Many, if not all of you, are on our list to receive our letters once a month. (Or as often as I get them out!) But in case I have a few readers here that don't get those letters, I wanted to share some news with you. Actually, John wrote this, so just consider it a "guest post." :) And, by the way, this is an edited version. Contact me if you'd like the full letter emailed to you!
New Year Greetings from the Winds!
Not only does every January 1st mark the beginning of the new calendar year, it also marks the beginning of a new year of work here for our family. We first arrived 7 years ago, on January 1, 2004. In fact, just tonight we were looking at some old pictures from those first few months and couldn't believe how quickly the years have passed and how much has happened!
This year as we mark the completion of 7 years of work, we are also anticipating some significant changes for our family in 2011.
After multiple months of prayer and discussion, we have begun on a path that we hope will lead to John beginning a Ph.D program in the upcoming fall. It would be a four year program at SBTS in Louisville, KY. Our family would plan to relocate to Louisville for those four years, meaning a departure from our work here.
Making this decision has not been easy as we have planted our lives here during the last 7 years, intending to stay indefinitely. We studied a new language, started a family, built a team, and opened a business. We shared with many and saw many lives changed. The possibility and the idea of pursuing the Ph.D came upon us unexpectedly in 2010. But as we began to seek Him in this matter, He began to confirm that He was, in fact, leading us to pursue this course. So the sadness of our expected departure is also mixed with the peace and confidence that His plan is best.
Our plan is to return to the US in 6 months, at the end of June. We hope to arrive in Louisville mid-July and begin settling into a new home in preparation for the beginning of John's fall semester. The next six months, then, will be focused on completing this 7 1/2 year leg of the race that has been marked out for us. When we first left for Asia 7 years ago, the hardest part was saying "goodbye" to all of our family and friends in the States. Now after living here for 7 years, the hardest part will be saying "goodbye" to our many dear friends and brothers and sisters here! Please pray for us as we seek to finish well our work here.
And, though our time here is not yet complete, it is never too early to say "Thank YOU" for all the wonderful support you've given us over the last seven years. You have played a key role in what He has done here!
We pray that the Lord will fill you with His superabundant joy, faithfulness, and fruitfulness in 2011!
Wow. Big news. I have several posts percolating in my head as I think about these upcoming changes. You can bet there'll be lots of reflections, musings, and ponderings coming soon as our family anticipates this major transition, so stay tuned. Thanks for reading!