All in Central Asia

Thy will

“Whatever season we are in, whether it is in the leaving our homes to go abroad for the first time, sending loved ones out to the ends of the earth, or some other part of our faith walk, the sacrifice isn’t in the things, it is in our will.”

Acceptance and then achievement

“With the helplessness has come the realisation that I’ve been depending on my works a lot,” shares OMer Beth. “It’s great to have tear-jerking stories of all the families our disability project is helping for our newsletters. I like feeling worthwhile because of the difference I am making in somebody’s life. What I do outside of our home has given me worth and significance.”

Hats

“I do not recall wearing many different hats ever. I only used them while travelling in some hot countries. Of course, I couldn’t survive without one during our Missions Discipleship Training in South Africa. Not just to protect myself against the sun in the desert, but also to cover my hair on bad-hair-days during long outreaches, without comfortable showers,” shares Loïs. “These days I only count one hat in my wardrobe. Nevertheless I have the feeling that I am changing hats all the time. My different roles make me do so.”

Choices and questions

“Did we pray enough? Did we ask the right questions? Did we challenge them enough? Should we have invited them to spend more time with us? Did we fail?” These are some of the questions that OMer Beth wrestles with when a friend marries a non-believer.

Taking time to rest

“I remember when our boys were younger you could just see their tiredness in everything they did, but they still didn’t want to go to bed. ‘I am not tired!’ But the moment they lay down, they slept. Even for us as adults, to rest can feel like a punishment or a sign of weakness,” shares OMer Loïs. “But there is no need to feel like that. God Himself created a day to rest.”

The hardest part is taking the first step

"What they don't know standing at the start of that escalator, is that once you get both feet on, you’re carried. That you don't actually need all the answers, you just need to start the journey," shared OMer Sarah. "I think stepping out into overseas work can be a bit like stepping onto an escalator for the first time. We talk a lot in the Faith about stepping out, but what does that mean? I guess it means going forward, not remaining in one place."

Leaving Egypt

"And yet, in this season of my life, I read [the Israelites] moans and I have compassion," shared OMer Sarah. "Yes, being thousands of years removed from it, and knowing the whole story, we can look in disbelief.  But in that moment–yes they had been freed from slavery–but they had also left their homes. They had been in a place where they had grown, where their parents had grown and died.  Where they had roots. Where they knew the streets, and the places to rest. Maybe the best place to buy bread, or the best place to watch the sunrise. They left a place of memories of seeing their children run and play and laugh. They left their homes where their children had crawled and walked for the first time, and where they had sung praises to God together."

No more goodbyes

"How do we allow our kids to process, to grieve well, when we're so busy trying to deal with our own grief and pain and stress of transition? How do I model healthy grieving for my kids when it takes all my effort not to collapse in a puddle on the airport floor when I'm saying goodbye?" wondered OMer Beth. 

Being thankful

"A new year. A time to look back and a time to look ahead. Of course there are lots of memories from this past year. And when I sit down and think, even more come. Memories that make me smile and memories that hurt and make me sad," shared OMer Loïs. "As I go over this year, I feel it has been hard in different ways. I can honestly say that it has been one of the hardest years of being on the field."

Be a 'safe space'

"This is what I pray as I meet with younger women," shared OMer Beth. "That I can be a safe space for them; that they can trust me, be honest with me and that I can speak God’s truth into their lives. I don’t know all the answers and I can’t heal the brokenness, but I can point them to Jesus who can do all that and more!"