Isaiah 8:18 Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me are for signs and for wonders
Greetings in Christ! January 2017,
We are very excited to share with you some of the new opportunities which the Lord has opened to us in the city! We have started a home fellowship on Tuesdays mornings, 12 people attend, which flows into lunch and fellowship time afterwards.
We also started a Saturday morning men’s Inductive Bible Study for the leaders of the Jardim Tropical area. These 4-5 men, led by Artur, have been conducting 4 services a week since February 2016. We feel very privileged to be in a position to help them minister to their own community. Brad helped them in December place the foundation for the new church building so that they will no longer have services in the mud. Your prayers are appreciated.
We hosted an American Thanksgiving in our house this year with several other American missionaries. It was a real blessing, as the men and women each had fruitful conversations about life and ministry in a foreign land.
Brad took classes to be a licensed boat operator in November. He can now pilot any recreational boat. He and Josiah had planned on going to the village the first week of December with our new ministry boat, but in the end cancelled because his licensing test got scheduled during that time.
Brad also went to English Guyana the second week of December with our local church leadership. He helped with the translations from the people of English speaking Guyana to our Portuguese speaking Brazilian Pastors and friends.
Christmas was a real blessing. We hosted Christmas eve with two Venezuelan families + one Brazilian family. We were able to sing Christmas songs in all three languages; English, Portuguese, and Spanish. We also read the Christmas story and had a small bible study, followed by a traditional Christmas meal from all three countries. Boy, was that food good!
2016 is now behind us. Join us as we look forward to what God has prepared for 2017!
This week, the first of 2017, we started our preparations for the next village trip, which will be January 10-27th.
It is exciting to be in the mission field, used by the Lord, seeing people encouraged, having their individual walks with the Lord enriched and fulfilled. Melissa mentioned to me last week, “Isn’t it amazing to think that God knew exactly where we would be today, 20 years ago? He knew exactly what we would go through, exactly what was needed to get us to where we are today.” This invigorates me! None of the past trials of life were for naught. None of the past tearful sorrows fell to the ground unnoticed. All of our triumphs were orchestrated by the only one who could.
Jer 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.
We pray that this is how you come out of 2016, entering into 2017 more than conquerors, knowing that the one who began a good work in you is faithful and just to complete it until the day of Christ Jesus!
We want to thank those who gave special gifts for Christmas, extra donations, Christmas cards, and messages, etc. Each arrived with perfect timing to remove holiday stress and increase our faith in the Lord.
Do not forget to lift up our eldest adult children before the Lord as they seek the path the Lord has for them in the U.S. Junior and Ashley expecting their first child, our first grandchild, and Andrea as she completes her Cosmetology school and seeks that career which the Lord has planned for her.
Brad and Melissa, Josiah, Veronica, and Benjamin