Greeting from Ohio! (Yes, Ohio!)
As I write this, I am sitting at the Highland County Fair in Ohio promoting Motorcycle Sunday School Mission(MSSM). Our lives have been a whirlwind since our last newsletter. We started Boot Camps in June, after 40 days of 24-hour a day prayer. On July 10, we traveled with a team of 17 teenagers to Nepal. We returned from Nepal via India on August 10 and left for Ohio on August 16. We were in Ohio until September 23 and then traveled to Iowa for a week to speak at churches and hold a Teen Fun Day on Saturday, October 1, at Jericho Hills Camp in Lucas, Iowa. Hopefully, we will be back in Florida by October 6. Shannon has always said that “home is where your stuff is,” but has now changed that to “home is wherever you make it.” It will be good when we finally do get home.
Our summer in Nepal taught us to be fluid and flexible! 🙂 Our original project was to build a church/orphanage in the village of Urlabari. However, our building site was a flooded rice paddy during monsoon season. It soon became obvious that construction would be impossible. Our team was touched by the children that would come to visit us every day. One boy came just to read the Bible and shared with us his favorite verses. One girl told us that she was a Christian and wanted to serve God, but her parent’s had forbidden her to go to church or read the Bible. Please remember these children in your prayers and pray for encouragement for the believers in this area. While in Urlabari, we stayed with a farmer named, Prem. He shared with us a vision his pastor had long ago. He said that one day, Prem’s house would be covered with white people. Guess what? When 23 Americans show up to live in your modest, three bedroom house, it is definitely covered with white people. The people in the area knew about the vision, and many came out to see the white people that God had sent. Prem and his wife were so kind and hospitable. It was sad to leave them. Because of the heavy rains and lack of project, our team relocated back to Kathmandu to serve at Mendie’s Haven Children’s Home. We were so grateful that David Mendies opened his doors to us and welcomed us in. We immediately fell in love with the children who live at Mendie’s Haven and loved our time playing with them after school. Our project there was to build a covered, outdoor cooking area that would also provide shelter for the dish washing and laundry area. We also built a wall in front of the boy’s restrooms. Our team of 17 teens worked hard. They matured in their spiritual lives and learned to serve others in a sacrificial way. We are so proud of these teens and their ability to adapt and adjust.
One miracle we experienced was on the journey back to the United States. At one point, after a long 14 hour train ride in India, we realized that one of our duffel bags was missing. We started the trip with 17 and after counting, realized we only had 16. We recounted them often and knew we only had 16 bags. It worried us to think what was missing and we were sure it was Shannon’s clothes and belongings that we lost. One of our team members, Sydney, immediately started praying that God would help us find our lost bag. We knew it was probably never going to be seen again. Upon return to Florida, we started to unpack and one of the team members shouted that they had found Shannon’s clothes. We were so excited to know that our things weren’t missing, but wondered whose things were now lost. Much to our surprise, all of the teams things made it to Florida…nothing was missing!!!! Sydney immediately realized God had answered her prayer. She was amazed to discover that God cares about even the little things! She said she would never doubt God’s presence in her life! What an amazing way God chose to prove Himself to our team!!
Despite the difficulties, it was an amazing summer and we saw a few people come to know the Lord! Ashley, one of our team members, led a man to the Lord on the flight to Delhi! Another young person was led to the Lord while we were in the village of Urlabari. That makes our summer worth it all!
Canaan had a challenging but rewarding summer in Honduras as an assistant leader on the horseback team. I was amazed at how much he seemed to grow up and mature.
Taylor spent a month in China teaching English at Evergreen Ministries “Joy in the Journey Camp.” She really enjoyed her time there and fell in love with China all over again. She enjoyed teaching geography and spending time with the kids who came to camp.
They are both students at Asbury University in Lexington, Kentucky. Taylor is a senior and will graduate in May. Canaan is a freshman, but with his college credits, will graduate in about two years. He is majoring in Biology and has really adjusted well to college life. He works in the Biology Department as a lab teaching assistant.
Zoe was a Peanut Team member for the first time this year. She went on the Cookie Command Team. Her team baked cookies, attached scripture to them and delivered them to the local firemen and police departments. She had a great time on her team and, surprisingly, was homesick very little. She is looking forward to Peanut’s again next year, although she says she won’t do the Cookie Command again because “they didn’t let me eat the cookie dough.” She is such a funny girl!
On September 17, Shannon and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary. Taylor (with the help of some family) threw us a surprise party in Bainbridge, Ohio, at the Methodist church where we were married. It was a wonderful evening with family and friends (some we haven’t seen in over 20 years)! My brother, Mark, even brought our wedding video for every one to watch. What memories it brought back. We are truly blessed.
In closing, we would like to thank all of your for your faithful support, prayer and encouragement! We are so blessed by you! We would also to thank everyone who hosted us, fed us and visited with us during our time in Ohio, Indiana and Iowa the past few weeks. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!
In Christ, The Bobbs