Tuesday, June 7, 2016

You work all things together for my good

While some weeks our support-raising seems slow, God continues to encourage and strengthen us.  We have been motivated to seek deeper, look further, and stretch higher.  After hearing its words included in lyrics at church Sunday night, I have been encouraged by Romans 8:28
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Cambodia - Christmas 2010
Things don't always go according to our plans. We had intentions to return to Cambodia as missionaries within two years after getting married (2011), but God quickly showed us that He had other plans.  In the time that has passed since we had already hoped to be in Cambodia, God has led us on some amazing adventures!
  • In July 2015, Titus became a citizen of the United States; this allows him the right to travel freely between Cambodia and the US without a visa.
  • Our daughter was born with a heart defect, but was able to have life-saving surgery.
  • Titus went on missions trips to Puerto Rico and Uganda.
  • Jewel found gainful employment at Indiana Wesleyan University, which provided Titus with the opportunity to earn a bachelor's degree with free tuition.
  • We plugged into ministry with the youth group at Brookhaven Wesleyan Church.
  • We have built a strong support among those who have been able to get to know us as a couple and a growing family.
  • We have also had the opportunity to return to Cambodia twice (December 2013 and October 2015).
Titus' citizenship ceremony - July 16, 2015
Our story is long; and our God is good. Our journey to now has not always been an easy one, but it has been one full of blessings, of affirmation, and of the Lord’s leading us. He led me to Cambodia, He led us to each other, and He has led us since then.  He's taken care of us.  His sovereign plan has been greater than ours.

While we continue to make plans, we're trusting that His plans, even when they do not match ours, are great.

We didn't plan for Sophear to have surgery this year and we certainly didn't plan for her to be born with a heart defect, but we're grateful for what God has taught us.  When the anesthesiologist carried Sophear to surgery on March 16, I found myself helpless and fully reliant on God's loving goodness.  When Sophear was 12-days-old, we dedicated her to the Lord and chose 1 Samuel 12:24 as her life verse -
But be sure to fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you.
He has already done great things for Sophear!  Dr. Kumar wants to see Sophear one more time before we move to Cambodia; but at her last appointment, he said she looks GREAT! The extra blood flow through her heart has COMPLETELY STOPPED and there is NO resulting DAMAGE on nearby veins or arteries. Also, he was surprised that the left side of her heart has SHRUNK back to almost its NORMAL size. (He had previously anticipated that the swelling would be long-term damage.)

On May 24, I (Jewel) had a very long and painful gallbladder attack.  While comprehensive bloodwork and an ultrasound (of the gallbladder) had good results, there is concern for another attack.  If I have another attack to the extent of the previous attack, my doctor wants to immediately remove the gallbladder.  Before removing the gallbladder, he will deliver Little Man.  Of course, our plan includes a full-term pregnancy and a complication-free delivery on August 1, but we're trusting that sovereign God has a plan to "work all things together for our good."

Memorial Day Weekend:
The Romdenh and Nov families

We traveled to Churchville, NY to spend the long weekend with our Cambodian-American friends and to speak at Spencerport Wesleyan Church. Phalkun and Janell have been friends of Titus since around 2001. Their story, though written a few years earlier than ours, is about the same – go to Cambodia as missionary from IWU, eventually come home with Cambodian pastor husband. Janell was a missionary at the Wesleyan Bible Institute in Phnom Penh and Titus also translated many courses for her. The drive to the Rochester, NY area was about 9 hours one-way and Sophear did FANTASTIC! We seriously couldn’t have asked for a happier girl!

On Sunday, we shared about our calling and ministry at Spencerport Wesleyan Church.  Because of our friendship with Phalkun and Janell, we had visited their church on previous occasions and we were grateful to see some familiar faces and receive a warm welcome!  SWC was the fourth church that we have visited as a family on this journey of support-raising.  We continue to be grateful for the opportunities that we have had to share, for the people that have encouraged us, and for the experience of worshipping God in a church outside our home church. Traveling and being a guest is not always easy or fun, but we are grateful for the opportunity that we have been given to raise our own support, to build our team, and to connect personally with our supporters!

We covet your prayers!
  • Praise God for His goodness and faithfulness!  Please pray that He will continue to strengthen and encourage us and provide us with more speaking engagements.
  • Please pray for the people at Cambodian American Christian Fellowship, Cambodian United Methodist Mission Fellowship, Coleman Wesleyan Church, and Spencerport Wesleyan Church. (These are the churches that we have visited on our support-raising journey.)
  • Please pray for God's favor upon Jewel's scholarship application for her continuing studies at Moody Theological Seminary.  Scholarship awards will be made in July and early August.
  • July 23-31, we will attend Family Camp in Fairmount, IN.  Please pray that we find comfortable accommodations for our little family.  Please pray that it's a spiritually and emotionally uplifting week!  Praise God for the tradition on camp meeting!  
  • Please continue to pray for Jewel's pregnancy, gallbladder, and Little Man, expected August 1.
  • Praise God for Sophear's healing!

To see Christ glorified in Cambodia,
Titus, Jewel, Sophear, & Little Man

No comments:

Post a Comment