Remembering Our Commissioning Service

By Wednesday, August 10, 2016 0 0

Nearly two months ago… I am so behind. This is a missionary’s blog and many of you come here to find out how to pray for us, to catch up on our ministry, and to get a peek on our lives. Well, life is overwhelming. Between parenting, swim lessons, homeschool planning, sorting and selling our home items, ministry activities we just want to keep doing, and the long list of tasks related to prefield… doing this blog the way I want just falls off the priority list.

But something is better than nothing. So, the photos are not all here, but the words are and they matter. We had to blog this because we never want to forget it!

On June 18, 2016, we gathered with our church family, many friends, family members and financial partners to officially commission our family to the mission field. We chose to have our commissioning this day because our teammates and coworkers, Rich and Cindy, were in town and scheduled to speak at Eastgate the next morning. We turned the whole weekend in a focus on Spain! Our prefield director, Brad Winkler, was also able to come to Bellevue to participate. Brad has been such an encouragement to us in this long journey – never judgmental, critical or disappointed, but always encouraging and pointing us to God and what He can do.

Our coworkers, Rich ad Cindy, with us on Sunday after church.

We have video of the service but I have some editing to do, so here is a written summary. I’ll update this post with video when it is finally done.

After gathering in the foyer by our display board and having guests “sign” the fingerprint tree, we sang, worshiped, prayed and were encouraged by our speakers.

A photo posted by Rosalie (@mrsduryee) on

Rather than record the names of all the people who came to our service, we created this fingerprint tree as an Ebenezer to represent the day. The truth is, there were a lot of people not in attendance whom we know to give, pray and follow our mission work closely. It would be sad not to have their names in the guestbook meant to represent the day were were “sent.” Furthermore, it was just a day. Our real commissioning came the day we each surrendered our lives to Jesus, and our sending is done – we are missionaries, though we have yet to leave for the field. The fingerprint tree reminds us that many, many people are behind us; we are not sent alone and we do not labor alone. In the years to come, when we doubt our calling, I know this Ebenezer will encourage us.

Our friends Robin and Joy Porter and both their boys led us in worshiping with Mighty to Save by Hillsong, Our God Reigns (How Lovely On the Mountains) (an oldie but SUCH a goody), and Follow You by Leeland.

Then Chris and I shared our testimonies and some of the ways God has changed us over the last six years. He is so faithful!

Our Pastor, Brad Kolbo, gave a charge to the church, and Brad Winkler gave the charge to us, the missionaries. My notes are disjointed from caring for children, but the main message was “Three Cs” that we can remember when we face difficulty: our commission, our calling, and our comfort.

We decorated Clark Hall for a reception but I forgot to take pictures of the beautiful centerpieces complete with Spanish fans. Here’s the festive vases being reused.

A photo posted by Rosalie (@mrsduryee) on

We’re so thankful. God used our commissioning service to bring new partners, caused committed partners to begin their support, and honored God by rejoicing in the work He has done and is doing in Spain.

Please continue to pray for our support raising, language school plans, and transition to the mission field.

A photo posted by Rosalie (@mrsduryee) on

Last Night I Dreamed About Orlando

By Tuesday, June 14, 2016 0 0

Last night Chris and I prayed before falling asleep, like we always do. We held hands and thanked God for our many blessings, prayed for our children and our support raising and our marriage. And then we prayed for Orlando. Chris’s voice broke a little when he thought of the parents. Parents whose babies won’t be coming home. Parents who had horrifying text conversations just moments before a monster took their baby’s life. And this is the picture that haunted my dreams last night: silent phones, still bodies, distressed parents.

We are heartbroken for this tremendous loss of lives. So many young lives; not that value decreases with age but that potential increases! I think of all the amazing things that have happened to me since I was 25 and I mourn the lost future of all these precious humans.

Which brings us to the age old question. What was God’s role is this tragedy? He is sovereign. He literally holds the world in His hands and not one hair on your head is lost without God knowing about it, ordaining its fall. I have studied the answer to this question, heard messages on it and read the many Bible verses that demonstrate that God’s purposes prevail over the purposes of man. I never know how to answer it exactly. It is not comforting to hear that He allowed it, willed it, caused it, or will use it. It’s too horrible! It’s not comforting to hear that He didn’t have a part in it but it is all because of the decisions of that horrible man, because then what is the point? If man is that powerful, then God must be weak. Indeed, this is a prevailing belief today.

This is my only comfort: Jesus, who redeems ALL things, will redeem this tragedy. I know that God was not surprised, though He is brokenhearted. God was not detached, though He does not control us like marionettes. We cannot yet see how, and perhaps we may never see this side of eternity, but this tragedy is part of the bigger picture, the bigger plan for all of humanity, and it fits perfectly into the puzzle, which God sees in completion.

God’s plan for every human is that we dwell with Him forever in eternity. This is the single best thing that will ever happen – no more tears, no more pain, no more suffering. Just perfect fellowship together with God, the creator and author of everything beautiful and good in the world. It comes at the price though. To ensure this possibility, God endured the very same tragedy that those brokenhearted parents in Orlando suffer now: His only son, Jesus, was slaughtered. God sent His son to be slaughtered.

Why did He do it? Because the horrific death of His son paid a ransom placed on mankind. He allowed His son to die in order to purchase us because He loves us. In order to purchase you. Because He loves you.

You see, the enemy of our souls tricks us into believing that God has withheld something good, and we chase after that something until we die.

What is causing the quarrels and fights among you? Don’t they come from the evil desires at war within you? You want what you don’t have, so you scheme and kill to get it. You are jealous of what others have, but you can’t get it, so you fight and wage war to take it away from them. Yet you don’t have what you want because you don’t ask God for it. And even when you ask, you don’t get it because your motives are all wrong—you want only what will give you pleasure. (James 4:1-3)

Lest you think only Sunday’s killer is represented in this passage, remember that Jesus said that if you hate someone, you’ll be judged like a murderer, and John said it too, a little more pointedly.

No one loves perfectly, and the imperfections void our love when we face God. That’s what sin is. It’s a black mark on our hearts, which are designed in love, for love. Marred. Broken. Imperfections void our love in every relationship, really. It’s just that we (can – we don’t always) forgive and have grace and treat others the way we want to be treated – all things Jesus taught us.  He was aiding our survival in this broken world, and He was pointing to eternity, which will be full of perfect love!

Instead of casting aside our broken hearts and the messed up world that rules our hearts, God made a way for His perfect love to rule our hearts once again. He sent His son Jesus to earth, humbly, to grow up in this broken world, and Jesus grew up in it but was not blemished by it. He was perfect in every way – always loving, always gracious, always righteous, and always hanging out with the worst of the broken ones at that – the adulterers, the liars, the drunkards, the sexually immoral. He loved all those people. Indeed, he said they would be first in line to Heaven. He didn’t say it to condone their sins, indeed they turned from their sinful lifestyles time after time when they met Jesus, He said it because they would run to Him with abandon. When you have nothing to lose but your brokenness, it’s easy to come to Jesus. It’s when you’re holding on to something else – your past, your money, your rebel lifestyle, your pain, your reputation, your power – that it becomes hard. It’s like Jesus was saying, “you’re broken. If you know you’re broken, come with me. I will take care of it.”

It’s the knowing that is hard.

Tragedy reminds us.

What Does 75 percent Mean, Anyway?

By Thursday, July 30, 2015 0 0

75After the last prayer letter we sent, it was brought to my attention that the numbers we share are sometimes a bit confusing. Our prayer warriors and financial partners are happy we’re moving along, but perhaps don’t totally know what we’re lacking in support for which deadline, and whether that’s a monthly or a one time amount we lack.

So, thanks for your grace! I hope this explanation will clear things up.

The most important number for us is 100 percent of our monthly support. When we are fully supported, we can register for language school, pack our bags and plan our shipping container. 100 percent comprises what we need to live and do ministry in Spain. Currently, we have 75 percent of that total in committed gifts, and most people are fulfilling their commitments. We really appreciate that! We currently draw on this support for prefield ministry expenses, including travel.

Our monthly support “shortage” is just over $1500.

In the meantime, we need to reach 85 percent to attend Field Prep Seminar. That’s just another $600.

What we don’t currently draw from our support account builds up, and can be used to fund our Outfit & Passage, a one-time amount we have to raise to get to the field and set up. It covers some language school expenses, travel, housing set up, a new car, visa fees, etc. We’ll share more about that need as we get closer.

If this helped you understand our financial needs a bit more, perhaps you will pray about how you can help? We would love to see you be a part of our team in Spain through financial partnership. Take a look at the following graphic – when we fill in all the orange bunches, we’ll receive financial clearance!

Last 25 percent

The Encouragers {Day 8}

By Wednesday, October 8, 2014 0 0

Philippians 4:19

When I read Paul’s letters, it seems to me that his encouragers played an important role in keeping him on the field, keeping his eye on the prize: Jesus. He admonishes the churches everywhere to encourage one another, and thanks them for their encouragement to him.

Financial support is so encouraging. Our partners are tangible proof and confirmation of God’s call on our lives, and they motivate us to put our own money where our faith is and remember that giving to missions is giving to God, not people.

Prayer support is humbling. To think that people around the world would remember us in their prayers, petition the God of the universe on our behalf… I can’t wrap my head around it sometimes, and yet each year I get hundreds of notes, Facebook messages, comments and emails telling me “we’re praying for you.”

And finally, the real life Barnabus’ (Barnabi?) who speak from the heart, encourage us in our calling, our ministry, our efforts. We couldn’t do it without these people who allow God to speak through them.

Following are some of the things our encouragers have said to us that have really kept us going.

All your work is kingdom work. We support YOU.

I know Spain needs missionaries because I have been there.

We’re in this with you for the long haul.

I think you’d be good at that.

It is a joy to see that money come out of my account each month. I am doing something for God’s kingdom!

Seeing your faith in this season is motivating to me.

We pray for you every day.

We need you here! (from our coworkers)

You will marvel at the work God is doing in front of your very eyes… through the prayers of people who live on the other side of the world (from this blog post by Gloria Furman)

I pray many more will read this, Rose. Excellent!

You are precious and honored in his sight, he chose you and will deliver you through any storm, and he wants you to live a life of freedom and not one of bondage.

You are SO loved and prayed for by SO many!

(image source)

31 Stories of Preparing for the Mission Field at Seasoned with Salt // theduryees.com

End of Summer Prayer Letter Available

By Thursday, October 2, 2014 0 0

Did you know you can receive monthly updates about our ministry by signing up for our prayer letter? The signup is on our homepage, right above the Light of the World image.

Will you read our most recent prayer letter and consider our request? A potential partner church in Tacoma, about an hour away by freeway, and a near miss on the street this week bolstered our prayer that God would provide the funds to purchase a more powerful/safer scooter for Chris to use.