After nearly a year of gaining value against the weak American dollar, last month the euro actually devalued against the dollar! This is very good news for American missionaries heading to or currently ministering in Europe, as our paychecks rise and fall with the exchange rate.
Without going into the deep ins and outs of it (mainly because I really don't understand the intricacies of international trade), this increase in the dollar's value is quite significant. At the weakest point, the exchange rate was 1 € to $1.60 or so; to put this into perspective, if you were to buy a used car (as we will in several months) for about 5000 €, it would have actually cost you $8000. At the current exchange rate of 1 € to $1.42, that 5000 € would be about $7100--a pretty significant savings!
So if you want to know how to pray for us, pray for God's provision for us in the midst of somewhat unstable world markets (we have 77% of our monthly needs met!); perhaps more importantly, pray that God will continue to teach us how to trust Him through this transition; but most importantly, pray that even now God will be softening Spaniards hearts to the Good News of Jesus, so that they will come into a real relationship with Him.
Monday, September 1, 2008
A couple of posts ago, we wrote about the letter from our Spain field leader, Francis Arjona, requesting our arrival to Spain by January 2009. Within that letter Francis showed us that we have been making a huge error in our presentations, including our video. We had been sharing that there are over 700 towns of 5,000 people or more that have no clear witness to the Gospel, which seemed like a lot of towns and people who need to know Christ. But Francis reminded--and corrected--us that there are 7,200 towns of 5,000 people or more that have no evangelical witness to Christ! We were off by a mere 6,500!
Seeing this staggering number of towns and people who desperately need someone to show them Christ through their lives and words has further confirmed our burden to get to Spain ASAP. Even though we know that we won't be the ones to share Christ, His truth, and His love with every Spaniard, we know that we are a part of a team that is seeking that end. So please pray with us that the bonds of spiritual blindness and apathy will be broken in Spain and in Spaniards' lives and that we will be able to get there by January to begin the transition that will enable us to share Christ's light with those living in deep darkness.