Just two weeks ago, we officially completed our 2014 mini-furlough, and we have to admit; it was a joy to be home sweet home. We thoroughly enjoyed our time with family, seeing our parents and siblings, our kids and grandkids. We met our new granddaughter, Shiloh, and we were blessed to learn of a new family addition that’s on the way – congrats to the McComas family. We were also blessed by some friends with tickets to take Robin (our South African son-in-law) to his first Ohio State football game. As a student at OSU he is now officially orientated as a Buckeye!
While in America we spent our first month focusing on Southern Africa regional administration matters. That means we worked at ABWE Headquarters in Pennsylvania and did some additional training. We attended the Missionary Enrichment Conference in Washington DC, and spent some planning time with missionary friends Bruce and Bev McDonald in Colorado while planning the South Africa Regional Conference (SARC) and Mountain View’s upcoming Leadership Team Advance. In the time remaining this summer we were able to minister at ten of our supporting churches and meet with many of our faithful individual ministry partners.
Getting to Home Sweet Home… while flying into Cape Town International Airport, marveling at the African coast and the beautiful Table Mountain, we turned to each other and with a deep sigh at the same time said, “Home, Sweet Home.” That’s right… this is home too. It’s wonderful to know that you are where God wants you to be and He confirms that in our hearts each time we realize in a fresh way that we are called to be here. While we really love all that we enjoy about being in America, being in God’s will is what brings us deep satisfaction. It’s hard to explain, but it’s very real.
So, what awaited us upon our return? Lots and lots of hugs and kisses. Our forever family at Mountain View either really missed us, or they’re really good at pretending. We also hit the ground running with a busy October ministry schedule:
Nate and Lauren Bell arrived to join us for the SARC in Durban, South Africa and to lead our children’s ministries. Three days later, we greeted Bruce and Bev McDonald, our main speakers, as well as several other ABWE staff and missionaries who were coming to attend the conference. Then, from 7–10 October we came alongside the Durban missionaries to host ALL the missionary families in South Africa for a time of spiritual enrichment and physical restoration. The theme was “Our Soul Answer: The Replenisher of our Souls.” We’ll write more about that in our next blog post, however, we praise the Lord – it was a wonderful conference and God really blessed us.
As we write this evening we’ve just returned to Cape Town where the McDonalds have accompanied us and Bruce will also be speaking at our annual Leadership Team Advance at Mountain View this weekend. We hope to encourage our church leaders, as well as to further plan for the future of Mountain View Somerset West and Mountain View Hermanus, our new church plant. Please pray with us this week and through the weekend. We truly desire and need God’s guidance and wisdom as this little church moves forward. A more detailed list of praise and prayer requests is available at http://www.onerwe.com under the Prayer Request Tab. Thank you for praying.
As we think about you and thank the Lord for our relationship, this is our prayer… Wherever home sweet home is for you… may you be blessed, encouraged and fully satisfied as you serve the Lord where He has called you to be!
Keeping you posted and grateful for your prayers!
Tom & Nancy