Dear ITA Family,
Greetings in the precious name of our Lord Jesus Christ! It is with great joy and enthusiasm I write these words to you. Susana and I consider it an immense privilege to form part of this alliance, this family, and the work of extending God’s glorious Kingdom globally together with you.
Honestly, we never expected to serve in this role! We have been church planters outside Madrid, Spain for the majority of our adult lives. We always thought we’d finish our days there! Obviously, God had other plans for us. When Roger Lang, chairperson of the search committee for the ITA Council, contacted us, it was a complete surprise. Our immediate thought was: “There are so many other leaders who are so much more capable than us!” Nonetheless, we agreed to pray about the offer. From that time forward, God began to move obstacles to open the way for us to do this. As always, we stand in awe at how God continues to do more than we think or imagine, even moving into our seventh decade of life.
We were first introduced to LMC and ITA in 2005, when we attended our first LMC in the Canary Islands, Spain. It was Joop Strietman’s first time to lead a LMC without David Cummings. Of course, we didn’t know that. In God’s providence, I was in Joop’s coaching group. I immediately sensed a kinship with him, and our friendship grew since that time. Joop can tell you, we loved LMC from day one, even asking how we could become a part of ITA. We became trainers that same year, and our mission (FWBIM) joined the newly formed alliance that same year. In our first course as trainers, we worked with David Cummings, as he mentored me in the areas of communication, creative thinking and decision-making, and Susana in the relationships track. We had the opportunity to serve in many courses with Joop and Annie over the next decade. Joop continued to coach and mentor us, and we eventually grew into the role of senior trainers and I a lead trainer.
I told the ITA search committee that the only way I would accept the role of CEO would be if my friend and mentor Joop Strietman was in agreement. Evidently, Joop had already recommended us. Right after that first meeting with the Council, Susana and I traveled to Emmeloord, The Netherlands, to spend time with Joop and Annie. We took long walks to talk, and after that we sensed more of God’s peace about moving forward.
We officially accepted the role in April of 2015. And then four months later, together with Joop and Annie, we made the decision to spend a month in Emmeloord. Once again, this was a tremendous help for us. It simply added to our love, respect and appreciation for this wonderful, godly couple, and for the global ministry of ITA/LMC. God has obviously used Joop, Annie, and ITA around the world to touch lives and extend His Kingdom. We pray, as we walk in their footsteps we can honor their example and our Lord by continuing to make ITA/LMC a blessing for HIS honor and glory.
We ask you to stand with us with your prayers and financial support for 2017! We have six LMCs planned for 2017.
Many more leaders around the world need the encouragement that a LMC experience can give them, not to mention the practical tools that can help with life and ministry. Many leaders who want to benefit from the training are unable to do so because of finances. We need your financial support. Consider sponsoring a leader!
We continue to have more invitations than we can possible fulfill. Our greatest challenges are personnel and finances. We need your prayers.
Please feel free to contact us. Give us your ideas and suggestions. We are here to serve you.
For the extension of HIS Kingdom globally,