Living Life in the DR

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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