Yes, a few months have transpired since we last posted. It has, indeed, been a tough time. Granted, Covid has taken its toll on everyone around the world, but our hard hits have not been Covid related.
We lost our beloved Nana, my mom, in March, just two weeks after she was diagnosed with cancer. This was just after she had recovered from her seizure diagnosis and was finally feeling strong, driving again, and able to do most of her normal activities. She even worked in the yard, mowed the lawn, reorganized Josie’s entire bedroom and did a thorough house cleaning the weekend before she started feeling bad and was diagnosed! The whirlwind of how quickly things progressed and how our world changed was stunning. And all of this at the beginning and height of Covid in America. She first went to the doctor, thinking she had a chest infection or pneumonia on March 11, was diagnosed on March 12, and went to Heaven on March 29th.
We are beyond grateful to the Lord for allowing our family to be here to walk this journey with our mom. Though painful and sad, it was absolutely beautiful! To see the transition, her attitude toward and anticipation of death, the excitement of seeing the face of Jesus and the face of the love of her life, the glory on her face as she slowly left this world….all such a testimony of her faith! We went on an amazing journey with our mom and Nana. A perfectly protected time of goodbyes (thank you, Covid), a special time with family to remember and reflect, and then a glimpse into the heavenlies as she shared some precious visions of the glory she was to see.
The hard part began after she left us. The short story is that our family is now living fulltime in a beautifully renovated RV (thanks to an amazing husband who can literally do anything!), ready to travel and share our story of HCO (as soon as Covid allows!), and have left our America home behind.
Since I moved to Kenya in 2007 and as our family grew, Midland was our America home, Nana & Papa’s house. That is where Julia takes long, hot bubble baths. Josie rocked to sleep in Nana’s chair. Jim and I watched Hallmark Christmas movies with Papa for days on end. Beautiful memories. All packed up and emptied out now, an estate sale ushering out all of the “things” of this world that my mom and dad possessed. We have a small storage building of the most precious memories and the most important items. And then we pack our family and all of our American possessions into our RV and take the next steps forward….not 100% where all that will be. But we know this is where God has led us in this season.
Life looks a lot different for people right now, and we feel like that is magnified, on steroids and exploded exponentially for us. As I mentioned, our greatest hits and hardest setbacks have nothing to do with Covid. Add that, and even more uncertainties abound.
Currently, we are in Florida. We left Texas and came to spend some time in Florida with our older children. Florida is also open right now, so we are able to come and go and have a somewhat “normal” existence.
Our little girls have gone through a LOT the past months! Can you imagine knowing that your Nana is going to die, being in the house with her, and not being able to leave at all? (This was in March, total shut-down time, not even a park open to go play at.) Then, all of their familiar world, their home, all they know in America, being packed up around them and ready to be sold. We have been walking through this with our daughters as they mourn so many losses over the past year+. They really just want to go back to Kenya, but for now, they are happy to be in Florida with their big brother and sister!
So, this is where we are. We know God has led us thus far and has never left us alone. He has directed us, one step at a time. We trust Him to continue to lead us as we walk out the next steps of where we are to be.
For now, all of our babies and staff remain healthy and safe. We have continued to manage the ministry from afar and are pleased to see how the Lord protects and provides. Jim has already passed a few scheduled trips to Kenya, and we all had planned to be back there the end of May. We know God is with them, and God is with us. We still look forward to being together.
Though we had anticipated traveling and focusing on meeting with potential supporters and sharing the ministry, we are not quite sure what that looks like at this time. For now, our family needs to sit and rest. We need to mourn together, heal together and be restored together. We don’t know how long we will be in Florida, but for now, we are going to step back and take some time to focus on our family.
We would greatly appreciate your prayers….for our family and for the ministry. Our gracious God has shown Himself to us, and for that we are grateful. We ask that He continues to lead and protect the ministry in Kenya as we are not physically there, and would love for you to join us in that prayer.
Thank you to all who have loved on and supported us over the past few months. We know that everyone is facing their own hardships and difficulties so your reaching out to us and praying for us means even more! THANK YOU ALL!