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Quick Praise Update!

The other night Loralie had a friend come to church.  During our time of worship, I could over hear her talking to her friend about God.  It was so awesome to hear her sharing her faith in God.  At one point she began to describe how God can provide, “and God knows your heart, if you like pray for like $1,000 He will see your heart and then he can provide it for you.”   Now I am not saying that God is a bank, genie, or dream caster, but He is a loving father!  I swallowed my desire to intervene and let it play out.

As we finished church and talked about the kids conversation, I was a bit defensive.  I couldn’t just say that God would provide $1,000 if you asked for it.  But isn’t that what my family is doing?!  I thought about all the needs my family has been praying for and realized very quickly that we are probably looking at needing between $30,000 and $40,000 for our move.  And hasn’t God answered our prayers so far?!

Praise:

We have our flights covered! This is easily around $5000.

We have accommodation for the first month and a half.  Easily another $1000.

We have been given the funds to cover 2nd bags! $500.

Our home church, Centerpoint is having an Art Auction to help us raise funds for a car $??

We have friends in OKC who have some clothes for the kiddos!

Almost all Doctor appointments and visits are covered!  At least until we figure out Canada’s health care for our family.

Our loving home church is making preparations for an Art Auction and Fundraiser for the 1st weekend of July.  The proceeds will go to our family towards either the purchase of a car, deposits at our place in Vancouver, or other costs associated with relocating our family around the world.  The details for now, is that the event will be held at Centerpoint Church in Pagsoa Springs, Colorado.  They would like to invite you to participate in person or through donations via post or online giving.  As more information becomes available, I will send you updates.  So here is the giving information:

  1. Go to http://www.centerpointpagosa.com/resources/giving.html
  2. Select First Time to create an account (recurring options) or quick give (one time)
  3. Change “my donation” to “MISSIONS-Poland Mission”
  4. In the “Other Comments” you can say “Graves Family”

– OR –

Make checks (or cash) payable to: “Centerpoint Church”
In the notes say it is for: “Graves Family”
Send to:
Centerpoint Church (Attn: Logan Irvin)
2750 Cornerstone Dr
Pagosa Springs, CO 81147

So can I really say that we can’t take our needs before God?  $1,000 seemed unreasonable, but yet God has provided over $7000 of the $30-40K in less than a month!  When I prayed this past week, I believe that God is asking us to have a child like faith about this. Kids don’t have to wonder about financial provision, they trust their parents.  I believe that when God says He wants to provide, He means it!  Sometimes it takes a bit of patience.

For those who are interested in knowing about what needs we have remaining, here they are.  Will you join us in prayer about these needs being met?:

-Clothing: Michelle and I need new clothes (badly), the kids will need some items (message for sizes)

-Car:  We will need a 6+Passenger vehicle for our growing family (probably mini-van or SUV)

-Travel Expenses: Food/Gas/Hotels

-Deposits/Down Payments/Furniture/Moving Expenses

-For the Art Auction/Fundraiser

 

We would love to join you in prayer as well!  Please send us your requests, remember you are never alone!

 

Much Love!

The Graves Family

Chapter 53: When Life Gives you Lemons, …

Now the donkeys of Kish, Saul’s father, were lost. And Kish said to his son Saul, “Please take one of the servants with you, and arise, go and look for the donkeys.”

1 Samuel 9:3 NKJV

Have you ever started off on a journey expecting it to take you on one path and it leads you on a completely different one?  I bet Saul felt this way when he went looking for his father’s donkeys and ended up becoming King of a nation! The phrase, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!” comes to mind.  I guess that can be true about most things in life, like: “When life gives you another child, love him!”

So, in case you missed the subtlety of that last line I will repeat it in another way, THE GRAVES ARE EXPECTING ANOTHER BABY!  I know what you are thinking, ‘Really, another child?’  Sometimes no matter how much you plan, God changes those plans!  So we choose Love.  We believe the delivery date will be sometime early December.  We will be visiting a Doctor when we arrive back stateside, due to some Visa issues we are currently experiencing, and will confirm the dates then.

In the next 6 weeks our lives will completely change.  On May 31st, I will serve my last day as a barista/manager with Sweet Life.  The last two years have been an incredible journey of sacrifice and joy.  I am so thankful that God gave me this opportunity in life, and will always have a special place in my heart for Sweet Life.

During the month of June, we will use this time to connect with people here in Krakow, plan our first steps back Stateside, and prepare to transplant our lives from Poland, back to the West.  This is going to be very tricky!  Think about making a move in your home country; logistics, what to keep/save, prioritizing and setting a value on everything you own…always asking the question, “Do I need this?”  We get to add the question, “Will it fit on the plane?!”  Unless we receive additional financial support, we will be looking at taking 5, 50lb(23kg) bags back.  To add a second bag will cost 80Euro each, or around $425 total.  Oh man!

However, that does mean we had a HUGE prayer request answered!  Our flights have been taken care of, and we have a departure date, June 27th!  WOW!  Thank you God and those willing to help us!  So now that the hard part is over, we just have to find: a vehicle (6+ passengers), figure out a timetable for traveling to Vancouver from OKC, find a job, find a home, and find a school for the kids.  If we didn’t have the peace of God knowing that we are following His calling, I think I would be paralyzed with stress and anxiety.

Everything is dependent on something else.  We can’t enroll the kids in school until we know where we live.  We won’t know where we will live until we know where my work is and what our budget will be.  We won’t know how we will be traveling and to which city until God knows when (literally), because if we get a vehicle we can drive, but if we don’t then we will need to rent or fly.  But how do you buy a vehicle or plane tickets when you don’t have an income?  Hah!

I realize I can’t focus on our problems, but the problem solver.  After all, in Matthew 14 Peter is able to walk out on the water he was called to.  As long as he kept his focus on Jesus, he did just fine.  So, we shall do the same.

 

Will you join us in prayer?

For Poland

…as we close out our time with Sweet Life.  That we would have great fellowship with the staff and customers, and set up the business for our departure.

…as we connect with friends and family that we have made here.  That we would speak truth, encourage fellow missionaries, and build strong connections.

…as we pack, clean, and prepare for our departure.  For God’s blessing, strength, and wisdom.

…for the kids as they say good bye to their friends.

For the US and Canada

…as we transition out of one culture, live 2 months or so in another, and then resettle into a third.

…as we transplant our lives across the globe.

…as we seek out business and ministry partners in Vancouver.

…as we reconnect with family and friends in the US.

…as we search out transportation, travel plans, connections, etc.

..for financial provision for this crazy adventure!  For additional bags to the US from Poland, a vehicle for use Stateside, transportation, hotels, gas, doctor appointments, new clothes (for all of us!), and all other costs associated with moving into a new place (deposits, down payments, new accounts, etc).

 

We are incredibly humbled by the love and support that has been shown to us.  Every time we have had need in our lives (prayer, financial, or otherwise), you have been there for us.  God has blessed us with your partnership in our families journey.  For that, we are incredibly thankful for you!  Thank you all so much.

 

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