WELCOME!

We are so pleased that you have taken the time to catch up on our family's adventure. Feel free to comment words of encouragement, inspiration, and/or prayer. By your friendly connection with our family you are being an effective part of the mission and we are wonderfully blessed to have you along with us!







Tuesday, August 20, 2013

July/Aug Update NEW BEGINNINGS

"See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands, your walls are continually before Me." Isaiah 49:16

“You did what?!”
Yes, I’ve resigned from my position as an appliance repairman with Sears here in Sequim.  I had a go at it and learned a huge amount about the trade and about myself.  I have concluded appliance repair is a challenging field especially residential refrigerators and I really enjoyed doing the work.  What I also found though was the increasing number of hours it required and the amount of stress that I shouldered was way more than I had anticipated.  Without going into all the gory details, I realized I could not continue.  I am relieved, to say the least to be moving on and am excited for the next step in God’s plan.  Though God used me hugely during my time in this job, now that we are in transition, I feel our compass needle is reading true again.

The Next Step
 After meeting with Tag and Deidra Larson, directors of YWAM Discovery Bay, we have prayerfully committed to moving back on base (we lived there for nine months back in ‘09-‘10) to serve in the ministry.  There are a number of areas in which we will be assisting:  Discipleship Training School, School of Music in Missions, general base care taking, and administration.  These responsibilities will keep us busy (mostly Jeremy as Cameron will be home schooling) through the week and likely will include more overseas outreach most likely in Southeast Asia and the Pacific Rim.   We will continue to fellowship at Calvary Chapel Sequim and help out whenever we can while continuing to build our relationship with our supporting churches.

One Step Beyond
God continues to put Australia on our hearts and we are taking another step of faith to see what doors the Lord might open for us by attending the Envision Conference coming this October.  The kids will be staying home this time as we fly to Sydney for a few days for the event and then go on to visit Pastor Dave and Melissa Heitman in Tauranga, New Zealand for the remainder of our time.  We will also visit the Calvary Chapel Bible Institute in nearby Rotorua and hopefully connect with other YWAM ministries while in the country.  We’re intrigued by the possible ministry opportunities in NZ and are excited to reconnect with friends and see some beautiful scenery.       

Prayer Needs
  • A smooth transition moving out of our current house and into the base house
  • Finances; we are going to be living on full missionary support as no one is paid in YWAM, we’re a little less than half way to our goal of $2000 a month
  • Adjusting to the new ministry responsibilities
  • Open doors in Australia and/or New Zealand
  • Healing for Jeremy’s lower back, seems to have a pinched nerve effecting the left hip and leg.
  • Home schooling planning for coming year


Friday, July 5, 2013

Lessons in Adversity

I had the privilege of speaking at Calvary Chapel Port Angeles on Sunday, June 23rd.  It's always a blessing to fellowship with various churches and to see how the Lord is faithfully ministering in people's lives.  This church especially has been dealing with adversity with one of their elders suddenly passing away in a car accident and so I was especially honored to share a message of encouragement and practical application.  Have a listen if you have a few minutes and I pray you'll be encouraged!  Jeremy
Click here to listen to the message at Calvary Port Angeles

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Wingey City


It's pretty cold here in Chicago, not really what I was expecting, in the 30s when the sun goes down.  Seattle was green, blossoming, and pushing 70 on Sunday when I left and I was optimistic that spring was here and the temperatures would be on the rise.  Not so.  We drove through snow flurries from the airport to the hotel and I have had frozen ear lobes every night from walking to and from restaurants.  Wah wah wah, says the local, and they're right, I'm just whining.
In 2Cor. 1:8-11 Paul and his traveling mates have been all over modern day Turkey and Greece and have come up against increasing persecution, discrimination, and flat out hardship.  As he writes to the Believers in the worldly, pagan city of Corinth, he does not hesitate to inform them of their perilous experiences. This really struck me as I studied because at times, I shy away from writing in much detail of mine or my family’s struggles as we prayerfully wait for our next step in missions.  Partly because I feel it’s a personal struggle and not one to burden others with. I don’t want to be seen as “winge”-ing.  But it’s clear that there is great blessing in sharing our struggles as well as our triumphs. Paul is our example by sharing his experiences and then also points out the blessing that they received by the church’s prayer (verse 11).  As a result, there are blessings to share and multiply and the body of Christ functions as a healthy unit.  Pride plays a big part in what we do and do not share.  When we keep it all in, we not only miss out but we rob others of serving Christ by using their gifts.  Also, it’s clear that Paul makes a distinction between whining and honestly sharing a trial or concern, his letter is inspired by the Spirit and is written with real purpose and design, not one word is wasted or out of place. 
So, to start, would you pray for us to continue to hear from the Lord regarding Australia.  Almost every day and sometimes multiple times through the day, He gets our attention and draws us to pray for the nation and the brothers and sisters in the faith who are serving Down Under and I want our hearts to be soft and receptive to hear His voice.  Please pray for consistent and growing faith.  We have days when our faith and confidence in Christ and His promises is enough to feel our feet walking on the steamy sidewalk of some Aussie city and other times when we can’t see past our front door.  Would you pray for Cameron and the kids as they persevere in home schooling and generally keeping up the house while I’m working?  As many of you know I’ve been in training in my new job since January and am having to learn a new career from scratch.  This is a huge challenge and I am jumping in with both feet and often feel over my head.  I am confident though, that in time, it will get easier as I get more training and experience in the field.  I am very thankful for the income and for the potential this job has in opening possible doors in ministry, I just need prayer to keep at it and to stay balanced with my relationship with God, my wife, family, and friends.  As always, thank you for your prayers and support.     Jeremy 


Monday, April 1, 2013

Notes from the Windy City




So, I’m in Chicago for a couple of weeks to get trained by Sears in refrigeration repair.  I am super excited to get some intensive training and I am enjoying getting to know some new people from various parts of the U.S.  I miss the family and am kind of bummed about not getting to properly celebrate Easter but I know there are a lot of people who have it a lot worse, especially those serving in our armed forces.  As I settled into my four hour flight to Chicago from Seattle, I buried my nose into what has turned out to be a very interesting and sobering account of soldiers’ lives on the front lines of war against the Taliban in the craggy, rugged mountains and valleys of Afghanistan.  I managed to get through half of the book before we landed awkwardly on one of the many runways of O’Hare airport.  Though I have never served in the military, I enjoy reading about others who have, especially regarding training and leadership under the chaotic horror of combat.  While in Townsville, I found an old copy of the book, Band of Brothers and devoured it in short order.  It too was a great read with important lessons.  A story that really epitomizes what Jesus said in John 15: 13 “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.”  I am thankful also, for the many stories in the scripture that focus on leadership and many of them depict warfare or have some relation to military service.  In my devotional time today, I was in 2Corinthians 1: 1-11 and saw some of these leadership principles described by Paul as he wrote to this adolescent church.  He related the recent persecutions and trials that he and his traveling companions had experienced as opportunities to encourage the Corinthian Believers to endure the same things.  As I read, it is clear that Paul has lead the way through the battle and is showing courage and fortitude, much like the “Captain of our salvation”, our Lord Jesus.  He says in verse 6-7, by following in his footsteps they are affirming their faith thereby showing the fruit of their salvation.  The battle is certain, when the heat is turned up and the enemy engages us, the true Believers fight to hold their spiritual ground and the leaders rise to the forefront and boldly press forward while firmly but lovingly prodding others along.  May we find our strength in Christ to have victory against our adversary as Paul says in verse 9b, "...that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God who raises the dead, who delivers us from so great a death, and does deliver us; in whom we trust that He will still deliver us..."    Blessings, Jeremy

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Step By Step You'll Lead Me

The beautiful Olympic Mountains, our Winter view



Happy 2013 and welcome to Spring!





17 Year Anniversary in Port Townsend
Greetings again from the Botkin Family!  It’s been way too long since out last update and I’ve decided now is the best time write.  Since our return to the States from Australia, we’ve been in prayer and have been patiently waiting for another open door to continue to serve Down Under.  The church plant in Sydney is not progressing very quickly and seems to still be in the prayer and planning stage so, though we are still very interested in taking part, it still seems like it’s a ways off.  We’ve had a few other opportunities but none have materialized as of yet.  
Lollies!
Upon getting settled in here in Sequim, WA. I was blessed for a number of months to be working part-time as an assisting pastor at Calvary Chapel Sequim but the position eventually ran out of funding.  As a result, I’ve been looking diligently for work and God has really come through!  As of January this year I have begun working as an appliance technician for A & E Factory Service, a branch of Sears Holdings.  This is really exciting since they have been training me to work on refrigerators and laundry appliances for the last couple of months and are interested in expanding my training and licensing into the future.  This is both beneficial for our immediate financial needs (enabling us to save more effectively for the mission) and for developing a trade for a potential future visa. 
The neighbors
Yes, it rains in Sequim
With each potential opportunity to serve in Australia we go through a rollercoaster of great rejoicing and excitement and then disappointment.  There are times when we’re perfectly content and at peace with God’s timing and plan but sometimes discouragement weighs on us.  We’re learning to trust in Him solely and not allow our outward circumstances to negatively impact us; God is always faithful to meet our every need.  A few days ago, I was feeling pretty down and was reading in Proverbs when it seemed the Lord pointed me to chapter 30: 25 where it talks about the ants’ wisdom in being prepared for the seasons and I felt that really confirmed our present plan of getting trained in a trade in order to be able to be better equipped to minister in the future.  Even so, if an unforeseen opportunity arises sooner we’re ready to go!  Our savings continues to grow and we are eager knowing that with every contribution our ability to meet our financial goals (plane tickets, insurance, moving costs, etc.) is becoming a reality.  We realize that this is a relatively long period of time of investment for our supporters but be assured that our focus remains on missions and we are continuing to streamline our lives for the calling.  As always we want to say a huge, “Thank You!” for every prayer, word of encouragement, and dollar that has been given to us over these years of support, we are truly humbled and blessed by you.
Sean's new rabbit, Clover

The Botkin Family 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Here's a recent Sermon/Update that I'd like to share with everyone.  We had the blessing of visiting the church that we planted and pastored for over seven years and were, as always warmly embraced.  This Aug. CCForks will be  celebrating its ten year anniversary!  Praise the Lord
http://www.calvarychapelforks.org/sermons.html

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Spring 2012








Easter Sunrise Service


“A land for livestock and your servants have livestock.” Num. 32: 4b

                        This is the rationalization the tribes of Reuben and Gad made to Moses and the elders of Israel regarding why they were choosing not to enter into God’s Promised Land, the land of their inheritance, His best for them.  I think of this when I drive home from work or picking the kids up from school because I see large tracks of land fenced with weathered barbed wire keeping massive cattle from wandering out into the road.  Sequim is a truly beautiful area and the whole N. Olympic Peninsula is very idyllic, in fact, I couldn’t think of a more beautiful place to serve God while we wait for doors to open for our next step in missions.  Australia is still on our hearts and we are continuing to press into God to receive direction and eagerly wait for Him to open doors.  Ps. 33 has also been a source of encouragement for me as the psalmist focuses on God’s wisdom in His plans. Verses 20 and 21 express the personal application, “Our soul waits for the Lord; He is our help and our shield.  For our heart shall rejoice in Him, because we have trusted in His holy name.”  His “holy name” speaks not just of God’s name but His nature and character; that He is perfectly righteous, all wise, just, and perfect in His purpose and plans, therefore we can trust Him with all confidence.  Our church planting team is making their preparations for transition.  Some are ready to leave in a matter of weeks, others are in the middle of the process, while still others, like ourselves are waiting for God’s direction in acquiring a visa and the finances to proceed.  Waiting can be at times, a difficult thing and we have ups and downs of great faith and sometimes doubt, but we’re excited to see what God’s going to do.  One advantage of having our teammates already relocating is that they can begin the work of preparing the spiritual ground for the future ministry and also, can potentially assist us more effectively in attaining our visa.    
Opening Day at the Disc Golf Course
         This lesson of not settling for less than God’s best has been on my heart quite a bit lately, in fact, that was the title of a recent message that I gave at Calvary Sequim and again, to be sure I got the message, I taught it once more at Island Christian Fellowship in Camano Island.  I broke the message up into three main points all dealing with the issue of their compromise:

1) Convenience (comfort)
2) Caution (un-certainty)
3) Choices (consequences of compromise)

Num. 32: 1-6
Convenience (comfort)
»Reuben, Gad, & ½ the tribe of Manasseh decide not to cross the Jordan, instead they want to settle in the land on the eastern side…A land very good for pasture.
»Lot did this same thing about 550 years previous (Gen. 14) when he and Abraham settled in the land of Israel…and he met with the same results as the 2½ Tribes…

Our Society is Based on Convenience…Capitalism is based upon giving the customer what they want…not necessarily what they need.

Some Examples
Remote controls, Convenience stores, Drive-thru Coffee (We’ve even shortened “through” in drive-thru out of convenience!),  Fast food, etc.

Often we compromise God’s best for us because it’s hard and takes work, it’s not convenient…

  • Does God want us in debt?  No, but it’s easier to use the credit card
  • Does God want us to wait until marriage before getting physically involved with one another?  Yes, but it’s easier to give in and not wait.
  • Does God want us to be honest?  Yes, but sometimes it’s inconvenient to tell the truth, especially at tax time.
 Rom. 6: 23 “For the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Gal. 6: 7-8 “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.”

What we need to do is…be content with God’s will, then plan and choose daily to surrender to Him knowing that He is good and has our lives and future in His hands.

Micah 6: 8 “He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God?”

 Num. 32: 7-15
Caution (un-certainty)
What are the 2 ½ tribes saying by settling for the land on the East of the JordanThat God doesn’t know what He’s doing…They’re questioning not only His planning, but the heart and character of the Planner…

»It’s as if they’re saying, “This is a great place for cattle and sheep, there can’t be anywhere better than this…Beside, if everything falls apart on the West side at least we’ll have our land over here on the East!”

This is exactly what we do when we settle for less than God’s best…When we choose to take the short-cut or disregard the clear teaching of His word in order to do what we want.

Gen. 3  This is essentially the strategy that Satan used in tempting Eve in the Garden of Eden…
  • “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree in the garden’?” (questioning God’s word)
  • “You will not surely die.” (flat out contradicting God’s word)
  • “For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (Satan’s saying, “God does not want the best for you, He’s keeping good things from you”, he’s questioning God’s nature and character)
 The Key to trusting in God’s plans are:  His Character (all loving) and His Nature (all knowing and all wise)…When we forget or disregard these, we end up compromising and subjecting ourselves and others to danger and/or limit God’s effectiveness in their lives though us.

 Choices (Consequences of compromise)
 What were some of the consequences of their poor choices

1) Unfulfilled Commitments:  A Job Left Unfinished…Short-cuts

Joshua 13: 13  Israel did not fully complete the job of subduing the land and driving out those who were entrenched in idolatry and destructive behavior.  »Many of the people mentioned are located on the land allotted to the 2½ Tribes.
»These become enemies of Israel from here on out and reappear during David’s reign…Absolom’s mother was a Maachathite

2) A Dangerous LocationToo close to the world…Compromise puts us in line with the world…We team up with the world.
»Just like Lot back in Gen. 14

1Kings 12  Israel is divided as a nation into two kingdoms…In the north, Israel goes heavily into idolatry…Judah, to the south, waffles back and forth between serving the Lord and idolatry.
»The 2 ½ tribes are the first into idolatry and soon loose their identity.

2Kings, the Latter Chapters…Hosea, Micah, Amos:  As a result of their rebellion against God, a few years later the Assyrians war against Israel, defeat them killing thousands and lead them into captivity.

The Good News, Jesus is our Redeemer!  He takes bad situations and redeems them (but better for us not to make bad choices in the 1st place!).

Luke 8  The New Test. shows this part of the land (where the 2½ tribes settled) as “Decapolis” and the “Gadarenes”.  The place where Jesus came across Pig farmers and the demon possessed man named Legion who lived in a cemetery.  After Jesus delivered the man of the demons, the people of the city came and pleaded with Him to leave!  Even so, Jesus instructed the man to go back into his own land to share the good news of salvation. 

We’ve all made mistakes and have opened ourselves up to be tormented by the demons of our sin…Some of us are surrounded by the swine of terrible choices and even work in and among it everyday.  But God wants to deliver us from the demons and send the filthy swine to the bottom of the lake.  He wants to give us new life and send us back to those who we love and care for to bring the good news of freedom and deliverance through Jesus Christ.
Heb. 12: 1-2Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares [us], and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of [our] faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

God has been pressing on us the importance of embracing our current position at Calvary Sequim and being faithful to serve where we are planted.  He’s keeping us challenged with many activities at the church:  We recently completed constructing and installing a nine-hole disc golf course and have had a wonderful response from our church family and from many in the community who are visiting the church grounds to take advantage of the beautiful surroundings, challenging course, and all around good time.  I have also been challenged to grow musically as Pastor Hans has inserted me into the Sunday worship team to lead worship for both Sunday services.  Also, I’ve been enjoying teaching a few beginning guitar classes during the week and the Lord’s been consistently giving me songs to write and record, so I’ve been busy trying to figure out that process.  Teaching the Bible is always a joy and blessing and I’ve been privileged to preach from the pulpit once a month and as there are needs in the Youth Ministry, I’ve been teaching a study and leading worship there as well (not to mention mowing a few lawns).    
            Cameron has been busy teaching Sean and Kay in our home school while at the same time leading the women’s Bible study every other Friday.  She’s happily involved once again in women’s ministry and really looks forward to it.  Cam and I are also staying busy taking an online class in order to receive certification to independently home school in Washington State.  This is important not only for legality sake but to gain more knowledge and skill to transfer to Australia in order to start, or to help develop an existing home school program.  In our experience, home schooling does not seem very popular except in very remote areas of the interior of the country.
Surf Ministry Salt Creek
            Ryan and Aubry are hard at work wrapping up their year of instruction at the Olympic Christian School and are doing very well.  Ryan’s begun to get involved with a ministry called, Child Evangelism Fellowship (CEF) and will be attending their annual youth camp at the end of June.  Aubry is making wonderful music as she is persistently continuing with piano lessons.  Sean and Kay are busy with their home education but are also attending two days of organized supplemental classes put on by other home school focused organizations.  To stay active (and wet) they are taking swim lessons in Port Angeles and Sean is participating in soccer for the first time and loving it.  All that and Karate on Mondays with everyone except Jeremy (he’s more into surfing when the opportunity comes up, especially with the CCS Surf Ministry) and every waking minute is taken up.  We’re soooo glad the school year is ending soon!

Praise Reports:
The Family is happy and healthy
The Sydney team has begun to relocate
Great things are happening at Calvary Sequim
School is almost out for Ryan and Aubry
Many of our relatives have been up for visits recently

Prayer Points:
Continued guidance and provision for visas
Financial provision (God has been providing perfectly for our daily needs but our mission savings is very low)
Ryan’s camp to go well and for the Lord to ignite the fire of missions within him
Health insurance for Jeremy and Cameron
Preparations for home schooling all the kids for the coming year