Posts Tagged ‘God’s Answer’


God’s Growth Chart

   Posted by: Ron & Stephanie Kenaston    in Our Mission

I think I remember growth charts unfondly because they represented either being sick, or being too short to get on a ride growing up.  I am reflecting on that today for a couple of reasons.

First, my kids wanted to get measured on the door frame.  Something I have been doing for almost 19 years.  As soon as Ryan could stand he was up against the wall with a pencil on top of his head.   Now it is only the two youngest that care.  The Ryan is done growing and Bree is pretty sure she is done.  Andrew and Gabby, on the other hand, are growing like weeds.  Since October both of them have grown almost 2 inches.  The days of pants too short, and clumsiness (due to being off balance from the growth) are upon us.  I am glad that I started this tradition with my kids.  They love looking back through the years ( I transferred the information every time we moved.) and see how much they grew and when one passed the other.  They are only 22 months apart but the Gabby has come close to Andrew a couple of times.  I think those days may be over now, but they still do a good job matching up growing spurts.

Today this seems significant because of the other reason that has been on my mind.  I read today about another missionary family in Peru that sounds like a sister family.  We both are living in barns, turned homes.  We both have bugs, though I have no doubt theirs are bigger and scarier, and we both home school children that would not be classed as your “seen and not heard” children.  Normal in so many ways but, speaking of my own children, some learning difficulties that we have had to hurdle along the way.  I laughed and sympathized with much of what they had to say in their blog. 

My heart is so divided between here and Peru.  But I started thinking about how I would have handled living as they are without the time to grow in contentment.  There are many types of growth.  And as people, from the time we can express it, cannot wait to grow up.  When we are grown up we cannot wait for other things and often run ahead blindly.  We make mistakes, we learn, we grow in wisdom.  I started looking at where we were when the notions of being missionaries first hit us.  Oh we were spoiled.  Not by American terms maybe, but by most of the world’s standards.  Nice home, nice income, got what we wanted, ate what we wanted…. the list could go on.  There was much we claimed as our own.  And most would see no problem with that.  We worked hard.  We got what we worked for.  We had much growing to do before we could see God’s will for us as missionaries.  We needed to see that none of it was ours.  When we gave our lives to Christ and committed ourselves to serving Him it meant coming to terms with the whole truth, not just the parts that sounded nice.  Not just the parts that felt good.  But everything we have is God’s and we have to not just be will to reluctantly surrender it, but be willing to give it all to him if we are to truly serve Him.

This learning process has taken time.  Not time we wanted, but time God used to grow us to this point.  And I know that if there is delay in us going to the field that it is a delay that God is using for more growth.  Either for us or for others.  I am not a patient person by nature.  Once I know what I am suppose to do then I want to “get er done”!  But God did not exercise a lack of patience with his creation and I look at the time that he took so often to teach his people.  Sometimes he required much sacrifice from them and sometimes little.  But always with great wisdom and purpose did he plan out their lives and I cannot help but realize that truth in my own life.

We wanted to be to language training by the beginning of the year; this year!  We went to training last July with a time table that rushed us where we wanted to go.  I just about died when they told us that we would more than likely project going January 2011.  I think I was almost depressed about it.  I wanted to go then…not wait a year and a half.  Now, that we are 2/3 of the way to that date, I can see why, in all wisdom, they would tell us that.  There was, and still is, much to do.  Most of what we can focus on is schooling and fundraising, but I see what God has on his agenda for us to accomplish too.  One funny thing was us living in this barn/apartment.  We are living more simply than we ever have and are forgoing luxuries that we would have considered necessities at one time.  We did not plan this as training, but God did.  We have had so many vehicle breakdowns and needed to depend on God for the answers that we would not have planned out, were it our choice.  Yet God deemed these good experiences for our training. 

The one that is heaviest on my heart right now is the fundraising.  I know that God is able to provide for all our needs according to His will.  And we are confident that His will is for us to be missionaries in Peru.  For what ever reason he has deemed us to wait.  The funds are not coming in by our time table, yet we are doing all that we have learned to do.  What is God waiting for?  I don’t know.  But my faith and my heart tell me that God is teaching someone something and this is a growing time.  Maybe he has spoke to someone, or many someones, that they are to give big and He (and we) are waiting for their obedience.  Maybe there are more life lessons that He sees us needing.  Maybe there is someone or something that needs us here before we go.  We just don’t know. 

But we wait in faith and we keep our eyes on the growth chart.  Marking off the new growth and know that we are on our way to being tall enough for the ride.  Praise God for His divine wisdom.  Help us in thanking God for this and for how Great He really is.  Pray for our paitence and for God speed to always be the speed we grow at!

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God’s Garage Sale for His Glory

   Posted by: Ron & Stephanie Kenaston    in Our Mission

Well, I must say today I finally feel like I am on the upswing of things. I can catch up now that life has slowed down a little. Two weeks ago we had our Women’s Retreat. If I was just a participant I may have been refreshed, but because I was on the committee I needed to recoup. But then again, I probably would have been up half the night either way! Normally, after we are done with retreat we can rest, but the garage sale our Encouragement and Accountability Group was throwing came just a week later; last weekend. I I had come down with a cold after retreat and that tried to slow me down, but I think I did really well anyway. Ron and I priced our stuff like mad and I know that there were more people than I could name who donated tons of stuff. Our EA group leaders, John and Sarah Cooper, were the founding planners of this event. They donated their garage and yard, hours and days of their lives, and coordinated it all. Sarah was also the head of our retreat committee. So we were all being sustained by the strength of God.
What could have been a real bummer sale (the weather was ummm rainy, windy, and just plain bad) turned out to be a testimony to God’s blessing for our mission. The one and a half days of the sale added $1,444 to our Outgoing Mission Fund. I have never heard of such a thing before. It was amazing.  We had so many people come and donate their time to work it too.  The Chapmans and the Howards, who are on our EA team, were always there or close at hand.  It was a gift on so many levels.  It encouraged us, it obviously helped us financial, and it gave us something productive to do.  We are looking for more things like this to continue that momentum.  If you have any ideas, we would love to hear them.

Now that we are past these events we look forward to a family garage sale that will be happening the 19th of June at Ron’s Mom’s house.  We have taken what was left of our stuff from the sale and will be including the rest of our stuff in storage and anything else that we can from our house. 

Also, I am thinking of putting together a cookbook or some type of book to earn money because I have a spiral binding machine and the coils.  Do you guys have any ideas on what I could do?  I want to sell them for our mission. 

Well, with that I will close.  Off to home school the kids, do my college class, and Spanish.  Praying that soon we will see Peru and do what God has putting into our hearts to do.  We still have a ways to go.  We are getting about 1/4 of what we need monthly and have gotten about 15% of our outgoing so far.  We are praying that God prompts the hearts of those he has richly blessed to give generously.  Please join us in this prayer.

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Mission Newsletter for February/March

   Posted by: Ron & Stephanie Kenaston    in Our Mission

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