Guest wifey blogger Jess here filling in for Phil.
Sometimes when people hear how quickly and graciously the Lord brought together our support team we hear things like, “Wow! You guys are really on the fast track!” Other times, when people hear our story and how long it has taken us to get to this point we hear something like, “Wow! You’ve been working at this a long time.” However you look at it, we know one thing is for sure… God’s hand is totally in the timing and the process is a critical part of our preparation. So whether we feel like we are moving through this process at light speed or we feel like Indonesia is light years ahead, we trust that Father God is the Lord of the timing and we give Him permission to do good work in us (and hopefully through us) during the process.
Currently we are at MAF Headquarters here in Nampa, Idaho. Phil has just completed the maintenance portion of his training here and this Monday he and four other pilot / mechanics plus two instructor pilots head northeast into the back country of Idaho where they will be working on their flying skills, mostly landings on less than ideal runways for four days. It has been a great season for Phil as he is learning a ton and sharpening his skills. I love when he comes home excited about a good flight, a sweet landing, or an interesting project in the hangar. What a blessing!
One of the cool things MAF does with us wives in terms of preparation is offer a little cooking class. We learned a great deal about substituting familiar foods with unfamiliar ones in recipes and we were taught some basic cooking / kitchen skills. We got to work with powdered milk as that will be what is available in Indonesia, not exactly cow country. (My favorite part of the class was making bread from scratch. My oh my did it smell and taste yummy! ) Thankfully I started cooking from scratch when Phil and I got married so many of the concepts were not brand new to me. One of my biggest challenges, it sounds like, is going to be finding good ways to increase nutritional value to our foods. For example, we’ve heard that whole grains are hard to come by on our island. So, I ask my God to supply all our needs and rely on His grace to help us accept a new way of doing …everything… including cooking.
The Passover and Easter season was especially sweet here in Idaho as one of the moms prepared and served an abridged version of the Passover meal to our children. She did a wonderful job and the kids really learned a lot of Bible history. I loved it too! Then, on Easter, I cooked curried lamb with cucumber mint raita for a few families and did a little reading / demonstration about Easter for the missionary kiddos. It was a rich time and I felt super crazy grateful that our Redeemer lives and I’m free!
Here’s a quick snapshot of what’s ahead for us…
May 23rd – We will be back in Reno
June 1st – Vana Open House at Summit Christian Church
June 5 – 12 Phil receives turbine engine training in Spokane, Washington
June 22 – 28 Vana Family goes to Minnesota for Islamic Education
July 28 – 30 Vana Family will be back in Idaho for Security Training
August 23 is the date we hope to head to Indonesia to begin language school, visas permitting
Our biggest prayer needs are…
Please pray for Indonesian visas to be processed and approved quickly for our family and three other MAF families who are waiting to get to work.
Please pray good health for our family as our summer is quite busy with traveling and such.
Kiddos love consistency and our kids are being uprooted yet again. Please pray for their precious hearts as we pull them away from a community they really enjoy. Please pray for God to bless them for their sacrifices and may they come to know and love Him above all else.
Please pray for our relationships in and out of our home to be sweet reflections of the Savior we serve.
There is a long list of things to do between now and August. Please pray we can get our logistics in order and enjoy a peaceful season leading up to our big move.
I am under the long-distance care of an orthopedic doctor in Reno for a hip condition called Ischiofemoral Impingement and am on a high dose of anti-inflammatories. Please pray the anti-inflammatories allow the injury to heal completely.
If you have any prayer requests, please let us know! We love, love, love praying with and for our partners. Thanks so very much for being a part of our team.