Tuesday, August 8

Quarterly Catch-up

No, we really don’t have quarterly newsletters. Nor do we have monthly newsletters. We can accurately say that we have newsletters, I suppose, since from time to time we send some sort of an update about what is going on in our lives. Our goal is to at least monthly inform you so that you can know how to pray for us specifically. We will try to provide the updates on a regular basis in the future, hopefully the near rather than the distant future.

Some of you only have contact with us via this medium, so I will try to be a little complete for your benefit. Others have seen us weekly or so, so it may seem a drag for you all.

The first week of March Amber experienced terrible pain, which was uncontrollable with the strongest pain meds available to us. (Tylenol) After visiting 4 hospitals and talking with a group of American docs we felt it best to get Amber out of the country and to the US as soon as we could. Many of you got a short, abrupt email concerning her immediate departure. Ellie and Megan, who is serving in Addis with us, left with her. Luggage, a stroller, a car seat, and a child is almost an impossible task, especially when dealing with the miserable pain that had plagued her for almost a week at the time of departure. The diagnosis in Ethiopia by all of the available medical personnel was multiple kidney stones in both kidneys, with one stone having released already which was the cause of the pain. The US Dr.’s concern was that stone from each kidney might release and thus result in Amber losing both kidneys within a short time. So we sent her home and I waited behind in Addis for 5 weeks before following her home. It was during this time that I had the opportunity to visit with Gashaway (see Role Reversal post) and his church and family. Amber arrived home in the US 4 days before the death of her best friend’s dad. These are some of the little mercies that God has allowed us to see in the situation so far. Though He owes us none, God has been very gracious over and over again to us, allowing us to see a bit of His workings in the circumstances of our lives.

Upon Amber’s arrival in the US, she saw a urologist that insisted that she didn’t have any kidney stones and he was unsure if she had had any at all. So we really don’t know what the physical issue was, but we can rest in God and his sovereign control in our lives. Two weeks after I arrived in America, I re-injured my knee that was in bad condition from a previous injury. After an MRI, it was determined that to avoid long-term irreversible damage to my knee, I was facing reconstruction of the ACL. With this surgery comes 6 months of recovery time and rehab. As of now, I am 7 weeks post surgery, and my knee seems to be doing well and is on schedule for a full recovery. Due to being in the US for this extended unanticipated time, we were able to be in Cincinnati with Gashaway and Kalkidan for her surgery. (for information about this and pictures, visit www.theadweb.com/child) Not only this but Gashaway and Kalkidan were able to visit with us in Memphis, attend church with us in New Albany, and meet those who have supported their ministry for 7 years financially.

We were able to share in most of the churches that we have contact with in the first two months back, and more opportunities have presented themselves due to our being here for an extended length of time. Also, during our time here I am preaching a number of times over a four-month period at the church in New Albany while John, our pastor, takes a writing sabbatical.

We are very appreciative of you all who pray for us and desire to make you aware more regularly of the occurrences in our lives.