We can’t believe summer is almost here! Our daughters are finished with school (cheers all around), and the rainy season has begun for us. As farmers this really matters to us now!
Encouragement from Locals
We wanted to start by sharing a fun story with you. Earlier this month, the “gifts” had a friend come to the farm to visit them. This man who visited is also orphaned, and he grew up in the same village with the girls. He told me that most orphans he knows get worse and worse, but these two girls are getting better and better. He said that our farm is a good and healthy place for them to be, and he was so happy for them to be here.
He also said that he could tell that Kevin and I were called to this work, and so it will thrive and do well. Then he encouraged me to keep going even if we make mistakes and not let those things stop us from moving forward. Finally he said that he didn’t know of anyone with as much courage as we had to try something like this, and he thanked us for coming. I cried tears of joy as he spoke these things to me. In a culture where encouragement is very rare, it was like a breath of fresh air blowing life and hope into our efforts.
Improvements to the Farm
We haven’t posted an update on our farm progress in a while. There have been major changes and more coming, but as of now here are some pictures for you to see how far we’ve come. One of our teammates felt strongly that the girls should have a welcoming place to make them feel special. She dreamed up this lobby and kitchen for the girls. We know it will be a blessing to the ‘gifts’ we have and the ones that are to come.
And we also have a lovely electric 3-wheel bike for our farm now, which is simply awesome. We use it to take the ‘gifts’ and team places and to do work on the farm. It’s been a huge blessing to us and we use it all the time. Another teammate felt strong enough about this, she paid for it for us. Thank you, Hill.
Speaking of Hillary and Cass, both of them felt led to move onto other things and have left our team. We appreciate their kindness to the ‘gifts’ and serving us over the last few months.
So now our team consists of our family, Andrea, and two summer interns. Andrea has been teaching English for us and is loved by the gifts. She only committed to be here for three months and is leaving in July.
Our family moved out of our house and into the dorm last week, and we are really enjoying spending more time there. Our daughters feel like the gifts are their sisters, and we are attaching to them and them to us more and more. We plan to take them to the dentist soon since they have never gone for x-rays to check for cavities, and they’ve never had a teeth cleaning. We are also involving them in a lot of our family activities. It’s getting to the point where we miss them on our days off and we want to spend days off the farm with them, like we do with our daughters.
So it really is feeling more and more like we are foster parents and that we have 4 kids now instead of 2. It’s a nice feeling, especially after trying to adopt twice and having so much heart break through the years. Dreams are coming true and we are just trusting Him to build Josiah’s Covenant as we move forward.
Our ‘gifts’ are doing really well, and there’s another orphaned friend of theirs who wants to come in June or July. We’d love to take her in and hope it’s possible. Please remember this transition and decision.
And if you or someone you know is interested in orphans, teens, or China please message us! We would love to have the company, and anyone would be blessed by seeing these beautiful women changing and growing in such beautiful ways.
Thanks for all your love and support. We appreciate you joining us on the journey.
How to Give to Josiah’s Covenant
By the way, we finally got chickens after a lot of preparation. We are so happy to have them! We started with 5 hens and 1 rooster. We want more later on but will start with a small number while we make sure we know how to care for them. Please pray that they lay a lot of eggs, haha!