I thought I would start this post out with a little history for you. Did you know that Utah is called the Beehive state? I guess when the Mormons first came to Utah they called it the “State of Deseret” which is a reference to the honeybee in the Book of Mormon. Early Mormon settlers have been described as having carried “swarms of bees” with them. This nickname commemorates the industry of the people of Utah. The beehive was adopted in 1847 as an official emblem and represents the quality of industry, perseverance, thrift, stability, and self-reliance which were all virtues respected by the region’s settlers. The beehive is the centerpiece of the Utah Great Seal and the Utah State Flag.
We just spent 6 days in the beautiful state of Utah! The beehive thing was interesting because they actually have a little picture of the beehive on all of their State Highway road signs…we laughed, but it’s kind of cool in a way. However, we did not travel to Utah to learn about their history, or even to see the gorgeous landscape, but we were invited to come and share with some dear brothers and sisters in Christ about Tribal Church Planting in Mexico and about what God was doing in our lives.
Our hosts, Bill & Carole Wright, picked us up from the airport in Salt Lake City and our first stop was their home in Price, UT. A big thank you to them for setting up the trip and opening their home to us! We felt the love of Christ through you both, and it was so refreshing for us to come and talk about the things of the Lord with you and to feel your excitement for being involved in what God is going to do in the hearts of the people of Mexico.
From the Wright’s home in Price we drove the next morning 3.5 hours to Milford, UT where we had an opportunity to share about tribal missions with Valley Alliance Church and visit with Bill and Carole’s daughter Nikki and son-in-law Joel and their family as they are serving as Pastor there. At Valley Alliance Church we enjoyed a meal with some of the church members and shared about Mexico and the need for the gospel among the tribal people. Also coming up to hear us share, Bill and Carole’s other daughter Brittany and her husband Bill and their little guy Ethan.
After sharing at Valley Alliance Church the next morning we woke early and drove down 2 hours to St. George to spend a hot day on the lake, boating and cliff jumping with the whole family. The lake was gorgeous surrounded by red rock and the water was so clear you could see 20 feet down to the sandy bottom. It was a nice balance of relaxing and water sports, it’s too bad we forgot our camera that day or you could see some stellar shots of Pete learning to wakeboard and my first knee-boarding experience. It was such a fun day, thanks to Brittany’s, Bill for driving the boat and Brittany, Joel, Bill, and Kayla for the great company.
That night, sun-burned and tired we drove the 6 hours back to Price to get some sleep before sharing the next morning. Bill Wright is the Pastor of East Carbon Community Church, in Carbon City, UT. This church family has been supporting us and praying for us for almost two years now as we have been going through the missionary training and prepare to go out to the field of Mexico. Saturday morning a lovely brunch was put together by Carole and other ladies in the church. After sharing a meal with the believers Pete and I were given the opportunity to share about tribal missions in Mexico, and also to share about what God had been teaching each one of us, personally. Pete was given about 30 minutes with the men, and I 30 minutes with the women. It was pleasure to come and share our excitement about the Lord, and East Carbon’s love for the Lord and for their missionaries was completely evident to us as we spoke with all of you.
Sunday morning Pastor Bill interviewed both of us in front of the congregation at East Carbon asking some great questions so they could get to know us even better. Then Pete preached a message and we had some time after the service to fellowship a bit with these precious people who have been praying for us and giving to us so faithfully. It truly is a blessing to be a part of your church family.
Once all of our speaking and sharing was over, Monday we took a trip out to Arches National Park outside of Moab, UT. The park was beautiful, so many wonders of God’s creation to see for miles and miles! Pete and I had never seen anything like it before and despite the 102 degree temperatures we hiked for almost 4 hours! Here are some pictures from our adventures.
After a day at Arches National Park we got home, and packed for an early trip to Salt Lake City and the airport the next morning. Our trip to Utah was full for great memories we will carry with us throughout the summer and as we move to Mexico in January. We were encouraged by the faith of the believers here and their support and love for us and excitement about Mexico and tribal missions. Hopefully we will have the opportunity to travel back and see you all on our furlough and share first hand about what God is doing through you in Mexico.