Happy Spring! I know many of you have experienced what seems like a forever winter, so I am sure you are looking forward to those signs that spring is really on the way. Here in Florida we did experience a winter that was colder than normal for us and we are now enjoying weather in the 70s and 80s which is a respite before those hot and humid temperatures of the summer. Instead of flowers popping up, it is the sign of spring here at TMI Headquarters when Big Top Tents go up. We have four of the Big Tops up and the fifth and final one will go up after our Annual Mud Run the first weekend in May.
March gave me (Linda) the opportunity to put into practice our word of the year—ASSURANCE. On the 2nd of March, I, and a piece of furniture in my bedroom, had a collision which resulted in a fractured left toe. I am healing, still having issues with closed-in shoes, but grateful for the lessons learned in allowing others to help me. It is good to be humbled every so often. Two weeks later I flew to Pennsylvania to spend a long weekend with my parents. My father is in poor health and I wanted to spend some time with him before we headed overseas. I enjoyed my time so much and will treasure our talks for a long time. The three of us were one hot mess, me with a broken toe, mom on the walker and a bad knee and dad with a bad hip—hilarious watching us get around. The stretching part for me was renting a vehicle and driving to my parents on my own. I am not a confident vehicle driver especially in the snow and alone with a broken toe. God was so faithful and good to me, traffic was light and I really enjoyed two, two-hour prayer sessions alone with Him.
When I returned, we had our annual Governing Board meeting and then, on the 25th of March, I came down with the flu. I have not been that sick for a long time, I was flat on my back in bed for a week and it took at least two weeks to regain my strength. Praise God, Tom, Zach and Kalah were spared. March also had its joys in that our dear friend, Larry, spent the first week with us. We so enjoy his annual visit. Tom and Larry did some “man stuff” and we enjoyed our times of fellowship around the table.
April was special this year. We enjoyed the Easter season in celebration of our living Savior, Jesus. I personally found it ironic that it fell on April Fool’s Day. In Proverbs there is a verse which says, “a fool says in his heart there is no God”. How ironic that we celebrated the resurrection of the King of Kings on a day when others celebrate foolishness—does anybody else see the humor in this?
The main Big Top tent went up on April 7 and I was on the crew that helped prepare lunch. It is a family day with all our staff, students, family members and area volunteers. We always have a good time working together and enjoying fellowship around the picnic tables at our luncheon. From April 8-14 the Maher family came together for a week. We have precious people in our lives that allow us the use of their beach house. It was such a tremendous blessing! All our children, daughter-in-laws, and grandchildren were in one place for the first time in two years. We spent many hours on the beach collecting shells, building and wrecking sand castles, filling up and dumping buckets of water and laughing at the antics of the sea birds. When inside, we put together puzzles, played with dinosaurs, trains, cars, colored and sang silly songs which ended in fits of giggles. Elsie, Jude and Link realized pretty quick that a sweet smile and a tug on my hands would get them a trip to the closet where I kept the “special” snacks. Sweet baby Aurora was not left out of the snacks either. In fact, she was often the first to indicate that she wanted to be deposited in her high chair for something too. I admit they had me wrapped around their little fingers and I, as their Nana, would not have it any other way. I spent the majority of the week on the floor with the children and have some precious memories from our time together.
Tom has his hands full with the Graphics Department and with software updates for the computers in the office. The majority of his current work is getting ready for our annual 5K Mud Run which is a fundraiser for AIDS Orphans. Last year 775 people in the community participated and we anticipate the same number or more. FYI–Tom will be 60 on June 6 this year. I would like to encourage him with cards of greetings from those of you who know and love the gentle, godly man that he is to us all. Send cards to Teen Missions address and ℅ Linda Maher. I am currently teaching in the Bible school three days a week, have a large writing project and handling the day to day responsibilities in my office—never a dull moment.
We will be returning to our beloved Africa again this year! We are currently scheduled to lead the Malawi Well Drilling/Agriculture Team. We will drill a well in a village that has no easy access to water, then return to the base to do agriculture projects. We are looking forward to going back to the country that has some of the most beautiful sunrises and sunsets in the world. This year we will accompany our team to our Debrief location in Addis Abba, Ethiopia. Tom and I will be leading the Debrief of three teams which will be held at a hotel. After the teams fly home, we will travel to Cameroon, Uganda, Tanzania and Zimbabwe, spending two weeks in each location to encourage, train and give accountability to our national staff. We should be back in the States around the end of September.
Praise God, Tom was able to get his new hearing aids! Thank you so much for those of you who helped us meet this need. Tom can hear so much better! As a “geek” he loves that he can control the volume with his phone and the sound goes directly to his aids so as not to disturb anyone around him. What a blessing! Thank you to our support team who pray and financially help us to continue in ministry! You are the BEST! We feel we are loved and supported more than we could ever deserve. May God find us faithful! God bless you and keep you!
Because He Lives,
Tom and Linda Maher
Tom’s new hearing aids.
God’s continued steadfast love, grace and mercy in our lives.
Our fantastic support team.
Pray for Corvin (Linda’s father) he has heart and kidney issues and needs a hip replacement.
Pray for David (Tom’s brother) as he battles brain cancer.
Pray for the teens that will be a part of our team. Ask the Lord to grow us spiritually, help us to be united in purpose, be healthy and see others come to Christ.
Safety, wisdom and good health during the rest of our African travels.
Our children and grandchildren.