It hasn’t been the bliss that some people seemed to talk about, nor have I been drowning in tulle, flowers, cake tastings, and other wedding related things.
Honestly, it has been hard. Planning a wedding has been the least of our concerns. Since we returned to Germany, we have been hit with obstacle after obstacle, and we have questioned if this is really where we are supposed to be for the time ahead. We have considered how much easier it would be if we did not continue in missions, as there were opportunities presented to us to deviate from our present course. We started planning to move to a different part of Germany because it was getting so difficult to try to live here in the south where we were always intending to live. If it had not been for the counsel of friends, we might have settled for something else.
Lesson: We do not always see clearly; that’s why the body of Christ is so important.
It’s often in those hardest moments that God seems silent, doesn’t He? Wise teachers have taught me that when God seems silent, it’s probably because He has already said what He needed to say and we need to go back and remember what was the last thing He said.
God has clearly communicated to both Paddy and I, individually and as a couple, that missions is our calling.
He has also made it clear that the first months of our marriage are to be set apart as a time to focus on building our marriage and setting the foundation for the future He has for us because that doesn’t just happen; it is intentionally cultivated with time and effort in relationship.
It is also clear that in order to build our marriage, we must be in community. Marriage, family, and community are all extremely important to God because they are different expressions of two of His most treasured values: relationship and love. The community that we have in ICF (International Christian Fellowship) here in South Germany is where we believe that God has us in the next time, to invest into a church that is investing into us, and to take time to just be married.
Our wedding is in just 16 days!
In my last update, I sent out several prayer requests. I’d like to tell you what has happened with a couple of them.
An apartment. The area of South Germany that we are in is a rather more expensive place to live than the small village in East Germany where I have been living the last four years. It’s also very difficult to find available apartments because so many people want to live here. That puts us at an extreme disadvantage, especially when you consider the unconventional nature of our lives that does not fit into the tight bureaucracy of one of the most organized and efficient nations in the world. That being said, nothing is impossible for God.
At the end of August, we will be moving into the Airbnb of one of the pastors of our church here. It appears to be the perfect solution as we will be traveling on and off for some time, and this will enable us to have our own place when we are here, not have to pay rent when we are gone nor have to find a place to store a bunch of furniture since it is already furnished so we don’t have to buy almost anything. Naturally, we will have to move all of our stuff out each time we leave, but we will have a place to come back to, and that is the important part.
Use of a car. One and a half weeks after arriving in Germany, we were able to buy a car! (Pictured below) Unfortunately, we had to go through quite a saga with getting some repairs done, but all that is finished now and we have a well-working car that will aid us greatly in getting around and save us a lot of money that would otherwise have been spent on a lot of train tickets (and a lot of time going in roundabout routes to get places).
Thank you so much for your prayers! I’ve never been the biggest fan of the practical side of things because I always felt like it gets in the way of the real ministry, but with God I’ve come to realise that He loves to use the practical things to minister to us and reveal to us who He is. And through these testimonies, we can encourage others!
Take a moment today to think back through the last few days or weeks or months and look for when you were praying for something or needing breakthrough and then you saw God work. Then share it with someone! Through sharing testimonies, we
1: remind ourselves of who God is and are encouraged that if He did it once, He can continue to work in our lives and do it again;
2: encourage someone else by reminding them of who God is and that if He was working in your life, He can work in theirs too;
3: glorify God by telling of His wonderful deeds!
Then after sharing it with someone, ask if they have a testimony to share as well! Everyone has testimonies of God’s work in their lives. If you’re having trouble seeing it, ask God for help. He is always wanting to reveal more of Himself to His beloved children!
“For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy“Revelation 19:10b
Testifying of who Jesus is and what He has done
[both in the Bible and in our lives today]
is an invitation to God to do it again.
The next time I write, we will be married!!!
God bless you and encourage you with testimonies of His goodness and faithfulness to all of us!
Paddy & Amy