In the good ole summer time….

It’s been a big couple of days here. Isaac headed off to camp yesterday and will be gone through Friday. It will be his first time really being away from home for any length of time, and he was very excited as we saw him off.
Isaac rides the zip-line
Britt took off today for an overnight with her friend who lives up the street and Tim is packing up to head back to Hawaii tomorrow. Vanessa and the rest of the Tim Coxes are about to head off to visit the extended family in Louisianna and then will be joining him in Hawaii. All things considered, there are Coxes headed in all directions.

I spent much of the day hammering out our own travel plans. Reviewing the details I had and seeking the answers to those I didn’t. (If you’re interested, the latest revision of our schedule is here). We’re excited. Tomorrow night we’ll be addressing the short term missions committee at church seeking some financial assistance for our trip. If you think of it, please say a prayer for us around 6 pm MST.

The Adventures of Transpacific Tim

Many of you have been following the saga of my brother Tim and his strange tropical ailment, so I wanted to take a few minutes and catch you up on his current status.

Tim is home again briefly to celebrate his son’s graduation from high school, and to help the family pack up and get moving toward Hawaii. God has moved powerfully, and their house sold within a few days of housing opening up for them in Hawaii. Tim is in good spirits and health. He is still dependant on a cane, but he is able to walk short distances without it, and in many ways seems as though nothing ever happened to him.

The proud family and the graduate

Please continue to keep he and his family in your prayers, but know they are powerful and effective. Your prayers are working! Thanks, and God bless you!

Economic decline in Germany

The Telegraph has produced an article about the decline of the German economy. (Hat tip: Powerline) Once again this is a post which has been languishing on my desk for a long time. I want to appeal to our readers again to consider the importance of Europe as a mission field. The article talks at some length about the decline of the German economy in comparison to it’s EU bretheren, but I think the conclusion is the most concise and important look at the issue:

Its once generous welfare state now looks completely unaffordable and Germany is now suffering a brain drain of scientists.

A people with a reputation as the hardest-working in Europe have come to hate work and unemployment has reached a higher level than at any other time since the Second World War.

What we see here is the failure of secular humanism. We’re each born with a unique need to relate to God, one which can only be fulfilled by relating to God. For all of history since the fall we have struggled to fill that need in a myriad of other ways: sex, drugs, gluttony, power… but nothing has ever worked. Just as the writer of ecclesiastes discovered so long ago:

What does man gain from all his labor at which he toils under the sun? —Ecclesiastes 1:3

The writer tells us it is all meaningless. It certainly appears that the German is drawing the same conclusion. Now is the moment to aquaint them with Christ. He is meaningful! He can fill the void which is destroying them.

What does this mean for you? Think about the great commission. We are, each one of us, called to participate in the spread of the Gospel. Maybe you’re called to go, or maybe you’re called to be a prayer warrior. Maybe God want’s you to partner with a ministry financially. I would encourage you — no matter what — to pray. Pray that God will show you his plan for your life. Pray that God will light a fire of envangelism in Europe. Pray for Creative Works, and reaching the people of Europe through art and media. If you’re looking for a way to get involved, we’d love to hear from you.

A Triumph of Faith

Can you guess what present Faith liked best?

It seems it’s only been a few days since I was writing about Brittany’s birthday and now Faith’s birthday has come and gone without my managing to get a post up. There is nothing like a house full of preschoolers to sap away your desire to get things done. 🙂

Faith’s birthday began with a fair amount of excitment. She marched into Sunday School class and shouted: “It’s my birthday!” Arms flung wide, grinning from ear to ear, with all the joy and exuberance that only a four year old can muster.

After Church, we had a party for Faith at the house with various friends from her preschool class plus all of the requisite cousins, grandparents, Aunts and such. They made princess crowns (or prince crowns as the case may be), played musical chairs, and pin the tale on the donkey. There were of course mountains of presents — far too many, they reach a point of numbness at this age — and a cake (which came out much better than Brittany’s) with a pink and purple VW Beetle — or as Faith would say, a yellow “Herbie” on it.

All in all, it is another reminder that time is flying by (although four is not so jolting a reminder as twelve, thank goodness!).

Happy Birthday Faith!

A Vision for our Future

I admit it. I’ve been holding back on you. 🙂 For some time now, we’ve been discussing making a short term trip to Germany to kind of get our feet wet and get a feel for how things will be when we go long term. The opportunity has finally arrived.

Jason and Sue HolmWe’ll be leaving the end of June to go to Cologne, Germany for two weeks. There we will be working on a project with Jason Holm and Creative Works. You will find some details on Durand’s blog, but I think Jason has probably summarized it best in his most recent prayer letter:

In an effort to encourage existing churches to plant daughter churches, I have begun putting together a multimedia seminar that I will offer to churches. … I envision a fast paced, creative and modern seminar with video clips, PowerPoint, music and a series of “elevator pitches” on evangelism and church planting. I would like to target 25-45 year old Christians who have a heart for evangelism, are creative and have entrepreneurial gifts like leadership, Apostleship and faith. These people have, for the most part, grown up in a church that has a huddle mentality and has failed miserably in reaching out to its community. They have often been stifled in their faith and expression of their gifts and are longing for a change … These are the people whose hearts I want to capture … I want them to realize that it is their spiritual responsibility to do it – and that it can be done. I am collaborating on this project with another GEM missionary, Durand Robinson, who is very gifted in multimedia. He has recruited a professional videographer, Ted Cox, to come and help. During the last week of June and we will be doing interviews with Christian leaders and with lay people who have been involved in a church plant or have come to faith in a young church. We also want to do street interviews with non-Christians asking them why they don’t go to church. My experience is that … a new church plant has the wonderful opportunity to focus on the answers they are looking for. Please PRAY that God would help us as we work on this project.

Durand and Ruth RobinsonAs you can imagine we’re very excited. This will be a wonderful opportunity to work with Durand, who will be my supervisor in Europe, and also to impact Europe for Christ! It’s hard to imagine a much better opportunity than that.