We have now been living in africa for ONE FULL YEAR! In the past 12 months -365 days- we’ve experienced a plethora of struggles that God has used to groom and sanctify us. Whenever we arrived we were supposed arrive with our leaders but we had to arrive alone (our leaders who were coming with us couldn’t come with us right away due to Covid regulations). Couple that with finding out that we we’re pregnant THE DAY WE LANDED - which I (Stefan) did not respond well too lol. We started shortly arriving in country with our War on Mosquitoes began and is forever ongoing! We received the Stomach bug after that. Right after we were finished with our stomach bug we experienced a lot of riots in our country (explosions, tear gas, burning buildings, etc.) during riots RAN OUT OF COFFEE!!!. Our kiddos then received a variation of the MEASLES! We have been robbed by police officers and robbed by taxi drivers. I (Stefan) went on an adventure through the alleys of Africa because my friends phone got stolen she “find my iPhone” (we found it and got it back!) We got the Stomach bug along with other unknown sicknesses with our children AGAIN! Moved into a new home... Had a baby in a developing country, Shawntel had to have a C-section (then spent a day in a broom closet in the hospital because they had no room). A few months later our house flooded (ankle deep with poop water). We've had Pink Eye, night terrors (shawntel), our house got robbed TWICE! Once while we were asleep and another time midday while we were out. .
What we’ve learned in the past year… • His grace is SUFFICIENT and He is WORTHY (Rev. 4)!!! This year has been INSANELY difficult and lonely… God has grown our faith, endurance, and dependence in Him and we wouldn’t trade it for a world of comfort (even though we thought about it for a second )!!!
We wanted to say a special “thank you” to three special groups of people: 1. to our supporters in prayer and finances. Your friendships and encouragement has been IMMEASURABLE in spurring us on while being here. We can’t ever express enough what it’s meant to us! 2. Supporting churches and the pastors of those churches. Receiving cards and prayers from small groups, Sunday school kids programs, and videos from churches is PHENOMENAL 3. CHRISTMAS CARDS! thank you to every single person who sent us Christmas cards this year. Truly. Even received cards from people who didn’t even know us and simply titled the letter “missionary” and said “merry Christmas” (they didn’t even know us but that was HUGE and special for us!!).
“If you want to go fast go alone. If you want to go far go together” - African Proverb
P.S. our children, through it all have adjusted amazingly and love their new cultural context.