Monday, September 17, 2012

"Ninguém Despreze A Tua Mocidade"

I Timothy 4:12a - Let no one look down on your youthfulness (Ninguém Despreze A Tua Mocidade).
The Lord continues to bring to us challenging responsibilities that always end up blessing us more than we can imagine.  Last Sunday I began leading the Sunday school class for the youth of our church.  With my quite limited language capacity, we began working through and discussing the subject "Participating in the Mission of the Church" (a study written by BILD president Jeff Reed).  The youth are very gracious and patient with me, and we pray that the Lord will use these times of study to bring honor and glory to Him.  Please pray specifically that I will become more proficient in the language so that these studies will be fruitful.

The boys after our study playing Crokinole (only my Canadian friends know what that is:)
This past Friday we had the young men of the church over to our home for dinner and Bible discussion.  Lord-willing this will be a weekly occurrence, as we learn together what responsibilities God has for us as men.  We appreciate your prayers that these times would be fruitful, as the Lord has placed on me a burden to help these young men have a true passion to serve our great God!

We are also praising the Lord as I have been able to pick up teaching hours at a local company for the next 9 weeks!  I will be teaching a businessman not far from here each Saturday morning.  Please pray that I would be effective in my teaching, and that I would have the opportunity to share my faith with him.

Thank you for being our partners in ministry!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

For We are His Workmanship

The young men and women of our church here in Porto are a true encouragement to me. They have a genuine love for the Lord, and it is evident that they desire to make an impact for the Lord in Portugal.  It is a privilege for Caryne and I to be a part of their lives, and we are humbled that we can serve the Lord alongside them.

Thank you all for being precious partners in this ministry!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Todo Mundo Esta de Ferias!

Things slow down a bit here in the month of August.  Most Portuguese take vacation (ferias) this month, so activity is not quite at its normal pace.

This past Wednesday we finished up painting dear Maezinha's house (see the results here). It was a true blessing to see the joy on her face as she looked at her newly refreshed home.  We then played soccer this past Saturday evening, and the game included three men that do not know the Lord.  Please be in prayer as we seek to have opportunity to share Christ through the game of soccer.

Please be in prayer for a very difficult situation going on at the moment involving a very special family within our church.  Much wisdom is needed in these next few days, and your prayers would be truly appreciated.

Thank you so much for being alongside us here, and for being a part of what the Lord is doing in Portugal!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Faithful Examples

Wednesday and Thursday were dedicated to painting the house of Pastor Figueira's mother-in-law, a women who is very dear to all those who know her.  She is a wonderful example of one who has dedicated her life to serving the Lord, and it was a joy to help freshen up her home.

For the past week Caryne, the girls, and I have enjoyed several get-togethers in the homes of families of our church.  We are thankful for the opportunity to fellowship with them, and are blessed by their hearts for the Lord.  I continue to teach English twice a week to Jose Luis, a young man who is also a member of our church.  It is awesome to see the Lord use these times to further His kingdom!

Thank you so much for your prayer, love, and support!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Pray for the Youth of Portugal!

As we get to know the precious young people within our church here, we have begun to feel a tremendous burden to see them completely focused on what the Lord has for their lives.  In shear economic terms, Portugal is an extremely difficult place for a young man or women to grow up in. More than one in three youths (36.2%) were jobless in the first quarter of 2012 according to the Portuguese National Statistics Institute (INE).  With the country being so spiritually desolate, it is our fervent prayer that this generation of Christian young people will face the world with a clear understanding of the Lord's call for their lives!  That is, that they would live each day for Him, giving their lives sacrificially to Him!  Romans 12:1 - "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service."  I have learned the hard way that living my life according to the world's values only leads to struggle and heartbreak.  It is our hope that the Lord can use our example to help these young people to only focus on what God wants for them, and not what the world wants!  Please pray that we ourselves would continue to grow in spiritual maturity, and that the Lord may use us to affect the youth of Portugal to further His kingdom.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Its Been One Month!

Today marks one month that we have lived in Portugal.  We have been so blessed beyond measure!  We are truly thankful for so many things, beginning with the faithful love, prayer, and support that has come from all of you.

We are so humbled by how the Lord has provided for our needs.  We are excited as the girls have begun to learn the language, friendships are forming quickly, training is well under way, and opportunities to be a witness abound!

Things you can be in prayer for:
 - We continue to need to raise an additional $350 of monthly support to cover for taxes here.  Praise the Lord we have already had response to this need!
 - Opportunities have begun to open up to teach English here at church and around the city.  Please pray that some of these opportunities will come to fruition.
 - There is a possibility through a man at the church for us to be able to purchase an affordable vehicle from him.  We have very quickly realized that for us to be most effective here in ministry we will need to purchase a car.  Please pray for wisdom, and that we will do as the Lord leads in this matter.  We will share more about that in the future!

We praise the Lord that we can be a part of His ministry!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

A Caminhada Ate' a Igreja (The Walk to Church)

Most mornings I walk from our apartment to our church to begin my day.  It is about a mile away, so I thought I would share with you some of what I see as I walk.

Home near our apartment building
Continente is the grocery store across the street from our building
A Roman bridge 
Highway headed north
Uninhabited home
A very contrasting home directly across the street from the one above

Approaching our church (building straight ahead)