Dear Friends and Family,
What a joy to be able to share what the Lord has been teaching me (Blair) over these past months. As many of you know, we hope to go to Australia and we are continuing to work in that direction. The Lord has not opened that door yet, so we patiently wait on His timing. That brings me to what He has been teaching me through this time. It was back around October that we began to feel called overseas full-time. Through many events, the Lord has been teaching me how much I’ve started to value the things He has given us while serving in Florida. I realized that I had slowly begun to hold on to this stuff as if it was important. I would have it no other way than to serve my Lord wherever He wants me to go, but I believe my holding on to things so tightly was keeping me back. So, back in September, I began my journey.
One thing this journey has taught me is how very important prayer is to our lives. Prayer changes everything! Everything changes when you pray! Especially our own hearts and attitudes. God has faithfully answered many of my prayers. It has caused me to hear Him more clearly than I ever have before. I know He has a perfect plan for us, so even though I do not know His timetable, I continue to pray for His leading and perfect timing. I do not know if Australia will be our final destination or not. The more we have talked and prayed, we have realized that Australia may not be where we end up and we have agreed that we’re ok with that. My hearts desire is to follow the Lord where He leads, not head in my own direction and make sure the Lord keeps up with my plans. I know that we are called to go overseas, but when and where are doors God will open or close. Please continue to pray for us during this time. Pray that we will be sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leading and that God’s will will be done. Pray also that I will have His heart and that He would guide me every step of the way. Another thing the Lord has laid on my heart recently was to learn Spanish, which I am doing right now. I have no idea how this will tie into our future, but it is a desire He has placed there and I want to be faithful to what He has called me to do.
There is a lot that goes on around Teen Missions this time of year. During our winter we are training teens at many of Teen Missions’ bases around the world. At times, it is easy to forget the global impact Teen Missions is making. Even though I am not there personally to help train the national teens, I have a job here at the main headquarters that can help support what they are doing. When you pray for and support our work here, you also have a part in what is happening at our overseas bases. We would like to share a report from our Boot Camp in Brazil.
“The Teen Missions in Brazil Boot Camp Commissioning was on Wednesday night. As always, it was a very special time. We had bus loads of visitors, approximately 400. There were about 10 pastors present. It rained quite heavily during the service and we even had to drop the curtains for part of the time. Everyone lit their candles and marched out into the drizzle to pray together on their teams. The party after the service was huge, with all eight teams celebrating under the Big Top until 10:30pm, when the visitors finally left and we sent the teams off to their tents. Early Thursday morning, we transported three teams to their projects while two others took down tents, one team took down the Obstacle Course, and the other two helped Vanja pack up the Big Top. That
afternoon we took another two to their projects. Friday, we took the remaining three teams to their project sites. Praise the Lord for His safety and no major problems with the buses. Saturday and Sunday was mainly R&R (rest and recovery) for us here.
Each one of these teens is a success story for us. We gave out more than 1,000 brochures while recruiting for Boot Camp. Then we had more than 170 sign up. Of these, only 122 actually made it to Teen Missions, but each one is here because God brought him or her. Here are a few testimonies about their 12 days of training:
“Boot Camp meant many things to me. In most of the evening messages God spoke to me, things I needed to hear. He taught me to be more obedient and keep the rules. I learned to accept the personalities of every member and leaders too. Everything I learned here, I want to show out there.” – Ayrelange
“For me, Boot Camp is a place of preparation, as much spiritually as well in character in assuming more responsibility.” – Jecelmir
“I learned things I never knew before. To win, we have to pass through various obstacles that life teaches us. In the personal evangelism class, I learned how to give my testimony in public to people who are not Christian.” – Fabiane
“Here, I have grown spiritually. I am able to recognize Jesus in the difficulties. I am able to get over the barrier of fear in witnessing. I am able to resist the devil and know that he will flee from me. This has been a place where I got the victory over discouragement. A place where I got to know wonderful people and make lifelong friendships. A place where the Holy Spirit has touched me and I recognize God’s will for me.” – Thamires
“This is a place where I can learn more about God, a place of spiritual growth, of learning and loving each other and to be a true servant. I hope that with all that, I have learned that I can leave here and people that look at me won’t see my face but rather the face of God shining in my face.” – Gabriel
We rejoice and praise the Lord for the five salvations and more than 50 rededications that have happened during the Teen Missions in Brazil Boot Camp.”
At this time, our plan for summer is to stay here in Florida. We will help keep the offices and property in
order while the majority of our staff are with teams overseas. We will still be involved with Boot Camp and help at each of the Debriefs. Jaden and Skylar are excited to be doing their first teams as “real” team members with Teen Missions’ Peanut program. Peanuts is a 10-day camp for kids ages 7-9 that is set up as a mini version of the teen program. They will get to experience Boot Camp training classes, sleep in tents and run a Peanut-sized Obstacle Course. They have private devotions, evening rallies and memorize Scripture just like the “big kids” do. It will be good for them to experience being part of a team without Mom and Dad there to help.
In hopes that the Lord will open doors for us to serve Him overseas we will need to raise support to do that. If you feel called to support us in this, we have set up a separate fund for our overseas ministry call.
Because He’s Worthy,
Blair and Carrie Hames