Friday, March 28, 2008

Brian's thoughts . . .

So I have had alot to think about as of late . . .mainly things that are beyond my control.

I know that I have written about these things before and it might appear that I want you all to pity me or feel sorry for me or whatever . . .just know that this post is just for me to vent a bit about what I am learning from the Lord and how these life experiences are about.

I heard about a guys, its probably many men actually, that say that they are not ready to have a child. I have been thinking about that alot now that my son is going to make his appearance in this world in the next couple of months because I actually said this prior to finding out we were pregnant. Are we ever ready to have children? An author on parenthood once said that I think as men if we wait for the time that we are ready to have children then we will end up having our children when we are too old to truly enjoy them as a younger dad would. For this reason I am really thankful to God that He has planned it to work out this way that I will be a dad when I am only 25. Wow, am I really that old already?! This May 4th I will be a quarter of a century old and while that may make some of you scoff I am realizing that as my first child comes into the world, my responsibilities increase alot, possibly even more than I even know. Currrently I am very occupied with thoughts of what that responsibility is. I am having a little difficult time figuring out the balance of things. My job is very important and it is through working and doing something for a living that I am able and blessed to provide for my family, but the Lord also wants me to be with Him daily and the balance of these things is sometimes hard.

Of course I have many questions as to what parenthood is going to be like but everyone I ask here says that you really need to experience it, trust the Lord, turn to Him for guidance on how to "deal with the kids" and the rest falls into place. I feel really blessed to be working with so many very wise people. The administration is really a dream to work with and the director and member care people do an amazing job helping us stay fired up to serve here. However even despite the wonderful care that we receive as missionaries I am still sometimes feeling a little down and defeated. Please pray that the Lord would help me to defeat these feeling of defeatedness and to live life victorious.

I am reminded that we are constantly on a spiritual warfare battlefield. Satan uses all the feelings of despair and grief and can try to accentuate their power so that we feel we cannot go on when the Truth is that Jesus died so that these feelings, though we still feel them, do not have to affect us or our ministries. I guess I just need a reminder of that Truth.

Until the next venting . . .

B

Snow in March . . . .and updated belly pic . . .

Hey there everyone. Weather has been pretty crazy around here lately as is shown by the following pictures. Betka and I noticed while we were walking home that the tree in the picture was in bloom with white flowers while the other branches of the bush were covered with white snow. The other picture is the view out across Praterstern which is a really important traffic circle that is also the center, in north Vienna, for tains, U-bahn, and buses. It was a strangely beautiful thing to see snow on different things during such a sunny day! :)



We also wanted to share another belly picture. Betka is now 23 weeks pregnant, we're now officially over the hump and on the end part of the pregnancy. According to the latest test she is possibly due to deliver on the 30th of July. We'll see. Please continue to keep us in your prayers as we figure out what it means to be here in Europe all summer, something we have never actually done as a family. Please pray that the Lord will meet all of our financial needs even though we will not be in the States this summer to meet with people.



We really appreciate your emails and comments keep them coming! :)

Be blessed,
Brian & Betka

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Looking for missionary teachers!

Just a quick note . . . our school is still looking for people to fill the following positions for the coming school year:

Middle School Science
Middle School English
High School Math
Additional Music
MS/HS German

If you or anyone you know would like to serve as a missionary/teacher for this coming school year please tell them to either get in touch with me or visit our website at www.viennachristianschool.org

We are always on the look out for other servants of the Lord that need a school to teach at! :)

B

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Happy Easter! Here is what we did! :)

This Easter after my wife and I got over a sicknesses on the first weekend of our break (we had the whole week before and the day after easter off) we went to the Czech Republic to spend some quality time with Betka's side of the family. It was a much needed break for both of us. The following pictures are from the annual pig roast that the Church congregations of Mikulov, Valtice and the surrounding areas have. It was a blast and a wonderful time celebrating with great friends from Czech as well as another missionary friend of ours.

What celebration would be complete without food and snacks!? We had a really good pig that the fellas in the church were cooking from 10Am until 3:30PM when they started cutting helpings off for people. Gingerbread were decorated very intricately by a church member . . . . AMAZING!


Below: The youth in the church enjoy playing in the unfinished church house in Mikulov where the roast was held. There is a great place out back that they use for cooking.
The view from said unfinished church house is very good despite the foggy windows with Holy hill in the background.


Below are two faces of the Czech Republic's future.




I am continually amazed at how awesome our God is and yesterday was another time for me to just marvel at his works. This marveling came in the form of the doctor doing and advanced organ screening ultrasound on Betka looking at our son. He seems to be developing wonderfully. Here is a little video snip of the 3D picture that the doctor could put together using the ultrasound snapshots. The half of the baby's face you cannot see is due to unsure readings, it is all there in reality, the video just makes it look like his head is missing by half. What you can see is his left eye, nose, left ear, and most of the left side of his face. You can even make out part of his right hand. Enjoy! :)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

International family Fun Night, 6th Grade Fellowship and Betka's students pictures.

Here are the latest pictures from our life in ministry here.


Above top: a fun Dutch game where you dunk for a sweet. Really tough as the kids found out. Also really cool Dutch shoes!

Above top: Kids dressed in native Venezuelan garb. Above bottom: African countries represented, Namibia and Nigeria I think, Namibia for sure. Below: Fun times at the Netherlands station.


Below: Betka and one of her students hard at work learning the proper way to play violin.


Below: 6th Grade fellowship/going away party for one of our students. The girl of honor cuts the cake. One of the guys butts in on the girls' picture.


Below: One of our girls leads us in the game Mafia. If you think it isn't appropriate try telling the kids that, they love it. Its a great game of strategy and good times.


We also played Twister (below). I enjoyed spinning for the kids, but having not done that before I found out it was very boring and let my wife relieve me after a while.


Our new guy (below) was fast getting used to the atmosphere at 6th Grade Fellowship and hammed it up for the camera. He came to us from the Austrian School System and loves VCS so far.


Thanks so much for continuing to keep us up in prayer while we serve the Lord here by serving these kids. Be blessed ya'll!:)

B&B

Monday, March 10, 2008

Current Reynolds ponderings . . . . .

Recently my wife and I have been talking about our life together and what we would like to see change and what we think needs to change and really what we are so thankful to the Lord for in our current situation. We would like to share it with you all.

First of all . . .we are very happy to be serving at VCS and know that Lord-willing, we will be here for another 4 years after this school year. That means that the majority of my twenties will be spent here in Vienna. Who knows that the Lord has in store we could be over here much much longer. Betka is certainly ok with staying here and I (Brian) am getting used to Europe and I realize how much help it needs spiritually. We are honored to be able to be here for a long term assignment. practically speaking though we have run into a few things that we thought we should share with you all as our supporters and being a big reason why we are still here.

I'll start by explaining our current situation, practically speaking, we are living in an apartment that is 50 meters square (roughly 540 square feet) and our base rent is 380 Euro monthly (roughly $580). Add in utilities and our total rent is 480 Euro (About $740) a month. This is for a one bedroom, sitting room, and kitchen living space. As Betka and I were thinking about it we know that this is enough for us and a child . . . . even when the child is a year or two old. If we really really had to it would be possible with another child although it would feel a little cramped with even just one toddler. We were thinking that it might be good to start praying for a new, bigger place for a similar price miracle like we have now. For rent and utilities to come in under 500 Euro anywhere in this city is insane and definitely not the norm and we are truly blessed to be where we are for the price we pay. Basically our landlord provides a service for us, they aren't making tons of cash and we are truly blessed by them. So we have made the decision to start looking for a bigger place (2 bedrooms, 60+ meters squared) , preferably closer to school. You can help us with this in praying that the Lord would move us if it is His will for us here in Vienna. We pray that He would make it known to us where to move and in His timing. There is also the prayer for finances. With Betka's income from violin and piano lessons we are able to put food on the table and get by with life day-to-day. This summer we will be really tough without her usual income and with it slightly changed due to the arrival of our little bundle of joy. Please pray that the Lord would meet all of our needs . . . we are very certain that He will provide exactly what we need . . . nothing more nothing less.

Another thing we can be praying for is for our financial situation to get to the point that we can even afford to move to a bigger place. Hypothetically our "price range" would be between 500 and 700 Euro a month, but that is really only if we can even have that kind of monthly support coming in. Am I too bold to ask you all to pray that the Lord would help us have more monthly support coming in? Again we believe very strongly that the Lord will provide for us what we truly need and nothing more, nothing less. Please ask the Lord how He might use you to help support us in ministry.

This past Friday we had a really fun night of fellowship with the 6th grade class. We haven't had 6th grade fellowship since December due to my father's death and the fact that January and February it was impossible to find a free Friday or Saturday night. So Friday we had 13 6th grade boys and girls together for pizza and games. It also turned in to a going away party for one of our girls that is returning to Canada with her family on Wednesday of this week. Our thoughts and prayers are with them as they return "home" after adapting so well and becoming such a big part of our community here. That family had a 6th grade girl, 3rd grade girl, and a primary boy in our school. They will be missed. Surprisingly this situation happens very often here. Its only by the grace of God that we can go on when good friends leave and new people come. Just last week we got 2 new 6th graders. If you would please pray for my time with the 6th grade boys each Tuesday during lunch. I really seek to go deeper with them but there is something standing in the way. Pray for boldness of Christ for me to ask the tough questions and to present our Lord's gospel in a way that they can absorb.

As we look ahead to 4 more years here at VCS we know that it seems like a long time right now, but in all actuality it will go quickly and we will be looking back on this time and wish we could go back or if nothing else looking back on it with a warm remembrance. Please pray for our continuing vision at this school and that the administration would continue to seek the Lord in everything they do. It is so easy to lose focus and get off track and we pray that this would never be the case with our school.

We are truly thankful for how much you all lift us up in prayer and support. What would we do without you all? Well, one thing is for certain we would not be here. Be blessed this day all you out there.

In His grip,
B&B