THE FINAL COUNTDOWN!!

I may have started the countdown rather early, however anyone can follow the countdown here and the really eager have saved it to their computers. Today another early countdown was announced. Julia Gillard announced an election – in September. Fans of football and rugby sometimes start counting down to the next world cup as soon as one has finished. Too bad they have to wait four years and none of their friends are interested in the countdown.

What am I getting at? If something seems too distant, it is easy for us to forget about it, lose sight, be distracted from the goal, or begin to think it will never actually happen anyway. As far as our wedding is concerned, I will not forget about it. I am counting down with an eagerness and enthusiasm that borders on extremism. For others it’s not such an occasion.

What about the return of Jesus. Neither internet sites nor Julia Gillard can predict when this will be, but I know it is the event of events. Don’t let the cares of this world or the distractions of being busy keep us from the ultimate consummation of all things.

GLOBAL CONNECTIONS

There are so many things happening around the world. I’d love to bring a few to your attention. I truly believe that God uses triggers in our hearts and minds, as we expand our boundaries, to cause us to get involved in His world-wide scheme. “For the earth will be filled with knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.” (Habakkuk 2:14)

PARAGUAY

Here’s a little inspirational something worth checking out. And it’s not even about my sister and her family. They are currently not in Paraguay but in NZ and I will be seeing them soon at our family reunion.

VLAD - UKRAINE

Tom writes: “I have spoken to Vlad, he was very thankful for the support he has been getting! Thank you all for your prayers, please remember him in your prayers. He has recently been having some heart problems, the doctors have given him a course of medication that he needs to take to keep his heart working right and his blood pressure down, but the last few days he has been doing better. So please keep his health in your prayers, he works every day pretty much, and has to unload trunks with heavy bags of food and supplies and his back has also been in pain recently so this is something you can be praying for. We love our dear brother and pray he is used by God in a mighty way. We pray he would be released and be able to return to his family and we pray that God will meet his every day need and use Vlad to glorify our heavenly father!”

BRUCE - UKRAINE

Here is the link to Bruce’s blog which I encourage you to have a look at. It includes a video of him driving with ease up the hill that I used to struggle on in my van. Four wheel drive is a wonderful asset. Pray against discouragement and for the opening of a centre in town that will truly be a lighthouse to the community.

WHEN I WAS IN NORWAY . . .

One of the best conferences I have ever attended was in Bergen, Norway in 2010. The two organisations that put it on run them in various locations around the world and they are coming to Australia. Yes it’s this month. I can’t go because I will be in NZ but I would thoroughly recommend it to anyone who has the chance. At least check out TENT here.

NEW ZEALAND

Ruth and Jon had another really great camp at Lonsdale Park. Marie and I will join them for autumn camp at the end of April. Please pray for the far north coast of NZ and the impact that God’s Word is having amongst the families there.

USA

Marie changed her tickets!! I am so excited. She arrives here in Australia on February 7th. The next time we will be Stateside will be a couple weeks before the wedding. Farewell to the stars and stripes for a few months.

ON THE HOME FRONT

FAMILY REUNION

This month will see the 4-yearly Miller Family reunion. We are having 5 nights together in Opononi in NZ’s north. Once home to a famous dolphin, Opononi is a very quaint seaside town. We have a lovely house with great views and lots of water activities at our doorstep. It will be great to reconnect with nephews and nieces as well as my siblings and for the wider family to meet Marie. Lucky them!

SCHOOL DAYS

I am one week down teaching grade 2 and I love the class I have this year. I have 10 boys and 11 girls who are for the most part keen to be at school. Please pray that I instil good study habits, a love of learning, a love of reading and books, enquiring minds, positive peer relations and above all introduce them to Jesus – the one who created them, died for them and truly loves them.

KIDS CLUB

Our first week back for the year and our first time on a Friday saw Kids Club sparsely attended but we hope as the word of mouth grapevine gets to work the numbers will pick up. I am doing the talks currently and we have a curriculum to guide us this year. “Jesus is the light of the world” is our current theme. Please pray for the kids in our community and for God’s Word and the love we model to touch their lives.

LIVEWIRE

And Livewire is back for 2013. I am committing my Friday nights to Livewire. I am sad to say goodbye to table tennis but I really do love being a part of a youth group. There are a few young leaders just out of high school, pray that I can be a mentor and a model for them. Pray for some non-churched teens that have started coming at the end of last year. Pray that our young people will be inclusive.

WHAT YA READIN'?

Could someone please yell loudly at me and tell me that I have to start reading again! I have a list of books I want to read. I am not making time and when I get into bed at night I find I can’t even pick a book up. I do want this to change soon.

PRAYER AND PRAISE

· Our wedding in July

· Vlad in jail

· Kids Camp – follow up from Jan, and camp in April

· Class 2M at PHCS

· Kids Club and Livewire at WPHCC

THANKS

Angela Grace for the hard work getting ready and amazing hospitality you are about to show to Marie.

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