Thursday, September 27, 2012

An Update

Howdy Bro. Mike,

I pray this short note finds you filled with God's grace and enjoying his love.  Just a quick update on some things happening with us.

Bro. Brett emailed a few months back and asked to keep him posted on our search for a home.  Here's what I wrote him this morning.

"Just to update you on our search for housing.  Two weeks ago Bro. Mitko and I 'scouted' out four villages centrally located around Provadia.  We are interested in this area presently because we don't know where we'll be working permanently.  There are villages closer to Zach as well that we've looked at, but they are on the fringes of the present work.  And any commute to the more established meetings, should it prove necessary, would be substantial.  We looked seriously at 6 or 7 houses, and ruled out a couple.  The going rate is right around 20K lev, rather that's the figure everyone quotes initially; I am assured they can be talked down.  The two we ruled out, though they were cheaper, were on the fringes of the gypsy section in the village of Sava (CaBa).  While we work with gypsies all the missionaries say it's best not to live in the gypsy section.  One home, which Mitko very much liked, was in the Turkish village of Royak.  They are clean Turks, however, and not gypsy Turks.  (The difference being they are pure ethnic Turks, not merely gypsies who have intermarried.)  Still, it is an entirely Turkish village.  We looked at two homes in Petrov Dol, both asking 20k, that would need to be either gutted or torn down completely.  Again, that's what they're asking, Mitko said, more than likely they would go for less.  The village of Chaika is a strong possibility, as there are many empty houses in the village.  The problem is getting in touch with whomever owns the house.  We have made up fliers in Bulgarian with Mitko's contact information, so as they know they're dealing with a Bulgarian and less liable to inflate the price as they would with an American.  In the meantime we have a few people inquiring into apartments for us, as Zach will be returning at the first of the year.  Though I have not been asked yet, it seems more than likely that we will remain in the area of Shumen while Larry returns for furlough to help look after his meetings.  Again, I haven't been asked and the subject hasn't been broached, but that's what I'm thinking."

We completed work on our visas yesterday, turning in the last of the paperwork.  We return in a week to pay for them and process our new identity cards.  This marks the start of our second year visas.

If you think about it, keep us in your prayers.  Support always ebbs and flows, the last three months have marked an ebb, pray a flow comes soon.  The Lord knows and will provide.

We were saddened to hear of the passing of Bro. John Jr., not for Bro. John's sake, but for his wife, children, and mother.  May the Lord save his children, if they are not already.  Reminds me of Dean Bumgardner's mother, while on her death bed she asked Preacher to bring her children to heaven with him.  God help us to pray for them.

I haven't heard lately how Miss Theresa is?  The last news we received indicated she was still taking chemo.  Is she improving? are the treatments working?  I hope and pray so.  She is asked after every week in our meetings.

Miss Jane's told of some real good services she's been in there of late.  May the Lord multiply his blessings upon you all.

Again, thank you Bro. Mike for all you do.  Give our love to the church.  Your family remains in our prayers.

William LeFevre

Saturday, September 22, 2012

September Prayer Letter

"...they said, Can God furnish a table in the wilderness?" Psalm 78:19

"And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible." Mark 10:27

Our praying friends and family in the Lord,

This past weekend we held our third baptism of the summer, during another one of our extended meetings. While the crowd wasn't quite as large as at our other meetings, more than 30 believers were baptized. That makes more than 100 souls who have testified of their newfound faith so far this year. It's difficult to explain what baptism means to these new converts. Most of them were raised with a deathly fear of the water, especially the swiftly running rivers. Among the older generation, most of them have never stepped foot in lake, river or stream. For them to surmount their fear, willfully walk down into the river (we baptize right below a spillway) and submit to being plunged beneath the water is quite a testimony. While the soul being baptized wades out into the river, those on the shore sing loudly the songs of the redeemed. Prior to the preacher immersing the convert, all of the preachers present pause and pray for the faith of the new follower. After the baptismal service, we adjourn to the meeting house for several hours of singing, preaching, testifying and praying. At this last meeting, we had to make a special rule that only the new converts and those who came from the farthest villages could testify. Had we not, we might still be in meeting. With those limits explained, the service still lasted until after 10 p.m., having begun just before 6 p.m., with people waiting in line to tell the blessings of being a child of God.

This month we begin the process of applying for our second-year visa. During the spring, our attorney began preparing the paperwork and collecting the government signatures we need for application. Please pray that processing the paperwork will not be delayed, as our visas expire in October. Also, please pray that when the processing is completed, the money will be there to pick them up. The lawyer informed us the visas have gone up since last year. We know the Lord will supply, but pray for our faith.

I don't often mention our family life, as there is so much to say about the work that I haven't the space left to talk about us. We are presently looking for living accommodations, preparing for my brother's return just after the New Year. We want to be close to both of our families and right in the center of the work. If you think about it, pray the Lord leads us to the place He wants us to be. This week, our three-year-old, Carrick, began Bulgarian preschool. A little hesitant at first, he now enjoys the time he spends there. We hope he'll pick up the language. While officially everything is in Bulgarian, most of his classmates are Turks, so he's sure to get a good dose of both languages. Christian, now almost two years old, remains at home with Hannah. At the beginning of the month, we took him to the doctor for help with his congestion. After a thorough examination the doctor informed us Christian has asthma. If you remember, earlier in the year he spent almost two weeks in the hospital with respiratory problems. Please keep him in your prayers. My language studies continue to progress, albeit slowly. I read a portion of Turkish scripture almost every meeting, and I try to express my thankfulness to God for His word. Pray the Lord helps me learn this language for His glory.

We love you all. God bless you.

Because of a living Saviour,

The William LeFevre Family