Saturday, January 23, 2010

Super Story--Part Three

 A few people have wondered if I found it difficult to move so much as a child; if it made me insecure. I began moving from the moment I was born. My parents were missionaries in Mexico before I was born and they returned there right away after my birth. We moved a lot within Mexico and my sister was born in Puebla. Then we traveled up to Washington State where my two brothers were born. I think we moved a few times in the two years we lived in that state  and then we moved to Oregon near my maternal grandparents. We changed houses at least twice over the next couple years while living in that one town.

My grandparents' sunflower garden. Circa 1978?

  I don't remember any of those moves aside from the last one and then of course living in Mexico where we were in a campground for 6 months, we didn't move during that time but our neighbors did. 

With a little friend in Mexico. Circa 1976?

  All that to say moving was my normal. I didn't think much of it.  I didn't feel insecure at all but saw each move as an adventure. My parents were always positive and made our travels fun and educational. It's fairly common too for people like me (Third-Culture-Kids) to learn early how to make friends quickly. The only problem is that we don't know well how to hang on to friends and we don't necessarily invest much of ourselves into friendships right away because we don't know how long they'll last. 

 With a friend at Halloween in Oregon. Circa 1980

I have to share a quick story before  going on:
  When I was about eleven years old my parents were part of a missionary fellowship and we got to meet missionary families around the country we lived in at the time. I formed friendships with many of the other children my age. One day my dad explained that we were going to move to a new city. A family with a boy my age had just moved to the city we lived in at the time. My dad told me he was sorry that I was going to have to leave this boy who I had developed a friendship with. “That’s ok, Dad,” I said cheerfully, “there’s a boy I like in the new city too.” Oh, dear! What a player!

Ok, so, back to the Super Story: In the last episode we were staying with friends and my parents were contemplating our next move. A new adventure was just around the corner.

My parents were trying to decide where to go next. They had 6 children (including a seriously handicapped child), had been serving the Lord fulltime (minus a break for a couple years when my dad went to school) for over 10 years, and having spent 4 years in Mexico at different times thought perhaps the Lord could be leading them further south to the continent of South America. This made a lot of sense because they both spoke Spanish fluently and loved the Latin people.

Around this time two people teamed up with my parents: One was a young man who my parents had mentored when he first became a Christian. He had served as a missionary in Colombia and was married there but after a heartbreaking divorce found himself alone and looking for a new start. He came to stay with us and my parents were glad for the extra help. The second person was a single mother who had a little girl. She played the flute and joined our little family singing troupe. I'll be telling you more about this next week.

So with four adults working together, three of which spoke Spanish fluently, moving on to a new work in South America seemed even more certain. Knowing the importance of taking everything before the Lord and not "leaning to their own understanding" my parents and their friends got together to pray and received the biggest surprise. 

They all felt that God wanted them not to move south but east! To India! Say what? My parents hardly knew anything about India and it would be a completely different way to work. There would be a new culture to learn about, new language to learn, new ministries to work in.

  I have to say that I am really proud of my parents for being willing to follow God to the ends of the earth even when it didn't make a whole lot of sense by human standards. I remember my dad even sharing the story of how when he was on the plane heading to India he was feeling sad that he was going to miss his spicy Mexican food. We laugh now because Indian food is some of the spiciest there is. As I write this my mouth is burning from the egg curry I just ate for lunch. 

  Once the decision was made we began the process of finding the support we would need to work as missionaries in India!

  Next week: Our family singing troupe and a really special dignitary.

Further reading: 


  1. This is great! I love reading missions stories. I always have said that I would love to raise my kids on the mission field - for the exact reasons you depict - adaptable, friendly, a kingdom perspective from a young age. I dont know what God has for me and my fiance, but we would not be surprised if missions was a part of it! Thanks for sharing! :)

  2. you have led and continue to lead one of the most fascinating lives of anyone I know!


  3. Wow, Amy! That is awesome! I envy your parents definite knowledge of what God wanted them to do, even though it seemed like a strange choice to them.
    Your whole life is quite amazing!


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