Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The Christmas update we never posted.

This past year was so very different than what we expected. We thought we would be back in Brazil before March. It feels like we spent a year waiting in anticipation for our return to that country! It’s not until we’ve sat down and really looked at what God has done this past year that we have seen a purpose for us being in the US. God has given us innumerable blessings through unusual and trying circumstances. We can’t give ourselves any credit at all for how He has provided. We want to give Him the glory by sharing a glimpse of what He has done for us with you, our friends and family.

November/December ’06 – We returned from Brazil and stayed with Jeff’s parents for the month of November while we shared our experiences at various Community Church mission conferences. We then began living with Lindsay’s parents while we applied for a visa through Lindsay’s credentials. A good friend recommended Lindsay for a seasonal job working part time at Go Fish (a missions based clothing and jewelry store).

January/February - Lindsay’s work permit (a precursor to the visa) was denied. Jeff was offered a job by an another good friend to work at Roche Diagnostics in their IT department. Lindsay started working full time at Go Fish as the assistant store manager.

March/April/May- We decided to apply for a visa through Jeff’s credentials. Jeff studied for the A+ test (which was paid for by Roche). Roche began donating laptop and desktop computers to World Renewal. Jeff had a rough bout with the flu that landed him in the emergency room and added to his stomach problems for the following months.

June –After Jeff took the A+ test in May we began to apply for a visa on our own with Jeff’s credentials. We moved in with Lindsay’s brother & his wife. Lindsay quit her job at Go Fish – in anticipation of returning to Brazil shortly.

July/August – After having no success getting visas on our own we hired a Brazilian lawyer to help us with the process. The lawyer told us it would take 30 days to produce a visa. When Jeff was hired at Roche it was as a temp; his contract was up so we headed to California for a vacation to visit Jeff’s grandparents.

September/October/November/December – September rolled around and still no word from the lawyer on the visa. Jeff was offered another position at Roche and Lindsay was offered an administrative assistant job at Hugabug Family Entertainment (a friend’s entertainment business) in November. Jeff went to the doctor after continued problems with an upset stomach and was diagnosed with acid reflux. His insurance at Roche paid for medication to treat it.

We can’t thank God enough for all He has done for us. We have been able to encourage some of our friends through some rough times this past year and they’ve helped us immeasurably through this confusing time as well. We continue to pray about our return to Brazil and we do have confidence in this:

“… I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” – Jeremiah 29:11