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January 2011 Prayer Letter

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Christmas 2010Dear Friends & Family,

We praise God for a good three months in the Northeast, despite the untimely death of Karl’s father that brought us back to the U.S. two months earlier than expected.  God was very good in providing us with many helpful people to supply what our family needed - clothes, supplies, manpower, babysitting, finances, conversations, fun times, and opportunities to talk about what God is doing in Thailand, and in our lives.  Many thanks to those who had a part in our time in the Northeast this past fall.

On Jan 10th, our family flew to Southern California where we will be living until our return to Thailand in late 2011.  Coming directly from the bone chilling Northeast, it has been fantastic to walk to the park with the children in shirt sleeves.  Many of our things are still in suitcases though we are quickly settling in to our new home and surroundings.

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December 2010 Prayer Letter

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green and yellow taxi cab in ThailandDear Friends & Family,

 

At the beginning of this month, I (Karl) was in Bangkok for a few days to renew my visa.  Believe it or not, it is less of a hassle to fly all the way back to Thailand to renew the visa than to apply for a new one.  My body is still recovering from all the time zone changes but it was a good trip for many reasons.

Besides successfully renewing my visa for another year, I had the chance to talk again with the same taxi driver who brought our family to the airport this past October.  At that time, he had been studying the Bible with the Mormons and objected to the idea that God could just forgive someone, letting them go scot-free.  We had a good conversation and I gave him a Gospel of John to read.  As he took me to the airport again this past week, I asked if he was still meeting up with the Mormons.  “Oh no” he replied, “I stopped meeting up with them after we talked, and I am a Christian now.”  Wow!  This was a great encouragement to me after a difficult term in Thailand when we did not see much fruit in our ministry.  I wasn’t able to determine to what degree he truly understands the Gospel but he talked about how God can help us, and no longer objected to God forgiving people.  I encouraged him to get involved in a local church to continue learning about Jesus.

Tags: Evangelism
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November 2010 Prayer Letter

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Sun and the children bundled up & enjoying chilly weatherDear Friends & Family,

Our family has experienced a number of unsettling changes since our last prayer letter in September.  

We had been planning to begin our home assignment in the U.S. this coming December but then we received an email from Karl’s brother.  Dad was in the hospital.  In just a little over a week, our family had packed out of our home in Thailand, said goodbyes, and were on a plane back to the U.S. to begin a year of home assignment - three months earlier than expected.  But Karl’s dad would not be there to greet us.

We were in plenty of time for the funeral but even if we had jumped on a plane the second we heard he was in the hospital, we would not have gotten back in time to talk with him.  It is strange to think that just two years ago we made another unplanned trip to New Hampshire to be with Karl’s mom just before she died.

Tags: Death Children
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September 2010 Prayer Letter

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Dear Friends & Family,


“How is church planting going?” I don’t particularly enjoy answering this question but I wish I did.  With only about 3 months to go until our home assignment in the U.S., it is time to look back at our first full missionary term in Thailand and ask, “What has been accomplished?   What do we have to show for ourselves as we head back home and meet with supporters?”

I wish I could tell you that new churches (or at least one new church) has been planted.  Or maybe that a small group Bible study of some sort has started that we hope will grow into a church.  Or at the very least, we’d like to report about some promising new believers who have come to faith while we’ve been here.