01/07/2012

Dear friends & family,

It has been a while....but here is a quick update.
With a grateful heart and with a lot of thankfullnes to God we just want to share that we have moved.
We lived in a small cute house, but now we have a much bigger house! It was really an answer to our prayers.Out of the blue we were blessed by a change to move here.We really felt that the Lord was opening doors for us.
We have even a guestroom now!
This will be the house of the nations.So our hearts and house will be open if you want to come and visit.







Isaiah 2:2 And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD'S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.


Thank you for still walking and praying with us!

19/02/2012

From tears to joy....


It is a general weekend in February. We enjoy the warmth of the heater. The last few weeks were very cold. Which was for Joao a hard time. Cycling on slippery roads to the bus stop early in the morning made him feel very cold. One day he even didn't feel his toes anymore. But he survived the 'real' winter! Now the temperature are mostly above zero degrees and we are all happy with that. We enjoyed the beautiful snow and how wonderful it looks, but we are looking forward to spring and summer time.


We are enjoying life as a family. At the moment we are not under so much pressure anymore as we were last year. Soon it will be Ethan's first birthday celebration. And his first year was for us a very difficult year. But it is so amazing to see how daddy and son love each other, even though they were separated for 5 months.

We know it is a blessing to see what we have these days. Joao found a job, which make us financially a bit more stable. He also started 2 weeks ago with his course to learn the Dutch language and about the Dutch society. This means he has to go to school 5 (half) days a week. We really pray and hope that the coming weeks he can work besides that.

As a family we are stable at the moment, and we can say after so many challenges it is nice to feel a bit more space to breath. In the meantime we are still thinking and praying about the future. Our hearts are still in mission and we are curio
us where and if the Lord will send us back.
The time that we are here we hope and try to work on our family foundation, our finances and also on our mission and vision. This all beside our work, study and daily life. It's a busy time but we know it is good for us and will form us more.


We enjoy our little son Ethan lots. He says already 'papa' and 'daddy' and speaks his own baby language! He likes music and loves to be outside. He gives us lots of joy and happiness. His first steps in this big world are made (around the table), so maybe he will walk when he turns one.

We surely miss our friends and family in Africa (SA and Mozambique). We miss the sonshine and some food. We would love to go back...but for now we only can send a huge hug and lots of greetings!

Joao, Anja & Ethan

13/12/2011

Immanuel ~ God with us


Dear family and friends,

As we draw close to the end of this year, we look back with a grateful heart.

God’s hand of faithfulness has gently led us as a family through the year and the challenging moments that we faced.

We are blessed with a lovely son this year. After that we were sadly separated and waiting for the right papers for 5 months! It was hard but even more we feel so happy and thankful to be united as a family!

I’ve found myself running with even more resolve into the arms of my loving God as I adjust to the variances of a new culture.

God is exceedingly faithful and I really enjoy the opportunity of being back to The Netherlands and to enjoy the unity of family hood.

May this Christmas be a peaceful and refreshing time for you and your family as we celebrate the birth of Jesus who came to give us life and life in abundance!

João, Anja & Ethan


Thank you so much for your prayers, all your love and support!

07/04/2011

Newsletter


March 2011


Dear family and friends,


It took us such a long time to finally sit down and type a new exciting update, but here we are. A lot of things have happened in our lives and we would love to share the highlights and challenges. We write you this newsletter while we are in the Netherlands, enjoying the end of winter and the first sunshine in springtime. We hope that you’ll enjoy reading this newsletter and that you will give thanks with us for all the blessings and keep on praying with us for all other things that we face in our life.

End of CDTS

We can tell you that we finished our 6 week outreach in Tulbach. From there we went to Hawston for 3 weeks, another little place in South-Africa. We were able to do a lot of youth ministry there and also street evangelism. It was amazing to see hearts touched and changed. After these 3 weeks we came to the end of our outreach and went back to the base in Worcester for a debrief week. That week was really good! We went through a lot of different situations as a group during the outreach and it was good to open our hearts and to share how we feel about all the things that happened. With this week we could really finish all this. Looking back we can say that we really learned a lot in the DTS. Not only theoretic things about the Bible and being in missions but we also learned about our personal belief. The most difficult thing to discover was the fact that we see so many Christians in life not really living the way that they are supposed to. This makes us try harder to be the people that God wants us to be.


Ethan João

In our last letter we told you about the pregnancy. That time we were 20 weeks. The nine months went fast and without any problems, we thank you all for praying for that. At the beginning of December Anja went to Holland to prepare things and to settle down. On the 1st of February João also came over. In the meantime João was able to connect with his family and Kedesh (the orphanage where he grew up). It was hard to be separated for a while, but we chose to be together around the due date. In those times you really feel and discover how much you love each other. Anja found a little house where we can stay for now, so since we are together we have our own place. The most exciting news is that on the 2nd of March we became proud daddy and mommy of Ethan. Giving birth was something new for us and we really didn’t know what to expect. Now we can say that it is a huge blessing; it’s such a miracle to hold your own son and to realize that we are chosen to take care of him. With all this we also discovered some sleepless nights  and that our feelings changed by the minute we became parents. But we are so thankful that Ethan is a beautiful boy who grows well. We love him more every day.


Future

The last months were months of thinking and praying about our future. We came to the conclusion that it will be good for us to settle a while and to work on the base of our family life. We really feel that it is important to have a strong foundation as a family. Besides that, we also have to be honest and face the fact that we need to work on our finances. We can’t go on the way we did the last months, especially with our little boy. However, both our hearts have a desire to be in missions and we know that one day the Lord will show us another route. The coming time we want to use to enjoy being a family, to pray about the future (in missions) and to work so that we are able to fill our three stomachs. But with all this we have the challenge of Joao’s visa. He was able to come to the Netherlands for three months, which is really sad….we cried thousands of tears already….but he has to leave on the 1st of May. It was hard to be separated last time, but now that we have a child it will be more difficult and it goes against all our feelings. However, we know we have to go through this. The plan is that João will try to do the Dutch exam at the embassy as soon as possible. He is already studying hard on the language, which is one of the requirements to come to the Netherlands for a long time. Anja needs to find a job (a year contract) as proof of income. As soon as those requirements are met, João can come again and stay for long.


We ask you to pray with us for the next points:

- For courage for João to go on studying the Dutch language and that he may pass

- For strength during the time we will be separated as a family.

- For a job for Anja

- Trusting the Lord for money for the exam (€ 350), visa to stay (€ 850) and the plane ticket(about € 800)


Support

We just want to say sorry for being quiet for such a long time. We know that many people thought of us and prayed for us. We really felt uplifted by all the prayers and support. We hope and trust that we will have an income soon. We know that God has been faithful to us and that He will carry us through. It’s amazing that when we look back we see that He was always there for us. He is a great and good God.


Lovely greetings João, Anja & Ethan

24/11/2010

Moving on...


As we look back in the last months of our lives, then we can say that we had a fabulous time being on outreach. It was challenging a lot of times, but we made it through by the grace of God.
We really were blessed with good health and with nice places to stay. The team was very mercyful to the fact that Anja is pregnant and it was a blessing to be with them.
Tonight and tomorrow will be the closing of the DTS and then it is time to move on for us as a couple.

This morning we heard that Joao's visa for Holland is ready and we really thankful for that.
We will spend from friday till wednesday together with friends in Jeffrey's Bay and then we will say goodbye to each other. Anja will fly to Holland to prepare things for the baby but also to work on a permit for me. It will be hard and difficult to be far from each other...but we made the decission for a good outcome in the future. We want to do it the way we shoul and so I can go the end of January and be there for Anja when she will give birth and a certain time after that.

Please pray with us during this time. But we are also greatful for all the things that happend already and for all the support. Physicaly, spiritualy and financialy. With out that we couldn't make it.

27/09/2010

Outreach



Today is the day that we will leave the YWAM base for outreach. Our team is unexpecting big and counts 21 people. The first six week we will spend in Tulbagh an hour from here and after that we will go to Hoston. In Tulbagh we will be busy with evangelism in prison, children work at the orpahnage and the farmer schools. We will see what else we can do!
It is a blessing that Joao and I can go together though we didn't pay the full money yet. We hope really that we might be able to pay and trust the Lord that He will provide.
On the 19th of November we will be back at the base and then after the debreef we will have graduation on the 25th of november.
What will happen then...well that's a good question.

We are still waiting for our visa papers. We hope that we can spend some time with friends and then I (Anja) will leave for Holland, but we rather go together. So please pray for the visa issues and for wisdom on what to do. We really don't know yet how things will go. We know that we would love te be together, especially when the baby is comming.
At the moment we are thankfull that the baby is doing well and also I'm really feeling good.
So thanks for all the prayers and messages.

We hope to keep you updated about our outreach time.


Lovely greetings
Joao & Anja