Thursday, August 16, 2012

We're in Texas!

Thank you to each and everyone of you who covered our family in prayer last week as we made the move from North Alabama to South Texas. We had a very good 2 day trip, no problems of any kind, didn't get lost one time, the kids did great and David and I both survived driving 19 hours in separate vehicles too. The picture above was my view for the entire trip. I got to stare at the back of the moving truck the whole trip! We arrived in Los Fresnos, TX around 9:30pm Friday night. There were people in the parking lot waiting to greet us and introduce themselves which we thought was pretty neat. Inside our new apartment, was a plate of homemade chocolate chip cookies with a cute little "welcome to To Every Tribe" note attached. We were so tired that we came in and went straight to bed. Saturday morning we started unloading the moving truck and had so much help unloading that we couldn't get boxes into their hands fast enough. The sense of "community" and "family" is huge here and everyone is so friendly and helpful.

We are now living on campus at To Every Tribe which is a missions agency that mobilizes and trains missionaries for pioneer church planting among unreached people groups. In particular, To Every Tribe targets the most remote and most difficult-to-reach groups where the Gospel has not yet penetrated.
The landscape in Texas is certainly different from where we grew up and have always lived in Alabama. South Texas is pretty flat and there are not lots of trees. The ones that are here do not grow very tall and the palm trees seem to be the biggest trees in this area. There are lots of cactus (which Wyatt loves seeing) and the wind blows constantly. We live so close to the ocean now that we get to enjoy that wonderful ocean breeze everyday.
These beautiful Bird of Paradise flowers are just outside our door on campus so we get to look at their beautiful colors and unique design every day. It reminds me of the words found in Psalm 104:24.
This is the door to our new apartment on campus with To Every Tribe! Yes, we brought a little piece of Alabama along with us (Roll Tide!). We are still working on unpacking, organizing and settling in. We are almost there but still have a couple of days work ahead of us. The apartment came furnished with furniture so we just have to find a place for all the clothes and stuff that we brought. Thankfully we have one more week before training classes actually begin to give us a little time to get totally done, relax a little and familiarize ourselves with our new area a little more too.
Since South Padre Island is just 30 minutes from our house we drove down there one afternoon just to see the ocean. It is a natural beach (much different than Panama City Beach, FL where we love to go) but it was still the ocean and still so beautiful and peaceful. We can't wait to go back and spend a day playing in the ocean, collecting seashells and having fun as a family. The drive over to the beach was a nice little break from unpacking and organizing too!

And how are the kids liking our new place?? They are loving it so far. There are so many kids here of all ages for them to play with and they go outside as soon as breakfast is over and only come in to eat or go to the bathroom. We haven't started homeschooling yet so they get to play all day right now but in a few weeks we will begin homeschooling so their daily routine will change somewhat.

  • Continue to keep us in your prayers! Pray for us as we prepare to begin training classes and start homeschooling. Pray that everyone will continue to adjust well to our new place, new surroundings and new friends.
  • Pray for us as we find a church here locally. It isn't like growing up in the "Bible Belt" where there is a church on every corner so we are visiting different churches right now and praying for God to lead us where He wants us to be the next few years.
  • Pray for financial support on our behalf. We are self-supporting missionaries and we came down here literally stepping out on faith that God will provide the funds we need to be able to stay. We did not have a house to sell (we rented) and we literally sold most of what we had in our home and came down here with the money we had in our bank account. We believe God's Word to be true and we claim scriptures like Phil. 4:19, Matt. 6:31-32, Luke 12:7. We are also praying for churches that may want to partner with us in some way too. If you would like to help us financially you can donate online (choose our name under Gift Designation: Johns, David & Gretta) or we can receive mail at our new address below:
David & Gretta Johns
602 W. 6th Street
Apt. 5
Los Fresnos, TX 78566

We realize we do not know what hardships we will face as we seek to serve the Lord. We do realize much risk and sacrifice are part of this step but that no matter what we go through the joy of the Lord will be our strength - for where the cost is great, the joy is greater. Jesus IS worth it! We look forward to what God has in store for us the next 2 years as we complete our missionary training at To Every Tribe. We are already loving being in TX, are getting to know some wonderful families that are here with us and we look forward to beginning our time of training and studying the Word as we prepare to take the Gospel to unreached people groups.

We pray that God continues to bless each one of you too!