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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Frequently Asked Questions

I want to set up an FAQs page on this blog to help answer some of the very common questions people have about what we do here in Zambia, how we got here, what our mission is for and to the people of Zambia, etc.

A high school student wrote me saying that she wants to do a class presentation on our family. This gives me the perfect opportunity to compile some questions and post them in a series and eventually get them onto a page at the top of the blog. 

Please let me know if you have any questions to add to my list or if I can further clarify answers I give here.

Why Africa?

In the late 90's Africa was entering the news more and more. Story after story highlighted the problems the continent faced with warring tribes and factions, poverty and lack of development and worst of all, HIV and AIDS which were sweeping the continent leaving behind a trail of orphans. 

In 1996, I had been reading accounts of missionaries who were working in Africa and it sounded really interesting. After working in Mexico as missionaries for three years (our first three children were born during this time), we had been in Texas for 4 years. While we hadn't been idle and had always kept busy with many different mission projects, I thought there might be more out there for us to do still.

When I broached the subject with Tom, he brought up the very valid point that we had five small children (and another on the way) and was Africa really the right place to take such a large family?
I shelved the idea and carried on with the big job of raising my family, supporting my husband as he worked two jobs and learned a new craft. I was homeschooling my oldest three and nursing a newborn and taking care of two toddlers as well. Life was full and busy.

A year later, Tom took a job in a town across the state and went out there ahead of us for a month. When the kids and I moved out with him, I found that he had had a life-changing moment somewhere there. He told me he felt that God was calling us to be missionaries in Africa.

We've often talked about why God called us at different times and I feel that part of it was so that when we encountered trials and troubles there would always be a sense of teamwork and shared vision.--We had both been given the direction and purpose. We were in this together!

Tom and I are both from missionary families and had lived in four of the 7 continents. Adding Africa to that list would be an exciting new challenge.

Now we knew which part of world we were headed to. We only had to choose which of the 50+ nations would be our new home. And what we'd be doing, and how we'd support ourselves. And were we crazy to be even considering this at all? Details, details. 

Stay tuned for the next question next week.

Exactly One Year Ago: Travel Fun
Almost Exactly Two Years Ago: Henry

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