Wednesday, October 5, 2011

a few things not missed

Just to remind myself that things aren't always as perfect as you remember, I saw a friend's fb page and was quickly reminded of some things I don't miss about living in Nigeria....

1. head wraps
2. no consistent power
3. having to put all clothes on a clothes line, rain or shine (the kids are cute, huh?)
4. traffic that takes the Christ right out of me... (is that bad to say, you understand what I mean, right?)
5. flying bugs that overtake our home as they crawl under the doors and through our windows
6. flat, huge, crab spiders
7. Let's go ahead and end today's list with having to home-make all meals from scratch, every day, three times a day....

I think this is a good list so far. Again, these aren't entirely horrible things, but things that I just don't miss...

The grass isn't alway greener on the other side... A valuable lesson in life!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

the loss of an old life, a birth of a new one

This is the Africa I last remember! It is funny how six months later, I am finding myself already in a place of only remembering the "good and fun" parts of life there. The sights, smells and sounds of memories lived fully!

I was at church on Sunday missing our village church ladies singing unto the Lord! It made me want to take note and remind myself of some of those memories and think about them for a bit. So I will begin to do just that and be grateful for the time spent as a foreigner in a far away continent!

Beginning list of things missed in Jos, Nigeria

1. Village church worship
2. walking in the market and choosing something to eat with only a few choices in front of me
3. being such a foreigner allowed me the deepness in friendships to reveal themselves early on
4. evening times spent as a family playing games
5. naturally living out biblical commands
6. simplicity in schedule
7. ah, one of my favorites - their German white cheddar cheese blocks! yum, yum
8. the warmth (man is it cold here)
9. I guess the familiarity of being a foreigner and automatically being different than those around you

This is just the beginning and I am so glad for those experiences as I am also glad for the ones before me not yet lived! There is a lot of life in me and a lot to give. John and I talk about how different we are now. People on the outside might not see the differences right away, but they are there and I am confident that the changes are to prepare us for what is yet to come.

With that, I move forward missing what is gone but anticipating what is yet to come. I choose to grab on to this new day and live it! Death is a part of life. The death of what was - the death of an old self, an old relationship, of what you thought something was meaning, maybe even a death of a perception, etc... I am sure we can all fill in that list with our own deaths. I really do believe that the better we learn to handle death, the better we are able to live the life in front of us without missing those moments, those brief but always available moments to serve the person in front of my face!

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Guckenberger's Family update

Family and Friends,

Hello to our family and friends! We regret how long it has been since we have given you an update. Especially since I have paused on the blog which was such a great way to communicate what God was doing with us and B2B. Please know that we have been praying for you all as we are ever reminded of our partnership with each of you. During these past four months being in the USA, we have enjoyed taking the time to connect with some of you in person. Thanks for taking the time to have lunch, dinner, or just visit on a not so

long distance phone call.

As you all know, John has been working in the home office for the last four months, on “home assignment”. During this time, we have been in prayer seeking an answer to where we might serve next with Back2Back and continue the ministry we’ve felt so passionate about for the last seven years.

As the conclusion of our home assignment time has drawn closer, we have been sensing that God is leading us in a different direction and so we have decided to leave B2B staff.

Before moving to Mexico with Back2Back, John fulfilled a construction manager role. In the next few months, he will begin to pursue employment again in this fi

eld. His passion that he has been educated in, that the Lord has blessed him with, and that he continues to enjoy so much is with construction and all its varying roles. He and I are very much on the same page with this change and couldn’t be more excited to see what God has next.

Where specifically God is leading we are not sure. We just know we need to make the necessary room for Him to show us where that next step is to serve Him elsewhere.

We have been blessed ten fold by God through the ministry of Back2Back. We have not only had the opportunity to serve in the role of orphan care, but we have been served by so many of you who have locked arms and partnered, cared, prayed, financially supported and loved on our family for the past seven years. It has been a gift given to us that is not taken for granted. We are now leaving the ministry as different people than when w

e began. For this, we are thankful!

Here is the plan:

John will be looking for new employment while continuing with B2B in the home office. There is much to do and this will allow John to bring closure and transition to a number of projects for which he is currently responsible.

Our desire is to transition out of B2B by the end of October, but much of this timing is based on John finding a new job. Until that time, John will continue

to serve the ministry. In order to help make this transition, we ask that you remain in financial partnership with us through the end of November.

We want to continue to be open with each of you so if there are any questions in regards to what we are communicating, please email us at We would love to hear from each of you. We will continue to keep you up to date with our changes as they occur and let you know the final date that we are leaving B2B. We are blessed by each of you and grateful for your prayers.

Thank you and God Bless,

John and Corrie Guckenberger


Please know that the ministry is continuing to invest in the lives of orphans by God’s provisions through the generosity of supporters like you. Our desire is that you would look at this opportunity to partner with Back2Back in a new way.

By shifting your financial support to another staff member (all staff raise their support), a program, or to assist any of the children’s homes or communities in which we have served, you’ll be continuing your important partnership with the ministry.

Of course, you can also give generally which allows B2B to meet specific needs at any of our ministry sites as they arise. If you don’t feel led to continue to support the ministry, that’s perfectly fine too! We welcome any questions you might have in regards to this.