Five Minute Friday: My Tiny Team — August 20, 2016

Five Minute Friday: My Tiny Team


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We had a team. We had all our support raised, ready to join our friends in India who were working endlessly at getting a fledgling little church off the ground and headed towards independence.

They had gone before us and blazed the trail, learned the ropes, made all the mistakes they could keep us from making ourselves. I remember always joking that they were our test dummies, and I was glad we didn’t have to pioneer the field of New Delhi on our own.

There were some behind us, following the path of fundraising and raising awareness about the need of our field. They would join our team of two families and we would link arms with one heart to reach the country of India. God would work in our midst, and, together, we could see Him doing something there. We had all dreamed together for years. We were just dying to see those dreams manifest in reality on the other side of the world.

417911_10201205177995317_119377220_nBut months trickled by, and as the pages turned on the calendar, we realized what we feared had come to fruition. We weren’t getting entrance into the country we longed to live and minister in.

We were devastated. We found it hard not to question God as he crumpled up our plans and crafted something entirely different. It still looked like a torn apart mess to us, but we trusted it would unfold into a legible, beautiful story one day. We were honored to be a part of it.

But…he sent us somewhere without a team. No one we had any ties to resided in this new (to us) country, Nepal. Not a single family was behind us, aiming to join our side a year or two later.

It was so difficult to say goodbye to the dream of a team and embrace this new role as pioneers for our board. We’ve been so blessed to meet some wonderful new friends here, and truly, we are working together to reach this country with the gospel.

But I miss our team. We had a Bible-inspired name and sweet little babies to grow up together.

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Our team may only have 4 members, but they’re it. My tribe. My co-laborers. I know God will use this tiny team if we stop pining for more members and move forward alone, yet praying that God will add some bodies to the bench.

My kids don’t have ministry experience or much fundraising to speak of, but I believe they are an essential part to this team, and I know God will use Team Taube as we work together here for His glory.

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Who’s on your team? How can we work together to reach the world?
Talk to me in the comment section below!

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When the going gets tough… — February 5, 2015

When the going gets tough…

The Tough (that’s what I’m calling myself as of RIGHT NOW) gets writing!

It’s a little bit of strange experience returning to my blog. I was never really great at keeping up with it, but I always enjoyed working on the posts I was able to write, and it certainly helped me to process through a tragic time in my life.

I find myself in a strangely similar time, though it is not something I have experienced before. What I mean, is the disappointment of this particular day in my life is much like the disappointment of my due date rolling around.

Like my due date, today was supposed to be a BIG, EXCITING day in my life! After over 2 years of support-raising, we were leaving for our mission field, New Delhi, India. Our last meeting of deputation was over, our support was raised, our bags were packed, we had said our goodbyes. Everything we could do in order to be ready to leave had been done.

Our family at our blessing service at Vision Baptist Church in Alpharetta, GA.
Our family at our blessing service at Vision Baptist Church in Alpharetta, GA.
Prayer with leaders at our "last" service at our home church, Grace Baptist Church in Middletown, OH.
Prayer with leaders at our “last” service at our home church, Grace Baptist Church in Middletown, OH.

However, after months of praying, hoping, and trusting the Lord to provide our visa, it did not come. Reality set in on Tuesday when we were forced to cancel our flight and travel plans. We continue to pray, hope, and trust as we wait for an answer from the Consulate of India. You can read more about our visa situation from my husband, who is much more knowledgeable than I, here and here.

Waiting is truly the hardest part. I love the USA, but it honestly pains me to be here right now. As I tried to explain to my mom as our departure date was drawing near, “The only thing harder than going is NOT going.” I am realizing now just how much truth was in that almost prophetic statement.

So, tonight, instead of braving through 15 hours of air-travel with a soon-to-be-3-year-old and an 8-week-old infant, we will be spending a little extra time with our family before we take the next steps as the Lord paves the way for the Taubes.

Bittersweet for sure.

Our Longest Trip Yet — March 27, 2014

Our Longest Trip Yet

Last Sunday night/Monday morning, we made our longest journey of deputation! We traveled from Fort Myers, FL (waaaaay down there!) to Kent, OH (pretty far up there!). We had church in Fort Myers on Sunday night (that last night of a round-robin missions conference-4 churches in 1) and had to be at a missions conference meeting on Monday night in Kent, so we left right after the Sunday evening service just before 8 pm. We traveled through the night, taking turns driving, and taking turns sleeping, until we arrived in Kent at about 3 pm. Jolynn and I crashed for a few hours at the hotel, and Daddy went to get our car worked on. That crazy marathon of a trip did quite the number on our little Dodge Caravan!

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(Yes, I know it says the trip should take 19 hours, and it only took us a little over 18, but our GPS always gives us a shorter ETA than does Google maps.) All 5 churches were so sweet to us; I can’t say I wish we wouldn’t have gone to either. In fact, Fort Myers was a bit of a vacation for us, which is wonderful since Paul and I had not been on once since our honeymoon. We took Jo to the beach two different days. She loved the sand but not so much the water!

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We enjoyed our time with all of these church families, and even got to visit with a precious man of God that had hosted us when we had a meeting at one of our now-supporting churches in Kent. We were spoiled, Jo was loved on, and Paul got to preach to his heart’s content! At the church in Kent (Ravenna, actually) we even got to help the church put together and ship 20,000 John and Romans! What a blessing!

We have one more crazy trip planned next month during which we will have to travel 12 hours from a Saturday evening missions conference meeting to a Sunday morning meeting. Whenever Paul announces to me that he has such a trip planned, he says, “You’re gonna hate me.” Well, I’m not super excited about making this kind of trip, but I definitely don’t hate him yet!

He says he needs to fire “whoever makes his schedule,” which of course always makes me chuckle because he’s the one who makes his schedule! In all honesty, I truly admire him for spending all those hours making phone calls and setting up our meetings. I know it’s not an easy job and he always does the best he can do by our family. We haven’t made many long trips and have only been to 13 states (3 of which we have only been to once!).

I’m thankful for the hours he puts in and for how he considers the needs and feelings of our family. Though things don’t always work out perfectly, he always takes control and gets us through them- doing the brunt of the driving, filling up the gas tank 4 times, letting us stop in a drive-thru at 4 am for breakfast, etc. It’s these times I sit back and admire his faithfulness, his patience, and his thoughtfulness. So, really, I wouldn’t trade these moments during these all-night drives for anything. But I would take a few extra hours of sleep!

All Things Added — June 25, 2013

All Things Added

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you (Matt. 6:33).

At times, I have felt a little silly about how much I don’t know about India, the country to which our family feels lead. For months, we prayed that the Lord would send laborers to India to fill the great need for the gospel among its millions of inhabitants. I don’t think I ever really thought the family to be sent would be the Taube family. However, when it came down to make a decision and begin raising our support, it was a no-brainer. God had put India on our hearts, and it was there to stay! Here is an excerpt from my blog the morning after announcing our plans to begin deputation to reach the country of India:

Last night, during the teachers/workers meeting at Vision Baptist Church, my dear husband wrote me a little note. This is not an unusual occurrence in any given church service or meeting, but this was a very special note.

It read,”Pastor asked me if we wanted to announce that we are going to India tonight.”

replied, “Up to you, babe.”

“Are you 100% in?” Quite a weighty question for note-passing, wouldn’t you say?

After a shorter pause than I would have anticipated, I quickly scrawled, “YES!”

I have to be honest, at this point I knew little to nothing about this country to which we had dedicated our future. In fact, I just about Googled myself to death the night before our first meeting because I was nervous that someone would ask me a question I couldn’t answer and my cover would be blown. I had just about blindly surrendered to serve in a country I was totally clueless about, and I was a little embarrassed about it.

But I felt a peace I couldn’t begin to describe, and aside from the self-consciousness of my ignorance, I really didn’t care that I was so clueless. I had surrendered my life to Christ, and I had submitted myself to my husband. When I told God I would follow Him anywhere I meant it, and I told my husband the same! A few days ago, we returned from our survey trip to New Delhi. I am overwhelmed just thinking about how God answered many questions and provided peace for many concerns during the short time we were able to spend in the country.

Despite my ignorance I have found the promise in Matthew 6:33 to be absolutely true! I’m thankful for my husband’s wisdom as he lead me to seek God’s plan for our lives and trust Him to take care of our needs as we did.

It’s not perfect, of course, and it would have never been my first choice based on the few things I had heard about it in the States. Maybe it’s the comforting peace of knowing we are following the Lord in our lives or maybe it really is just because many things about India really “rock”, but I am feeling great about moving here in the near future! It could also be that the Roberts are doing an awesome job and making it look easy, but I guess we will find out soon enough and have a great example to follow when we do!

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Getting Used to India — June 17, 2013

Getting Used to India

Well, we have been in India since Tuesday night, June 11! It’s definitely been an interesting and eye-opening experience! I’m not shocked that things are different; I had prepared myself for that. But the reality  of actually seeing all of these things and being personally affected by them is a whole other story!

I’ve had time to adjust, and I’m realizing that, while it will be challenging, I can get used to all of these things. 

I can get used to having a “Revolving Door” as Autumn refers to hers.

I can get used to always being the passenger and never the driver.

I can get used to living in a heavily populated area.

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I can get used to only being able to call my family at certain times of the day and not just when I feel like chatting.

I can get used to wearing clothes that aren’t necessarily “my style” (learning to love it!).

I can get used to eating a mostly vegetarian diet that is heavy in spice (I already have! I love the food here!).

I can get used to extremes in weather: the heat, the humidity…even the monsoons.

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I can get used to people ALWAYS being around (maybe).

I can get used to the stares and unwarranted attention.

I can even get used to monkeys in the street (Varanasi).

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What I can’t get get used to, however, is that the masses of people I push my way through are nearly ALL lost. The majority have never even had a chance to hear the gospel I’ve grown up with. I pray that this will be the one thing I will never become accustomed to.

I can’t get comfortable living here and getting by on broken English without constantly being aware of the great need of the gospel in the country that will become my home. The reality of the void of the gospel in this country has to be the fire that fuels me to learn (language, culture, etc) and grow so that we may be able to plant churches, train leaders, and give God ample room to do an amazing work among the Indian people.

I’m not gonna lie, it’s going to be hard to return to the United States. Not that I just love the way of life here because I don’t (yet). It will be easy to return to my normal American way of life, but in just this short time, I’ve been challenged to want to be here. I want to learn the language (like YESTERDAY!) and culture, and I want to get started in the ministry as soon as possible. My last post was about how much I love deputation, and I do, but I’d like it to hurry up and be over so we can come back to India and get started on what we believe the Lord would have us to do! I’ll TRY to be patient…

I’m so thankful to have been given the opportunity to come on this trip and to see all that I have seen. Please pray with me that we, collectively as believers, would never get used to the need of the gospel around us. In the US, in India, or wherever the Lord takes us.

Second-hand Confidence — June 5, 2013

Second-hand Confidence

I wanted to share a blog post that I had written on the Women Behind the Scenes blog last November. It’s amazing how the Lord teaches me things in preparation for what I will go through in my life. I have gone back through and bolded the parts that really ‘WOW’ed me!

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“Oh. India…Wow. I’m glad someone is going there, but I’m glad it’s not me!”

On the deputation trail, I have met many well-meaning people who have made this statement or similar ones and have left me feeling very discouraged about our field of choice- New Delhi, India. It’s too hot, too crowded, too scary, too disease-ridden, too closed to the gospel, too big, etc. These people are shocked that I would take my baby girl to such an “unsafe” location. I try my best to be sweet and understanding, and praise the Lord, I have always succeeded. However, sometimes I just want to be a little rude and say what my flesh wants me to say with the tone of sarcasm I have ashamedly mastered, “Thanks for the vote of confidence.”

I am both offended that that they think we can’t hack it and that they think our God is not big enough to overcome these obstacles. Then I think, “These are my natural thoughts, too.” My flesh feeds me these lies. True, India IS too big, too scary,etc. BUT it is not too-ANYTHING for God! True, we can’t hack it…on our own, BUT we serve a GREAT God who I have the privilege of seeing work around the world through goer- and sender-friends of mine. Like Paul, they have endured trials in order to make His name great in their fields.

“But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather to the furtherance of the gospel. So that my bonds in Christ are manifest in all the palace, and in all other places; And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the Word without fear” (Philippians 1:12-14).

Thanks to these awesome ladies, many of which write on this blog, I am more confident and more bold to speak the Word without fear. Because of Mindy Bush, I know that the Lord can save me, and even use my family as a great testimony, in the midst of violent attack. Because of Jillian Bashore, I know that residents in a country closed to the gospel can come to know the Lord as their Savior. Because of Natasha Tolson, I know the Lord can sustain me in the most lonely and grief-filled times of my life. Because of Holly Pearson, I know that I can conquer my fear of rejection and share my faith with those I encounter in the secular work-force and community.

Any trial I face is merely a small blip on God’s radar; delivering me is just a check mark on his “To-Do list”. I have seen him provide joy for the mourning and rest for the weary. Whatever I endure for His name, I can CHOOSE to have “fall out RATHER unto the furtherance of the gospel.” In other words, I can have a poor-me attitude, or I can have a FOR HIM attitude!

As I do, those who come behind me can feed off of both my failures and my victories to reach their fields in a confidence and boldness that only comes from knowing we are safely in His hands! This confidence can make great change in this lost world.

We all know Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” We love to use this as a verse of victory: “I can win souls, I can become wealthy, I can pass this test,” whatever suits our goals at the time. However, verse 12 gives me another perspective: “I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound: everywhere and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.” THEN follows, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

I can suffer for His name sake through His strength alone, and I can do it with a FOR HIM attitude! As a result, I can influence souls for Christ in the field where He has called my family, and I can make confident those that labor after me. I can have a fun and satisfying life in India. I can raise a happy family that loves the Lord and shines His light around the world. The possibilities are endless because the power of Christ is endless!”

I’m going to India! — May 23, 2013

I’m going to India!

When we found out that I was pregnant with Ezra, we were a little disappointed by one thing alone: I wouldn’t be able to go on our survey trip to India. We came to this conclusion based on my last pregnancy in which I was sick 24/7 and had a hard time accomplishing even small tasks. We figured that a 17 hour flight and 9.5 hour time difference as well as temperatures above 100 degrees would do me in.

At orientation at the beginning of May, however, Bro. Austin Gardner encouraged me to go to India whether it be now or later…AND I decided NOW was best! My morning sickness was tolerable, and I had the second trimester energy I never seemed to find last time around. PLUS: I only needed to seek care for one child and did not currently have a nursing baby to provide sustenance for.

When we returned home from orientation, Paul began the process of applying for my visa. He had the paperwork completed and was going to send it out on Tuesday the 14th. However, that day was also our ultrasound appointment where we found out that our sweet baby was no longer living in the womb. The process was halted as I went into labor and was resumed a few days later.

We praise the Lord that even though this process was started late and halted for a bit, we were able to buy a ticket for the same flight that Paul had booked for himself, and I just heard yesterday that my visa was approved by the consulate and is on its way to our house! Pray with us that it’s not “too much too soon” and that my physical recovery will be entirely complete when we leave June 10th.

It really is a dream come true to go to India with my husband, to finally see the country the Lord has put on our hearts, and to see my sweet friend Autumn who, I’m sure, has very much to teach me from her first few months on the field!

New Delhi, here we come!

This is not our home — April 27, 2013

This is not our home

The other night, Paul and I somehow went from near coma on the couch to cleaning frenzy in the kitchen in a matter of minutes. I think it was our irritability that got us started on the spring cleaning rampage. (Anyone else out there a stress cleaner?) I began in the cabinets, looking for things I could pitch…and so, the Goodwill box began. I was surprised at how quickly it filled up! It is amazing to me how quickly we acquire junk, and how we have so much stuff we rarely, if ever, use!

I don’t know what it is about de-cluttering that feels so great! Paul says, “I get high on getting rid of junk!” After our box was full, we continued to look in other rooms for things to trash. We filled one more box and 2 trash bags! Jo’s bedtime came, and since her room is in the kitchen/dining/living room (one bedroom apartment with open floor plan…we make it work!), we had to cut our mood-boosting chore short.

I think our lack of attachment to things will make our move to India MUCH easier (or at least our bags to India much fewer!). We have never put a lot of stock in STUFF (still can’t figure out how we ended up with so much!). We also know that our time here in the States and in this apartment is limited. We plan to stay here with 2 babies and only one bedroom, and we have not even painted over the dry wall after nearly 3 years of living here! Whenever I begin to complain about these things, Paul reminds me, “This is not our home.”

We will paint our rooms in India, our babies will have a room/rooms in India, I’ll pick out our appliances and home decor in India. We’ll hang pictures (and doors that actually close!) and make memory after memory in our new home. We will most likely rent, and our address may change from time to time or furlough to furlough, but we plan to make our home, to raise our family, to make meaningful, lasting friendships, and to serve the Lord in India for as long as He allows.

Sure, I’ll miss this home just like I miss our previous home in Ohio at times. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned, wherever He moves us is home! There’s nothing better than knowing we are where God wants us to be! We are so thrilled to be following Him to India to set up a home and establish churches! And if for some reason, He keeps us here or sends us elsewhere, we’ll make a home there, too!

After all, we are just strangers in a strange land; we’re citizens of heaven, just passing through! (1 Chronicles 29:15) We will serve Him wherever He has us, knowing He will be swift to call us to our eternal place with Him. We will FINALLY be HOME!

I love Him more — January 17, 2013

I love Him more

On Tuesday, we traveled to Greenville, South Carolina to say goodbye to our dear friends, Jim and Autumn Roberts. Jim and Autumn are the first members of the Come and See India team to leave for New Delhi! We are so thrilled for them to start this exciting journey and begin this work we are confident God will do great and mighty things through. We are also thankful they are going ahead and figuring it all out for us first! 🙂 We just love our “test dummies!”

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Autumn has been such an encouragement to me with her sweet spirit and attitude about their departure. She has had to give away most of her earthly possessions, pack what was left, say goodbye to her family and friends, and board a flight to a destination that is mostly unknown. I think it is safe to imagine that she was (and is) scared, heartbroken, and hurting. But the thing she continued to say both audibly in her words and silently through her gentle, quiet spirit was, “I love HIM more!”

More than her earthly possessions, than her family, her friends, her security, her stability, her comfort. More than her own life! Can I say this? Can I honestly say, “I love Him more” than all of these things I believe are inherently mine? I can sing, “He is ALL I need” till I am blue in the face, but does my heart believe it? Wait a minute…Does Autumn know something I don’t know?

No, the Bible tell us all that He is good, that He is faithful, that He is our comfort and our joy. Will I claim His promises and accept His grace today? Tomorrow? When my plane leaves the ground headed for the unknown? I must. If I want my life to mean anything for the Lord, I must love Him more.

I can love Him more because He IS more! He offers more wealth than any amount of worldly possessions, more love than all my friends and family, more comfort and security than my safe-guarded life, and more stability than my immaculate schedule. He really is ALL I NEED! I can truly say, “I love Him more.” I can live solely dependent on His grace and goodness. I am looking forward to the opportunity on its grandest scale, but I can live in light of its truth today. When we don’t get home until 2:30 a.m., when the love offering doesn’t meet our needs, when we are away for weeks at time. I love my comfort zone in the realm of the known, but I love Him more!

This attitude will not only be beneficial to me and a blessing to those around me, it will be an act of obedience to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Jesus said to him, “‘you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment.” (Matthew 22:37-38)

He sure does have my best interest in mind when He asks me to obey, and He gives me great reason to love Him more! Thankful for His sufficient grace, and that He truly is ALL I NEED!

Change of Heart — January 30, 2012

Change of Heart

Last night, during the teachers/workers meeting at Vision Baptist Church, my dear husband wrote me a little note. This is not an unusual occurrence in any given church service or meeting, but this was a very special note. It read,”Pastor asked me if we wanted to announce that we are going to India tonight.”

I replied, “Up to you, babe.”

“Are you 100% in?” Quite a weighty question for note-passing, wouldn’t you say?

After a shorter pause than I would have anticipated, I quickly scrawled, “YES!”

This is not the first time that we have discussed these plans, and I have had a few months for the Lord to work on my heart toward India. Many of you may know that I had previously been on a missions trip to Africa, and we often talked of plans of eventually serving somewhere in Africa. Honestly, I let myself get too set on this idea since that time, and it has been an adjustment to sort of “re-program” my mind and my heart to let go of this dream.

Previously, when I thought about missions, I saw African faces. This is probably just something that was created by the short time I had spent actually seeing the work and serving short term with Keith and Rebecca Shumaker in Burkina Faso. It was my only experience of missions. I prayed more often for Africa, decorated my home in our souvenirs, and dreamed of returning someday.

It is taking time, but the more that I learn about India, the more the Lord stirs my heart and creates an excitement within me live and minister there. We are fortunate enough to have friends who have an incredible burden for the country of India. Trent and Stephanie Cornwell are a constant encouragement to us. Trent’s heart for India is contagious, and I believe the Lord truly used his relationship with Paul to lead us there. He shared his dream for Vision to send 8 missionary families to India with the church, and we feel so blessed to be counted as one of those families! We also have Jim and Autumn Roberts, missionaries to India currently on deputation. They also had other plans of serving in, I believe it was, Scotland (?) when the Lord redirected their steps towards India. We are looking forward to getting to know them better as we prepare to get to the field. We hope to work along with their family in India and hope to arrive on the field just a couple years after they do.

Lord willing, our hope is to begin raising support by the end of 2012 and join the Roberts on the field by 2015. We feel so blessed to be given this opportunity, and we are trusting the Lord as He leads and guides us along the way!

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