July 1, 2012

update on Tony, etc

Tony is doing slightly better. Day 3 of three weeks of antibiotics, nebulizer treatments, pain meds, and bedrest. He is now eating and smiling and talking without getting so winded, none of which he was doing on Friday. The coughing sounds horrible and is painful, but he looks and sounds a little better. Trying to keep him in bed or in the house has been a challenge, though. I've had to crack down and get militant.

Thank you for the prayers and encouragement and support and verses sent; they so help! We spent most of the day looking over and studying some new and beautiful verses we haven't looked at in a while.

The last post I wrote very quickly in a small window late at night. I should clarify: We are not starving, and we do have this month's rent. It's actually been a good month. But August? who knows. That is life here for us.

We are selling off some big appliances we brought because we can't use them here and we need the money. Yes, we do need to eat and no, we don't have anything after the rent is paid. Welcome to faith missions. You do what you gotta do. Selling appliances works.

Our house is small, and my super sized washer just doesn't fit anywhere. It has been taking up precious space next to the dining room table, along with a dishwasher someone gave Tony back in the States. If we left them outside to free up valuable space, they would get stolen. After many months I have convinced Tony to just sell them - they are driving me crazy, and we have bills to pay. It's simply God's provision.

I haven't said much about our financial situation because I walk a very fine line between being honest and telling the truth of our financial situation and not upsetting or offending someone by doing so. People ask and want us to tell them if we have any needs. We are not like other traditional missionaries in that we have a church, or many, behind us, or a missions organization. We do not recieve regular monthly support that we know will cover all our expenses every month. Our church officially would not support us, officially closing the door for us to go with a missions org, officially leaving us on our own to raise support and do everything else. We left without a church, an missions agency, monthly support, or a job. We trusted God would provide. So far He has. The life we lead, this missions life of faith, is not for everyone. It's not for me either if you were to ask, but what can I do. We live day to day here, month to month.

I think of the story where Paul asks the Lord to remove the thorn from his flesh. He asks three times. Jesus answers this way,

"But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me." 2 Cor. 12:9

I am not at the boasting in my weaknesses and taking pleasure in my infirmities part just yet, but we have been able to see Christ's power resting on us. It's pretty amazing. What else could explain us being able to make it this far?

The difficulty in sharing our situation is that every time I do I inevitably get an angry email from someone. I am "criticizing" or "not thankful" or "accusing". They think that I am talking specifically about them (it's more likely I was not even thinking about you when I was lamenting one night at 1am over the keyboard the fact that we can't pay the rent the next day). Or, if I do share our needs, I upset relatives who think we are starving and want us to come home stat. I always inevitably upset someone. Throw some pneumonia in there = fun times.

We do appreciate every single person that supports us. We simply couldn't be here or continue without it. If we have seen one thing, we have seen that it is God's people, the Believers, individual Christians, who make up the Church. The church as an organization can make its decisions, but it is the Church capital "C" through which God choses to work. At least, that is our experience.

1 comment:

Annie said...

Chris, I am certainly not a missionary. But, I can almost certainly tell you though, that this post could have been written by countless missionaries. As I have mentioned before, I am very interested in missions and I continually read missions books. So many of the missionaries I read about, in fact most, were independent like your family. In other words, not backed by a large church or organization. Yet, were they called?? Indeed!! Were times tough?? Yes!! This post of yours was like a chapter out of a book. Expressing your weariness, lack or frustration only to have someone say, "i told you so!" :) or "How could you say that?" Family will always want you to come home when times are really tough. I mean that in TOTAL LOVE. They just will. It is their natural instinct. Or others might think what they have given isn't enough, when you are just plain weary and need to express it.

Just hang in there and have faith that the vision He has given your will indeed continue!


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