Halfway Point of Our Summer

Time Has Flown By

Time has been going by so fast! The kids & I (Annie) are halfway through our time in America. If you haven’t seen us yet, please don’t hesitate to call or email, our schedule is pretty flexible and open and we want to see as many of you as possible.

I think the halfway point is a good time to share with you what my strategy for fundraising has been and is on this trip.

The idea to come for the summer without Louis was given to me by God when we were here last December and January. That winter trip was all about our family, getting Kyrie’s surgery accomplished, and celebrating her healing. We spent Christmas with our families, and we did not spend much time visiting with the people who support us, and we did not spend any time finding new partners.

Because of that lack of contact, I was inspired to start planning this trip to America around creating and deepening our partnerships. At the same time, I knew that the security training I would be attending would need a great deal of reflection and prayer. Needing a great deal of time to sit quietly and pray seemed at odds with running around to see every person who might be able to give financially or otherwise.

So, I asked God to give me clear directions that I could obey.

Engage

 

The word God gave me was Engage. Engage is the title of Horizons International’s course to teach people how to engage with Muslims. I have always been able to use the training to engage with basically anyone. It has given me a framework to reach out to non-Christians and Christians alike. Therefore, it was easy for me to hear God say I needed to use this framework in Arizona.

Not only do I want to Engage with people here, but to help people Engage with the ministry in Lebanon. There are so many ways to do this, and the first part is just having a relationship with us.

Also, I want to be an encouragement to people here in the States, to share ways that you have all kept us afloat and the joys of new ministries, stable ministries, growing ministries that I see in our communities here. These ministries that we have seen grow while we have been in Lebanon are such an encouragement to us as well.

Isn’t This a Fundraising Trip?

When I ask Kyrie a yes or no question, her answer is usually, “Yes or No”. While it is confusing when she says it, it is the most appropriate answer for me here.

Yes or no.

I am here hoping to be fully funded, but I am not raising money the way we did our first year of fundraising.

The money I am basically leaving in God’s hands. Yes, we are under funded and need to raise our amount in order to stay in Lebanon, but I believe God wants us in Lebanon, and so that part of the ministry will be taken care of by God.

I do not want to make it hard to give us money, however, so CLICK HERE if you would like to start giving monthly, or a one time gift.

Throughout this post I have linked previous articles that relate, so if you see a link, click on it to find out more of the story. Especially for those new to the blog, this is a great way to work your way back through time to connect with us.

If God is leading you to become a financial partner, CLICK HERE to donate through Horizons. There is a drop-down menu to designate funds for Louis Liss.

Annie will be in the States until August 20! Please sign up to meet with her to encourage each other in all that the Lord is doing! CLICK HERE to make an appointment, or reply to the email when you subscribe to our newsletter.

If the appointment page is confusing, I made a walkthrough HERE.

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Field Security Initial Thoughts and Debrief

 

Last week I attended a training in San Diego along with other missionaries working in or headed to places all over the world to share about Jesus Christ.

This training was informational as well as hands on covering all types of situations that may cause a crisis in our various work places.

Of course, you might imagine the need for a training like this with Louis and I working in the Middle East.

Crisis Consulting International ran the training, so if you CLICK HERE you can find out more about it.

I have decided to take this week to process through the training and write up several journal entries before attempting to share my thoughts with the world, but I wanted to share a basic overview and to let you all know I am back in the State of Arizona to start meeting with people and fundraising again. Please CLICK HERE to reserve a time to get together, pray, and hear about what we are doing in Lebanon. You can call or email me as well.

If you have any questions, even specifics about our own security or about the Middle East, please leave a comment or send us an email.

What Did This Training Change About Your Plans?

Being able to do our own Risk Assessments will allow us to expand our mission work wisely. In the past a location we knew had risks was off limits because we felt unequipped to assess those risks. This training helped guide future risk assessment for our own travel within Lebanon.

This training also brought to light the limitations of our knowledge and our organization, Horizons International. Recognizing the essentials that are missing helps us pray and also act on our own behalf within our organization.

How Can You Use This Training Immediately?

My goal of gaining confidence and eloquence was definitely met. Of course I need some time to gather my thoughts about what I just learned before I could give a speech, but I know the direction to go in order to be an advocate for my family.

This week will be full of prayer about problem areas that came up in this training, research on topics and sites that were shared in the training, and drafting letters to the appropriate people in order to get Crisis Management Policies underway.

In travelling, so much of this training is applicable right away, and I am much more confident in future travels.

 

Did Horizons Send You to This Training?

No.

I was encouraged to attend this training by several other missionaries when we went to MTI back in 2014. When we were put in charge of internships in Beirut, incoming interns’ parents often have asked us what policies are in place in case of an emergency.

Horizons has no such policies.

Therefore, I knew that with or without Horizons’ support, I needed to attend this training in order to protect my own family.

I sent the kids fun pictures throughout the week and am happily back at home with them now, which is why some of the pictures are more silly in nature.

2 Weeks in America

 

I (Annie) have been in America coming up on two weeks this Tuesday. I haven’t had a chance to check in because I left my computer in Lebanon with Louis and we have taken our two broken computers into a shop in Phoenix in hopes of salvaging pictures and maybe a workable computer.Can't Stop Me

So, I thought I would check in at this point and let you know that we are well. So here is a quick bullet point list of our trip so far:

  • JET LAG: I didn’t know kids would struggle with jet lag, but boy did they! It was insane! The first week was spent just trying to keep them awake during the day with toy stores, swimming, and games.
  • Visits and Appointments: I started meeting with partners to share encouraging stories and the plan moving forward. If you would like to see me, the best way is to text or call me at 480-242-6979, email me, or sign up on the calendar page by clicking the day and time you are available and writing your name into the Title.
  • Planning for attending the CriCon training.
    • This is a training to prepare me to write policy for crisis encounters that may occur for our staff in Lebanon and as they go into other places in the world.
    • I will update you after the training with a debrief, but for now be praying because I will be leaving the kids in Mesa with my parents during the training.
      • If you would like detailed prayer updates for things like this CLICK HERE to join our prayer team. Items with sensitive information are only emailed to this group.
  • Ministry preparations and prayer time to determine what God has for me in the upcoming year
  • Praying a lot that God will bring forward people who can help us get our funds from 38% to 100%.
  • Culture Shock: Getting gas the first time in our car was a bit overwhelming, and every trip to Walmart I end up leaving before I can even get through half of my list because it is so overwhelming.

If you are one of those people who can join us in financial partnership CLICK HERE and find STAFF: Louis & Annie Liss on the dropdown menu.