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

Giving Tuesday {a request}

By Tuesday, December 1, 2015 0 0

I love the week after Thanksgiving. I know it’s all commercialism and buy buy buy, but I enjoy it. I don’t go crazy, but I do spend a little money over the weekend and on Cyber Monday because sometimes the deals on gifts and things we were looking at anyway are just too good. I always buy our Christmas cards and family photo gifts with these fantastic deals, for example.

Perhaps you got some good deals this weekend too! I love how each day has it’s own name – Black Friday, Small Biz Saturday and Cyber Monday. It helps me plan! I hope you’ll forgive me for jumping on the bandwagon with this request, which is a little different. We’ve had our shopping days, but today is Giving Tuesday, a day that celebrates generosity and doing something more, something to give back.

And I have been a constant example of how you can help those in need by working hard. You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” Acts 20:25

Here’s what they say on givingtuesday.org: “It’s a simple idea. Just find a way for your family, your community, your company or your organization to come together to give something more. Then tell everyone you can about how you are giving. Join us and be a part of a global celebration of a new tradition of generosity.”

There’s no shortage of options. I often share my Angel Tree story and recommend a Global Gift Catalog (today World Vision has a matching gift!). Those are just two special ways my family gives back each year around the holidays.

Would you consider partnering with us as part of your Giving Tuesday plan? We are less than $1500 away from full support, plane tickets, language school, and feet down in the field, where less than 1 percent of people know Jesus.

The statistics say that 77% claim to be Christian, but less than 1% of that group claim Evangelical beliefs. Just to be clear, some of the beliefs up in the air for Spanish “Christians” include the deity of Christ, the personal love of God, Jesus’ death and resurrection, and salvation by faith alone. By our calculations, that means that of 46.5 million people, only 400,000 are evangelical believers.

He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” Luke 10:2

Your monthly gift (of any amount!) will enable us  to put our feet on the ground at a growing church plant in Alcalá, where the population grows each year. New apartment complexes mean that young families just like ours are moving to Alcalá, where there is not a church on every corner. In Alcalá it really seems like nobody has a neighbor who can share the love of Christ with them. We’ve been called to be that neighbor, and we are so eager to go! We long for the friendships we’ll build trading English for Spanish, meeting children in the courtyard of our complex, and doing life shoulder to shoulder with Spaniards.

You can be part of the amazing joy it will be to see a small Spanish church plant grow, raise up a Spanish pastor, and plant its own church elsewhere.

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 Spiritual Battle for Spain

By Thursday, July 23, 2015 0 0

In our May Prayer letter, we shared these sobering statistics and details. I see Spain as a land of contrasts – beautiful, yet broken. My dream is to see its Spiritual influence as beautiful and whole as its culture is rich. Spain is a place many people want to visit, and for good reason. But it is struggling in many ways – on the world’s stage, it suffers economically. And in God’s realm, Spain is still a very dark place. Our prayer is that God would use us to shine the Light, Jesus Christ, in Spain. These statistics are part of the spiritual battle, but we serve a Mighty God! We believe that although these facts are sobering, God has a plan to use them to draw people to Himself.

Bible Illiteracy

Spain edges out France and Italy for first place in Bible Illiteracy. Officially a Catholic nation, Spain today has more people who say they have little or no interest in religion than it has actively committed Catholics. What this means for us is that we can start from the beginning and tell the Story of Hope in a new way. The stories might be familiar and we might have to answer questions and correct old superstitions, but God’s plan for redemption as outlined in the Bible will take center stage.

Atheistic

Spain is the 5th country in the world in terms of percentage of atheists in the population. Most of these people are young influencers with whom we’ll be neighbors! Although they don’t believe in God, this does not mean that Spaniards don’t have an interest in spiritual things. Superstition, horoscopes, and new age beliefs are common as well.

English

According to social statistics, Spaniards speak the worst English in Europe! English is the felt need in Spain. God has opened doors because many people who are not interested in the Bible want to learn English. The lack of English  means that young adults have fewer global opportunities than their peers from around Western Europe. So we offer English camp, English lessons, and English practice. We meet this need out of love for Spaniards, and we praise God that it’s so “easy.” Then we pray that through the friendships we form, we can share His love for them by sharing the Good News.

Getting to Know Our City {Day 15}

By Wednesday, October 15, 2014 0 0
Espartales Norte will eventually house 15,000 more people with not a single church or believer that we know of.

Espartales Norte will eventually house 15,000 more people with not a single church or believer that we know of.

Alcalá de Henares is a bustling city in the Madrid suburbs, with a population of over 200,000. It’s about the size (and feel too) of Tacoma, WA. It’s also a college town, with the University of Alcalá near the center of town. The culture there is rich: it’s the birthplace of Don Quixote! That’s right, Miguel de Cervantes was raised in Alcalá, and there are statues of his characters, the author himself, and his famous windmills, all over town.

Plaza de Cervantes

Cervantes, on top, and the windmill scene on the pillar in Plaza de Cervantes.

Recently we’ve begun learning more about the neighborhoods that make up Alcalá. Our small team cannot reach a city the size of Alcalá without multiplying, so at this point we’ve outlined an area with 40,000 people and pray that God would multiply believers and plant churches throughout Alcalá through discipleship.

How beautiful it would be if those churches were planted by Spaniards!

One neighborhood within our church’s area is called Espartales. In 2015, Espartales Norte will be completed, adding 15,000 more people to the area. There are no churches or believers that we know of in Espartales Norte.

That’s why we want to go there. In Espartales Norte, our family will fit right in (except for the blond hair): the majority of new residents are young families. In addition to the formal outreach our church plant does, we will meet people at parks, shopping areas, and through activities with our children. We’ll build friendships and talk about the economy, our families, and, most importantly, our beliefs. It is likely that we will have lots of opportunity for conversations about what makes us different from Catholics, Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses.

We’ll also be able to show Christ’s love to people in a variety of ways. We’ll meet needs as God reveals; one we already know of is English. Many people in Spain want to learn English. By starting English lessons and having regular meetings with Spaniards who want to work on their English, we can show Christ’s love.

God has called us to move to Espartales so we can influence for Christ the community being built there. How is God asking you to influence Espartales for Christ? Will you join our partnership team?

Read our Support page to find out what it looks like to support a missionary financially.

 

 

 

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

Photo credit: Adam and Emily Byerly