We wanted to send out a quick update to let you know how life is progressing. We are still adjusting to our new life here in a country that is so different than anything we have experienced before. We have both been to many different countries before, learned languages, had new job but this is our first time with a baby! Tommy (and Marigold) both enrich our lives and create such joy every day but we did not realize the cost of leaving friends and family would be on raising a child. With that in mind we have sought out the help of some people here in order to be able to live lives of mission and introduce Tommy to the world.
Crystal started language learning 3 days a week and we couldn't be prouder of her. She already sounds so Cambodian when she speaks and is starting to make connections in the neighborhood and a local coffee shop. Tommy's sweet demeanor opens many opportunities to meet others. God has also blessed us with many small groups, bible studies, and even a play group with kids Tommy’s age. A family with a two year old German Shepard also move to the neighborhood last month so even Marigold is making friends!
A.T. often feels like he is back at graduate school as he spends the majority of his days doing research for AIM. It has been a gift to be able to study and learn so much about the world of fighting trafficking, pornography and sexual exploitation. This education will be helpful in many different ways but the heaviness of the material does begin to weigh upon him. There is beauty in the ashes and living and working here makes both unavoidable. Please be praying A.T.can maintain perspective of God's work in all of the darkness.
A.T. has also been able to do some side projects for AIM, write project proposals, and go assist in construction related accounting. These activities have been such a blessing as it gives a break from the darker parts of the job. We are very thankful for the opportunity to be working with AIM as this has helped both of learn so much about running a program and serving the survivors and victims of sex trafficking. We are so humbled to walk beside this community of Khmer and AIM volunteers.
We are still waiting on Crystal and Tommy’s visas. There are many obstacles and potential costs ahead, please join us in prayer as we await these documents. We have not left our suburb of Phnom Penh due to the restrictions that are on us without these papers. We also wanted to share that we are short of our fundraising goal for living here sustainable, but through a few generous donations we still do not know need. When money has become tight God has provided without fail. This journey of ours has been many steps of faith and God has always shown himself to be so faithful in it.
Somethings to celebrate:
Crystal and Tommy got a chance to visit family and attend a wedding in Minneapolis
A.T. got to do a little moto trip with his friend Collin on the outskirts of Phnom Penh
We had to leave the country to renew or visas and spent a day in Malaysia.
We are learning so much.
God has provided some great friends and community.
God continues to provide our every need.
We wanted to share with you some of the amazing numbers from April. Although we are working more in a support role we get to see God at work in every aspect of AIM.