By Kris Yeomans
Since our commissioning at the 2018 General Baptist Summit, I (Kris) have been faced with a series of health challenges resulting in several arterial stints prior to our departure for Niamey.
With medical clearance, we then departed the United States for West Africa on October 25, a trip that was met with some challenges. After a substantial amount of prayer and discussion, our field partner (SIM International) in Niamey was put on hold until the beginning of the next school year, August 2019 (part of our work will involve volunteering at the missionary kid’s school in Niamey). That decision, coupled with lack of health resources currently in Niamey and additional security concerns that prompted more missionary movement restrictions, ultimately led us to return to the US.
While this is not something we wanted, or expected to happen, God’s Grace has sustained us, and His Peace has been evident throughout the entire change in plans. He has confirmed that this change for us is all part of His plan. Through the sadness of another delay, He has given us joy that we know only comes from Him, and He continues to keep Niger in our hearts.
So, with our extra time in the US, we are moving forward with ministry plans. We began taking more French courses in January, with the hope of being as fluent as possible by summer. January through May we will continue a time of deputation, raising more funds for our share support, and bringing additional awareness to the needs and ministry opportunities in Niger. If you would like to schedule us to speak at your church, please contact us – we would love to visit and share about Niger!
We are so excited to share that the Lord is opening doors for a location of our very first church plant in Africa! So, while we aren’t there right now, God is continuing to work and expand His Kingdom, and we are thankful that we (and YOU) are a part of that!! More on this later, as it develops.
With this unexpected furlough, we will answer some of your questions here:
Have you resigned from GBIM? No, we are still full-time with the mission, and have basically moved the short furlough we were planning for 2020 to now, so we plan to be on the field from 2019 – 2021 before returning to the US again.
Are you receiving a paycheck while you are in the US? Yes, we continue to be employed by the mission, and our salaries and insurance continue to be covered by our deputation.
Should I stop my support while you are on this short furlough? We live off your support, while on the field of service and while we are here in the US on furlough. This is ultimately up to you, of course, but we encourage you to continue giving so that once we are all set to depart, there is no delay due to lack of funding. In fact, our deputation is down due to the purchase of plane tickets to return home unexpectedly, so we certainly need and appreciate your generous giving.
Where does our support go while you are in the US? Whether you support us weekly, monthly or annually, 100% of our share support goes into our deputation account, whether we are in the US or in Niger. These funds pay our salaries and insurance, as well as expenses for providing updates via mail, etc.
With all the challenges and changes in plans that have taken place recently, do you feel like God is leading you in a different direction? We do not feel like God is leading us in a different direction now. While we certainly weren’t expecting the changes we’ve experienced, we knew all along that getting this brand new ministry off the ground would be a tremendous challenge, and even more so in a place like Niger – where Satan has had a stronghold for many years. Satan is going to fight with all he has to keep more evangelism and resources from being poured into one of the most unreached places in the world. We not only want your prayers, we NEED them, for us and this brand-new work for General Baptists in West Africa.
In closing, as you pray, continue to remember our family as we adjust to a lot of transition, pray that we will pick up French quickly and that our courses will be effective, and continue praying for the work in Niger (and especially this new church plant that is already in the works!). Thank you all, so much for your faithful prayers and support on our behalf
Kris, Nicole, Emily & Eden Yeomans Missionaries to West Africa | GBIM Email: kris @ generalbaptist.com US Phone: 270-820-1114 or 901-646-5758