Agape International Missions (AIM)     

An introduction to the 'Butler5' from Natasha

Back in 2009 Brandon and I and a baby 'India' and were living in Orlando Florida having moved there from London in order for Brandon to use his teaching degree. We had always been involved in mission separately and as a couple (short term) but felt the desire to serve long term.  
A long story short, a pastor in Orlando felt God prompt him to support us in mission, his church sent us to a missionary training school in North Carolina for 1 year, where we lived in a cabin with no electricity and learnt many many things.

After graduating, the church that sent us to the school, sent us to Ethiopia where we spent roughly a year (during that time, I travelled to the United Kingdom to give birth to our twins Judah and Naomi.) Unfortunately we could not get visas to stay in Ethiopia, so after praying about what God wanted us to do next, AIM contacted us and offered us a position serving in Cambodia.

Brandon's brother had been working with AIM for several years, so we were very familiar with their work. We visited Cambodiia and prayed. We felt sure the move to Cambodia was what were were meant to do and that was 7 years ago! We worked in Siem Reap (North Cambodia) for the first 3 years and have spent  the last 4 in the capital Phnom Penh, all with AIM but with various positions. 

This is the short version! It's been a wonderful journey with many stories of Gods wonderful provision.
 
I think the hardest part has been with our children as there have been health concerns, we live with the reality of dengue fever constantly (so COVID 19 is just another illness for us) and the general lack of health care here is worrisome, we get sick quite often, especially tummy issues.
 
Missing family and friends is a big one, loneliness in the early days was very difficult. Suffering from being burnt out literally from the very high temperatures here in the summer and metaphorically due to the nature of our work and the cultural differences can feel overwhelming and tiring at times. It does improve over time but it’s always there.  

Blessings and Stay Safe 
Natasha
 Covid19 Update from the Butler 5

 

The Butler 5, COVID-19 Update

 
 
 
Dear friends and family,
I hope this letter finds you healthy and abiding in the perfect Peace of The Father.  
We wanted to send an email to our supporters and prayer partners to update you on where things stand with the Butler’s and COVID-19.  Many friends and missionaries out here in Cambodia have returned to their passport country because of the lack of resources and potential medical care in country.  We feel a deep sense of peace in staying here right now.  As a family we are called to serve in Cambodia and feel that God is going to use the time to grow the young Cambodian Church.  We believe that peoples fears are going to be an opportunity for faith.   That as we step out in love, God will meet people in their fear.  And that God knows our weaknesses, and will use us anyway.  The Butler family is being shown an incredible opportunity to demonstrate love, faith, trust and maturity to believers that may be shaken and fearful.  
So the Butler’s are currently riding out COVID-19 here in Cambodia.  As we watch this unfold globally, we are seeing the effects of this virus reaching across every race, gender and economic status. We know that the effects are, and will be far reaching for sometime.  And will touch and change many lives. 
We realize that many of you reading this many have been affected by this virus in multiple ways, maybe even financially. We do not want any of you to feel conflicted in your financial support of us. Please feel free to reach out to us if you need to.
We are trusting that the Lord is able to supply all of our needs, yours and ours. 
Pray:
That we are an example of faithfulness and not anxiety to those around us.
For our three children as we Shepard them through these new times.

That the Lord would continue to seemingly shelter Cambodia from the virus.

That we will be able to leave Cambodia in June to visit our family and friends in The United States.

Lots of Love and Peace,

The Butler 5
 
 
 
 
 
Deborah Mathews, 09/04/2020