Over the next 6-8 months a number of us, serving on field in Wales and the Basque Country, are going to be moving around a good bit and in some cases making a major move over the long-term. Consequently, “transition” will be a theme for many of us over the next few months.
There are a couple of us, who must move out of Wales for a period of six months due to tax requirements in the USA. My colleagues are actually returning to the USA this month for this purpose. I will let them say more about their plans (i.e., to speak for themselves). I’ll be doing something similar for six months, starting around the end of September. I’ll say more about my own situation below.
Others of us are finishing up our on-field assignments over these next few months. At the conclusion of their assignments, most will return to their home countries, but some are actually moving on to other mission assignments in other countries. We ask your prayers for all of us, those who are going for various periods of time and those who remain on field that we would finish strong and persevere, according to our various callings.
I’ve also had some personal news which throws a wrench in my current plans.
I probably need to give you some background, before giving you the news and prayer requests.
- I live in a rented house in the Nantlle Valley in North Wales. The house is older, but ideal for my needs, and great for entertaining guests, which is important to our ministry philosophy.
- I currently have two interns living with me, who do not finish their assignments in the area until the beginning and middle of September respectively.
- I will be leaving for six months out of the United Kingdom in compliance with USA Social Security rules, starting around the end of September or beginning of October at the latest. Because the house that I’m currently renting is so ideal, I was just planning to keep it going, even while out of the country.
This past Saturday (17th July) I received word that my landlords were asking for the property back from me. They want to sell the house now. I don’t really blame them. I know that they tried for a long time to sell the house before renting it, and only began to rent it as a last resort. This coupled with the fact that it is very much a seller’s market at the moment in this area means that I can hardly blame them for wanting to take advantage of the opportunity. It just causes some significant difficulty for me, especially regarding the timing.
Though the COVID rules here mean that I technically have a generous six months to move out, the fact that I have to be out of the country for six months starting at the end of September moves this timetable significantly closer. I essentially have 2 months to find a solution and move out.
Herein is the prayer request: I really need wisdom from the Lord as to what to do as well as some miraculous doors to open, because the rental market is so competitive at the moment in this area that it is slmost impossible to find a place. Please, pray about what I see are the two primary ways to move forward (open to additional suggestions as well):
- Find a house to move into. This is one option: simply to pray that the Lord will provide a suitable place to live and then move from where I am currently directly to the new home. This option is more expensive (I’d be praying rent, even if not in the country), but more convenient (I only move once and have a place to return to after my six months away).
- Find a storage unit to move everything into. This option is the less expensive option (rental storage is significantly less than rent), but more complicated, as it means (1) moving everything twice, once now and once when I return after six months and (2) having to find a place to live after returning from being away.
This is a complex situation for the reasons I’ve stated (preparing to be away for 6 months, taking care of our interns including housing/feeding them, etc.), but also because I have a lot of stuff (primarily the library), and I’m not in the best physical shape with some medical issues at the moment, and I don’t really have very many people to be able to help me. I really need both divine direction and miraculous provision in order to move forward. I ask you, please, to pray about this situation.
I would also like to share what I am praying about as a way to utilise this time outside of Wales for six months in the most effective and productive ways possible. This is both for general information, but also to ask for your prayers for wisdom and direction. In essence, because I would need to be back in Wales from this six months away by early April 2022 in order to be here in time to help prepare for our summer projects, I have to count back six months or so from early April to plan the start of my six months out of Wales/UK, which means about the end of September to leave the UK. Ordinarily, I would simply take this six months back in the USA for various family and ministry reasons. However, there is a Conference in Germany occurring between Christmas and the New Year, which would be highly strategic for me to attend. Consequently, I would need to be out of the UK but somewhere in Europe from late September through the end of that meeting in Germany right after the New Year in January.
There are certainly some strategic ways of using this time in Europe, particularly with things like language learning (I have to use a lot of languages with my work) and also connecting with potential ministry partners in specific areas. One possibility for this time in Europe would be in Estonia and perhaps in combination with Russia and some other areas in Scandinavia. Another would be in Northern Italy, where we have been developing networks and partnership possibilities (as well as language learning opportunities). There are a lot of logistical concerns related to either possibility, which are affected by ongoing issues related to COVID and travel to other countries. It makes planning very difficult. Also, if they feel the need to postpone the Germany meeting again, this will also affect things. Please, be praying that God will clearly show me how and where to use this time and opportunity for His glory, and then, please, continue to pray that all the logistics would line up. I realise that it seems like this is a long way off, but it’s not really, given all the things going on between now and then. Thank you for praying.