Well, Sophia Lee of World Magazine has done it again. In her latest article, she has done an excellent job of capturing one of the biggest struggles of being on the mission field, how it impacts our children. We know the Funks and the Stewarts. We can vouch for their sincerity and genuine love for their villages and more importantly for their children. Your faithful support has provided the means for us to fly thousands of pounds of desperately needed food to Luke and Sarah in Kobuk.
As parents, we know and accept the challenges of mission work, but often it is tough because our decisions affect our kids too.
Pray for us, but more importantly, please pray for Sabrina, Miriam, and Natalie. Our children are “the chink in the armor that Satan often uses to attack us because that’s where we’re weakest.” Being an MK (missionary kid) or a KM (kid missionary) has very different outcomes, and there is a very fine line between them.
So Sabrina and Miriam are at the public school this week doing the mandated annual state achievement testing. We homeschool the kids but Alaska is different, the state realized years ago that it couldn’t afford to provide a public school education to every kid scattered across the state. If there are less than 15 kids in a village the state has determined that it is too expensive to keep a school open. So the state helps fund the homeschooling of kids with quite a bit of accountability expected in return. That means the kids have a public school transcript but we are required to take the standard achievement test every year.
I was reminded how much our kids don’t think like the rest of the world as they were walking out the door this morning. I reminded Sabrina and Miriam that they should leave their pocket knives at home. I did not think that a simple request would lead to such a deep discussion. I had to answers all kinds of questions like “what do I do if I need a knife and I’m not allowed to have one?” “Some people would be nervous if they knew that I had a knife, really, why?” It took awhile but they got over the crazy notion that not everyone carries a knife. So they started unloading their pockets.
Judging by the pile of “weapons” on the kitchen table it’s obvious they are their father’s daughters. One knife is not enough, last count I have four blades on me right now. They each had two. That’s my girls!
It’s never good when your kids start a conversation with that line.
Several months ago the girls were asking me how I made the decision when it is OK to go flying and when it is better to wait. So we got into this long discussion about Risk Management and risk/benefit analysis. I’ll admit that I might have gotten too deep into the topic for a 6, 8, and 10 year old to understand. However, they were asking good questions and wanted to know more about why and how I know it is OK to do something. Apparently most of our conversation sunk in and they have transferred that knowledge into their decision making process. Here is how I know. Continue reading Don’t worry Daddy!