons in these last few years. First, the very safest place to be is in the middle of Godâ€™s will, doing what He wants, where He wants. Second, itâ€™s not all about us. The world needs hope. He has called us to share the love of God expressed in the Good News of Jesus Christ with the people of Mango and the surrounding areas through the very practical means of providing quality healthcare at The Hospital of Hope: hope through Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of our sins, to the glory of God the Father! During our time of pre-field ministry and language school, one thing that has really stretched our faith has been the constant uncertainty of the cost of preparing and getting to Africa. We sometimes wonder if this uncertainty is a little like what Abraham felt when God called him to leave his family and country. We know where we are going (unlike Abraham) but often we have no idea how the Lord is going to work out the details of actually getting us there. I am a numbers person. During the first 20 years of our marriage we worked hard and always stayed within our budget. If we didnâ€™t have the means, we would simply do without. The whole process of actually getting to the field and the costs involved have been a great challenge to our faith. The way it works is that our personal income is a fixed amount. That comes from the monthly support that the Lord has provided through our partners. We can handle that. We have been living in Paris with an income designed for Africa. The key is to spend less then you make. However, the costs to prepare and get to Africa (which comes from one-time gifts) is a moving target; meaning, we could look up the prices for things while raising the funds, but the prices donâ€™t stay the same. I had no idea prices could change so drastically. When we left for language school we had, what we thought, we needed to cover our expenses, and we had the beginning of a vehicle fund. Now we have not only exhausted our funds for a vehicle (with the increasing prices of school, housing, shipping, tariffs, visas, etc.), we are in needs of additional funds to finally make it to Mango. We honestly have stalled in writing this update for no other reason than pride. It is humbling to once again have to present our needs to you, who have already been so giving. God has been good and we first would like to share some answers to prayer. First, the container is purchased and will soon be on its way to Africa. We are only using 25â€™ of a 40â€™ container and were able to get someone to fill the other half. This unexpected change is a huge praise. This means that we only have to pay for our portion. The other missionary who is filling the rest, has agreed to front the initial cost, while we wait on the Lord for additional support. Second, we have been given the green light!!! In order to actually leave for Mango, we need an official invitation, an â€œOKâ€, from the Togo North Team (TNT). We are so thankful that we have been given the go ahead. Our senior missionary in Mango is busy making arrangements for our arrival. Once we have an official date from her, we will be ready to purchase our visas and plane tickets. Lord willing we will be leaving at the end of June/beginning of July. Thirdly, we have a place to stay when we arrive in Mango as we search for and fix up our own home. This, too, is a huge answer to prayer and will take some time. Homes in Mango are very limited and are difficult to find, even a temporary dwellings. It can often be very costly. God provided for us. We were contacted by a fellow missionary family who will be in the states for six months on furlough. We will be able to rent their place while they are gone. It is already safe and livable. Fourthly, we have a vehicle. We just today heard from a friend in Mango that has a used vehicle for us. We are still unsure of any transfer cost and minor repair cost. We wonâ€™t want to be taking it long distances, but will be helpful to get around town. This is a huge praise! God has been putting everything into place. Now, we just need the funds to finish up. We cannot pay for shipping our container, plane tickets, visas, or the last 2 months of school unless God provides through His people. We are in need of an additional $20,000 to finish the last leg of this part of our journey and start our ministry in Mango. Once in Mango we will need some funds for preparing a place to stay. However I have no way of knowing at this time what the cost for that may be. If we donâ€™t raise the $20,000 we will not be allowed to continue on to Mango. We cannot spend money that we do not have. We are asking that you prayerfully consider giving a one-time gift towards our final stretch.