Exceedingly Abundantly (Eph. 3:20-21)

The New King James Version Bible (NKJV) is, at times, an exceedingly abundantly adverbly badly translationly version. Thou shalt not stack adverbs upon adverbs in English – unless you have a good reason to. This verse does not.

Let’s all agree to no longer use “exceedingly abundantly” ok? It makes you sound silly.

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Weekend Round Up (#1)

A brief update on some stuff that happened:

1. Newsletter
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2. Garage Sale Fundraiser
Many thanks to Michael’s parents for hosting (and providing many of the wares) for the garage sale that went down this past Saturday. Though we worked ourselves to the bone, we managed to raise about 17-18% of our total funding!

We’d also like to thank many of the people who generously gave more than the cost of items and a few who gave donations without purchasing anything. Last, but not least, thanks to a couple of our friends who gave us items to sell.

This is an effort far larger than we are. So thank you to everyone involved; it means so much to us.

3. Speaking Gig @ Pressly Memorial ARP
We were invited to speak at Pressly Memorial ARP in Statesville NC this past Sunday. It was a great time of confirming our calling – it’s surprising what having to audibly explain things, when you have to tell others about it, does for your own sense of purpose and desire. We made our presentation during the Sunday School hour (10:00 – 10:30) about our calling, our vision trip, and our vision for the ministry in Oviedo.

All in all, it was a wonderful time of being encouraged by some great saints. It is a humbling experience to present what you believe God is calling you to do and ask people to pray for you and partner with you. Some great advice (among many encouraging words!) we heard there was a reminder that this is God’s church – not ours. It isn’t about us, nor is it dependent upon us; it depends on the risen savior Jesus Christ, who died and rose for his church, and the gates of Hades will never overtake it.

A big thank you to everyone!

So… why Spain? (Part 1)

This is a reasonable question. First, a caveat or two:

  1. Spain is not inherently evil, dark, or anything else.
  2. The USA is not inherently better, pure, and a holy Christian nation.

In other words, should the evangelical churches in Spain send missionaries to the USA, I for one would not feel as if it spoke about the character of my country. It would indicate simply that they, like the faithful churches here, were following Jesus’s command to “go into all the world, teaching them all I have commanded you…”

Okay, now that’s out of the way.

Choosing to pursue Spain was really a two-stage process. The first part of our story begins with my throwing a dart onto a world map with another mission agency. The dart hit the Czech Republic. It was through this that I got to meet the wonderful missionaries serving on the field there. They may not have seen it this way but in a small way, they mentored and ministered to me. Through all of this I prayed and prayed for the missionaries there, the national church, and the country. What I found through that was really an outworking of Christ’s admonition that “where you heart is, there your treasure will be.” It was through praying that I began to see a desire built in my heart for this wonderful country.

Well, not to use too many Christian cliches, but the door to working in the Czech Republic seemed closed (cf., 1 Cor. 16:9; 2 Cor. 2:12; Col 4:3). Laura had severe reservations about mission work at that time. It was a huge struggle for me. Of course, there was plenty of good that came out of this – it developed in me a  dependence upon God through prayer. It’s hard to watch your dream being shattered like that. It seemed pretty impossible many days that we would ever be missionaries. But, as I said, it helped me see that the important part is first God, second being a missionary.

In the interim time, God opened the door for me to go to seminary affordably. We decided that it would be a good use of my time as far as training goes. And it was. Being trained theologically has made me able to do the work of planting a church, much better than I would have been able to do without it. So now I am in the middle of nowhere South Carolina getting a theological degree, not working with the previous agency, and no longer thinking that we will be working in the Czech Republic. So, how’d we get to Spain again?