Monday, 30 December 2013

Christmas culture

A few weeks ago I was asked a question by Tim Abney: What are some of the differences in customs and sights during the Christmas season here in England? So I have a small list of differences that I observed here in Mansfield:
1) Far fewer homes are decorated on the exterior 
2) They will often have both Ham and Turkey on Christmas
3) Chestnuts are actually eaten and sold in stores
4) Mulled wine, this is our equivelent to Hot apple cider, where we use apples they use grapes
5) NO EGGNOG
6) Adults past a certain age no longer have stockings
7) Christmas Pudding see link http://www.deliaonline.com/recipes/cuisine/european/english/traditional-christmas-pudding.html
 Christmas "baskets" are called "hampers"
9) Mince pies: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mince_pie
10) Boxing Day (day after christmas)
11) Christmas Crackers a small paper package that when you pull on both ends "cracks" and has small gifts inside

This is a list of just a few that I can think of/noticed.

PLEASE BRITISH FRIENDS IF I'VE LEFT ANY OUT PLEASE FEEL FREE TO ADD!

MANY BLESSINGS THE SPAMPS!

Monday, 23 December 2013

Merry Christmas

With Christmas only a couple days away, it's a wonderful time for us to reflect on the gifts the Lord has given us. One prevalent gift being our opportunity to serve the Lord here in England. We can't believe that we have reached December already: our 6-month mark. These past months have been full of challenges, frustrations, and warfare, but also many, many blessings. We are looking forward to celebrating Christmas this year with our church here, and we wanted to take a moment to wish you all a Merry Christmas as well! We cannot being to thank you enough for all of your support and your prayers. We truly cannot be sustained any other way than through the Lord's strength. So whether this season brings you much joy or reminds you of much sadness, we pray that the Lord will meet you and remind you of His great love for you as we focus on the reason for this season, the birth of Jesus, the greatest gift of all. Merry Christmas!

Monday, 18 November 2013

PRAYER REQUEST


We have a prayer request that we want to share with you. Last week Lindsay and I celebrated our 2 year anniversary in York. While we were there one of the teachers asked if we would be interested in coming up and teaching the biblical missions class. So this Wednesday Lindsay and I have the privilege of teaching the class. So your prayers for clarity and the ability just to really reach and connect with the students. Thank you all for all of your prayers, and we will update you all when we get back!

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Four months

Hi everyone! I am so sorry it's been so long since I've posted on here. Hopefully this will give you a glimpse of what we've been up to these past few months. Thanks for checking in!


video

Thursday, 25 July 2013

God's timing

Hiya everyone!  Alex here and i just wanted to let you all in on a bit of whats happened since our last video update.  In our update, at the end, we had some prayer requests one of which was for David our landlord.  David was the neighbour of Bryce for about 10 years and in that time he was able to share and speak with David and build a friendship with him, however David never wanted anything to do with the Gospel.  Also David's father is a priest at the Methodist church in town and his brother a missionary in Albania yet never wanted to know God.... until....

One of the days we were moving into our house with Bryce David came up and asked if he were going to be around for a bit because "i have to talk to you".  David returned and just broke down in tears.  He and Bryce spoke for about 40 min and then he left, we got in the car with Bryce where he was just completely in shock about what had just happened and was convinced that David had just accepted the Lord.  About a week ago, just a couple of days after our video, Bryce and David got together and had another 3 hour conversation about what all was going on.  Needless to say David was a church on Sunday morning and the midweek study Wednesday night, He lives nearly an hour away!  So we wanted to say THANK YOU! PRAISE THE LORD!  David is beginning to walk with the Lord so please continue to pray for him and his family as this is going to be the biggest change he's never experienced.

Now as you all know the Visa that Lindsay and i need to come here had been delayed which turned out to be a huge blessing for us, we were able to see friends, sell things, go to a wedding, PACK!  But what we weren't able to see is this.  If it weren't for our visas being delayed we would have never been able to get into this house.  We would have looked elsewhere for a place to live.  With our delay Bryce and David were put right in each others paths at the EXACT MOMENT when David needed him most.  If it weren't for that delay only GOD knows where things could have headed.  But He used that to put them both together and after years of plowing and watering hard ground, fruit came forth.

When there is a "delay" in our plans we are only able to look at the here in now, whereas GOD knows the beginning from the end and His timing is PERFECT we just need to trust and keep our eyes open!

PRAYER REQUEST:
David and his continued walk with the Lord
Creation Fest ( Aug 2- 12) Hearts of service for the church heading down and souls to be saved.
A Heart of Love and Humility as we serve

Thanks for Serving with us!

Monday, 15 July 2013

First Month Recap

For those who prefer to watch rather than read...here's a little recap of our first month in England.

video

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Getting Settled

Hello all!

Conference
Things have been going very well. We thoroughly enjoyed the conference in York, and were blessed not only by the teachings, but also by the fellowship and reconnecting with friends we haven't seen in a few years. Seeing the change in the building was absolutely amazing as well since the last time we saw it was in the VERY early stages of construction. All in all, it was a very blessed week.

House
Upon returning to Mansfield, we moved into our house and began unpacking, setting up, and collecting items generously donated by people from the church. The house isn't "finished" yet as there was more plastering and painting yet to do, along with putting in a new kitchen, however that got put on the back burner since another water leak appeared. Thankfully, all the leaks are fixed now and the holes are plastered. There's just a little bit of painting left and we'll be getting new cupboards and counter tops hopefully in a few weeks. It's just nice to be settling into our own home now.

Most of everything that comes with setting up house has been done: arranging bills for rent, council tax, water, gas and electric; buying a refrigerator and washing machine. We are still working on getting mobile phones and internet at the house (hence the lack of consistent updates). Hopefully that will be resolved within a few weeks.

Ministry
We are gearing up for CreationFest at the beginning of August to serve in the cafes, and are busy in Selah, the coffee shop ministry of the CC Mansfield, in which we will be hosting a live music and dessert night on the 20th of this month.

We have been taking part in the Sunday services, Bible study in Nottingham, mid-week services, and will be doing more as we settle in.

Thank you all for your prayers. It's such a blessing to see how everything is coming together and how welcoming the people here have been. Pictures and videos will be coming soon.

Blessings,
A&L

Monday, 24 June 2013

Let the adventure begin

Well, we made it!

We landed in London on Wednesday after a relatively short flight (only 9.5 hrs.), grabbed our bags, and were graciously picked up by Bryce Heard, the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mansfield. We headed up to Mansfield, which was about a 3.5 hour drive, fighting off jet-lag, and taking in the scene of this new place we are going to be living. 

This first week has been a time of getting the lay of the land, meeting new people, and adjusting to the time difference. It looks like we will be able to move into our house this weekend, hopefully. Until then, we are staying with the Heard family.

We have explored the local supermarket (Asda, associated with Wal-Mart), local coffee shops, and the beautiful countryside. Here is a picture of Alex in Sherwood Forest by Major Oak, an oak tree that is believed to be 1,120 years old. 


We also enjoyed our first Sunday morning service and after church picnic...though it's England and it was raining and windy, so our picnic was inside the church hall. 



All in all, we are doing very well and are excited to get settled and into a routine. We will be heading up to York next week for the Pastors and Leaders conference, which will be wonderful to see some old friends. 

Praises:
   We arrived safely
   All our bags made it
   The Lord is providing a house and stuff to fill it
   
Prayer Requests:
   That we can move in this weekend
   That we will be able to find a fridge, freezer, and washer for cheap
   Safe travels to and from York
   That we will be able to continue serving the people here and build relationships with them


That's all for now. Thank you all for your prayers!

Blessings,
Alex and Lindsay

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

On Our Way

First off, thank you all so much for your prayers during this transition season. It means more to us than you know. Alex and I are currently sitting at Gate 23A at LAX, excitedly waiting to board the plane that will take us to the land we've been dreaming of. We know that there are many challenges ahead, many hardships and trials, but also many blessings. The burden the Lord has placed on our heart for England has been ever-growing these past few years, and in fulfilling the call of the Lord there is great joy. It's not without some sorrow, however, leaving behind loved ones and friends, not knowing when we will see each other again, but to know that the Lord has everyday planned out for us and that we will be able to spend eternity together makes the journey a bit easier. 

Our day started off with packing, and more packing, and re-packing once we found out some bags were overweight (50 lbs. goes quickly!), then we were off to enjoy one last cup of Klatch coffee and In-N-Out burgers with our families before made our way to the airport. We checked in our five 50 lb. bags, 1 guitar, and a few carry-ons without any trouble or airport shuffling, praise the Lord! All this to say, everything with the trip so far has gone very smoothly and we attribute that to all your prayers as well.

Thank you all so much for your love and support. Hopefully, our next post will be from Mansfield!

Blessings,
A&L

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Changes in Plans

"A man's heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps." ~ Proverbs 16:9

Our original plan was to leave on May 21st, however the Lord seemed to have a different plan. Our visas didn't arrive before our departure date, so we had to change our flight. Thankfully, we received an email from the consulate yesterday...our visas were issued and we should receive them tomorrow!

Though we don't completely understand why we had to change our flight, we know that the Lord had a perfect reason. One thing that has turned into a blessing is being able to sell a lot of our stuff (that somehow multiplied under our noses), which has covered a lot of the cost of changing tickets. Another blessing is that we're able to see a dear friend of ours as he visits home from being a missionary in Ecuador.

All in all, we know that the Lord is in control of everything and are thankful that He is working in ways we don't even see yet. Our new flight is scheduled for June 18th, so for the next few weeks we'll be nomads.

All of your prayers and support are so greatly appreciated! It means so much to us to know that there are people praying for us.

Blessings,
A&L

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Final Preparations

As we prepare to head out to England, there's a lot of last minute things that have come up. One of which was starting a blog...a place for people like you to keep in touch and hear about what the Lord is doing in our lives and the ministries we're blessed to be a part of. This blog will include normal posts as well as photos and videos (hopefully)!

We'd love to hear from you too, so feel free to post any comments or shoot us an email.

We so greatly appreciate all your love, prayers, and support as we begin this amazing journey. Our biggest prayer request right now is for our immigration visas to arrive before we are scheduled to leave next Tuesday. If they don't however, we'll just have to change our tickets. The Lord know the perfect time for us to arrive and we are trusting in that.

Blessings,
A&L