April 2011

April 1, 2011

Dear Special Friends,

How is it raising your kids on the mission field?  This is a question that we are often asked. We never hesitate to talk about the different advantages and challenges we face raising our children as “missionary kids.”  We are well aware that raising children on the mission field or in America or Canada or wherever can be a challenge.

Having lived in Costa Rica, Florida, Russia and now here in Budapest for the last 14 years, our kids have probably faced more transition than most kids.

Here are some things missionary kids have to deal with:

* Not really knowing where they are from. Their parents are from one country, they grow up in another country.

* They continually have to leave friends.

* They have to learn new cultures.

* They change schools.

* They have to learn new languages.

* They sometimes feel they miss out on things in America.

* They miss going to Taco Bell, Subway, Chili’s, Starbucks , Olive Garden and Walmart.

* The list could go on and on . . .

But probably the most challenging for all our children has been and still is for our girls, is having to leave close friends or seeing close friends move away. This was especially true for our boys, Nathan and Ryan.  They said say goodbyes  to friends in Costa Rica, Florida, and Russia, when we left those countries. It was hard for them. It got old.  They let us know they didn’t like itIt was a challenge for us, it was much more of a challenge for them!

By the grace of God, our children never had bitterness or gave us “too hard of a time” when we moved.  We knew they were going through things, therefore we prayed, asked for God’s Grace, and gave extra attention to our children.

Now if you ask our boys about growing up on the mission field they will have nothing but positive things to say.  Our girls love growing up as “missionary kids.”  Not all missionary families have this same experience with their kids.  Each child is so different and sees things differently.  Sometimes we don’t even know what we did right. We do know that there are many, many people praying for us.

Our kids have had the opportunity to travel and see other parts of the world, meet people from other cultures, they have been with us as we ministered and they have also had opportunities to minister.  They have been blessed to have many wonderful experiences as “missionary kids.”  We don’t think they would trade them for anything!

Now Nathan and Ryan, who live in Orlando, love to talk to their friends about growing up around the world.   Every year they love to come back to Budapest for Christmas.  Audrianna and Alexandra are still with us here in Budapest and love living and going to school here.  Thank you for standing with us not only with the ministry but also with our family.

In Awe of His Faithfulness,

Jim and Brenda

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