Ellingson Update – July 2017

Our journey begins…

We leave for Madagascar on August 2nd!

Dear Friends,
Here we are 2 weeks before we plan to board a plane with the
destination on the other side of the planet—Madagascar. We have been
planning this trip for so long (about 9 months), and now it is almost
here! We have been praying about mission work for the past 3 years and
now the Lord has given us this opportunity to experience a taste of it
for 3 weeks.We plan to fly out of LAX on Wednesday, August 2nd,
travel through Detroit and Paris, and then land in Antananarivo,
Madagascar at 10:45pm on August 3rd (a 27 hour trip). Madagascar will be 10 hours ahead of California time.
We will then spend the next 18 days ministering and exploring this
Island Nation. Our precious daughters will be driving with their
grandparents to Tucson where they will stay for that time and be driven
back home the day before we arrive. The days are flying by quickly as
we plan and prepare.We want to thank you for your prayers and support and ask that you
continue to pray for us over the next month. This trip is no small task
and we know that we are not capable to accomplish any of this apart
from the strength and grace of God. Here are some specific requests
that we would be so thankful if you would pray for.

Specific Prayer

  • Final preparations on our teaching (David’s 7 sermons—mostly from Titus,
    Ashley’s message on parenting for the ladies)
  • For David to complete his assignments for his summer class before we leave
  • Packing and planning logistics
  • Safety in travels for the whole family
    and other team members going (and our daughters traveling)
  • Pray for our daughters, ages, 2, 4, 6, & 7 as they are with their
    grandparents during our trip
  • God would be glorified using our ministry efforts in Madagascar
  • That God would direct our hearts on whether this is where He wants us to
    minister after seminary
  • For unity for our whole team as we travel and minister together (Faly and
    Lily Ravoahangy, Scott and C.J. Nelson, and us)
  • For the health and safety of our team during the trip

A Note from

On Wednesday our close friends Faly and Lily Ravoahangy left the United
States to head back to their home country of Madagascar. They will have
a two-week stopover in South Africa before arriving in Antananarivo—the
capital city of Madagascar. Ashley and I will join them just two days
later on August 3rd, along with Scott and CJ
From that point on, we will have the privilege to meet with and
minister to many people in Madagascar. There’s a great joy in my heart
that this time is finally upon us. I have longed to minister alongside
Faly and Scott in passing on what we have been taught by faithful men
for the last several years. God has richly blessed me with some of the
best training in the world and has put me around believers that have
sharpened and discipled me. Despite this preparation I realize my
insufficiency for the immense task ahead. I am humbled that I can
participate in this gospel ministry and I rejoice that God has shown me
my weaknesses so that His power will be made even more evident during
the trip.In His goodness, God has continually and progressively strengthened my
faith since we first decided to come to Madagascar about nine months
ago. Many times when I would learn more about what some of the
challenges of life and ministry in Madagascar would be, fear would fill
my heart for my family or
even for myself. Now as I look back, I can see how God has grown my
trust in Him in all of the areas that were initially a struggle for me.
My fears have dissipated and my confidence in Christ has grown strong.
I praise God for His work in my heart. I look forward to seeing God’s
Word proclaimed and to what He will accomplish during these three weeks
and beyond.

Our 4 girls will be staying with grandparents

A Note from

The Lord has used the preparations for this trip in great ways in my heart.
Even if the Lord in His providence never allowed me to go to
Madagascar, I am thankful for all the learning and wrestling in prayer
that this trip has brought about in my life. For the last 10
months,  I was struggling so much with the idea of leaving my
children and going to the other side of the world for 3 weeks. Months
and months were spent praying, begging, pleading with God to help me,
teach me, give me peace, give me more faith. Sunday after Sunday, the
Lord sent ladies to encourage my heart and to share that they were
praying for me. Finally, the Lord gave me His peace, the Lord has
answered the prayers of His people. Planning this trip has made me
examine my own heart in so many ways. It has caused me to see things in
my heart that I never knew were there. I am thankful for what I am
learning before I even step foot in Madagascar. I am now excited and
looking forward to this trip! May God be glorified in this unworthy
Lyrics from two songs of Keith and Kristyn Getty that have recently
ministered to me often.“By faith the church was called to goIn the power of the Spirit to the lost

To deliver captives and to preach good news

In every corner of the earth”

By Faith (Getty Music)

“When I fear my faith will fail

Christ will hold me fast

When the tempter would prevail

He will hold me fast

I could never keep my hold

Through life’s fearful path

For my love is often cold

He must hold me fast


He will hold me fast

He will hold me fast

For my Savior loves me so

He will hold me fast

He Will Hold Me Fast (Getty Music)


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