Living Life in the DR

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Looking Ahead to 2015!

Wow! I can’t even describe all the emotions that run through my head when I think about 2015. There is genuine excitement for the changes that this year will bring. We felt God calling us to the DR back in December of 2013 and now to be standing just 6 short months from it seems surreal! But with that excitement, fear also creeps in. I have to admit, I enjoy being comfortable. I’ve spent years building walls around my perfect little life and now, to watch God tear those down and ask me to step out of my comfort zone…well to be honest, it brings on some anxiety!! But God has revealed Himself to me in some amazing ways over the past couple years. And I’ve come to this conclusion….God doesn’t call us to be comfortable! I read the book ‘Crazy Love’ by Francis Chan a few years back. If you want a slap in the face, this is the book to read! This quote from that book really speaks to me!

“But God doesn't call us to be comfortable. He calls us to trust Him so completely that we are unafraid to put ourselves in situations where we will be in trouble if He doesn't come through.” 

You don’t have to move to the DR to be uncomfortable. God’s plan for my life looks much different than yours! But He has a plan and purpose for each of us and I believe He is calling each one of us to step out of our comfort zone and get uncomfortable! Francis Chan says it again so well!

“It is true that God may have called you to be exactly where you are. But, it is absolutely vital to grasp that He didn’t call you there so you could settle in and live your life in comfort and superficial peace.” 

Is moving to a foreign country far from family and friends going to be easy? No. Are there going to be hard times? Yes! But I’ve come to find that the best place I can be is inside of God’s will. I heard this on the radio awhile back and it’s stuck with me. “Complete surrender to God's will leads to complete security”. 

So here’s to a year of being ‘uncomfortable’! I pray that we are all willing to step out of our comfort zone and step into God’s will for our lives. 

Fundraising Update:

Our goal was to be at 60% of our monthly budget by the end of 2014 and we currently stand at 61%! Praise God!! Our next goal is to be at 65% by the end of January. We also stand at 79% of start-up costs! We are so thankful for all the prayers and support we have already received and ask that you prayerfully consider joining us on this journey!

If you are interested in supporting us and becoming part of our team, please visit, click on Donate under Invest and choose Pyle from the drop down menu.

Happy New Year from the Pyles!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

November Update!

Pyle Family  Update
It’s hard to believe that it’s been nearly a year since Gabe boarded a plane to the Dominican Republic for a one week work trip to Freedom. Crazy how that one trip completely flipped our lives upside down. I felt God telling me weeks before Gabe left that it would change our lives in one way or another but I really had no idea that it would involve moving down to the DR to join the Freedom team! Looking back, it’s been a crazy, emotional year. But I stand amazed at God’s faithfulness and provision! Each and everyday, He continues to break our hearts for this ministry and the people we are ministering to and our hearts ache to be physically down there! 
You have been asking when we plan to leave and we are excited to say we have officially set a date. That date is June 1, 2015! Having a date set makes it all seem a little more real! We need to be at 90% of our monthly budget before we leave. 
We currently stand at 48% of our monthly budget and 51% of our start-up costs! This just blows me away considering we started our fundraising only 7 short months ago! So first of all, we just want to say a big thank you to everyone that’s already pledged/given and also to everyone for the prayers! Secondly, we ask that you continue to prayerfully consider becoming part of this ministry and joining our team! We would like to be at 55% of our goal by the end of November! If you are interested in supporting us, please visit, click on Donate under Invest and choose Pyle from the drop down menu. While any gift is much appreciated, signing up for monthly donations makes it easier for us to have a steady income. We are looking for monthly donations of $20, $25, $50 and $100 or more.

What's Happening with Freedom

The search for a third vehicle begins!
A donor offered us a matching gift of $20,000 that will allow us to to purchase a third vehicle. We needed to meet this match by October 22nd and we did! Praise God! We currently transport 90 kids to and from school with only 2 vehicles. Our bus seats 29 and the safari truck has two long benches. These kids are really packed in! A third vehicle will come in very handy as our school continues to grow and we will be transporting 120 kids at the beginning of our next school year! 

6 classrooms almost complete!
We are currently using four classrooms. Three of these classrooms are used for students and one is used as a kitchen/office area. We hope to wrap up two more classrooms on the first level of the building soon so we can move over and begin construction on our apartments. We are all looking forward to being on the same campus as the school!

Meet the newest Freedom team member! 

 Arisleyda is the newest member to join our Freedom team! She joins Angie as a co-teacher in the kindergarten class. Arisleyda has been a big blessing to Angie and our kindergartners. Our students are so starved for attention, and Arisleyda has jumped right in to invest her love and time with these kids. She actively seeks out ways to pull in those children that seem to “fall through the cracks”. She desires success for each one of them. 

How You Can Pray for Us:
  • We have several speaking engagements coming up and would appreciate prayers
  • For patience as we wait here in the US for our funds to come in
  • For God to touch the right people’s hearts to join our financial team

Thank you for all your support! 
Gabe, Krista, Ava, Blakeley & Karsyn 

“it is for Freedom that Christ has set us Free!” Galatians 5:1


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Quick Update!

I just wanted to give you guys a quick update of where we currently stand and also share some new things that are going on with Freedom!

We currently stand at 42% of our yearly goal! It’s crazy to think that we started the fundraising process only 6 months ago and already we are so close to being half way there! God is good! We are so grateful for each one of you that has partnered with us financially! We can’t say it enough. You are all as much a part of Freedom as we are and we know that God is going to do amazing things through your generous gifts! None of this would be possible without all of you! We would love to see 2 new monthly donors join our team by October 1st. Please continue to pray and prayerfully consider joining us on this journey! You can donate by visiting and clicking on Donate under Invest and choosing ‘Pyle’ from the drop down menu.

I’m not sure if I've mentioned it before but besides our yearly income, we also need to raise $40,000 in start-up costs. This $40,000 will go towards a down-payment on our apartment plus 3 months rent, furniture, language school for Gabe and I and a vehicle. Any one-time gifts at this point are going toward this $40,000. We currently stand at 40% of our start-up costs! A big thank you to everyone for those special gifts! I'm just amazed at how fast that is coming in and how God is providing! 

As for Freedom, we started our second quarter for the 2014-2015 school year last Wednesday. This comes after a one month break for staff furloughs. Gabe and I had a chance to visit with several of the Freedom families while they were in the states and it was so good to reconnect with them and hear first hand all that God is doing!

Construction also continues and our school building now has four school rooms, a large entryway and two restrooms (a boys room and a girls room). We were also able to secure the school with steel doors and bars on the windows. The campus has also been secured with 3,000 feet of chain-link fence including a sliding entry gate measuring 35 feet long! 

Something really exciting going on right now is that solar power is being installed at the school! Through the power company, we only have about six hours of power a day on the land (a few hours in the morning and a few in the evening). The Lord has provided an electrician and a crew of experienced installers from Sonlight Power to install it for us! Solar is going to be a good option for us to have reliable power and will change the school experience for our students!

Josh Simos, one of our Freedom missionaries, is back in the states this week having surgery done on his shoulder. He will be in the states for about a week while his wife and 3 kids remain in the DR. Please pray for a speedy recovery for Josh. Please also keep his family in your prayers!

If you are interested in learning more about Freedom and what we are doing in the DR, we would love to meet with you! We’d also be more than happy to talk at your church, sunday school class or small group. You can either Facebook me or send me an email if you’d like to set something up! (

We are so thankful for each and everyone of you and the prayers that you have offered up on our behalf! Please continue to keep us in your prayers! Please also pray for Freedom and that God would continue to use us to further His Kingdom.



Wednesday, August 27, 2014

August Newsletter

August Newsletter
View this email in your browser
Pyle Family Update
Fundraising - Mini Goal

We currently stand at almost 39% of our monthly budget! We are setting a mini goal for the last week of August. We would love to be at 45% by September 1st. We need to be at 90% of our monthly budget in order to actually pack up and move down to the DR. 45% would put us at the half way mark! Wow! That is just crazy to think about! We are so thankful for all the prayers and support we have already received and ask that you prayerfully consider joining us on this journey!

How to Get Involved!

If you are interested in supporting us and becoming part of our team, please visit, click on Donate under Invest and choose Pyle from the drop down menu. While any gift is much appreciated, signing up for monthly donations makes it easier for us to have a steady income. We are looking for monthly donations of $20, $25, $50 and $100 or more.

Celebrating the last day of school this quarter! 
Pyle Summer
This month has flown by! August held a few important dates for us! Here's what we've been up to!
  • Ava started Kindergarten! South Adams offers all day Kindergarten so it's taken a while to get used to her being gone all day! Blakeley and Karsyn are very happy to see her at the end of the day. :) She says her favorite thing about Kindergarten so far is computer class.
  • Ava also celebrated her 6th birthday on August 16th. There's something about 6 that just makes her seem so much more grown up. We celebrated with a party at the Berne Pool! 
  • Gabe and I celebrated our 10 year anniversary on August 21st! Wow! Where has the time gone?! We will be leaving Friday for a mini get-away to St. Louis! I'm so excited for a kid-free weekend :)
Click here for video
Click on the picture above to see a video about why we love our new school!
One Quarter in the Books!
It's hard to believe that we've completed the first quarter of the 2014-2015 school year! While there have been many adjustments, we have truly loved being able to teach these kids in our very own school building! Exciting things are happening at Freedom! We are living inside one big miracle - God is providing financially, students are being sponsored, the building is going up, lives are changing on the ground and so much more! Please continue to keep Freedom and everyone involved in your prayers. It's amazing to see how God is working in the DR and we can't wait to see what He has in store for the future!
You can keep up with us on Freedom's FB page or by following our family blog. We will be speaking at several churches over the next couple months and sharing what God has laid on our hearts. Please keep us in your prayers as we prepare for that and that God would speak through us.

Gabe, Krista, Ava, Karsyn & Blakeley
Mission:  Freedom equips people to engage culture according to their design.

Vision: Freedom develops life-changing relationships with those most unlikely so
               that they become catalysts for change with in the Dominican Republic.

Friday, August 1, 2014


Waiting. It’s definitely not one of my strengths. I’m more of an ‘instant results’ kinda girl. So as you can imagine, this whole fundraising process (it definitely involves waiting!) has been a faith builder for me. It’s really easy for me to get discouraged. We know that God is calling us to the DR so I just want to pack up and get down there asap! It’s really hard to watch all the wonderful things happening with Freedom as we sit over 3,000 miles away in Berne, IN. 

First Mennonite Church recently had 30+ people go down for a week long mission trip. Several of our friends were on this trip and as they posted pictures on Facebook, Gabe and I both looked at each other and thought “it’s no fair!” We so wanted to hop on the plane and head down with them.

But as I was lifting my discouragement and frustrations to the Lord the other night, He randomly brought a song to mind. (I love how God speaks to us!) The song is called “While I’m Waiting” by John Waller. I went to YouTube to listen to it and it really touched my heart. Here are some of the lyrics. (I've also posted the video below)

While I’m waiting, I will serve you
While I’m waiting, I will worship
While I’m waiting, I will not faint
I’ll be running the race, even while I wait

When we are waiting for something to happen, it’s easy to just be idle. We know God is calling us to the DR but that doesn’t mean we can’t be active here while we are waiting. God still has a purpose for us here, and that’s why we are waiting. So while I’m waiting to join the Freedom team in the DR, I will serve God right here where I am. While I’m waiting, I will worship the Lord Almighty! It’s easy to be discouraged during this process but I can’t forget what all He has already provided and done! He has already provided 35% of our yearly budget and 20% of our start up costs! That is just amazing in itself! So instead of being discouraged about how far we have to go, I will worship Him for everything that He has already provided!!

I’m also reminded that God’s timing is perfect. He knows when we will be in the Dominican. I can only see right in front of me but God, He’s already there. I just have to trust Him daily and take those bold steps of faith. He is using this waiting period to prepare our hearts for the ministry He has in store for us. I love these verses on waiting on the Lord!

Wait for the LORD; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the LORD. ~Psalms 27:14
Our soul waits for the LORD; He is our help and our shield. ~ Psalms 33:20
I wait for the LORD, my soul does wait, And in His word do I hope. ~ Psalms 130:5

"The LORD is my portion," says my soul, "Therefore I have hope in Him." The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, To the person who seeks Him. It is good that he waits silently For the salvation of the LORD. ~ Lamentations 3:34-36

But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. ~Isaiah 40:31
So while waiting is not one of my favorite things, I will wait on the Lord and serve and worship Him right where I am!

Have a blessed day everyone!


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Pyle Family Newsletter

Check out our Pyle Family Newsletter! We will be sending one out every month. If you want to receive our newsletters, you can email me at and we will get you added to our list!

Pyle Family Update

Well we reached our goal! We wanted to get to 30% by the end of June and we did it! We currently stand at 34%. Praise God! Thank you to everyone who has supported us financially and we ask that you continue to keep us in your prayers.

How to get involved

If you are interested in supporting us and becoming part of our team, please visit, click on Donate under Invest and choose Pyle from the drop down menu.

Pray for us!

I’ve been reminded countless times through this process how powerful prayer is! Please keep us in your prayers as even now we prepare our hearts to serve God in the Dominican Republic! We are so anxious to get down there and physically be a part of the team. We continue to ask that you prayerfully consider joining our support team. We know and trust that God will provide!

Our new bus!
Pyle Summer
This summer has been a busy one for the Pyle Family! Here are a few events that have kept us running from one event to the next!
  • Ava registered for Kindergarten and will begin this fall at South Adams! I can’t believe we are already at this stage in our lives! Not sure this momma is ready for that! Karsyn and Blakeley will both attend Pre-School at First Mennonite Church for 3 mornings a week.
  • My sister, Erin, got married to Matt Rupp on May 24th. I was in the wedding as well as all 3 of the girls. As you can imagine, they loved every minute of that!
  • The girls attended 2 Summer Bible School programs.
  • Ava enjoyed her first year of T-Ball. She especially loved that her daddy was the coach!
  • All 3 girls took swim lessons this year at the Berne Pool! They are quickly becoming quite the little swimmers!
  • Gabe and I enjoyed a kid-free weekend in Michigan visiting some dear friends! It was nice to have a short break and be able to reconnect with each other.
  • Gabe is currently working on flipping a house with a friend. This keeps him very busy and we are all ready for it to be done!
The kids in their new classroom!
 New Beginnings
The 2013-2014 school year ended in May and the new year (2014 - 2015) began June 9th. Along with our pre-K3, pre-K4 and kindergarten classes, we have now added 1st grade to the mix! In the past, school has been held in churches in one of the bateys we work in but we are so excited to announce that we began this year in our very own school building! Above is a photo of the kids in one of the classrooms. We currently have 3 classrooms and a lunch area completed but there is still much to be done! More floors and ceilings are being poured as well as plumbing and much more! We have about 120 students enrolled this year and were in dire need of a second Freedom vehicle to transport kids. God is so faithful and provided us with just that! (photo of the bus on the left)
You can keep up with us on Freedom's FB page or by following our family blog. Please continue to keep us in your prayers as we continue to take these steps of faith! We are so excited to get down to the DR and begin the work God has laid before us!

Gabe, Krista, Ava, Karsyn & Blakeley

Mission:  Freedom equips people to engage culture according to their design.

Vision: Freedom develops life-changing relationships with those most unlikely so
               that they become catalysts for change with in the Dominican Republic.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Exciting News!

I wanted to give you a quick update on where we stand and also share some exciting things that are happening with Freedom!

We currently stand at 25% of our goal! Woo Hoo! I’ve been told that the next 50% will be the hardest to raise but we are trusting that God will provide and know that His timing is perfect! We would like to be at 30% by the end of June. That only gives us about a week but I know we can reach that goal and we just continue to ask that you prayerfully consider joining us on this journey!

Several of you have asked how to give so I’ve posted the steps below for giving online and by check.

    1. Visit
    2. Select Donate under Invest
    3. Choose the Pyle Family                          
    4. Select monthly or annual      

By Check: (Include ‘Pyle’ in the memo line)
    Freedom International Ministries
     P.O. Box 92
     Noblesville, IN 46061

If you prefer to give by check, we do have monthly envelopes that are available and would be happy to give you some! We find this also serves as a helpful reminder to give each month.

Freedom is also experiencing some exciting things! Two weeks ago, we started the 2014 - 2015 school year in the new school building! The classrooms are full of life, excitement and a few tears! One interesting fact about the new school is that we have toilets! This might not sound like a big deal but most of these kids have never seen a toilet and find it very fascinating! The kids are learning to use the toilet and that brings its own set of experiences. We have seen them try to mount it and stand on the rim as if it were a squatty potty.  One was so amazed that the water left the bowl, that he sent his hand down after it! Another nice thing about the new school is that we now have a shower in the bathroom in order to hose off potty accidents.  That has gotten some use over the past few weeks! :)

Another exciting thing going on with Freedom is that we welcomed 2 new members to the team last week! 

Katie and Kurt Cline welcomed twin boys into the world last Tuesday (June 17th)! Max Russell and Derek Thomas entered the world at 5.25lbs each! Katie is doing well and so are the boys. They are currently in the NICU but are hoping to be released within the next couple days. Please pray that the boys would continue to grow strong and healthy and also for Katie and Kurt as they start on this new path of parenthood!

We once again can’t say thank you enough for all the prayers and support you have already given us! If you would like to hear more about what Freedom is doing in the DR and also about our journey to get down there, feel free to contact us and we would be happy to meet you for coffee and chat! We love you all!

Gabe & Krista


Thursday, May 29, 2014

How We Got Here

I want to start out by thanking you all again for your prayers and financial support! I know I say it a lot but I really can't say it enough! None of this would be possible without all of you standing behind us and we are so blessed to have such wonderful family and friends! Well, I promised you the story of how we got where we are today and I'm finally getting around to writing it!

Our journey with Freedom began only 5 short months ago but I'd have to say God has been preparing us for this journey for several years now.

Gabe and I both felt God tugging at our hearts the past couple years. We felt like He was calling us in a new direction but we just didn't know what He had planned. Gabe began to have a heart for children in difficult situations and shared with me that he felt that we should look into fostering, or even possibly adoption. I wasn't quite on board with this at first. We had been blessed with 3 beautiful girls but I was still holding out for one more of our own. 

In November of 2012, Gabe and I were pleasantly surprised (well it might of been more pleasant for me than Gabe!) to find out that we would be welcoming baby Pyle #4 to our family in July of 2013. Gabe had been set on just having 3 of our own and I knew if we were going to have a fourth, it would have to be an act of God :) So when the pregnancy test showed positive, I just knew this baby was meant to be. Our thoughts of fostering and adoption were shoved off to the side as we knew we would have our hands full with a newborn for the next couple years. But as my 12 week appointment neared, we experienced one of the most difficult things we've ever faced. At 11 weeks, I started bleeding. We went in to the doctor the next morning and heard the gut wrenching news that I had miscarried our sweet little baby. I was in shock. Why would God have answered my prayer just to allow it to be taken away in 12 short weeks? I never doubted God's love but I was devastated at the loss and confused. A week or two after the miscarriage, I was driving to one of my follow up appointments ( I was by myself ) and I was in tears and just crying out to God. It was then that I experienced God's presence like never before. It was like He was literally sitting in the passenger seat next to me and I could hear Him say "It's going to be okay. I have things planned for 2013 that you never could have imagined." Wow! What a comfort and great reminder that God's ways are far above any of our own. There are so many things in this life that we will never understand this side of heaven but one thing I do know is that God is the Great I Am. I just have to trust in who He is. Although I still had many tears following that day, I was so excited to see what God had in store for us. 

I ended up experiencing several medical set backs with my miscarriage. I never imagined I would be dealing with complications from it for 6 months. It wasn't until July that everything was finally all cleared up. Those 6 months really strengthened my faith and trust in God. I'm a huge worrywart and tend to let that get in the way of letting go and giving God full control. I believe He was teaching me to sit back, let go of the reigns and let Him guide me during those 6 months. After many ultrasounds and a biopsy (which came back clear...Praise God!) the nightmare was finally over. During those 6 months, Gabe had brought adoption back up and felt strongly that we should seriously consider it. At first I was very against it. We had just lost our baby and I really wanted another one of our own. But over the next few months, God began to soften my heart and we began looking into international adoption. I'll never understand why my baby was taken from me but I felt like God was calling me to reach out and help other children in need. So we began the process of looking into adoption agencies. 

Toward the end of July, Tom Sprunger approached Gabe and asked him if he would like to be a part of a mission team that was heading down to the Dominican Republic. They would be working with Freedom International and helping them build a school. One of my best friends, Katie Cline, is part of this organization in the DR along with her husband Kurt so we were some what familiar with Freedom. Gabe said he would think about it and admitted later that he tried to come up with any excuse that would allow him not to go, but God kept laying on his heart that he needed to be a part of this team. So in November of 2013, Gabe headed down to the Dominican. Before he left, I could sense God telling me that this trip was in some way or form going to change our lives. As you all know, Freedom International works with the children who live in the sugarcane bateyes. Because of that, I thought this would further confirm are calling to adopt/foster. After 2 short days of being in the DR, Gabe sent me an email and just by reading it, I knew God was doing something powerful in his life. When he came home, I could see a passion in his heart for this ministry. He went back to work but felt like this chapter of his life had come to an end and was being called to start a new one. He text me from work a couple days later and said that we needed to talk. That night he told me that he really felt like God was calling us down to the DR to be missionaries and join the Freedom team. Wow! Much to my surprise, I responded with "ok!". I'm positive that a few years ago that would have not been my response, but through many difficult situations, God had been molding me and shaping me to prepare my heart for this journey! So two weeks before the end of 2013, I started to see what God was talking about back in January when He told me to trust Him! He was right, I could of never in a thousand years we would be standing where we are today but I am so excited to take this leap of faith with Him and allow Him to continue to mold me and shape me into the person He created me to be!

So that is our story in a nutshell! And you all know the rest of the story :) We are now officially part of the Freedom team and looking forward to the day when we can join them in the DR! We again thank you for all your prayers and support! If you are interested in supporting us finically, just click on the Donate button on the right side of this page. We love you all and are so grateful for all your support!



Saturday, May 3, 2014

Moving Right Along!

I just wanted to give you all a quick update on where we currently stand. So far, we have raised 15% of our goal! That is awesome! God never ceases to amaze me :) I want to say a BIG "Thank-You" to everyone who has already partnered with us financially. We are so honored to have you on this journey with us and we can't wait to see what God is going to do in the Dominican through your generous gifts! 

I'm not sure if I mentioned this before, but our target date for leaving is around this time next year (May 2015). In order to reach our goal, we will need to bring in about $1000 a week. I know that sounds like a lot but when you break it down, it's actually very reachable! Here are a few examples of how we can reach this weekly goal.

  • 4 people committing to $25/month 
  • 5 people committing to $20/month 
  • 2 people committing to $25/month and 1 person committing to $50/month
  • 9 people committing to $10 month
  • 1 person at $50/month and 4 people committing to $10/month

We ask that you would continue to prayerfully consider joining our team and supporting our family as we head down to the DR. If you decide to give, all you have to do is click on the 'Donate' button on the right side of the blog and it will take you directly to our site.

If any of you would like to learn more about the ministry and what we would be doing down there, we would love to meet with you! Just give us a call or send us an email and we will find a time to sit down and chat :)

We are so blessed to have all of you praying for and encouraging us as we walk on this journey! Your prayers and words of encouragement have been felt and are truly appreciated! We love you all!


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