2014 has been a full year for the Lee household that has brought us through some great highs and lows. It’s difficult to capture it all but we hope you get a glimpse of how God is working our lives and in His people on this side of the world.
Paul has faced the obvious challenges that come with his expanded roles and responsibilities, but he is thankful for the faithfulness of God in his life, family and ministry.
Giving a Team Orientation to a short-term team
Paul has grown in his gratefulness for his teammates. Working with others in any ministry context is fraught with potential conflicts but Paul is thankful that those conflicts have helped him appreciate the team in Cambodia more and more. It is confirmation that God is the one that has called this team together. On the mission field, one does not know how long we will be together so we have been learning to cherish the time we do have together.
Sharing a meal w teammates, a visiting Pastor and summer interns
“Success” is also another struggle as we are starting to close in on fourth year here. God has been teaching Paul what biblical “success” looks like. By some standards we would not be considered “successful”, but we have been thankful for all the work that God is doing . Even with the absence of large number of churches being planted, many national partners in countries all throughout Southeast Asia are faithfully ministering to their churches day in and day out in the midst of challenging societal, governmental and especially spiritual difficulties. Even with the growing secularism and materialism in the educated youth, many young national believers are leading praise for Sunday worship, evangelizing to other students even as they are rejected and persevering as they share their faith to skeptical family members. Even as teammates and friends are called to new mission fields back home, we have learned to appreciate how God is using them for his kingdom purposes.
As a father to missionary children, Paul has been especially thankful for what God has been in the lives of Caleb and Nate. As friends have been leaving, Paul has seen his sons grow in their relationships with the neighborhood children. Initially Caleb and Nate were hesitant especially with the language barriers but they have grown in their willingness to open up to their new friends and be vulnerable and to enjoy spending time with them. Paul has also seen a growing desire in his sons to share in the ministry that is taking place. They have expressed the desire to travel with Paul to the villages on his visits to different church planting sites. This has been a blessed answer to prayer.
Daily Ritual w Neighborhood Friends
Making friends at AKJ during the Medical Missions trip
After two years of the craziness as well as the joys of being the short-term team (STT) coordinator, Susan has decided to step down. It has been a wonderful way for a stay-at-home missionary mom to learn more about and serve her team. It’s provided a way for her to meet so many fellow believers and get a snapshot of the work He’s doing through His people all over.
Campus Evangelism w KCC and STT from CCPC
With the end of her responsibilities as STT coordinator, Susan will restart her English classes at KCC in October. Teaching English has been a great way to show love to the students and build a closer relationship. She longs serve them well, teaching them effectively.
The exhaustion of life this year and the heartaches of the constant goodbyes have exposed many of Susan’s anxieties and desire for control and perfection; ultimately her pursuit for worth and security outside of Christ. Yet through these times, she is experiencing a nearness with her Lord, bringing much freedom and joy found only in the refuge of her Savior.
CALEB & NATE
More often than not, Paul and Susan respond to their demanding schedules with stress and anxiety. Caleb and Nate usually receive the brunt of it, whether in the form of an undeserved tirade or an unspoken, weighty expectation to keep in line and not get in the way. Over the years, God has slowly and gently brought repentance and change for all of us. Our relationships with one another has grown deeper.
Susan’s fifth year of homeschooling is starting off well. We are starting to acknowledge the fruits of our labor and perseverance. We’re thankful both boys not only appreciate but want to be homeschooled. God has been kind in providing like-minded homeschooling missionaries to be source of wisdom and encouragement.
Science w Dad: Coke & Mentos Experiment
Homeschool Co-op: Math Games
We have been continually asking you to pray for the boys’ friends. Thank you for praying. Our God is faithful. In the midst of the many goodbyes, God has at the same time brought friends into our lives in ways unexpected. We know circumstances can always change but we’re learning to be thankful in each moment and acknowledge His good and faithful provisions.
Caleb’s 10th BDay w Friends & Neighbors
4 July @US Embassy w Visiting Yoon Kids
We’re learning that “God wants to bring us to the end of ourselves so that we would see our need for a relationship with him as well as with others” (Lane & Tripp, relationships: A Mess Worth Making, p.8). We want to thank God for not settling for our temporary comfort and happiness. We want to thank God for drawing us to Him. We want to thank God for you. Thank you for your faithful friendship and partnership, love and support, prayers and gifts.
PLEASE PRAY that we would learn to live a less driven and busy life rooted in “the fear of not being enough and having enough, the fear of losing face and losing control, the fear of missing the mark and missing out” but much more of a called life (Scotty Smith, Everyday Prayers).