Friday, December 30, 2011

January Prayer Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

We hope that you have had a wonderful Christmas! As we enter into the new year, we ask that God will do amazing things in us and through us in 2012. December has given us a slower deputation schedule than usual due to all of the Christmas festivities. Thankfully, that has given us small window of opportunity to rest and recover before picking up in our travels again. Michelle, Lila, and I were able to see family in both GA and FL. We spent Lila's first family Christmas at home. We have tried to establish good family traditions such as reading the Christmas passage and taking time to thank God for his love in giving us His only begotten Son, Jesus.

During December, we were in 3 scheduled meetings in GA and SC. Beginning on a Saturday night before our first meeting, we experienced a car problem that we are still trying to get fixed. Because of this, our engine will cut off and not start for several hours before we are able to start it and drive again. After several visits to the mechanic, we are still trying to get the problem properly diagnosed and fixed. We thank the Lord it is not caused us to cancel any meetings, and also that it did not happen during a much busier time for scheduled meetings! In January, we will have at least 1 more church that will begin supporting us. There are also several churches that are potential supporters, which may begin supporting us soon.

As we begin this new year, please pray for the following:
1. That God provide support needed for us to serve God in Nicaragua.
2. That God will help us get our car fixed in time for our January meetings.
3. That we will be able to book many meetings and conferences in 2012.
4. For God's guidance and help in raising our new family.

Thank you for your prayers! God bless each of you!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

God is Good! Even When Things Seem Bad!

This weekend, God used something unexpected to build my faith. Saturday night, while we were in Atlanta preparing for a meeting in Newborn, GA, I left Michelle and Lila back where we were staying so I could go get some dinner to bring back to them. After I made a quick trip to the dollar store, something took me by surprise... My car wouldn't start. It seemed that the battery was strong, and it seemed like the engine was trying to start, but no success in the car starting. This was a surprise, because the last time I started the car, there was no problem. So now, I am stuck somewhere unfamiliar in Atlanta where I know nobody, while my wife and daughter are stuck at the hotel.

As I tried to figure out what to do, I prayed and asked the Lord to guide me and get me home safely and hopefully allow me to get my car running so I won't have to cancel 2 church meetings the next day. As with any car problem, when you don't know what the problem is, you should try the easiest and most common solutions first. After asking several people for help jump-starting the car, I found a man who would try to help. However, we had no success. After he left, I decided I would try once more before trying to find a mobile mechanic. As I turned the key, VROOOM! The car started right up with no hesitation. In complete amazement, I praised the Lord, and then got to thinking, "How do I know it will start again?" I then decided to drive back our room for the night, so in case it wouldn't start again, I would be where I needed to be. As I drove back, the check engine light was on, and the transmission very, very hard. This concerned me, as transmission repair can be anywhere from $1,000-2,000 easily. Once I got back to Michelle and Lila, I assured her everything would be okay. After talking to her, I decided to give the car another shot. This time, the car started fine, and the transmission was smoother. After a lap or two around the parking lot, I gave it another shot. The third time, the car started fine and transmission now shifted perfectly. Praise the Lord, things were now on the right track!

I then went to an auto part store for a free computer scan, and discovered the problem. Sensors! It turns out some sensors were "misbehaving" and causing my car quite a problem. The car would not start because a sensor couldn't detect that the car was in park. The transmission wasn't shifting right because another sensor couldn't detect the speed properly. After leaving the part store, the check engine light went off, and the car behaved perfectly again. The next day (Sunday), we were able to make it to both of our church meetings without a problem, and Monday we were able to make a safe, problem-free trek home. Praise the Lord! Things looked horrible on Saturday night, and things could have been really bad. Whether the Lord fixed our car, or just allowed us to make it to where we needed to be, it shows that the Lord is good! After doing some research, I have found that other people have had this problem, to have it disappear for years before ever giving them a problem again.

My point in writing this is to encourage whoever is reading this. There will be times when you don't know what's going on, and it seems that everything is going wrong. Despite your circumstances, know that you have a good God! Romans 8:28 says, "And we know that ALL things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to His Purpose." Whatever it is that happens, know God is good and that He is allowing these things to happen for a reason. In this case, I believe God is teaching me to trust in Him more and more.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

November/December Prayer Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

We trust that you have had a wonderful Thanksgiving. There is so much to be thankful for! We were able to spend some time with Jeremy's family in GA as well as Michelle's family in TN. We thank the Lord for the family that He has given us. Last month, one of the churches we were in took up a love offering to replace our broken CD player in our car! Praise the Lord, we now have a new CD player and things needed to install it in the near future. I thank the Lord for giving me a faithful, loving wife and a beautiful baby girl! Lila is growing quickly and can now play with toys, roll over, and do all kinds of “baby talk.”

November was a busy month for us. We were scheduled in 8 churches, including 2 missions conferences, in VA, SC, and GA. We thank the Lord for a vehicle that has given us little to no problems! Last month, we were able to see 2 people come forward to receive Christ as their Lord and Savior! Praise God! As of the end of November, we are now at 25% of full support. After being in so many churches the last 2-3 months, we anticipate that to go up quickly.

Please pray for us as we set out to do what the Lord has called us to do. While we are raising funds to go to Nicaragua, we must remember that deputation is a ministry in itself. There are many opportunities to share the Gospel with the lost around us. Please pray that we will take advantage of those opportunities so that lives will be changed and God will be glorified. Please pray that the churches we have been in will be able to support us in going to Nicaragua. Please also pray for the people in Nicaragua. After the last election, it appears they will remain under the administration of Daniel Ortega. God bless each of you, and may you have a wonderful Christmas this year!

In Christ,

Jeremy and Michelle Blanz