Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Reminder about this weeks prayer need:

Pray that God would speak to us through His Word in a new and fresh way. That we would be able to know with confidence the height, width and depth of the Love of God both personally and as a couple.

More and more we are experiencing the power of prayer in our lives. This experience of waiting can be difficult on the heart and mind. Satan would relish the opportunity to discourage us during this time. The temptation of our hearts is to give into discouragement and fear. God is our Father and we are confident that He hears the prayers of His children. Prayers that are uttered in the midst of uncertainty when the heart, mind and body become weary. Prayers that seem to spill out of our hearts and lips when the eyes are overwhelmed by tears. I (Jessica) am so thankful for each and everyone that is covering us with prayer. Please, do not grow weary in doing good. Continue with these prayers. They are heard by the Father and they are felt by us.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Monday Update

Sometimes God's faithfulness is paraded before your eyes...quite literally.

Last night we were incredibly blessed to be apart of a time of celebration. Our church in Asheville, Trinity PCA, had a dinner, time of prayer and time of encouragement for all the missionaries that Trinity is sending out. We are so thankful for the time that God gave us to share with our Trinity family about what the Lord is, has and will do through this journey to Liberia. As we stood in a receiving line (more like a wedding than a funeral) greeting friends old and new we realized it was a visible display of God's faithfulness and abundant provision for all of our needs. Thank you Mission's Ministry Group! Thank you Trinity family! We hope to see all of you a couple more time before we leave the country. Know that it is by your prayers, support and encouragement that we set out on this mission.

We head back to High Point today. We're going to pass another week in the Piedmont of North Carolina while we wait for the back quarter panel of our car to get repaired. Thanks, Asheville Waste Management for side swiping our car many moons ago. (that was sarcasm)

September is wide open for us. The classes at Equip don't begin until October 2nd. Which leaves us with some time to kill. Keep a close eye on your spare bedrooms and basement apartments. We just might show up on your doorstep!

Finally, for today's update we are instituting a weekly prayer theme. We have been floored by the amount of folks that have shared with us that they are covering us in prayers. Each week from this point on we will share one item of prayer that will be posted alongside all of our other posts for the week. When you see these prayer requests please take just a moment, right then, to pray for this specific need.

This weeks prayer need: Pray that God would speak to us through His Word in a new and fresh way. That we would be able to know with confidence the height, width and depth of the Love of God both personally and as a couple.

Our plane tickets are set for October 30th, exactly two months from today. That's a big deal. Thanks for reading our blog!

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Truth Comes Out

Welp, Friday is here again. We are heading off to AVL on Saturday so all you Ashevillians check your spare bedrooms and basement apartments for the Hoovers.

We've been a bit cryptic as of late about our departure date. We now can share with you what the plan is! A couple of weeks ago Kyle was asked to consider assisting with Equip USA's Water Resources Classes (filters, pumps, well-drilling) in Marion, NC. The problem with that was we had planned on leaving for Liberia around mid-September. The classes are set for the 1st three weeks in October. So folks on both sides of the Atlantic had to be consulted and a decision had to be made. After a week or so of praying and emailing we decided to delay our departure so that Kyle can help teach the upcoming courses.

After that decision was made we were able to begin moving in a definite direction!

Today we are making the final arrangements to set our plane tickets for Liberia in stone. FINALLY! This has been a long time coming. The plan is to leave on October 30th (the day after our 5th anniversary!) and hop a bizillion flights and eventually make it to Liberia. Got that?

Pray that we would use this extended time wisely. God has provided for these extra months in the States. Pray that we would trust that all the ends will be met. I (Jessica) would like to think I was ready to leave yesterday. Evidently God has something else in mind.

Unfortunately this means more blogs from the hinterland. Stick with us...t-minus 2 months!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Liberian Highways

Equip Liberia's vehicles are able to navigate even in less than ideal conditions, aka; a bridge in Liberia.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Stuck Between Two Continents

What's it like being in limbo between two continents?


As you can see the words that come to mind when faced with this question are a mixed bag. Over the course of the last 6 weeks we have packed our Asheville home up, moved everything into storage, started living out of the Corolla, spent 3 weeks in Canada, a week bouncing between Charlotte, High Point and Raleigh, a week in Myrtle Beach with the Hoover clan, been stuck like a pin cushion for travel shots, wrestled and played with the nieces and nephews, enjoyed a day on the lake and put a few hundred more miles on the car. Kyle's mom calls us her "roaming gnomes" and roam we have in the past few weeks and there is no end in sight.

Liberia will be our biggest roam yet and we are anxious to set sail for it's shores. However, God is doing a work in our lives during the interim and we trust that is all preparation for the road ahead. If I (Jessica) were honest I'd have to say it is difficult to feel "stuck" between two continents. Each day we are forced to rely on Christ to provide a place for us to stay and all the other needs that we might have. Most folks we encounter are shocked when they realize that we really mean it when we say we are homeless.

Being "homeless" means relying on friends and family to open their hearts and homes to us. Kyle and I have been forced to be vulnerable and allow God to provide for our daily needs through many different people. No longer can I (Jessica) walk to MY drier and do OUR laundry. No longer do we have OUR OWN space. It's amazing how easily our independence and self-centeredness comes to the forefront when we find our self in an uncomfortable position. It seems to ooze out of my pores at times.

And yet...

God is stripping away our independence to show Himself faithful to provide and to show us that this work is not dependent on us. So what is it like being in limbo between two continents? I think that we won't fully know until we're in Liberia and can look back from the other side of the Atlantic and see all of the little and big ways that God has provided for this journey. Pray that we will be attentive to His voice and His lessons of love and provision.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Friends, Family and the Uncertain Details

Time flies when you're havin' fun!

We've been spending time with family around the Raleigh area this past week. For me (Jessica) it is the longest I've been around the part of the world that I grew up in, in many years. I have missed the scenery and people, but not the humidity. I suppose the Lord is preparing us for the intense heat and humidity of a typical Liberian day so I will simply be thankful.

Last week we were in limbo. We've been uncertain about our departure date which has left a bunch of the details up in the air that we hoped to have pretty well set at this point. Just another opportunity to trust God's providence along the road of this journey! However, things have begun to clarify themselves and we are confident that we will have a departure date set in stone this coming week. Sorry to be so cryptic, we will share more this week once things get set!

We're heard from many of you saying that you received our prayer cards! Once again our postage goes unwasted! Yipee! Now the Hoovers can take up residence on your refrigerator! Thanks again to Tanya McSween for doing the photography and design work!

A big thanks to my cousins (Wayne and Linda Elms, more like an aunt and uncle to me) who had us up to their lake house over the weekend. It was a little slice of heaven. Jet ski, fishing, steaks, Journey on DVD, George Strait on the stereo and dessert to boot, and an unexpected fireworks show...now that is what I call Lake Livin'! Thanks Wayne and Linda!

This week we head back to High Point, NC and then onto Asheville over the weekend! This week should be an interesting week around the blog so be sure to check back for all the news! We love each and everyone of you that is following this journey. Our hope is that through these daily logs you would see the grace and goodness of our Lord and be drawn closer to the Source of all life through these posts.

Friday, August 20, 2010

The Countdown: In More Ways Than One

Welcome to Friday! Back before the big Canada adventure we were counting down all of our favorite things about Western NC, where up until last month we called home. If my memory serves me right we had made it up to #8 out of a Top 25 (in no particular order). Our life has changed dramatically in the last month. Jobs have been quit, classes have been taken, support has been raised and vacations have been had. The one thing that hasn't happened is the remainder of the countdown! So here it is, in no particular order and without ranking, the remainder of the countdown!

Check out the links to find out more about our favorite things!

Doc Chey's, the view of downtown from Beaucatcher Tunnel, The Biltmore Estate, Ultimate Ice Cream, Mamacitas, The Screen Door, Mast General Store, Snowbird Wilderness Outfitters, the Nantahala River, Shindig on the Green, Black Mountain, NC, Dupont State Forest, the Davidson River, the River Arts District of Asheville...ok, so you get my point...there are more than 8 things that could finish out this list!

FYI to all our AVL peeps, we will be in Asheville over the weekend of August 28th-29th. We are looking forward to a service at Trinity and giving/receiving
some big hugs/encouragement from good friends.

Now that we have put to rest the Top 25 Countdown (be sure to look back through the archives for more!) we can move onto more pressing matters! As we near our departure date (whatever that may be at this point, continue to pray for clarity!) we will be endeavoring to answer some of the most frequently asked questions that we get in the coming blog posts. You know, inquiring minds want to know!

Questions like:
What are you going to wear in Liberia?
What are your living conditions like?
Are you worried about malaria?
What are you doing with your car?
What is Liberia's climate like?
How will you get around?
How does your family feel about this journey?
What kind of food will you be eating?
Are you nervous/excited/anxious, etc?

Stay tuned...it's just now gettin' excited! We're watchin' God do something BIG.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Late post this morning...and unfortunately no pictures on Wordless Wednesday. The internet connection just won't allow such tomfoolery so I have been reduced to words. I had a picture to post, but will save it for next week!

So far this week we (primarily Kyle) have managed to clean off my Grandmother's roof, remove hundred year old items from her backyard, dispose of ancient hazardous chemicals and visit with a couple of good friends (thanks for the pizza and conversation LJ and Amy!).

No word yet on our departure date. Please pray that all those details will work themselves out in the near future. In the meantime we will enjoy the slower pace of our life and the opportunity to spend time with friends and family while taking care of all the details!

Most of you should get a prayer card from us in the near future. Tack it up on your fridge next to the Papa John's magnet and your grandkid's masterpieces and please, please, please pray for the work in Liberia!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Back from the Beach and Big News!

Did you miss us?

Well, miss us no longer! We had a fabulous time! We only wish that we had another week to relax, lounge on the beach and watch the waves roll in. Kyle and I realized when we arrived at Myrtle Beach on Saturday that within a weeks time we had been at the Pacific ocean and the Atlantic ocean. We are turning into real jet setters!

Here are a few pictures from the Hoover Beach extravaganza! Ok, so only two pictures...
Slow internet + Jessica's lack of patience = two pictures uploaded and lots of apologies
I'll try to post more later!

Chaco tan in the sand

Jessica and Kayla (walking on the beach)

We have even more exciting news to share with you all! As of last week we were informed by Equip that we can leave for Liberia! Yep, folks that means exactly what you think it means! Through the support of the Body of Christ, God has provided and we can now buy plane tickets, get visas and prepare to hop a plane to parts yet unknown to us! We will be sharing more in the coming days but we ask that you be in prayer for us as we make decisions about the exact date we will be leaving.

We're back to blogging this week and are so excited to move into the next phase of this journey. We're overwhelmed by the ways God is bringing all things together in His time. Join us in rejoicing over God's provision!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Beach Bound

This will be the final post before our grand beach vacation. We are excited to have a few days with the Hoover clan on the Redneck Riviera (aka: Myrtle Beach). God is good and we are so glad that we have a bit of time to invest in family before this journey takes us to parts yet unknown. We're taking a week off of blogging so if you want more take a trip back through our blog archives and be encouraged by the way God is weaving this journey together.

We'll be back in a week or so with pictures, updates and the usual-whatever that is these days!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Wordy Wednesday: Where'd You Get the Bronze From?

I'm (Jessica) blaming the jet lag for our lack of a Wordless Wednesday photo to share. My heads just not been in the game since the trip back, but God works in spite of us and our limited ability (or cognizance). I say this because I think God wanted me to share something rather than show something on the blog today.

Over the last few months I have been slowly, methodically reading through Scripture- Genesis to Revelation. No, time line, no agenda, just reading through at my own pace soaking in whatever it is the Lord wants me too. Recently I journeyed through Exodus. Yep, Exodus, Moses tale stands as tall as ever. The story really is epic. So I'm reading through the book like an outsider and at times on the edge of my seat to see what by now should be a not so surprise ending. I get through the wilderness, Moses reluctant leadership, the plagues and the hard hearted Pharaoh, the Sea split wide for the people of God to walk through (not around, but through), the battles, Moses heavy arms held high, water from a rock in a dry and weary land, a mount ablaze with God's glory and Moses face aglow,the law given, idols made, a tabernacle built.

There is no end to the Exodus miracles.

Why am I telling you this? Well, as I was reading through, near the end, the description of the tabernacle began...and it just kept going...and going...and well, you know, going...I had to force myself to engage with these passages. Scarlet thread, gold filigree, ephods, and priestly undergarments (say what?). Something occurred to me as I struggled to stay locked into what God was doing/saying through the detailed description of how the tabernacle was to be constructed. Where were all these materials coming from? I mean you've got a people who had been slaves for a bazillion years and are released to wander the wilderness, unbeknown to them, for forty years. Bronze, gold, onyx, precious jewels, all the finest for this priestly tabernacle. The Israelites were in no position to retrieve all the materials that God was requiring. They were ill-prepared to say the least.

That's me on any given day. Ill-prepared at best for the task ahead. Full of fear, full of inadequacy, full of doubt, but God calls us in spite of our inadequacies and He makes something beautiful out of all of it. Because guess what? We don't have what it takes. You won't read that in the latest, greatest self-help book. You won't hear that on Oprah, but it's true. On our own, apart from the work of Christ, we don't have what it takes. The Israelites on their own apart from God didn't even have water to drink much less enough bronze to make a suitable temple.

God is a God of provision. Provision for our lack. The bridge across the vast chasm of our need, but boy don't we try to span that gap? That's why we wake up at 5:30 am in a fountain of worry.

(Worry about our husband's diet, worry about finances, worry about aging parents, worry about flying on airplanes, worry about hurricanes, worry about politics, worry about everyone and everything else in our lives that we have absolutely NO control over any way).

That's why we find it easier to know things about God rather than to know God the Father and His Son, our Savior, Jesus. If He is God to you He will supply your lack when He calls you to abundance. Today and every day. Wilderness wandering may be all a part of that plan, but His provision will remain. What I love about the end of Exodus is the promise. God doesn't leave Moses and the people of Israel. He promises to be with them and guide them through the journey. His still stands for those who believe. He has not left us in the wilderness.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Back in the Land of the Pines

After 24hrs. in an airport we made it back to God's country. Ahhhhhh, the sound of a Southern accent. The Canadians we met along the way were gracious hosts, but we've gotta say that a good Southern accent is like warm honey and it can't be beat!

We're running errands, reading back-logged mail, eating biscuits and grits, and rearranging all our worldly good-once again. We've been reunited with the Norbs cat briefly. He's every bit himself these days-and more-Mimi and Poppi's is evidently not a place where he will be losing weight.

This morning we hopped out of bed with every intention of getting our shots- Yellow fever, Typhoid, etc... only to find out that our appointment is for tomorrow. So we will try again...tomorrow. We will be heading to the Raleigh area with the Norbs cat tomorrow. Saturday we head to Myrtle Beach for some family time/vacation with the Hoovers!

Big thanks to our SWO family for sending us a package full of love, letters, and goodies! It truly reminds us that this work is not of us, but by God's grace that is being given to us through so many!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Monday Update

You're reading this as we are wiping the sleepies from our eyes. We are somewhere between Vancouver and Charlotte in transit right now! Our 3 weeks in Canada have been fruitful and refreshing. We return to the land of the pines to get shots (so necessary but ouchie-especially because we have to have like 4-5 of them), spend time with family and continue to make the final preparations for Liberia. God is good and we know that all of it will come together with His guidance and timing. We will update several more times this week before taking a brief break to go to the beach with the Hoovers. We've instated a blogging ban for that week! The remainder of this week we will continue to update you on all that the Lord did while we were in Canada and all that we are waiting on Him to do in the coming weeks, months and year.
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