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2017 Transitions and Learning

Lynda Neuman on January 1, 2018

 

Transition: first six months of 2017

   Lesson:  need for flexibility and trust in God’s plan

Plan A: travel to US Jan. 22, staying with our oldest son, giving support and encouragement; report to supporting churches and seek to raise support level; spend time with Lynda’s dad, knowing that at 95 he must not have much more time with us.

Plan B: Lynda goes Jan 12 to see her quickly failing father. She and Nathan spend his last days by his side and say goodbye three days later. Seeing once again how God gives strength and nurtures hope in the face of difficult times of loss. We organize a time of remembering Dad and God’s faithfulness in his life for February.  Recognizing God’s enabling to care for the details of Dad’s Homegoing and His mercy and grace in strengthening of our relationship with Nathan.

Opportunities for learning:

**Learning how the Lord continues to raise up His church even in the face of severe persecution and in countries under Islamic rule through testimonies of Nik & Ruth Ripken.

 **Learning, being challenged and encouraged as we visited churches, colleagues, mission leaders, supporting friends and family from California to Washington during March and April.

**Being challenged by Dr. Crandall to reflect on and anxiously anticipate the glories God is preparing for His people in Heaven at the California Regular Baptist Association meetings in Los Gatos, where we also met new friends and rejoined with old friends.

**Learning again of God’s faithfulness as He answered our prayers for a supporting church in S. California.  Berean Fellowship Baptist of Hemet joined our team in April.

**Being reminded to lean on God’s sovereignty and faithfulness as our June trip north was revamped due to major car problems.  We canceled meetings and spent more time with friends as we waited for the repairs to be completed. We saw His provision of a loaner vehicle to enable our report to a church we hadn’t visited for years AND car repairs fully paid through His people! 

**Learning how our MMM missionaries can take advantage of opportunities in Japan through Jerry’s June survey trip, coming came up with an important strategy for ministry in this country.

 More learning as we transitioned back to Brazil the end of June.

**Further learning of patience and grace with crowded conditions as our move from apartment to larger house stretched from July/August to September 18 and settling-in process continues. 

**Being challenged as to our own spiritual growth and as a couple at church leader’s conference – July; couple’s retreat – August; Biblical Counseling conference – September; ABWE All-Brazil Triennial conference - October.

 **Learning more about Islam, it’s contrasts to Christianity, and how to witness to Muslims in the October seminar at SIBIMA.

**Lynda learned more about Biblical principles concerning control of anger, dealing with manipulation, and how Christ’s love enables us to truly love as she prepared for three teaching opportunities to our church ladies.

**A November trip to Rio Grande do Sul showcased all God is doing there through colleagues and former students.

**Hearing about the spiritual situation in Mozambique at MMM Banquet taught Jerry the great need for more workers there.  MMM has approved this as a field and prays for workers to go.

December privileges and challenges

MMM – Learning more about how God is working through missionary interviews with: Fernando and Lany Lima, Ricardo and Rita Mafra, of Venezuela, Ronaldo and Thalita in East Timor, Eliane and Aires Semedo in Cape Verde, as well as about Renato and Francilene Santo’s progress towards ministry in Guiana and important decisions made at the Advisory Council meeting.

SIBIMA – Jerry’s participating in doctrinal and thesis exams for two graduating students and graduation ceremonies for 12 students from three different courses.

PLANALTO – the privilege of learning from Dr. Michael Grisanti of Master’s seminary in OT Introduction, couple’s meeting, SS and church as well as our family fellowshipping with him.

ASSAULT & ROBBERY – Yes, another opportunity for learning much about God’s love, protection and care for us: no physical harm, car not taken; patience/trust as we work through recuperation of documents, bank/credit cards; God’s timing & delays involved; God’s provision through His people.

We are grateful to every one of you who pray for and contribute to our lives and ministry To Brazil and Beyond!

Jerry, Lynda, and Lydia Neuman