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A life and ministry update:

Keeping up with the Kilsons

Hello dear friends. It has been too long since we have connected with you all! We'd like to catch you up on the Kilson clan:

We spent a wonderful holiday season from the beginning of November to the end of December in the U.S. visiting family and friends, as well as reconnecting or making new connections with churches and supporters in the Midwest. We were blessed to have the funds to make that trip, thanks to the generosity of you all! Though we had busy times, it was still truly a restful and rejuvenating trip.

We got to meet parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins. We got to spend several weeks in Missouri, seeing Travis' parents' new home, as well as going to some of the places we remember fondly from our college days. We got to connect with friends we haven't seen in years, and make some new friends along the way.

We had lots of firsts this trip: It was Maye's first flight, her first trip the the U.S., and her first time meeting most of our family. It was wonderful to introduce her to everyone, and show how Naomi is growing and learning. It was our first time to be in the U.S. with the girls for Thanksgiving and Christmas. It was the first time for Travis and I to have a weekend away from the girls after Maye was born. We spent a kid free extended weekend at the International Conference on Missions in Kansas City; what a blast!
Even though the girls were sick several times each and Travis and I at least once, (not to mention his parents getting sick), we were still blessed to have had such a long trip to have time to rest and recover as needed. We are truly grateful for that time, for our ministry team in Japan who took care of things while we were gone, and for those of you who enabled us to take the trip in the first place.

It's hard to describe the experience of coming back to our home country after having lived cross-culturally for the last five years. The image that comes to mind is having to constantly tread water while abroad, to keep your head up, and then you go back to your home country and suddenly all you have to do is float on your back to keep your head up. Like catching your breath. Although it is a challenge to live in Japan, we felt a confirmation from the Lord in visiting the U.S. that we are still where we are meant to be. As people asked us about our future ministry, and as we shared with them the needs in Japan, even just purely the lack of workers to share the gospel to the Japanese people, we felt a new urgency to continue the work that the Lord has given us here. 
We have spent the last two months catching up with people in our church and in our ministry. We've  also been getting ourselves ready for Naomi's kindergarten which will begin this spring by adjusting our daily schedule, and buying ALL the supplies and uniforms. And we have more news on the school front: in April, Travis will join Tim Turner in teaching English at a junior college in April. The school has a Christian foundation, so Travis is able to work there and remain in the parameters of his religious visa. We are very grateful for the help this will be for our family finances.
Stacks and stacks of supplies required for Naomi's kindergarten.

Changes Amongst Turmoil

Our world is expanding with the new communities we are joining with Travis and Naomi's schools beginning this April. We are excited for the connections to be made with the students and families that we will meet. We hope to be able to make meaningful connections and be a light for Christ in whatever opportunity presents itself.

While we were looking toward a busy Spring with a totally new routine for our family, we are now in a limbo with the cancellations and quarantines that have come about with the new Coronavirus. This month has been like staying home during a storm to wait for the bad weather to pass. We are waiting and praying that the spread of the virus can be slowed and praying for health and safety for everyone.  

We had our annual staff meeting, we have had so many things to look forward to, events to plan, and people to connect with. However, many if not most of our March events were cancelled, and we are all holding our breaths to see what April will bring, if by then we will be able to get back to "normal life". We thank you for your prayers as we all deal with this virus worldwide, and as we look to the rest of what 2020 will bring. Pray for us to be bold, and to be listening to the Lord for what or who He puts in front of us everyday. Blessing to you all!

Becky

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