Stepping Out - July 2008

Greetings from (mostly) sunny Silverdale,

We are excited to be in summer mode in our ministry at Children of the Nations (COTN). Many of our staff travel overseas to support teams and interns. Renee’ and I stay behind and keep the office and systems running. We can also focus on projects leftover from the fall banquet and spring conference seasons.

We are always excited to receive a letter from our sponsored child, Frances in Chiwengo Village, Malawi. Frances is a constant reminder of a life changed, orphaned early in life and left to his own care. Like many children in Malawi, he was discarded and passed from one family to another until COTN rescued him from a life of certain hardship. Frances wrote that during his typical day, he studies in the morning, afternoon, and at night after devotions with his house family. Frances is shy and very studious, hoping to be an engineer when he finishes school. We pray for Frances’s future, both to design and build bridges, and to build relationships with many other Malawians for Christ.

We have also been blessed to receive weekly updates from our children and staff this summer. Many villages without hope now have children receiving daily nutritional meals and attending school. Teens in the Dominican Republic are forsaking gangs and destructive influences and are choosing to become leaders in their schools. Hundreds have heard the Gospel and have received Christ, joining newly planted churches. The farms in Malawi and Sierra Leone continue to produce great harvests.

Renee is keeping the day-to-day financial office running, providing financial information to many key staff members, and praying that the financial audit for 2007 is done by July 31st.

Dave was very busy in May mobilizing volunteers and loading donations into three shipping containers for our children and staff in Sierra Leone. Our California Satellite also filled a shipping container for Sierra Leone. We are already starting to pray for the next shipment, planned to go to Malawi this fall. Please join us in praying for God’s timing and funding through the Department of Defense (DOD). COTN continues to be blessed with donated shipping through the DOD, saving an estimated $32,000 for the four Sierra Leone containers. This process takes much longer because of paperwork and waiting time, but the funds saved can build a feeding center, a classroom, or an orphan home. We are very willing to wait and pray for God’s timing for our shipments.

We were blessed to visit the Orlando area in June. We traveled on the cheap, with $5 frequent-flyer plane tickets, thankful for the free car use and housing from the Reids, and discounted Disney through Brent Reid and his friends. We watched and listened to the Space Shuttle launch, had a wonderful visit with Uncle Jim and Aunt Carrine, visited Cypress Gardens and Sarasota, and thoroughly explored the four Disney parks. Yes, we even had some photos with Mickey Mouse!

SUMMER PLANS – “Patio Time with Dave & Renee” We have completed our back patio and would like to enjoy it with all of you. Please invite yourselves for a meal. “Boat Time with Dave & Renee” - The boat is ready to go to Kitsap Lake, so join us!

· Pray for all four containers of supplies to clear customs in Sierra Leone and travel safely by semi-truck to Banta Village during the middle weeks of July.
· Pray for Renee and the COTN Finance Department
o 2007 financial audit reports to be completed and sent from Malawi and the Dominican Republic by July 31st,.
o For monthly funding needs to be filled in all countries for 2008.
· Pray for needed weekly volunteers with expertise in Finance, Facilities and Warehousing.
· Pray for Dave as he considers joining a construction team to Sierra Leone this December. The team will be completely wiring all the homes, school, feeding center and chapel for electricity, and also installing a below-ground water system. Many of the supplies were shipped in the May containers. This would also give Dave a chance to visit our ministry in Sierra Leone for the first time. Please pray for wisdom on whether Dave should go and finances to make this trip possible.
· Pray for more families to support Dave & Renee’ monthly – we currently receive 54% of our support goal.
· Pray for opportunities to share COTN with new contacts in our community.

Thank you for your ongoing prayers, support and encouragement.

For the children, Dave & Renee’