27 November 2009

Fellowship of European International Churches

Hope everyone had a terrific Thanksgiving.

The other day when I posted the story of my new car, I realized that I had forgotten to update you after my trip to Vienna, Austria and the Fellowship of European International Churches ( www.feic.org ) Summit meeting.

So better late than never, here's a brief update with links to photos and a video clip. My Facebook Friends have seen the video clip but my blog followers have probably not.

The meeting was in mid-October and held in a small retreat center up in the mountains about two hour ride from Vienna. It was attended by 60+ Assembly of God missionary pastors. They pastor churches located all over Europe from Finland to Greece to the Canary Islands.

I was invited to attend by Sebaastian Van Wessem, a Dutch pastor that I work with on the church planting group, Europe Advance. www.europeadvance.org

During our times of fellowship we discussed what God was doing in Europe and shared about our churches and ministries. They graciously allowed me share about First Step Ministries and my heart to help kids learn to pray.

We were all caught off guard when an unseasonably early snow storm moved in and dumped about 18 inches over two days. As it turned out, it seems it was an answer to prayer from a little seven year old missionary girl, named Olivia, from the Canary Islands. She asked her parents if they would see snow up in the mountains. The parents told her to pray and ask God. Guess he answered her prayers. Thankfully, He also answered our prayers to get us off the mountain safely without snow tires so we could catch our flights back home. He did.

It was great to make new friends and new ministry connections. I'm sure I'll be involved with them in future.

Here's the link to the FEIC photos:

FEIC Video:

(Just copy and paste the above URLs to your web browser to connect to the photos or video.)

Rev. Lawrence Blakeslee
Missionary to Europe & Asia

15 November 2009

Christmas Came Early

For me, Christmas came early this year. So early that I will be able to celebrate again on December 25th. Actually, the German's celebrate two days of Christmas and if that's not enough, the Dutch have three days of Christmas.

It's The Solution
Think about it. Just having more Christmas days is the ultimate solution to an ever present problem. Which friends, family, "in-laws" or parents you are going to celebrate Christmas Day with this year? Well I digress...

My Christmas came a few weeks ago when someone called me and said they wanted to bless me with a car. It was a total surprise. In fact I was speechless. (You who really know me, know that doesn't happen very often.) They wanted the car to be used for the ministry. No problem! I think I can make that happen. It took a few weeks to get everything organized. And I finally picked up it last Monday in The Netherlands and drove it home.

It has been a real process to get it registered and inspected with the German government but thanks to a couple of German friends that helped get me through the "red tape", it was uneventful. Thank God for German public transportation. But waiting for trains and buses outside in the German winter is not all that it is cracked up to be.

The First Car
Some of you might remember my first European car. It was a little, red, 20+ year old Opel Kadette that was given to me five years ago. It had a lot of "experience" but I got two good years of use from it. When it came time for the every two year German car inspection, it would have cost me more to get it to pass inspection that the actual value of the car. So it was time to get rid of it.

The Opel Kadette, like this car, was a total gift from God and I proclaimed it as such to everyone, saved and unsaved. To the amazement of many of my German friends, it got me all over Europe without fail. The Chevy is also going to be put to good use for The Lord and ministry. If you feel led, you can be in agreement with me for the car's expenses to be met.

The Sermonette
There is a "sermonette" in this story. It is never give up on your dream(s). No matter how tough it looks, just never give up on God. The dream may not come in your timing but it will come in His. The Bible talks about "Give and it will be given unto you..." (Luke 6:38) He's not kidding.

My Thanksgiving
The family that blessed me with this gift will be blessed by God for giving it. My friends that have made it possible for me to stay on the mission field all these years and especially during these tough economic times, have been and will continue to be blessed for their faithfulness. I know Him and I know His Word it is true. By the way, so do they...

Thank you to all those that have been used by God to make the "impossible" come true. It has already been an exciting and interesting 2009 for me. I can hardly wait to see what is in store for 2010.

Happy Thanksgiving America. We still have a lot to be thankful for in our lives. If there was ever a time to pray for our country and the world, it is now.

Love ya,
Rev. Lawrence Blakeslee
Missionary to Europe & Asia