Home Sweet Home?

I’m at the gate over an hour early for my flight back home to the Dominican Republic. I made it through ticketing and security for an international flight in 24 minutes, including when TSA thought the ratchet strap I stole from my Dad’s garage looked suspicious. You can’t get good ratchet straps in the DR. We’ve looked.

This was our first trip back to FL in 9 months and we needed it. It was good for our souls to spend time with family and friends. It was amazing to eat familiar foods and although I kept searching for perfect American meals, it wasn’t until today at lunch time Kathy suggested Cracker Barrel and the light bulb went off. Can’t believe I almost left without eating Cracker Barrel. Chicken fried goodness I was without for so long.

It was relaxing to speak a familiar language and most of all, we loved answering the question, “what exactly is it…ya do down there?” To be able to share with so many friends, family and a few churches the good work God has started in FIGHT Ministries was the best part. People are genuinely touched by the stories we tell and they asked some really tough questions that most times I couldn’t answer, except to say it’s in God’s hands.

Our family is adjusting well to life in the Dominican Republic, although for the kids, I’m sure there will be a readjustment after so long in the US. Our family is almost halfway to reaching our goal for ongoing monthly financial support. We have a monthly budget of $1,500 and we have about $750 committed–mostly from individuals. We are so grateful. We know that the rest is in His hands also. We were prepared in advance for this kind of faith– being totally reliant on God for our finances. Three years in a row we miraculously raised the funds for short-term mission trips when it didn’t seem possible, and during those years we never missed a bill or went without while living on a single income as Kathy became a stay-at-home mom. And in that time, we became completely debt free. It doesn’t make sense on paper, but if God’s calling you to do it, He will provide!

The day we arrived back in Florida, we closed on the short-sale of our old home. Earlier that week, our realtor called us and told us that one of the lenders was now requiring we pay $4500 to release the lean on the house. When she told him we were missionaries and we didn’t have the money, he rudely replied, “maybe God will provide the money.” Within a few hours she made a few phone calls and the other bank heard our story and kicked in the $4500. We didn’t owe a thing. Did you hear me? We didn’t. owe. a. thing. God provides and He is good.

The ministry is proving to be both challenging and rewarding. But we are pleased with the direction it is heading. I got a chance to speak at our home church about where we’re at with the ministry and you can click here and listen to that online. Good stuff. (see June 16, 2013 in the sermon series “49 Days”)

A stranger at the bank in Florida asked us today, “so which do you like better, living here or there?” My reply was this– “I like it much better here because I’m comfortable here. But it is there that I would like to be because my purpose for now is there.”

Picking blueberries with Trevor’s family.

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Bike ride to the beach with Kathy’s family.

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If you’d like to be a part of the Plankenhorn family support team, click here to set up a monthly online donation. Or does your bank offer “Bill Pay?” You could set up an automatic payment to FIGHT Ministries P.O. Box 1701 Auburndale, Fl 33823 *Put “Plankenhorn” in the memo line.*.

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