Growing up on the island of Fiji has allowed me to appreciate not only good beaches and pineapple but also a love for a multi-cultural life. Being a pastor’s kid and a missionary’s kid confirmed for me that ministry was not something that I wanted my life to involve. God has an incredible sense of humor, allowed me to struggle, make bargains and eventually come to accept the call to ministry that I had tried so hard to run from. I did not want to pastor a church, nor preach. I did not want to work as a missionary in some village overseas. As many of you already know, God gives us the desires of our hearts. He allowed me to love preaching, to love people in my church and then to openly hear his voice calling me to mentor creatively in an overseas context.
Our family has lived overseas in Thailand for over 12 years. We love being in a place that we see God moving. We are teachers, mentors, business owners, developers, team leaders and parents. The word missionary is not a word that is well received in many places around the world. We often say that we serve God and teach others to do the same while living in Thailand. One day we were in the states at a church and the pastor was upfront talking. He was saying that is was great to have missionaries with us today and then spent 5 minutes or so talking about all them. My son and I were on the front row and he turned to me and said, “Dad, who are the missionaries?” (as if they were hidden superheroes). I responded, “That is us.” That was the first time he had heard that word. God has called us all to represent Him in each community of the world that we live in. Our place just happens to be with people that speak and different language. We love being with people-hanging out, watching movies, training, and serving. God has allowed us to help lead some to Him and develop them as leaders. Our goals are to teach and develop leaders to train leaders.
My wife and I have been married for 25 years and have 3 beautiful children. One is in university, the second is graduating this year (2018) and the third is in middle school. We are blessed that God has given us 3 unique children that love the Lord. Each child has expressed that they have enjoyed growing up overseas and love eaves dropping on people in the states that are speaking the language we know. Getting my doctorate in ministry, will allow me to teach and train in our master level programs as well cooperate the multi-cultural teams in 6 different cities. We love the creativeness and uniqueness of living abroad and pray that God continues to use and direct us in all that we do. I was recently talking with someone about what we thought we were going to be when we were 20 years old and comparing it to who we are today. I am glad that the Lord has been faithful through the stress, trials and joys that have come in serving Him. Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift.