Vision Trip to Oaxaca City

 

Last month we took our vision trip to Oaxaca City!  We had a team of 12 people on the trip, and it was such a huge blessing.  We spent time each morning in the Word and sharing what the Lord had been showing each of us.  It was an honor to have Pastor Mike and Mario from CC Rosarito, Tim and Nikki from SGWM, Armando, and a team from CC Santa Barbara there to share in this time together.  We are so blessed to have made new, lifelong friendships with the CCSB team, and grow closer to everyone.

One of the days together, Pastor Mike suggested a time of spending time alone to hear from God and then coming back together to share what they had felt the Lord telling them.  This was a time of sweet encouragement and fellowship and it meant a lot to us to have this team pouring into us.

 

God was moving the entire time on this trip.  We had an information meeting while there and 5 people from the community came!  Jon was invited to teach at Capilla Calvario Oaxaca with Armando translating, and then we were welcomed into Pastor Antonio and his wife Carmelita’s home for lunch and fellowship.

 

We also met Meg and Obed who are going to be a part of our team when we get settled down there.  One of our prayer requests has been for a worship leader, and Obed is an answer to those prayers.  And Meg is fluent in Spanish so she can help Allison with translating and working on her Spanish.  We are looking forward to getting to know them better and serving with them.

 

 

On our last couple of days there, we got to reconnect with some friends from our time in Cacalote who now live in or near the city, Toby and The Blycker family.  It was so nice to see these familiar places.  No one quite understands our time in Cacalote like people who’ve been there.  Super excited to know that we’ll be “neighbors” in a couple of months.

 

 

 

Since our trip, we have seen many doors opening for us in Oaxaca, and we’re excited to see how things come together once we are living there.  Jon will be flying down at the end of November for a few days to look for a house for us.  We are planning on moving to Oaxaca City in mid-January!  Our time in Rosarito is quickly coming to an end and it’s definitely bittersweet.  We have made many dear friends here and love serving at CC Rosarito.

 

PRAYER REQUESTS

  • Please pray that Jon will be able to find a house for us on his trip at the end of the month, and for safe travels.
  • For us to make this next transition smoothly.  It’s been 2 years with lots of moving, so protection of our hearts (especially the boys)
  • Our Spanish to improve more and more
  • Please pray for our team to have unity and to always point each other to the Lord

Thank you for your continued love, prayers, support, and encouragement.  It is an honor to have you all in our lives and be a part of this calling on our lives.  We love you all so much!

Jon, Allison, Jonny, Noah


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August/September Update

I can’t believe it’s almost fall.  Our time in Rosarito is really starting to fly by, and before we know it we’ll be planting a church in Oaxaca!

Jon completed his first quarter of teaching at the Bible College at CC Rosarito.  It was a great experience for him as he studied and prepared to teach each week in the book of Daniel.  He has 2 weeks off and will begin teaching a new class after the break.  He’s also teaching the New Believers class on Wednesday nights.  It’s neat to know that he’s teaching a class that meant so much to him when he first got saved.  I love how the Lord brings things full-circle like that.  He also teaches the 11 and 12 year old class on Saturday nights.

Jonny and Noah have officially begun 6th grade.  We are homeschooling them again this year, and this is our 7th year of homeschool minus the few months that they attended school in Cacalote.  They are really enjoying their time in our neighborhood because they’ve become really close to one of the boys who lives across the street.  It’s going to be hard on them when we move, so let’s start praying for that one now!!!

I am really enjoying serving in the greeting ministry!  It’s my favorite!!!  I’m also teaching the 9 and 10 year old class each Saturday.  It’s a challenge for me to prepare each week but I think I’m finally getting a good routine down.  I have a great translator/co-teacher too.

Jon and I are back in the Church Planting Course each week.  It’s been such a blessing to see how the Lord has used this course to prepare us more and more for what He’s called us to do.

We had a great time serving at the grand opening service for Calvary Valley Center.  Please keep this church plant in your prayers as they serve the people of Valley Center.

Our vision trip to Oaxaca is just 3 weeks away!!!  We are so excited to see what the Lord reveals to us while on this trip.

 

PRAYER REQUEST:

  • Worship leader for church plant.
  • Wisdom for what to do with our car when we go to Oaxaca.  We don’t know if we can nationalize it because of some of the rules they have.  If our vehicle isn’t nationalized then we would have to drive it out of the country every 6 months which wouldn’t really be wise financially.
  • Our trip to Oaxaca City in October, that the Lord would show us where He wants us to plant His church

Thank you for continuing to follow along as we move forward in His calling for us to serve Him in Mexico! We are so grateful for each of you who love us, pray for us, support us, call us, and everything else.  We love you all!

Jon, Allison, Jonny, Noah

PS…my goal is to get more pictures of Jon and the boys this month.  🙂


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An Amazing, Blessed July

 

Hi everyone!  We’ve had a VERY eventful month of July, with many blessings.

Jon was ordained by Pastor Mike Vincent and the pastors of Calvary Chapel Rosarito.  He is now serving as an assistant pastor, alongside some amazing men.  We are so blessed by this!  On the same night that Jon  became PBJ, aka Pastor Big Jon, he also taught on Prayer and Devotions in the main sanctuary as a part of the Pillars Series at CCR.  He did a great job, and had Armando translating for him.

Our oldest son, Austin, married his beautiful bride on July 8.  What a blessing to now have the daughter we never had, and one who we love SO much.  We praise the Lord for their relationship that keeps Him in the center.  The wedding was as close to perfect as it could have been, and it was so fun to celebrate with so many dear friends and family.

I (Allison) was invited to serve at the youth girl’s retreat with 13-17 year old girls.  The theme of the retreat was “Born to Be Light”.  I got to share my testimony with the girls, and the entire time was such a huge blessing to me.  I was able to get to know some of the girls, and I look forward to spending time with them some more and being there for them when they need someone to listen to and pray for them.  This was one of my favorite times of ministry, although I was nervous about even going.  The Lord blessed me more than I can put into words.

Jon started teaching at the Bible College on the book of Daniel.  He loves it, so please keep that in prayer as he studies each week.

Jonny and Noah are continuing to love being here in Mexico.  They have been focusing on Spanish with some tutoring and Rosetta Stone.  They love hanging out with their friends on the street, and their friends at church.

We are loving our time here in Rosarito as we continue to prepare for the move to Oaxaca.  We have our Vision Trip in October that will be here sooner than we know.  This trip will be a time of prayer for the city that we will call our home, and also to try to find a place that we would like to live in which will be our church in the beginning also.  So far there are about 11 people that will be on this trip and we are SO EXCITED!

Thank you for following along on our adventure for Jesus in Mexico.  We love hearing from all of you through messages and calls.  Feel free to send us any prayer requests you may have.  Here are some of ours:

PRAYER REQUESTS:

  • Please continue to pray for a worship leader to go with us to Oaxaca
  • We will be starting the next semester of the Church Planting course on August 13 so please pray that we will grow in the areas we are taught on
  • Continued growth in the language for all of us.  We feel like we’re finally starting to remember more and more of what we learned in Cacalote, and we’re using Spanish more.

We love you all so much.  Thank you for your love, prayers, and support.  Remember:  YOU were born to be light!  Shine the light of Jesus everywhere you go.

Matthew 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven.

Jon, Allison, Jonny, Noah

Click on the photos above to see the complete picture.  🙂


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May Update

 

Hola!  We have had a full May and beginning of June.  In May we finished our first semester of the Church Planting Course at CC Rosarito, along with the finish of this session of guitar class for Allison.  It has been such a blessing to be a part of this course, and have the opportunity to serve here at Calvary Chapel Rosarito.  Jon has been teaching in a rotation in the Pillars Class on Sunday mornings, and he will be teaching in the sanctuary on a Wednesday night at the end of June.  We will also be teaching with a translator in children’s ministry, each of us in a different class/age group.  This will be a new thing for Allison because she’s never taught with a translator.  Oh, and Allison is now a greeter…does that shock anyone?  Her dreams have come true…seriously!

We also had the honor of serving as chaplains at the Franklin Graham Decision America event in Escondido with our sending church, Calvary Chapel San Juan Capistrano.  It was an amazing night serving with them and witnessing lives turning to the Lord at the event.

In the beginning of June, Jon went with a team from CCR to Calvary Chapel Maranatha in Mazatlán.  The team worked long hours doing construction on the building, remodeling the sanctuary.  It was a blessing for him to be on this trip for many reasons.  Pastor Tony, his wife and son opened their home to us when we drove back to California in October from Oaxaca. They didn’t even know us but our connection went back to Roca Blanca Spanish School, to a woman who also barely knew us, Nancy, who serves at the church in Mazatlán.  Just a fun story about how awesome God is!!! It was also a blessing for Jon because he really got to know the guys he was on the trip with and bonded with them.  He came home refreshed even though they had been working so hard.

Next month we will officially be gaining a daughter when Austin and McKenna get married.  We praise the Lord for their relationship and can’t wait to watch them grow as a couple in the many years to come.

PRAYER REQUESTS:

  • for a worship leader to be raised up to go to Oaxaca with us
  • that we would practice/use Spanish everyday and grow in the language
  • for Jon to do well when he teaches in the sanctuary
  • Jon’s foot to heal or for a doctor to treat it so it’s not so painful

We are grateful for all of you who love us and check up on us, pray for and support us. Thank you all for being there for us!  We love you!

Jon, Allison, Jonny, Noah


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Blessed Time of Growth

 

BENDICIONES DE ROSARITO!!!April was a month filled with really exciting things for us down here in Rosarito.  I’ll try to keep it short and sweet but some of you know that’s hard for me to do sometimes, especially when I’m super excited.  🙂

We were given the opportunity to share our church planting update on a Wednesday night after service and were so blessed to have people stay and hear all that the Lord is doing and how they can be praying for us as we prepare to go further south of the border.  This was the first time Jon and Armando teamed up as speaker and translator.  I was so blessed to sit and listen to them flow so naturally as a team. #teamoaxaca  Jon shared our hearts for the people of Oaxaca and how the Lord has really buried this love in such a way that we can’t deny this is where He’s calling us to go.

We completed the Pillars class with Jonny and Noah by our sides.  The purpose of us taking the class was to learn how to teach it in the future when we plant the church in Oaxaca, but it was also a huge blessing to sit and learn these things on a deeper level.  The Pillars class is a 6 week class for those who have been at the church and are ready to start serving!  The week after we finished, Jon was asked to start teaching one of the classes in each rotation.  He taught the Devotions class.  This is an exciting thing for him to be doing not only to be teaching the class, but also to be teaching it with Armando as his translator.  #teamoaxaca

I have been asked to do a short teaching at a young women’s retreat in late July.  What a blessing to be asked to do this but I’m also terrified.  Haha!  My favorite verse in the bible is Matthew 5:16 and that’s the theme of the retreat.  Please keep me in prayer as I prepare to share some of my testimony and how the Lord can and will use ANYONE, no matter what their past is.  I’m scared to death to speak in front of people but that’s something that the Church Planting Course has been helping me with.  Still…please pray!

We are both enjoying going to the Men’s and Women’s Spanish bible studies each week.  For me it’s such a huge blessing to be loved by these women, and to love them right back!!!  Mondays are our long days and by 6:30 I don’t always feel like going to the bible study but EVERY SINGLE TIME I leave there feeling so full of love, and so excited for the next week.

Jonny and Noah are doing so well down here!  They are almost done with 5th grade and have done so well with all of the transitions over this past year.  They are ready for summer!  They have some really sweet friends from our street and from church.  Every evening is filled with boys in and out of the house, riding bikes, playing Nerf wars, and coming in for snacks and video games.  Thank you for praying for them to adapt well, and please keep them in your prayers.

There’s so much more to tell, but I’ll go ahead and end here with prayer requests.

PRAYER REQUESTS:

  • For a worship leader to go to Oaxaca with us to plant the church.  Please pray for the Lord to place it on someone’s heart to go with us, possibly even another family
  • That we can figure what to do about our car.  If we don’t have a nationalized car, we would have to drive across the border every 6 months and the closest border would be Guatemala.  We are praying that we can get it nationalized but it’s sounding like it’ll be difficult.  If we can’t, then we will want to sell our car and buy one in Mexico.
  • That we would meet our financial needs each month.  We are at about 1/3 of what we would need long-term.  The Lord always provides and we are so thankful to everyone who supports us financially and through prayer.

PRAISE REPORTS:

  • We are so grateful for all of these opportunities that the Lord is giving us while we’re down here building the team
  • Continuing to praise the Lord for Armando’s commitment to go with us for a year, and the fact that he’s truly becoming one of our family members.  Such an answer to prayer!
  • Grateful that Jonny and Noah love it here but that they also feel that Oaxaca is where “home” is

Thank you all for reading this, supporting us, PRAYING for us and with us!  We love you all so much.

Jon, Allison, Jonny, Noah Brechtel

 


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Exciting News!!!

We have some exciting things going on that we’d like to share with you.  Just a little background to catch everyone up  on what we’re doing in Rosarito.  We are serving as missionary staff at Calvary Chapel Rosarito.  We are also in the church planting program and things are going really well.  We came here to not only learn, but more importantly to build a team to go to Oaxaca with us in late December.

Here’s our exciting news:  we have our first team member who will be going with us to serve as a translator and ministry partner.  We are spending time getting to know him and already love him.  Praise the Lord for Armando and his heart to serve the Lord.

Another exciting thing is that we have a church planting vision tour scheduled for October.  We will be joined by Pastor Mike Vincent, Tim Pappas from SGWM, and Armando, and possibly some others.  How exciting is all of this?  The Lord is moving on this future church plant and we are enjoying watching His hand on all of the steps, past and present.  We know He has great plans for the people of Oaxaca and we’re honored to be a tiny part of it.

Other than that, things are going really well.  We have had some scares with Jonny this past week with an allergic reaction. Thank you to all who have prayed and please continue to pray as he is still having some issues.

PRAYER REQUESTS:

  • Compete healing of Jonny and Jon’s stomach problems
  • We are sharing an update with the church on April 25th.  Please pray that we (Jon) would share all that the Lord is doing to prepare us for Oaxaca, and if there’s someone listening that feels a stirring to go, that they would let us know.
  • Pray for a worship leader who might be called to go with us
  • That we would focus on our Spanish and practicing as much as possible
  • Financial provision

PRAISE REPORTS:

  • we are continuing to get more and more settled and building relationships
  • we have our first team member for Oaxaca
  • we’ve had more and more opportunities to push ourselves into having conversations in Spanish and have come across so many people who are patient with us and excited to teach us when we try

Thank you all for taking the time to read us and keep in touch with what’s going on in our lives.  We are so grateful for all of the prayers and support from you.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor.  For if they fall, one will lift up his companion.  But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up.

#teamoaxaca

Jon, Allison, Jonny, Noah


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Getting Settled

We were so blessed by the missions night at Calvary Chapel San Juan and the outpouring of love and support.

Our new street! Home for the next 10 months

Our first visitors!

 

Hi from Mexico!!! We found a house to rent (that’s FURNISHED!) and are getting settled in down here. The neighborhood is really nice and seems super safe. It’s even guarded at the gate by actual police officers. The boys have made two new friends in the neighborhood, and they’re over right now playing video games and laser tag. We are getting into a good routine with homeschooling and normal bedtimes. Haha!

The Missions Night at CCSJC was a HUGE blessing! Thank you to everyone who came to hear what the Lord is doing in our lives and for all of the prayers and support. We were literally blown away by the love we felt.

This past weekend we were able to head to Calvary Chapel Tijuana and serve with CCSJC at the dinner for the chaplain program and local officers. Such a fun day spending time with our home church family. We even had our first visitors and overnight guests. Being away from our family and friends can be hard sometimes and having visitors is a special treat.

We are meeting tonight to find out which ministry/ministries we will be serving in so please keep us in prayer, that we’ll be a blessing and put our whole hearts into serving the Lord wherever He wants to use us. We are getting to know more people at the church and starting to make some awesome friendships. We are also taking a class with the boys on Sundays called the Pillars Class. We had our first class on Sunday and it was such a blessing to have Jonny and Noah (and Hanna) with us.

We are looking forward to what the next 10 months will hold and are so excited to build “Team Oaxaca”! And we’re really excited for the upcoming wedding of our oldest son and his amazing fiancee! It’s still a few months away but we are so excited.

PRAYER REQUEST:

  • That we would continue to get settled in our new home and build strong relationships
  • That we’ll stay faithful every day to this calling and the responsibilities that we have
  • Financial provision

PRAISE REPORTS:

  • Our time serving with CCSJC was such a blessing
  • The boys are making friends in the neighborhood and with church friends
  • That we were able to rent this house that is fully furnished
  • We got approved on the Mexico side for our visas…just found out today (March 7)

Thank you to all of you who keep us in prayer and support us. We are so blessed to call you all our friends and family. We pray you all are blessed by the Lord and if you ever have a prayer request, please send it our way.  Love you all!

Jon, Allison, Jonny, Noah

 

 


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Heading Back to Mexico!

Proverbs 16:9…A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.

Over the last few weeks, more and more people we know have quoted this verse for things going on in their lives.  Maybe we’ve heard this verse often but didn’t really pay attention like we have recently.  That’s because the Lord was preparing us for HIS steps.

As it turns out, the road to Oaxaca is not a straight road for us.  At the end of January we took a vision trip with SGWM to Capilla Calvario Rosarito.  We met with Pastor Mike Vincent and the more time we spent with him, it became more evident that God’s hand was in this meeting.  We weren’t prepared for that.  Haha!  CCRosarito has planted 19 churches in Mexico already and they have invited us to spend a short season with them to help us raise up a team for our church plant in Oaxaca.  Raising a team is going to be a vital part of planting a church so that it won’t be just us, alone.  While we are raising up a team, they have invited us to be missionary staff, where we will serve in various ministries.  Some of the ministries are the dump ministry and helping at orphanages.  We will also be attending their church planting class that is once a week.

We are excited for the Lord’s plans in our lives as we continue to prepare for our return to Oaxaca.  We will be having a Missions Night Potluck and Calvary Chapel San Juan Capistrano on February 18th at 5:30.  We will be sharing more about all that’s going on and answering questions anyone might have.  We would love to see you all there.

We will be moving to Rosarito as soon as we can find a safe place to live and are able to raise enough monthly support.  Please pray that this will be a smooth transition for Jonny and Noah (and us).  We’ve been so blessed to be in California with family and friends for a few months.

Thank you for your continued prayers and support as we follow the Lord’s guidance and calling on our lives.  We love you all and are so grateful for each of you.

Jon, Allison, Jonny, Noah Brechtel


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Terminamos La Escuela de Español!!! We finished!

Hi family and friends!  We did it!!!  We graduated from Roca Blanca Spanish School on October 20.  What a crazy ride that was…filled with ups and downs, good and bad, trials and triumphs.  But what an experience for us to learn to lean more on the Lord through all of those times.  Even more so, what a PRIVILEGE to be called by the Lord to serve Him.  Machaela finished strong in Level 1, and Jon and I really got into a great routine as we finished Level 4.

In October, Jon was able to go to the Pastors and Leaders Conference at Calvary Chapel Tijuana.  He had a time of being refreshed and spending time with two of our pastors, along with old and new friends who serve all over Mexico.  While he was away, the Spanish school went on a one day mission trip to San Martin.  Machaela, Jonny, Noah, and I were able to go and it was such a blessing to be a small part of that day, while the clinic offered free medical consultations and medicine for those in need in that town.

During our final weeks in Cacalote, we were able to spend time with the friends we had made while living there.  The Lord really blessed us with some amazing friendships that really grew.  I love looking back to when we first arrived to when we left, and seeing the Lord’s hand on our relationships.  I could go on and on about all of them so I’ll stop before I get going.  🙂

Now we are in California.  We drove up here the day after school got out.  It took us quite a while to drive up, but it was a great trip.  Our first stop was Oaxaca City where we met up with Toby and Lydia, two girls who did Level 1 and Level 2 with us who now serve in Oaxaca City.  So awesome that they came and went sight seeing with us at Monte Albán.  The following night we ended in Mazatlán.  Another friend, Nancy, (who we met on our trip last December to check out Roca Blanca) lives and serves at Calvary Chapel Maranatha Mazatlán, and she arranged for us to stay with Pastor Tony and his wife Angela for two nights.  What a huge blessing that was because it gave us a day of rest after the LONG drive to get there.  A couple of days later we finally made it to southern California, our final destination for this trip.

PRAYER REQUESTS:

  • We will be working on getting our temporary residency visas while we’re here, so please pray that that all goes well
  • That we would practice listening and speaking Spanish
  • Financial provision to be able to go back
  • God would continue to prepare our hearts for full time ministry in Mexico

PRAISE REPORTS:

  • one of our biggest struggles while in school was that our kids were having such a hard time.  The Lord COMPLETELY turned things around and the last two months were filled with laughter and joy and a house filled with those sounds from Jonny and Noah and their friends.  Praise the Lord for that!!!
  • Jon and I also were able to build some amazing relationships with people and it was really tough to say “see you later”.  We thank the Lord that He gave us those friendships that I know will last a lifetime.

 

Thank you for praying for us and following our journey as we took this first step of our great adventure for JESUS!  We are so excited to follow His leading into the next step.

Romans 10:14 “How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed?  And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard?  And how shall they hear without a preacher?”

 


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Level 4, Here We Come!!

 

We have now been living in Cacalote, Oaxaca, Mexico for just over 6 months.  Today (September 4), Jon and I began LEVEL 4 of Spanish School.  This will be our final level of school and we will be finishing October 20!  Wow, time has flown by!!!

It’s been a while since our last update and we are really sorry about not being better about it.  Our week-long trip to California in June was a huge blessing.  We got to see our beautiful niece marry her amazing husband, and spend time with family and friends.  Jonny and Noah came back to Mexico with renewed spirits after going through some trials down here.  Praise the Lord for that!  Since our return from California, Jonny and Noah finished 4th grade, and Jon and I finished Level 3.

We had 3 weeks off after Level 3 and it was a time of many exciting things.  I was invited to the women’s bible study at the local church and have been enjoying going each Friday afternoon.  I have had to really put what I’ve learned into practice in order to understand and somewhat communicate with the ladies. It’s a total bonus that I’m building friendships with a few of the women.  God knows our hearts, our needs, and our desires!

We also had some special visitors for a few days.  Our oldest son, Austin, and his girlfriend, McKenna, flew down to spend some time with us.  It was such a great time of being together and showing them how and where we live, along with doing a little bit of exploring with them.  (Jon even got the opportunity to witness to a homeless man with our friend Joe.) Their visit was short but it was an answer to prayer that they were able to come see us.

And a week ago we got another visitor…our niece Machaela.  She will be living with us for the rest of our time here and attending the Spanish School.  She has a calling to serve in a deaf ministry in Guatemala, so this was the perfect option for her to do Level 1 and get some great education in learning the language.  She’s a neat addition to our house and we are so excited to be on this journey together for the next 7 weeks…taking this step in learning the language so we can serve our Lord where He has called each of us.

PRAYER REQUESTS: 

*Please pray for direction for our next steps following language school…location, financial provisions, what it is that the Lord would have us do here in Mexico to serve Him

*That we would do well in school, both Jon and I, the boys, and Machaela

*That we would stay healthy for the rest of our time here.  We had a lot of health things go on during the last level of school and it was tough to play catch up after sick days, but the Lord TOTALLY got us through!

PRAISE REPORTS:

*We’ve been healthy for the last few weeks

*That we’ve been able to start using our Spanish more often during these 3 weeks of down time from school.  (Pray that we continue to do so as often as possible)

*All of us had a GREAT first day of school today!  Starting on an upbeat note, covered in prayer is the best feeling!!!

 

Thank you for taking the time to read this!  We really appreciate all of your prayers and support.  Little texts, emails, or Facebook messages come just when our hearts need a little encouragement.  We thank the Lord for those.  God is so good!  And as always, if you have any specific prayer requests that you would like for us to pray, send us an email or text.

Joshua 1:9 “Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and of good courage;  do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you WHEREVER you go.”

 

Jon, Allison, Jonny and Noah

 

 

 


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