Hello Friends and Family!
Tis the Season! We hope you all had a blessed Thanksgiving celebration with your families. We all have so much to be thankful for! Ethan and I were so grateful to have several thanksgiving day invitations. We ended up going up to Orlando to spend the holiday with some good friends of ours. Mike and Ann Mislang are always so gracious to hosts us and take care of us.
With the holiday season upon us, this last month has flown by! Ethan and I have been local this whole month but there has been a lot going on. Ride Nature has been busy with a local event almost every weekend this last month.
At the very end of October, we had several events including a skim contest which was put on by a local surf shop. We came, set up our tent, corn hole, and brought paddle boards and skimboards to share. It was a fun outreach to the skim crowd, a demographic we aren’t as involved in as the local skaters.
Then on 10/31, we hosted Ride Nature’s 5th annual halloween skate jam, Tricks for Treats. We had a good turn out and shared the gospel message with the participants before awarding prizes.
One of the first weekends in November, I got to go out with some of the Surf Sisters for a paddle board adventure. We had to do a lot of technical maneuvering through the mangroves and then our path opened up after awhile. We had a sweet time of fellowship, bible study, and heart sharing. I am hoping we can make that at least a monthly occurrence and hopefully draw in some new girls to join our weekly bible studies. The winter is mild enough here we should be able to keep going from Dec-Mar.
Ride Nature sent two of our staff members to Asia in November. They had a whirlwind trip to Japan, Philippines, and South Korea. The main focus was to meet up with our missionary contact in Davao, Philippines. However, they were able to make the most of their extended layovers in Manila, Tokyo and Seoul by meeting up with other action sports missionaries and doing some vision planning. Our guys were blown away by the amount of skim boarders in the Philippines and their talent. Ride Nature is now “sponsoring” the #2 best skim boarder in all of Asia. Mark, our director who was on the trip, talked with this young man for awhile encouraging him in his faith and challenged him to start reading his bible daily. In return, we would sponsor him and try to get him real sponsors. Here are a few pictures from their time in the Philippines.
As I mentioned before, Ride Nature has been doing a lot of local events this month in addition to the 3 weekly skatepark bible studies they always do. This picture is from an event we did at a Christian concert that was held in a city just under an hour north of us. The church that held the concert is actually the church that Ethan led on the India mission trip. He has been encouraging one of the guys to start up a weekly bible study at the local skatepark. The contest was a success even though the concert got rained out. The crowd of guys who participated were even a bit rougher than what we are used to in Naples. At the event, we got to share the gospel and pray individually with some of the skaters. We pray that the local church continues to pour into those guys.
Finally, we are trying to get in the Christmas spirit down here but it is a bit strange in 80 degree weather. It did get slightly chilly in the evenings when we were up celebrating Thanksgiving in Orlando. Here are a few pictures from our Thanksgiving trip and Ethan’s golden birthday (28 years old on 11/28) celebration!
**Praise Reports and Prayer Requests**
- We booked our tickets and are leaving this Saturday, 12/5, to go to Huacho, Peru on a mission trip with a team of 5, Ethan, myself, two interns, and a local RN volunteer. We found round trip flights for $230!! Also, because the team is so small, we have had to do some fundraising to cover Ethan and my trip but we are only a few hundred dollars short of our $1500 goal!
- Please be praying for our trip, 12/5-12/13. We will be visiting missionaries Craig and Daisy Tippie (I introduced you to them back in September). They have lots of events, projects, and sharing time planned for us. However, we skyped with Craig today and he said they have been experiencing spiritual attacks and some things have fallen through. Our prayer is that we wouldn’t just do what is planned but allow the Lord to use us as an encouragement to them while being sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s guidance in all our ministry/outreach pursuits. Here is a link to Ride Nature’s Huacho, Peru Mission Trip Newletter. If you would be willing to give toward our goal or just want to know more, check out this link.
- Be praying as we are in the works of planning Ride Nature’s first trip to Haiti in January.
- Prayer for continued health during my pregnancy and also all the financial changes that will take place once the baby arrives.
- Prayer for the weekly surf sister’s meetings. Since we have had to move our bible study inside, our attendance has been low and irregular. The other leaders and myself don’t want girls to come just to make us feel better but the real purpose is to develop relationships, challenge each other in our faith and utilize that time for weekly discipleship and spiritual growth.
Thank you all for your prayers and encouragement. We truly couldn’t be here without your support! Hope you are cherishing this holiday season and make the most of precious time with family. As we look forward to Christmas, I will leave you with this verse.
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6
Thank you Lord for the gift of your son. May a day never go by when we don’t stand in awe of the magnitude of your mercy and gracious gift to us.
In His love,
Ethan and Sandra