We bought tickets to Kenya!! We have stepped out in faith to buy tickets for August 2nd so that we could get Hannah there to start school. We will spend the next couple weeks saying goodbye, packing, shopping, and selling the rest of our things.
We aren’t fully funded yet (93%). We still need around $600/month. Please consider joining 165 families already supporting us and commit to supporting our ministry each month so we can go to Kenya fully funded and keep our focus on life and ministry in Kenya.
We can’t believe that a month is over so quickly. We spent our last week in Colorado learning how to handle grief and loss and how to say goodbyes well. We’re not looking forward to those “goodbye” times, but we feel a little better prepared for them. It was bittersweet leaving the training center too because we formed such strong bonds with the other missionaries at MTI who understand exactly what we are going through. We are excited to see family and friends of course, but it also meant that it is back to reality (work, school, support raising, no more house keeping services, no more chefs preparing our meals) and less time preparing for Kenya.
Thanks to the generous BOLD Christmas offering by Mountain Christian Church and several of you giving generously, we are now over 54% of our monthly support and 71% of our sending support needed to minister in Kenya! We still have quite a bit to raise and now that we have finished all of our missionary training we are ready to head out and begin this adventure that God has called our family.
If you were considering supporting us NOW is the time, join #TeamGerbersGo and click on the “Give Monthly” or “Give One Time” for start giving or please just contact us and we’d love to talk about it with you!
I can’t believe that we are beginning our last week of training! If someone had told me all that I (Katie) would learn, discover, feel, this past month I wouldn’t have believed them. This place has become home, our one room has become a sanctuary and the 7 outfits that we brought have been more than enough. It is amazing how much you don’t really need and I pray that I remember this as we head home this Saturday.
This week was a big shift. From exhausting language learning drills to a different kind of exhaustion. These last two weeks are more about learning about yourself and your tendencies to a very deep level so that when we’re going through the crucible of serving in a foreign country we’re prepared for how we handle stress and others who probably act, think, and express their feelings very differently.
Week 3 was a lot about conflict and how we handle stress. MTI even created a very stressful simulation for us to see ourselves through what we had just learned. That was capped off Friday with a surprise solo Sabbath time. I (Pat) had my bucket filled by climbing a mountain 10 minutes from MTI. The trail started with a lot of icy switchbacks that don’t get hit by the sun, but once you get the plateau on top your footing is sure and you can enjoy the breathtaking view God has made. I was asking for God to speak to me and I heard that “Kenya is worth it!” That was great to hear because this time of preparation can often feel like the slippery switchbacks on the dark side of the mountain!
Please continue praying about joining our team and supporting us monthly. I know a lot of you have mentioned wanting to support us, now is the time. We are completing our last few items off our CMF check-list and then once all the support is in we will be on our way to serve in Nairobi, Kenya. This has been the most humbling experience. The Lord has called, but we need the church body to get us there. When we get back on Saturday we would love to share our story with anyone who will listen. Let us know and we would love to meet with you.
We can’t believe that it is already the ½ way point of our month long training. We have finished the language portion of the training and I believe we can all say that our perspective on language training has changed; to truly understand someone and understand their culture you need to get to know their language. It will be hard work, but we are excited and nervous to begin our official language learning of Swahili.
This weekend we were able to experience God’s greatness through the beauty of the Mountains. Katie’s friend let us all stay in her cabin up in the Rockies, an hour outside of Denver near some of the best ski resorts. We were able to have tea in the Shawnee Tea Room, hike 3.25 miles up and then down the mountain, get caught driving in a white out of drifting snow, watch movies, eat s’mores and enjoy family time.
It’s exciting to think we are at the ½ way point of our training and we are getting close to the ½ way point of our monthly commitments. Now is the time to join our team, please prayerfully considering joining our team with a monthly commitment.
1 down, 3 more weeks of missionary training to go! So what have we been doing this past week?
We have a very strict schedule, kinda like camp, breakfast at 7:30 (8:30 on Weekend :), lunch at noon, dinner at 5:30. The rest of the day we are all in class, and yes we have homework in the evening. The classes are full of teaching us different language techniques and phonetics to help us learn any new language more quickly and effectively. Our mouths have made sounds we never knew we could make and we now understand some Russian and a tribal language from Vietnam.
This 1st weekend we were able to get out with a rental car and visit a Pioneer museum and go hiking in one of the most beautiful places we have ever seen, Garden of the Gods. Sunday we were able to worship at Academy Christian Church and then we were blessed to spend time with Katie’s Aunt, Uncle and Cousin who we haven’t seen in years. It was wonderful to catch up and we look forward to spending more time with them. They also blessed our socks of with allowing us to borrow their car. Yay, no more rentals!!!!
Please continue to Pray for us and if you haven’t joined our team yet please go to gerbersgo.com/support so we can get to Kenya and use all of these new skills to expand His Kingdom.
The last few weeks have been CRAZY for us! We’ve been in 4 states, told our story to lots of friends and strangers, went to 4 days of training on the style of ministry done in Nairobi, Commissioned by CMF and by our church, and had some work done on the house that had us living out of one room in the basement for awhile.
We have made lots of progress on gathering partners in the last couple of weeks! As of today we are over 50% of our Sending budget and at 20% of our Monthly budget! We want to get to Kenya early next year. So these totals are behind the pace for the GO date we’ve been praying for, but we are still celebrating each new financial support as it comes in, no matter what size. God is orchestrating it all!
This weekend we are speaking at Castine Church of the Brethren near Greenville, OH. This is Katie’s parents’ new church so we are looking forward to getting to know them better.
We are working on a new video for this Christmas season that we are very excited about. Pray that it starts a new Christmas tradition for people.
Pray for ordinary people like you and me to catch the vision for this ministry and decide to invest in the people of Kenya by supporting our ministry each month. That is our biggest need.
The house is getting close to ready so pray for home buyers!
We’ve been working towards this day for months. Please keep us in your prayers Mon-Wed as we go to classes and meetings all day. This is where we find out our budget, learn the nuts and bolts of support raising, and are oriented to how CMF does things.
Think about everything you own and decide what you would keep if you had to fit everything in 5 suitcases.
Seriously that’s how we’ve started looking at things. The truth is everything we own in the next few months or so will need to either fit in our suitcases or be sold or gotten rid of or paid to store.
I’ve never liked accumulating things, but this is a whole new worldview as we go through life still in the American culture where things are cheap and there is always a new and better thing to have.
I’m often reminded of driving through the countryside in England with Katie years ago. We were so confused by seeing signs in the middle of fields advertising a “Boot Sale”. When we returned to town we asked a long time missionary why people will be selling boots out in a field. She explained that people bring their extra things to sell in their cars and park in these fields. Then they raise their car’s boot (trunk) to sell those items. She went on to say that even in a rich country like England, the idea of having so much extra stuff that you need to fill a garage or even a yard and have your own sale was crazy.
I think this time of getting rid of things will be good for us and our faith. I suspect that even if you’re not planning to move everything you own in a few suitcases, your life and faith might improve with accumulating fewer things or even having your own boot sale.