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Homeward Bound Bruce News June 4, 2013

www.ntm.org/ric_bruce

We did it! The big move After years of talking about and planning for an eventual move to live among and work with the Phu Thai people we have finally accomplished that goal. Keep reading on page 3 for more information about how our move went, how we feel now and

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Village Life. What it’s like. What kind of village are we talking about here? What does it feel like to live in a agricultural community in Southeast Asia? We can’t give you the complete picture but on page four we’ll try to answer your questions about how it feels to transition from a major city to this community.

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Isaan Church: why local? We’ll just be getting things wrapped up here in the village then we’ll take off again, this time headed for the US for a four month maternity leave.

Ric and Sharon PO Box 2 Hang Dong Chiang Mai 50230 Thailand

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We have so many reasons to be thankful. Our new home is finally coming together and we’re relieved as we think about the alternatives: living in a big one-roomed wooden house infested with termites or a tiny one-roomed concrete “townhouse” right next to several others just like it. So rather than those options we waited about a month longer for this house to be completed and boy are we glad we did!

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Issue [Date] Bruce#:News

Dolor Sit 2013 Amet June

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Here are a few of the things we have to be thankful for:

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1. The weather has been amazing. Although a little toasty (100 degrees or so) this morning we got a few minutes of rain and we enjoyed a nice 45 minute walk in the rice paddies meeting villagers and exercising a bit.

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2. A roof over our heads. Yes, it’s made of metal so it’s a bit of an oven in this hot weather but hey, we’ll take it. Sure beats tenting. 3. Burglar bars. We mentioned in our March newsletter to help us pray for the finances to keep our family safe in this house. Thank-you for your generosity in giving to this project! 4. Our neighbors. People have been coming out of the woodwork to welcome us to the village. Our neighbors have brought over fresh fruit to warm our new house.

Here is a June 4, 2013 picture of us in our new house! The numbers on the picture correspond to the numbers on the right where we outline all the things that we’re thankful about the house

Church on Sunday right? Around here that’s not as easy as it sounds. There is no church in our immediate vicinity. Limited by our local options we’ve elected to try to connect with the local churches in the surrounding towns as best we can. Ultimately, of course, our goal is to see a church planted here. So how will going to a church 45 minutes away help us out? Resource sharing. Hopefully, we can share resources with them and they can share resources with us so that both our church planting efforts will be more successful. We’re very excited about connecting with the local church. It’s such a good feeling to fellowship with other believers, sing songs and hear a message each Sunday. Perhaps most importantly, we meet key people who are from our area that drive to church in these towns. These believers are as concerned as we are to see a church established closer to their homes and could serve as an effective bridge to the gospel in the future. We’re engaging with the local church prayerfully, anticipating that God will do great things in our hearts and those of the people we meet.

5. A nice, big front porch. Initially, we didn’t think that we would have a porch at all. We’re praying that this porch will be a place we can connect with our friends and neighbors as we build redemptive relationships. 6. Four walls. Yep, we counted them. It may not look like much but our house does keep the bugs out and it keeps our cat in. That’s about all we could ask for. J 7. Blinds and curtains. We installed them ourselves! The baby’s room especially needed them so that he will be able to sleep soundly. 8. Our garden (pictured below). We are now the proud caretakers of seven dragonfruit trees, 5 coconut trees and supposedly the landlord plans to plant mango trees around out house to provide shade and fruit.

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Issue #:News [Date] Bruce

Dolor Sit 2013 Amet June

Village Life The mangy dogs bark, the village chickens squawk, the white cattle moo, the red roosters crow and the little children laugh. It’s been strange adjusting to the birds chirping loudly and the crickets carrying on all night and all day without a break. Frogs can be deafening and the village itself can come alive with music in an instant.

The Big Move Friday morning at 5:00 AM we rolled out of Chiang Mai with what remained of our earthly possessions and our cat. We stuffed him in a bird cage we had taped to a big cardboard box to give him more room and off we went. Sharon and the baby did amazingly well, considering the relatively few number of places available to stop to go to the bathroom on the way. We arrived and our coworkers were kind enough to provide dinner for us. After a restless night at a local “resort” a few of our village friends helped us move the stuff we had stored at our coworkers house and the things we brought on the final trip into our new home. Before we knew it, we were done and unpacking. Overall, things went really smoothly and we’re grateful for the safety and health of our whole family (including our Siamese cat Cha Q J).

We’re headed back to the states in the middle of this month for a short maternity leave. Sharon and the baby continue to do well and covet your prayers during this time of transition in our lives. Even though we have a lot going on, as always, we would love the opportunity to spend some time with you this summer. We will likely need a bit of warning so that we can get something on the calendar. Please shoot us an email if you’d like to connect this summer ricandsharon@gmail.com We’ll get back to you as soon as possible with some dates that would work! If it’s after August you may even get to meet our brand new baby!

We have met new friends, tried new foods and gone new places as we explore our new surroundings but mostly what strikes us is how different village life is from city life. Below you see a picture of what walked by our bedroom window this morning. It just seems to sum up what village life is like:

Thank-you for your love and prayers. We look forward to seeing you as we head home soon! Love, Ric and Sharon

www.ntm.org/ric_bruce 3

June news 2013  

Homeward Bound! This newsletter has all our latest info about the move out to the village, our life here and our new home. We're settling he...

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