Saturday, November 19, 2016

Update on Questions & Challenges

I realized this morning that though I have alluded to some major challenges and possible changes, I haven't actually written down the various challenges we are facing these days. All these things came up in a matter of a week, and though some questions have been answered, others are still "in process".

Kaleb's request for citizenship was denied, which meant that we either needed to relocate or proceed with more costly paperwork. Update Nov 18: Someone generously offered to pay for the next big step in the paperwork process!

Our landlords let us know that they need to sell the house, which means we are moving sooner or later. And the process of listing (and hopefully selling) has required a fair amount of time investment in allowing them access to the house for fixing, photographs, and inspections. Currently the house is on the market and available to be shown with a couple hours notice. While the house has not shown often, it means being in a state of alert at home and realtors that want to show it having access.

The pending sale of the house also means we need to find somewhere else to live. We have often thought that purchasing a house would be a great option, but we found out that laws have recently changed. These laws basically mean for us that if we choose to purchase a home we need to change organizations. So far we haven't found anything that seems reasonable to rent: we are asking God for a house that fits our budget closer to Moody Aviation for quicker access to ministry opportunities. So far, we haven't found anything, but we are believing God for His house in His time.

We'd love for you to join us in asking God for answers to each of our questions. If you'd like to receive weekly e-mail updates with more specific requests, please e-mail me!

Tuesday, November 15, 2016


This week Garry is finishing up PT6 training, a great opportunity to learn and grow as mission aviation moves into more aircraft that use a turbine engine. It's a good reminder that experience is a great teacher, but we always need to keep learning new things. People who are learning and growing are also fun to be around-- I've learned a lot as Garry has gone through this course. It's also good for those of us who often teach to be a student somewhat regularly. Being a student has its own challenges, and it's good to be reminded of that as we go back to taking tests instead of giving them and absorbing information instead of teaching it.

Kevin is also having some new learning experiences this week as he attends Moody Bible Institute-Spokane's missions conference. He's learning about various organizations that do a number of different ministries. He's interacting with mission reps and others who came to present at the conference. And the experience is taking him back overseas to what he knows and making him ponder next steps as he learns about more needs in more places all over the world.

Some of the challenging information Kevin is learning is in relation to people in the 10/40 window. While a huge part of the world's population lives there, apparently only 1% of the financial support for missions from North America goes into this area. That surprised me. I would have assumed that missions from North America is currently focused on this area of the world, but maybe not. Kevin has also enjoyed learning more about mission work to First Nations people in northern Canada, an area close to home but needy.

Our impending move is bringing neat things to Kaleb as he interacts with his friends in the neighborhood. Sometimes only in light of leaving do we get feedback on the ways our lives have impacted others. This is true of Kaleb these days as his friends contemplate the fact that he may be moving to a different neighborhood.

So many things this week remind me that God is both powerful and creative. How amazing that He gives us the ability to learn, grow, and change! How incredible that He allows us to partner with Him in His work in the world, being a part of others changing, learning, and growing.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

New Blog Started

I recently began blogging at This is a more reflective blog, includes an updated "About Me" page, and focuses on living life well, particularly as we serve within the mission aviation community.

In time I will be migrating this blog to there, but for the time being I'll be blogging at both locations as I sort out how to integrate the various aspects of life and ministry I want to focus on.

Hope to see you there!

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Training and Drills

One thing on Garry's agenda for today is a fire drill. We all remember fire drills as kids, the noise and momentary chaos until a teacher or other adult called things to order and we lined up and evacuated the building. As a kid, it seemed funny to me. I figured that in a real fire, not even the adults would be calm. I thought the drill was a useless exercise. My views have changed since then. I realize that the value of a drill is creating a memory that we can fall back on in stressful times. Things we drill become automatic responses to situations or sounds. Athletes perform drills hundreds of times. Much of magic of art is created through countless hours of practice. Performers practice and practice some more, drilling themselves and one another on how things should be. And their hours of practice pay dividends in the quality of their performance, in the seemingly effortlessness of their actions.

Many of life's outcomes are also determined by what we've been drilling: in stressful times we respond much like we have been training ourselves to respond in less stressful times. We can choose to blame other people or search for solutions. We can see life as filled with hope or perceive our situation as hopeless. We can take action or wait for someone else to take action. The possibilities are nearly endless, but it's interesting to reflect on our own intuitive responses to life, and how those responses have become intuitive.

Yesterday I took a short walk with a friend and we chatted about life and ministry. I was blessed by her near-constant references to scripture. I was encouraged by the way she is changing as she walks through life. I was challenged by her thoughts on living quiet lives. I was blessed by the way she interacts with her kids. And I realized that day after day she is practicing living better and choosing well. Her efforts made her a blessing to me.

This week Garry is also privileged to take part in turbine engine training. He is excited to learn more about how these engines work and the best ways to maintain them. This is very helpful information as mission aviation is using more and more turbine engines overseas as avgas becomes harder to find and more expensive.

Our house is going on the market this week. It's challenging. I find I'm not fond of having photos of every room on the internet, of having strangers walking through and checking things out, or of having a device on the door that allows realtors access to the house. It's giving us a chance to practice what we've been practicing.

I suppose fire drills are, after all, quite valuable!

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Faith in Action

This week I've been reminded that faith requires action. Faith means not only believing what you say you believe, but acting on it. Not just talking about what needs done, but actually doing it. And sometimes the hardest action of all is waiting. Not passively letting life go by, but refusing to take action until you know what action you need to take. Not sitting by and hoping someone else will get involved, but engaging in this moment while you wait for clear direction for the next moment.

As housing and paperwork questions continue to require prayer and attention, this week we've been challenged to keep doing the things in front of us, getting involved in the things we see God doing around us. This week Kaleb has had some unique opportunities to attend and serve. The first was attending "Skate Church", a local ministry to skate kids. He is a BMX and dirt jumping guy, but he enjoyed trying some tricks on a scooter and connecting with various kids. It was fun to "do church" at an indoor skate park! This group has an amazing passion and God-story, and it was neat to join them for last Sunday's service.

The second opportunity Kaleb got involved in was "Trunk or Treat" fall festival at our church. I was impressed with how many of the youth volunteered at this event, helping build a huge box maze, face painting, serving, and interacting with the kids who came to the festival. Kaleb enjoyed serving with his friends and interacting with various kids. One of our neighbors who is typically very distant toward anything religious showed up, and Kaleb was able to chat with him a little. What a blessing to see the many ways God is calling His Body to interact, serve, and bless the community and one another!

Garry has been working on forms for the safety program this week. I am continually amazed (but not surprised!) at his attention to detail and his thought processes as he develops a program that is simple, helpful, and practical. It looks like he may be able to take some turbine engine training in a few weeks, which would be super helpful as he continues to invest in technical excellence here at Moody Aviation. He's also been chatting with real estate people, talking to the lawyer, and overall being amazing with the things that need attention.

This evening I am privileged to host a staff wives prayer and planning meeting. After having to miss the last meeting, I am excited to catch up with the other women and hear what God is doing in their lives. What a blessing to ask God together for His direction for the ladies involved at Moody Aviation and to serve together!

These simple, ordinary things are where our faith is taking us these days. And yet, the journey is anything but ordinary and the choices seldom seem simple. After all, faith always calls us to engage in the epic battle of good and evil, passion and complacency, and the invisible.