La Lumiere
October, 2016
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THE COBBLER'S SHOES

logo We just released a new version of our website - workmanrumpus.com! This comes after nearly a decade of being stuck in the previous one, like the cobbler who never takes the time for his own shoes. The blogs, quotes, and newsletters are there, all the way back to 2001. I went back to read some of our first newsletters where we introduced our first ministry team, and we shared our reactions to being in Toulouse, France during the September 11 attacks, then experiencing the catastrophic fertilizer plant explosion in Toulouse just 10 days later. So much has happened in our fifteen years on staff, and it's all journaled there! May and I enjoyed working on the website together. Our talents compliment each other well. Another recent accomplishment is a short video which tells the story of our call to France. It is at the top of our ministry page workmanrumpus.com/ministry, if you'd like to see. We hope this video can be a vehicle to meet new people who might be open to joining our team. I really enjoyed the process of filming and editing the video. I could have continued improving and polishing it for months, but at some point you have to be done. Those are skills I would like to develop, potentially. But we'll wait and see where the Lord leads.!

Sunflowers
Sunflowers Efrem planted in our garden.
Efrem's sunflowers
Efrem with his sunflower harvest.
DEUX
ON THE BENCH

Since 2007 I have spent the first weeks of September scurrying to kick start a new school year, covering campuses in Rennes with posters, handing out flyers and meeting new students. This year I am on the bench. Because of losses in our monthly support, I have been pulled aside to work on finding new partners for our ministry. It tears at me to see the campus team carry on with fewer laborers. Halle, who co-led the team with me for the past two years, has taken that full role. In addition to my absence, Melissa and Christian are working in new locations, leaving a team of 3 in Rennes. Student ministry is dynamic! There are very few constants: the great need for the gospel here in France, and that things are always changing. Although I truly enjoy being in touch with you - and it is an essential and fulfilling part of this ministry - I am anxious to have a full tank again and enter into ministry undistracted by financial needs. I'm praying that this phase be completed quickly so I can be back on the field again! As a baseball coach I dread putting players on the bench. But there is a time for everything, resting a pitcher's arm or being in better touch with your team. We are so thankful that you are faithfully by our side!

Diplomas
Silas with his good friend Marwan holding their middle school diplomas.

Praises...
  • for the new version of workmanrumpus.com, and the new video describing our call to France.
  • for sunflower seed harvest and middle school diplomas!
Please pray...
  • that Dan is able to connect well with new and potential supporters.
  • for May's audio/visual role in the upcoming women's conference, that everything would run smoothly.

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La Lumiere
September, 2016
UN
CRESCENDO

Last time we reported to you from Hungary in the middle of the Crescendo Summer Institute, Cru's ministry to musicians. At the end of the our time, kids from the youth section I was responsible for were asking people to sign their white Crescendo t-shirts. Along with my signature I wrote "Don't stay out too late," or "Be sure to get enough sleep!" That was my least favorite job. The small group discussions were my favorite, naturally. Our group had a great atmosphere, and we explored not just being musicians, but our relationship with God. The biggest bonus was that Silas and Efrem participated. The additional musical instruction was certainly great, but seeing such outstanding Christian musician role models was priceless. Brilliant artists from all over the world traveled to Tokaj to invest in the young aspiring participants. On one hand, these are celebrated award winning musicians. On the other hand, they are approachable. You could have a friendly talk with them over a tray of food from the cafeteria, then they might offer to share with you all the digital albums they brought, if you have a usb drive handy. It was refreshing to see such humility and down-to-earthiness in someone who you recently saw perform a jaw-dropping arrangement of Amazing Grace. They were there to serve. During one of the morning devotionals we were told that art is a means of expression that can give others a glimpse of God. An inspired artist can turn the gaze of others toward the Almighty. Ultimately, Jesus represented the highest level of art and communication - "He that has seen me has seen the Father." How can we better reflect the divine in our communication with others?

Biking
On the road again.
Sand dune
Bounding down the Dune of Pilat.
DEUX
RIDING

What started six years ago has become a family tradition. Our fourth biking-camping adventure had us pedaling 155 miles, with each of us carrying 35-60 lbs. in our saddlebags. Descending the western coast from Royan to Biscarrosse, we traveled in stages up to 47 miles. The water was cold along the coast, but warm in the Bay of Arcachon. We camped at the base of the surreal Dune of Pilat, the tallest sand dune in Europe. Trudging up, then practically skiing down its 60 million metric cubes of sand, which tower 360 feet above the coast. Even on vacation opportunities to talk about Jesus came up. While talking with a camping neighbor who is a surfing instructor, he was intrigued when I told him I was a "protestant chaplain" (which is more understandable than missionary). Silas and Efrem stood by as we talked about his obstacles to believing in God and why science has actually affirmed my belief. It was quite a ride. Now the question is - where to next?!

Beach
Enjoying the sun and beach.

Praises...
  • for a relaxing yet challenging riding vacation.
  • that we were all so blessed at the Crescendo Summer Institute.
Please pray...
  • that we find the right rhythm and priorities for this school year.
  • for good progress on the new version of our web site and the video to introduce us to others.

Bike route
Our route this summer following the Vélodyssée.
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