Monday, May 26, 2014

Pressing on

Can I tell you a secret? 

Missionaries are human, just like you.  We face frustrations, trials, disappointments, and discouragement too.  Life is not a "bed of roses" just because we have answered God's call to take the gospel to a foreign field.  
My goal is to always be encouraging and positive when documenting things on my blog.  But I also want to be real and not pretend that there aren't struggles on the field.  The Christian life is a battle  (2 Timothy 2:3 KJV "...endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ." )
The Devil sure has been fighting our ministry and family over the past year.  It is so easy to compare our lives and the result of our ministry by man's standards rather than God's standard.  The Bible commands in I Corinthians 4:2 (KJV) "...that a man be found faithful."  So as we face hard times and difficulties in life, let's make sure that we remain faithful to the Lord and leave any results up to Him.

Missionaries also need encouragement! (just like you)  I could tell you story after story of people God has used to be a blessing and encouragement to our family during some difficult times.  The amazing thing is, some of the times no one even knew we were facing the battle that had us down or discouraged.  But God did!  Isn't God just so good - all the time?  I'm also thankful for people that let God use them when He speaks to their heart.   

Sometimes I feel like I am just like the children of Israel.  It is so easy when trials come and things don't work out the way I want and in my timing, I start complaining and quickly forget that God is faithful

As we press on and continue to be faithful to the Lord's calling, we would like to ask you to pray for our ministry.  A couple months ago Ron found a building for rent.  It was a decent price for a commercial building.  After looking at it and praying, we met with the owner to discuss specifics.  She came down about $70 on the monthly rent and the plan is to take possession this Friday.

About the same time that we started looking at the possibility of renting this building, we noticed that we had a new church sending monthly support.  The problem was that we had never been to this church - actually, we had never heard of this church.  After checking with our mission board, we found out the support was indeed for us.  Our family had been praying that God would provide so we could rent this building.  God had answered our prayer!

Another blessing is that this building was full of office furniture - desks, bookshelves, chairs, tables, etc.  We were told that we could use anything we needed.  Many of the things we requested to use will be nice to have - especially since God provided them for us.

Would you pray that God would provide a couple more things? 
This building has a very large yard which means we need a lawn mower.  With all the rain and sunshine we've been having, the grass is growing quickly.  The yard is in desperate need of attention when we take possession.  A basic lawn mower will cost $200-$300.  
We have also been praying for a ping pong table.  This could be a great tool to attract young people so that we can have the opportunity to share the gospel with them.

Most importantly, please pray with us that this building will be a great asset to our ministry as we reach out to the people in Johvi with the gospel. 

For those of you who don't know, we are on Facebook.  Visit Winklers to Russians  and "like" us so you can get updates, prayer requests, and blessings.  I encourage you to look us up soon because we are getting ready to have a giveaway.  (details will be given on Facebook)  Our goal is to make more people aware of our ministry and ultimately have more people praying for the souls in Johvi.      

We are deeply grateful for so many of you that pray for our family, our ministry, and special requests as we bring them before you.

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Friday, May 23, 2014

Our Story

My hubby and I just celebrated our 16th anniversary. 

Here is our love story.

We met just over 21 years ago on a blind date.  Yes, that's what I said, a blind date!  Ron was my brother's college room mate and I was a senior in high school.  My dad and brother thought I needed a date for our church's first Valentine Banquet.  

During the months following the banquet we had a few more dates and wrote letters to each other.  To be honest though, I was not ready to be in a serious relationship fresh out of high school.  I had a lot of growing up and maturing to do.  

We ended up attending the same Bible college for my sophomore, junior, and senior years.  During those years I watched Ron.  I saw that he was a young man of character, commitment, and faithful to his classes and job.  Each week I watched him serve the Lord by working on a bus route, cleaning and helping prepare the church for Sunday, helping in a Sunday School class, and playing the trumpet during the services.  I saw his love for the Lord in everything he did.

 It was during my senior year of college that I realized God had given me feelings for this incredible young man.  Over the years we had both grown, matured, and become friends.  But now I didn't know how to let him know I was interested in him.  So I prayed.  I didn't talk to anyone about these new feelings I now had toward a certain young man, but I told the Lord.  You'll never guess what happened next!!!   Just two months before graduation, he asked me to a banquet. ♥

Over the next several months we fit in as many dates as we could.  After graduation, we both took jobs in different states.  I wrote him letters (daily) and we enjoyed lots of phone calls.  He flew in to see me for Christmas and that is when he popped the big question.  Of course, I said YES!

Words can not express how grateful I am that God brought us together in His perfect timing.  I love being married, love the man God gave me, and love serving the Lord together. 

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