Monday, July 29, 2019

The Amazing Race Birthday Party

Every other year, our kids get a "big" party where they can each invite as many people as they want. This year Taylor (who just turned 12) wanted to invite her WHOLE class (28 kids) and a few other special friends. We had 27 kids total show up (yikes!) but we really did have so much fun doing an "Amazing Race" themed birthday party. Here are some of the clues we used for the big day.

Ready, set, go...

This was the hardest challenge for them. They all
wanted to do it until they tasted it...we only had 3 throw up :)

Happy 12th birthday, Taylor!

What a fun day celebrating our Taylor Grace!

Pastors and Leaders Conference

The last weekend in July, we were able to train around 70 pastors and elders at a retreat in Notwane, Botswana. This retreat was made possible by the money raised and given to the IMB in honor of Sarah Harmening. 17 year old Sarah was on her way to Botswana 2 years ago when the bus she was traveling in on the way to the Atlanta airport crashed and she lost her life. Her family wanted to raise money to support a missionary for a year in honor of Sarah and present it to the IMB (International Mission Board), our sending agency. They raised well above the amount they had targeted and that money went towards the ministry here in Botswana. Here is how we proposed to use the money:
1. 1/3 of the money to buy books and commentaries to outfit our new seminary library.
2. 1/3 of the money to supply school supplies to the children we work with at Gaborone Baptist Church for 3 years.
3.1/3 of the money to hold a conference to train our pastors and leaders here in Botswana on our new church planting material that helps strengthen existing churches and look for areas where we can plant churches where there is no evangelical presence.

This weekend we were finally able to hold this conference and it was amazing! We trained them on very reproducible methods of evangelism/discipleship and pinned a map with areas where we currently have churches and where we need to go plant churches. Please join with us in prayer for the existing churches (red pins) and areas where we hope to plant churches (white pins).

Pastors and leaders of the Baptist Convention of Botswana

Brent sharing about Sarah 
Map of Botswana
Red pins-existing churches
White pins-where we want to plant churches

Close up region of a Map of Botswana
Red pins-existing churches
White pins-where we want to plant churches
T-shirts we had made for the participants of the conference.
Sarah's artwork "to the ends of the earth..." was included
on the shirts-she had drawn this on her training materials
 she was using tocome to Botswana to share about Jesus.

Birthday party and snakes?

Who would've thought that birthday parties and snakes go together. At school Taylor who is a 6th grader gets paired with a Kindergartener and is their buddy reader for the year. This year Taylor got a sweet little girl named Maddie and they each adore each other. Maddie recently invited Taylor to her birthday party and for her siblings to come along. It was at the reptile part with loads of snakes, yikes! It was such a fun party though and everyone enjoyed touching the snakes...well, everyone except me.
Love my kiddos


Mole snake

Taylor and Maddie

Cool Spring Baptist Church in Virginia

We love having teams come from Cool Spring Baptist Church in Virginia. This church has been coming 2-3 times a year for the past 6 years. Many of them have come multiple times and there is such a presence in the village they keep going back to that they know this church really cares for them.

A visit to infamous Sanitas is always a must

We were able to give out school supplies to the
children's ward at the government hospital-
Princess Marina Hospital

We worked with a doctor named Maria (far left) who is a
pediatric oncologist. She showed us around and let us visit
not only her oncology patients but the whole children's ward

A trip to the top of the Itowers to look over
the city of Gaborone. 

S' very very yummy!

Evangelism in the village

Men preparing to meet the chief so they had to have their jackets on

The team on the pan out in the desert

Praying over the boarding school we have just been granted
permission to share Christ freely with their 1600 students
Sharing Christ

Sharing Two Paths

This church has been coming to the village of Ditshegwane
for 6 years 

My friend Kathy and I on a game drive

The crew on safari

School things

We love the primary school our kids attend. There are so many amazing opportunities for them to learn and plug into the community. The school recently had an art show featuring each grades really was so impressive. We are so blessed our kids have the opportunity to attend the school that they do.
Bradyn's artwork-birds

Taylor's artwork-Sunbird
 The school also held a "Sponsored Walk" where kids do laps and earn money for their school. They also incorporated a color run into it. Well done kiddos!
One child definitely likes getting messier than the other

Oh sweet Ellie

Our sweet Ellie is almost 2 years old and boy does she keep us on our toes. She is at that stage that she can't quite say all the words she wants to so she just ends up screaming at us and on top of that she is trying to figure out if she is boss or mommy and daddy. Oh this her so much but she is quite a challenge right now. Here are a few of the moments that make me love her and pull my hair out :)
Ellie loved chasing monkeys

Thankfully she wasn't fast enough to catch the monkeys

Loving her ride on the bike

Ellie loves face paint and drawing on herself

Recycling Bradyn's old scooter

This is the 2nd time I have had to scrub a chair
after Ellie decided to put her artwork on it

Riding bikes with "Bubba" as she calls Bradyn

Swinging for the first time holding on by herself.
Of course this happened on daddy's watch and I about
flipped when I saw it.

Munching her croissant