I’ve signed up again (a perspective from Misty: a mom of 7 in full time missions

This fall will be 10 years since we walked into the greatest journey of our lives. 10 years ago we said yes to laying down our dreams for life and picking up the dreams The Lord had in store for us. The stories are endless as we have been challenged, transformed, ignited, grown, and provided for. Each move we have made and each child we have adopted has taken us to a new level of faith, I, at the time, wasn’t sure I could handle. Each step of faith leading to one journey after the other and stretching us even more. This past year when we felt called to YWAM Kona I knew The Lord was asking something of us that only HE could do. Come on, 9 family members go to Kona, Hawaii for 6 months!!! Who does this? Who gets invited to such a thing? Well we did and every need and every step of the way He provided. At 42 years old I became more alive than I have ever felt. I learned so much about walking life out to the fullest. I learned about joyful repentance, walking with an unoffendable heart and the great joy of sharing the gospel. These are all things I have been taught before but they were taken to a whole new level and it spoke right to my heart. While in those 6 months I felt more alive than ever I was also challenged far beyond what I had signed up for. From selling everything we owned on this earth but our 9 passenger van and some clothes, to my dad being given not much more time to live, to one of our children having the emotional hurts of his past and letting them all come to a head while in Kona, a miscarriage at 14 weeks, going low and serving and leading peers, wrestling all along with what is after Kona. The things I asked of The Lord at age 42 was that he would give me greater wisdom, more humility, grow me in leadership and more love for HIS word. I just did not know I would get in leading 16 peers and 24 children on outreach, in being desperate for HIS word to carry me through the pain of not being with my dad in his illness, and in trying to love a 10 year old boy who thought he could raise himself. I found myself both grateful and exhausted at the end of the 6 months. When I arrived back in Dallas and saw my parents and hugged their necks I was overcome by the graciousness of The Lord that he sustained my dads life long enough for me to see him face to face again. During all of this we felt like Canby, Oregon had been highlighted to us as the place He had for us next. This all felt like an out of body experience since I was trying to grieve my dads death and figure out how and why we we would be sent 30 hours away from “home”. In August we started our journey to Canby where our kids attended camp the first week we were here. Brady and I both almost instantly fell in love with the mountains and trees and the weather. ( I wore a sweatshirt in August) As I wrestled with The Lord the following two weeks as to how were we going to start all over again and how do I fill this whole in my heart of my dad being gone and are my kids going to like it here, is The Lord going to speak to them too that this is where we are suppose to be and will we find a home, what will we do for school and the list goes on. I am thankful to say that The Lord has made it such a pleasurable journey. He has answered so many of my requests for instance; schooling, a home to live in, what we will do here? YES! He spoke to my children unanimously that we were to be here. We have met many wonderful and like hearted people on this journey of pursing the presence of The Lord. So although I still have questions unanswered and my heart still grieves, I have signed up again whole heartedly to this season of life laid before me. I am excited and thankful to be here, make this our new home and partner with what is going on here.

Misty

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“Daddy, now I have more courage to share The Gospel!”

Can you imagaine my hearts delight when I heard our 8 year old daughter make this comment?  We were in the first month of outreach on The Big Island of Hawaii.  It was typical to go out several times a week as a family and to find people with whom we could share the love of our friend Jesus.  This time was a bit less structured as we were directed to pray and ask the Lord for a place to go and meet people. It could have been anywhere on the beach, within town among the tourists or in the nearby neighborhoods where we had distributed copies of the bible.  In this case our team felt as if we were to spend some time visiting with people around the community center and a park known as “Old Airport Beach Park”.  This was a popular site for the locals and was once the site of an old landing strip where the first airport had been. It was the home of midweek soccer practices and local hula competitions. It was also a popular place for Island homeless folks to hang out inconspicously. This time it was Maille, Noah, Kam and the two little ones.  We parked, loaded the stroller and made our way thru the expansive practice fields and playgrounds.  Mind you,  Im sharing this with you in such a matter of fact mannor but we were indeed filled with a bit of fear.  “What if we dont find anyone?”  “What if they reject our message and dont want to hear it?”  “What if we stumble over our words and look like fools?”  All of these thoughts filled our heads and we even voiced them aloud to each other as we made our way.  We prayed “God,  you are worthy of our weak attempts and we know that Jesus is real and is wanting to make new friends today” Just a few moments later we spotted very young couple laying on the grass together.  I knew were had an opportunity to share the love of God with these folks. Just think in an instant, they could make a decision to be friends with Jesus too and be changed for ever!!! It was this thought we had in mind as we approached them.  We asked “Do you know Jesus?”  Both of them responded “Yeah…didnt he die for our freedom or something like that?”  “Yes!, yes!” I replied. He did infact die for our freedom. I loved that he said it that way.  I then began to ask them if they had ever heard the simple gospel about Jesus.  They both said “no” and agreed that they would like to hear it.  In my mind Im thinking “really? Is this easy?” Using the scriptures from Romans I layed out the simple gospel message ending with Romans 10:9-10, and 13 If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved … For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (NLT).  I then asked “would you like to know Him forever and be sure that your eternal home will be with him?” Again, to my amazement they both said “yes!” As I prayed with them my heart was filled with a flurry of emotions.  I realized that I loved watching people get saved and I loved that this was happening with my kids beside me who were helping me convey the biblical truths of the gospel themselves. Both of them entered into an eternal relationship with Jesus that day. Fact is Jesus was pursuing them long before we got there. We just got to see them say yes out loud. As we made our way home that afternoon we were sharing the things we saw and talking about the people that we had met.  We were so excited that our efforts paid off and we got to see people meet Jesus.  As we were walking Maille looks up and says “Daddy, now I have more courage to share The Gospel the next time.  This is a first hand  testimony of how making this transition into missions has so radically impacted our lives.  We desire to live for nothing less than these encounteres among our family.  We have seen that indeed the “feilds are white unto harvest” (Matt 9) and we are all given the tools we need to take our part as laborers.  We simply say “yes” and see Him do extrodinary things.

Update from The Cottles

Greetings Friends and partners

This week we meet the end of the six-month commitment we made with YWAM and graduate from the Fire and Fragrance DTS.
After three months of lecture phase (ending late this past March), Misty and I lead a team of 40 people made up of seven families and 2 singles (19 adults and 24 children ) around the Big Island of Hawaii to -save the lost -revive the saved -and train them all. In the past 10 weeks we have shared the gospel, prayed for the sick and strengthened local believers daily.
We’ve seen our children grow in actively and confidently hearing God’s voice while going with them on treasure hunts to share the gospel and pray for the sick. As a family we have grown together and have been more deeply rooted in love for God, His presence, and the mission field.
As an outreach team, we were able to take part in a bible distribution project to reach over 8000 homes with the Gospel of Jesus Christ . We personally got to share the gospel and lead people to salvation in Jesus.
We partnered with local churches by preaching and exhorting the body toward intimacy with Jesus and saving the lost. We witnessed God pour out his mercy over the lost , the sick healed and even the dead raised!

Our school teams went to the nations to preach the gospel and saw hundreds of salvations in India, Nepal, London and Amsterdam, New York, Washington DC, Los Angeles California, Uganda, and South Africa. As a school we saw hundreds of people transformed by the power of Jesus Christ and their souls changed for eternity.

We are hooked! We are all in!
We can honestly say that the last six months have been so transformational that it will change our family forever. How can we do anything else but continue to join him in this work?
On June 12th we leave Kona Hawaii, headed for Dallas, Texas where we hope to connect with so many of you, our family and friends. While in Dallas we want to connect with our faithful financial supporters and prayer partners to share about our experiences and vision for Missions in the next leg of our journey.
In early August we travel to Canby, Oregon to work with the Jump in House of Prayer and make connections at the YWAM base in Salem.
Currently our plan is to return to Kona by mid December thru Spring to rejoin our YWAM cohorts to disciple and train more young missionaries and support families as they transition into full time missions.
Recently our family ventured out all together to watch the movie The Croods. I know we are a bit behind but we loved this movie so much because we could relate to this family journey in so many ways. There are several quotes we liked so I thought I would end with this one that seems to sum up where we are so well given all that we have experienced and now left feeling compelled to respond in like manner

“No more caves ! We’re gonna jump on the sun (Son) and ride it till Tomorrow” —The Croods

Prayer requests :
Continue to pray for us on this journey that we would carry this zeal we have forward toward for more salvations and more revived souls.
-Continue to consider a monthly financial partnership with us.
-Pray for opportunities to share our story with Dallas area churches
-Pray for the contacts we will make in Dallas and Canby, Oregon
-Pray for a buyer for our van this week in Kona or a clear word from The Lord about this
– Pray for the children in this transition as we say goodbye to such close friends from all over the world.
-Pray for preaching opportunities in Dallas and on our trip to Oregon in late July .

Grace and Peace,
The Cottles
Brady & Misty
Olivia (12) Kam (10) Noah (8)Maille (8) Edie (6) Brandon (4) Caroline (2)

The one thing I ask of the Lord — the thing I seek most— is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, delighting in the Lord ’s perfections and meditating in his Temple. (Psalms 27:4 NLT)