We have some big news about some huge changes ahead for us as a family!!
Firstly though, I have put some pictures below with short captions that mention some of our highlights from the last few months (as we have not posted on this blog for a while).
New things ahead...
Over 4 years ago we were in a worship service in the Phnom Penh House of Prayer. It was a powerful evening and during worship Mollie got a picture of us at Bethel Church, Redding, USA with a little girl (Grace) and a baby boy.
This was before we had plans for any children and right at the beginning of our time in Cambodia but we remembered about this back in June when we became pregnant again and we started to really pray into it. We also asked our fellow base leaders in the other Cambodia base to join in with praying with us for confirmations and spoke to our International Directors and asked them to be praying with us.
Since then we have had numerous prophetic confirmations from different people emailing us with pictures that they have had and other people prophesying over me in meetings -about a time of transition ahead and an open door into something new.
We plan to return to the UK in March for the birth of our boy and then after a season at home to leave for Bethel in the US in late August to attend the Ministry School starting in September. We are still in the application process so please pray for us!
Our hearts are still 100 percent for the nations and for missions and to follow Jesus but He has made it clear that this is our next step in following Him and our hearts priority is to do that!
It also makes huge sense to us that we have a season of training. We followed him out to the nations after only a short Missions School in Africa. By God’s grace we have been able to do what He has called us to in this 5 years since that but we feel like this season ahead will be a time of Him increasing our capacity, so we will be even better equipped to serve Him in the times ahead.
What about Cambodia?
Iris Cambodia is in an exciting time. In Phnom Penh this year we plan to raise up local leaders and across our two bases have a flood of new longtermers joining us from the nations. We will have at least five new people in Phnom Penh and at least four people (two couples) joining the team in Sihanoukville. We believe this season ahead for the team is going to be full of expansion and increase!
It has been a huge honour to serve along side this beautiful team and learn from them but when God tells us to go we have to go and we trust that He will continue to propel the team into the amazing destiny He has ahead for them. We have some incredibly gifted leaders and servants on the ground here and more new people coming in who will be better equipped to move Iris Cambodia forward than we ever could. Despite us leaving Cambodia the team here are like family to us and we will continue to be a part of their journey and praying for them. We will miss living alongside such incredible heroes but we are thankful that geography doesn’t separate the special bonds we have with these people.
We know we will come back to Cambodia as it has a very special place in our hearts. We have had words about it being our Jerusalem and the place from which that we go to other nations. But we do feel to not make any commitments about returning just yet so we can be fully open to whatever God has ahead for us in the future.
This last month we got to have a full Iris Cambodia Team get together in Sihanoukville and got to say goodbye as a family to the Sauder family (who are also leaving for a time) and also we ourselves received a good send off from the Sihanoukville team.
This next few weeks ahead we will be also saying goodbyes to our Phnom Penh team and other friends and finalising preparations for the team for the months ahead.
This time is full of mixed emotions. The thought of leaving this beautiful nation makes us feel sad; we have never met a people who are so loving, sweet, generous, caring and thoughtful. The Cambodian bride is truly magnificent and we feel so blessed to have spent the last few years learning how to love from them. But we believe that all those lives we hold so dear and who we have seen impacted by Gods love are so safe in the hands of our faithful Father.
We look forward to coming back one day and seeing the fruit of all the seeds sown and how God moves and breathes on the people and places our hearts burn for. Letting go is never easy but we trust that God has the best intentions for us and all those we love here and so we fully trust Him and know that there is no better place than the centre of His will.
We rejoice in God that we got the incredible privilege in serving in this nation and with this team. God has done some incredibly powerful things (mainly in us) and we are so thankful as we look back but we are also thankful as we look ahead with anticipation and excitement.