March 2017

Have you ever had a plan, but some unforeseen circumstance prevented you from executing that plan the way you wanted to? Maybe something like I did this morning by planning to get to an appointment early, only to walk out of the hotel and proceed to pour hot coffee all over my only clean dress shirt. Our plans are constantly being redirected by circumstances around us. How we respond to these things either makes us effective in pursuing the plan God has for us or derails our vision for where we are going. Are we staying focused on the purpose God has for us or our own? Proverbs 19:21 says,

"Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand."

Paul was so good at this. He was consistent in keeping his eye on the prize in the midst of the circumstances around him. He clearly understood God’s call on his life and he had a plan to pursue God’s will, but he never allowed his plan to take precedence over God’s plan for his life.

Cherry and I have experienced this over and over again this month. One way was in an opportunity to go zip lining at our church’s family camp this past month. This experience was one we will never forget. After we put on our helmets and harnesses we made the forbidding walk up the platform where we were secured to the cable that would serve as our lifeline. I will never forget the words of the staff as he cleared us to go, “Just step forward when you are ready”. Words normally easy to follow, but on this occasion suspended on a zip line hundreds of feet over a waterfall a much tougher command to obey. But with those words we stepped forward and our fears soon gave way to an incredible view that we would have never seen if we had stayed on the platform. This experience was a reminder to me of how God commands us to step forward into his purpose for our lives.

It also reminds me how important our lifeline is. That is you if you are reading this update. You are an incredible part of why we can step forward, because you hold us up in the journey God has called us to. Thank you for being a part of our lives.

This month has been very eventful. We had not planned to put our house on the market yet, but through a providential meeting we met an incredible family moving to Greenville and were able to secure a contract today. This experience made our zip lining experience even more real because we found out about this family’s interest in purchasing our house thirty minutes before we went zip lining (We were jumping in more ways than one!) We also had an incredible weekend at one of our supporting churches in North Carolina this past weekend. We were able to speak at their missions Sunday and we were greatly encouraged by our partners in ministry through this opportunity. I was also able to attend a conference on biblical support raising and stewardship this month. Even in this I saw how God’s purpose is so much better than ours. The first person I met at the conference was a former missionary to Berlin, Germany. He and his wife are now living in Greenville, SC (#yeahthatgreenville, the same one we are from!) and they are involved in refugee care in Europe. There are many times I have seen God working in our lives, but this experience blew me away to see how He continues to direct our paths.

Your prayers are evident in our lives and we praise the Lord for your ministry to us! Here are some pictures from our month.

Praise and Prayer

  • Praise for God's grace in allowing Cherry and I to celebrate our 12th anniversary
  • Praise for God's provision in allowing us to sell our house
  • Praise for God's provision in Gracie being accepted to the John F. Kennedy School
  • Prayer that Quinn's application would be accepted to the John F. Kennedy
  • Prayer for wisdom and guidance in moving out of our house (Closing May 1st)
  • Prayer for wisdom as we consider making a survey trip in May or June to secure housing and prepare for our arrival in July
Chad Gfeller