How did you become missionaries?
Mike answered a call to missions in church as a teenager, but became alienated from a graceless church and wouldn't darken a church door until after Mike and Tammy's first child was born. After they both started following Jesus, they became youth leaders, and then Mike felt a reactivation of the call to be a missionary. Tammy's response: NO! If we do that we will never have matching furniture!
Their pastor advised Mike to not push this issue. If the desire was from God, then Tammy would feel it too. Sometime later, she was reading a book about worldviews to review for the youth group. She realized that God had saved her from the futility and hopelessness that most people are experiencing, but that she was more concerned with having a nice middle class life than helping others experience that hope. She decided whatever, God wanted or wherever He led, that's what she'd do. Mike decided to attend a school to prepare for ministry.
They went to Southeastern Bible College with three children and a fourth on the way. They learned a lot about depending on God! They applied to mission boards and were rejected as too old, or with too many children (they have five in all), or in one case, that the mission only wanted candidates with a doctorate in education or theology. Although Mike has a doctorate now, this really discouraged him then. We lived in Alabama for 13 years. Mike served as pastor in several churches. This was actually a necessary part of his training, although they didn't know it at the time.
Then one Sunday Mike heard a message in church from a missionary who taught in mobile Bible institutes, and felt a strong desire to apply to that mission. Tammy's response: YES! The mission board sent them to Peru.
How long have you been in Peru?
We have been in Peru since 2004. We have been with three different mission boards, but always in the same country.
Are you ever in danger there?
We have been robbed several times by robbers both armed and unarmed. When we lived Andahuaylas the town was repeatedly shut down by riots that were sometimes violent and we have run from a few rioting crowds. Mountain roads are always dangerous! Here's a video showing what is actually one of the better roads we have traveled.