Back in the USA

We’re here. It’s been a little over a week. The suitcases are all put away, and we’re almost on a regular schedule. We still need to visit some family before we can really get into “real” life.

We’ll be living with my parents outside of Philadelphia for the indefinite future. My husband’s work is only part time, but it’s a good flexible job and he needs to continue with it since his students are counting on him to keep teaching his online foreign language classes. He is also able to continue his ministry from here of encouraging pastors and church leaders around the globe through email, messaging, and Skype. Our other income is from EP and especially Genesis Curriculum.

We will be in the States for at least a year and a half, but I think it could be much longer. We do want to get back overseas, but we’re not going to go just for the sake of going. God will have to give us new direction to do so. He obviously arranged things to get us here, so we are being content with that. Starting next year we’ll be moving into a new phase of parenting with a child entering college. It is a relief that it looks like we won’t have to send a child off to another continent for school! But maybe this will be a season in the States while we see kids through this transition to college.

I, of course, would love to have our own home. (I’m turning 40 this year and have never owned a home.) However, we don’t want to live in debt so that we can be free to go if the Lord sends us. We’re first saving up for a car before we can even think about a home!

Thank you to everyone praying for us. It’s a big transition to the States, and it’s a big change of lifestyle and culture. Pray for us to find meaningful ways to minister as a family here. I don’t want my kids to lose their understanding of how others live by being sheltered in suburbia. I don’t want my kids to forget that we’re rich compared to the rest of the world.

Here’s a video walking down the street to visit our friends in Macedonia. We visited them at least once a week. When we lived in Macedonia previously, we lived in this Roma (Gypsy) community. This was normal to my kids. (At the end I’m trying to show how there are several doors. There are four families living behind that one gate we entered through. Each door is a different family’s home. Each home may have one or two rooms. Some homes on the street house multiple families.)

Lee’s Life Update May 2016 Edition

Our paperwork was denied by the Macedonian Embassy. We’ve now been turned down for visas in three countries. It’s time to head back to America.

We’ll be there for at least a year and a half as we had already planned on being there next year to help my daughter transition to college. We don’t know what comes after that.

Please pray for me as I pack up for our fifth international move this year, say goodbye to friends I may never see again, and keep work and family in balance.

Black History Month

Here are some resources your kids could explore for Black History Month.

Teens: Drop Me Off in Harlem  You can click Play All.

Elementary: Musical Harlem

Everyone: Watch Alvin Ailey’s Revelations (excerpts) Watching Guide (“Learn More”)

Everyone: Listen to “Of Thee We Sing.” Marian Anderson  Click on Listen.

Everyone: Tour a gallery of African American artists  Take the tour. You can click on the pictures to see them larger.

Middle school/High school: Political cartoon after Brown vs. Board of Education, video clip on the first high school ordered to be desegregated

Teens: Click on the tabs along the side, a learning resource on the Civil Rights Movement.

Everyone: a place to read

  • Letter from a Birmingham Jail
  • A History of Hip-Hop
  • The Truth About Race: It’s Not What it Looks Like
  • What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?
  • Biographies of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, Harriet Tubman, Frederick Douglass, and Jackie Robinson

Elementary: US Mission Escape from Slavery

2016 Courses

I’ve gotten up the first two course of our last year’s worth of core courses. I got up Bible and PE/Health, not big ones, but it feels good to have something ready for next year.

Next will be calculus. That will be BC calculus for those of whom that means something. The last science is earth science and the final history course is going to be the geography/cultures course, but my plan is to give it a focus on governments. I’ve been mulling it over for a long time.

 

Lee’s Life Update

I have always been vague about where we lived overseas and what our family did. I still don’t want to put too much online, but I do want to share what’s going on with my family right now as things are kind of topsy-turvy for us.

Until this summer my family had been living in southeast Turkey near the Syrian border. I’ve actually seen ISIS members. They recruited in our neighborhood. Our city faced the brunt of the influx of refugees from Syria to the point where now a quarter of the city is refugees. We ended up being support to a school for Syrian refugees and my husband discipled Syrian, Afghan, and Iranian pastors leading fellowships in the city.

This spring we found out that our residence permits were not going to be renewed to continue living anywhere in that region of Turkey. As we had felt called specifically to that city and not to Turkey in general, we didn’t feel right just choosing another city in Turkey to live in. We sought the Lord as a family and two weeks later found ourselves moving to eastern Germany, really east, like a stone’s throw from Poland, or as they say here, a cat’s leap.

We moved in with a family who had been strangers before we arrived. We were at their home for six weeks until we moved into our apartment just this August. Yes, we just moved in. When we went to apply for our residence permit in Germany, we were met with a letter saying our application would be denied unless we enrolled our children in school. They had been told by a German friend of ours that we would be homeschooling. (He had been trying to be helpful.) The Lord has not changed our minds on homeschooling, and so we began speaking with this official and that official and sending letters, etc. In the end we were not given permission to homeschool, and we have to leave. We’ve only been in our apartment for less than a month. This weekend my husband will leave with my two oldest to find our next home, and I will be traveling by plane a week later with the youngest four children.

Where are we going? We are headed to Macedonia. It’s the first foreign country the Lord brought us to years ago. We were there for 6 years, living and working among the Roma, better known as Gypsies. I love Macedonia, and I have not been for a visit since 2008. We are allowed to stay three months there without a visa before we either need to get permission to live there or get out.

We do plan on coming back to Germany in three months (we can re-enter after being out 90 days) and will keep doing the work we’ve begun here and we’ll see what comes of it. We have friends here who will continue to seek an exemption for us to homeschool. We don’t know what God’s plan is for all of this.

Please be praying for me and my family through all the transition. I love being home, so it’s hard for me to not have a place to settle into.