Monday, March 29, 2010

Continued Blessings

Almost daily we are reminded of our many blessings. Over the past 2 weeks we have had the opportunity to meet with 11 couples and speak at 2 churches about our journey to Ecuador. Each time we tell our story it "fires us up" and gives us the energy to keep pushing forward.

Although the path continues to have small pebbles and sometimes large rocks in the way we are continually reminded of how blessed we are to live in Holland and to be given the opportunity to speak openly about Jesus Christ. We have running water - that is clean!- and a flushing toilet that doesn't dump the contents into the nearest river and a roof over our heads. We are blessed!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Check it out

For those of you who receive this blog automatically I would ask you to check out the actual site of www.ericandrenee.com. A good friend of ours, along with a friend of his, just redid parts of the site and it is amazing.

Take the time to check out all of the new information in the side bar and the new header. Thanks Tom and Mike!!!!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Crossing Hurdles

This morning we had the privilege of meeting with a mission committee of a local church and then introduce ourselves to the congregation. Each time we have that opportunity it reminds us not only of the task before us but also of how people view us. (Strange- perhaps?? :)) Seriously though we are excited about where we are going, however we would like to believe that we would be just as excited to stay if that is where God called us. As Christians we need to have the joy of Christ period. Our purpose is to honor and glorify Him and that can be done in our homes, in our schools and in our workplaces. It does not have to be done in a foreign country in order to be considered faithful.

Recently we heard a statistic that it takes 100 people to "stay" or be the sending agency for every 1 person that goes to a foreign country. If that is true then our family of 5 needs at least 500 of you to "stay". Everyone who prays for us, provides for us financially and visits us will meet the Ecuadorians someday in heaven who accept Christ because we went. We are just a part of the body - not the whole and we thoroughly enjoy seeing how the different and very unique arms, voices, legs, and heads function right here in our home town.

Blessings to you all!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

We posted this blog a couple of months ago but due to the increased amount of people viewing our blog and asking questions we thought we should post it again.

1) When we commit to a monthly gift, when should we start sending it to HCJB Global?

First, I would like to thank all of you who have felt the Lord leading you in this direction. HCJB Global requires that we have 100% of our funds raised prior to our departure. This does not mean that we have to have all of the "cash" prior to leaving but it does mean that we have to have a certain amount of reserve and monthly commitments for the rest of our time. It is most helpful to have the monthly commitments start as soon as you commit. This allows a reserve to build for initial expenses of attending language school and the initial setting up of our house in Ecuador. It also allows HCJB Global to keep track of the amount we yet need to raise in order to complete our time in Ecuador. The goal is to be able to stay in Ecuador for our 3 year contract and not have to leave the field due to lack of funds.

All money received prior to our departure is kept in our account until 100% of the funds are committed and we leave for training and language school. No monies will be used for non-mission purposes before we leave.

2) If enough money is not raised what will you do?

God has directed us to go into his mission field. If we do not raise enough money to leave by July 2010 then we will continue to raise money until we can go. This is not a matter of "if we raise enough money then we will go". We are trusting that God will compete the work that he has started in us.

3) When will you leave?

This depends on several things (the sale of our building and home and raising 100% of our funds). It is our desire to leave in July of 2010 for several reasons. We are required to attend a missionary training school in Colorado for 6 weeks prior to attending language school. A session begins mid-July and goes through August. Language school in Costa Rica begins in September. If we were to leave in July we could attend training school and fly directly to Costa Rica and from there to Ecuador. If there is a delay then we would need to attend training school and return to Michigan for a few months, raise funds and then head to Language school. Leaving in July would also allow our kids to complete their schooling year in MI and begin a new schooling year in Costa Rica versus taking them out mid way through the schooling year.

4) How long are you going for?

We have committed to a three year contract with HCJB Global. After three years HCJB Global will evaluate us and we them in order to determine our next step. We have been told to "go" so we will wait for Gods continued directions and follow them when His plan for us changes.

5) Can we have our monthly commitment taken out by automatic withdrawal?

Yes, HCJB Global offers this option on their response card and website. Their website can be accessed through our blog site as well. It can be done on credit card, debit card or through your bank account. Please let us know if you need a response card.

We hope this helps to answer some of your questions. Please feel free to contact us with any further questions. We would love to tell you about Ecuador and how God is working in our lives. We welcome your partnership with us on this journey and we can't wait to have you come down and visit us on the edge of the Amazon!
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