In our last update, we shared three things: 1) We bought a new car and needed extra funds for repairs. 2) We were essentially discouraged by the fact that we were not further along in our ministry. 3) Two unspoken prayer requests. Unfortunately, we don’t expect the unspoken requests to be resolved anytime soon so we ask that you continue to pray. But, regarding the first two items, we would like to share some things with you.
We’re incredibly grateful for those who gave extra to cover our car expenses. One church covered a majority of those extra expenses; we are super thankful for their generosity!
Secondly, we were overwhelmed by the amount of support that we received from many of you. We saw many expressions of understanding that encouraged us. Thank you!
As many of you know, one Sunday a month we drive to a church two hours away to fill in while they’re without a pastor. Although we have enjoyed our time with this church plant, we have been pretty confident all along that this was not where God would have us serve full-time. One afternoon, on a whim, we visited a nearby community. We decided to distribute flyers regarding bible studies and learning English to see if we would get any results. After distributing a few flyers, we met the owners of a café. They are around our age and seem to be struggling believers. They are Brazilian, recently moved to Portugal, and struggling with life changes. Even though our situations are different, we have some things in common and as a result, we have become friends with them. We understand their need for love, friendship and patience—just like so many of you have shown us. The wife is one of our English students, and frequently we will pray with her after class. Please pray that this friendship will continue to grow!
We have had some success with the English lessons. We have two very faithful students that meet with us weekly. These language lessons, Estudar para Entender Ingês (Study to Understand English), are meant to help us meaningfully connect with others. That is, so we can make disciples and eventually start a local church. Although we only have two faithful students right now, they are great connections in that they have introduced us to their families. They came over to our house for hamburgers last week (and one brought their family with them), and both have shared personal things about their lives. It’s exciting to see these friendships beginning to develop.
Lastly, we need to start planning to rent a building for church services and outreach activities: English lessons, math tutoring and music lessons. As you all know, we are not fully supported so please continue to pray regarding this upcoming expense.
We were roughly $300/mo short of hitting our Q1 budget.