Events and Training
Whether large numbers or small, it is always amazing to see what can happen on an intentional day like our A Day Together event. Since our last update, we have hosted four events with 109 couples attending.
One of the events was in Cambridge and it was really exciting for Chris and me to be at this event as it was the first event run completely by a local team. All three couples that spoke were from Cambridge, and Chris and I were there simply to support them from an A/V an admin perspective in the amazing work they were doing. We hope to see this sort of strength in more teams around the UK.
Here are a few of the things individuals reported as their most important lesson learned:
“That I am married to a great man and feel much closer than before.”
“Talking about stuff is good and hearing the honesty of the couples lessens feelings of inadequacy I might otherwise feel.”
“That there is much hope for us to help with our relationship.”
On a much smaller scale, but nonetheless no less exciting, Chris and I also spent several days in July training two new volunteers for FamilyLife. I went to Birmingham to meet with the lovely Nicolette from Manchester for a day, and Chris and I finished her training over video conference a few days later. (The exciting tools available to us today can be very helpful!) Later we worked with the fantastic Gill in our own home for a few days. Both ladies will be helping local teams and HQ to work more effectively, and we are very grateful to have brought them on board before our sabbatical. Please pray for Nicolette and Gill as they get up to speed.
After much video editing and behind-the-scenes software development, we’re excited to announce the addition of a second module in our Toucan platform. The topic is “Conflict”. Toucan continues to see the number of users increase, and we pray with this new module, we’ll see those numbers continue to rise.
Over one sunny weekend in June, we led 7 couples through our annual Facilitator Training. This year we had couples join us from Kenya and Lithuania, as well as from around the UK. It was exciting to meet with them and hear their stories and we’re sure they’ll be a great addition to our speaking team as they begin to debut in our autumn events.
We are privileged to have seen God work through the increased number of events we held through June, and we are slowly starting to see further events being solidified for the autumn period with Liverpool and Woodford Green in Essex. Please pray for these and other events to be finalized.
You may have noticed it has been longer than normal since our last update. Much has been happening. Part of the reason we have been delayed on our communication is that we have had many loose ends to tie down before beginning our sabbatical. Sabbatical? Yes! We’ve just began a three-month sabbatical on August 1st.
Every Agape/Cru missionary is encouraged to consider taking a sabbatical after every seven years of service. It is a time for rekindling our sense of calling, for growing our knowledge, and for deepening our spiritual life. It is also a time for renewal and refreshment.
We have been on staff for ten years now and have been very keen to take a sabbatical this year. We didn’t know if it was going to work, but it was very suddenly and gratefully approved in June. Life has been a huge adventure these last 10 years. Much of it has been good and some of it has been very hard, but it has definitely felt nonstop. It will be good to take some time to rest and to “sharpen the saw” for whatever the Lord will have us do in the future.
Chris hopes to spend some time improving and brushing up his IT skills. He will visit Cru Headquarters in Orlando for 10 days in September, where he hopes to explore ways his skills could be more widely used to bring help and hope to others. I will do some outreach with our local church: training in the Bread House. I am also hoping to attend a Coaching Mastery Certificate Program in October.
Prayer and Praise
Thank you for continuing to pray for us and your support. Please pray…
- for Ethan as he begins his final year of school and narrows his university selection • for the FamilyLife team to continue to flourish in our absence
- for God to make a way for Lisa to attend the Coach training
- for continued financial provision to support our ongoing ministry and living expenses
And give praise …
- for the growth of team through new facilitators and volunteers
- for the changed lives of those who attended our events this year
- for our sabbatical and provision of time away as a family