What's going on with the Clinkscales family these days?
We Are Serving With Youth For Christ Romania!
From the moment we stepped back on Romanian soil, we were in full-on Christmas mode! In addition to normal church activity (Rebeca doing worship, David preaching again), we were so thankful to reconnect with the youth again at the church AND around town. We also helped in Awana again, the Operation Christmas Child shoebox giveaways in a nearby village, caroling, and the New Year’s Eve All-Nighter last night. We planned some fun games, played Ping Pong, ate, and played various group and card games like Uno Dare and Ce Sunt (What Am I?). It was a great Christmas season — Watch the pictures scroll or click through!
THE PAST & THE FUTURE
With less than two full days of knowing the beautiful families you see here, we were asked to take some photos with the Youth For Christ Romania staff, board, and co-laborers in Christ. Less than a full day later, we were told we'd be approved to work with them if approved by Youth For Christ International (the sending organization). Our working with Youth for Christ shouldn't be a surprise to anyone. But in case you need to learn a bit about the change from Youth for Christ Military to Youth for Christ International in Romania, go read this blog.
But this is a new season! Christmas is in the rearview, we're just getting started on a new year, and we're all saying 'No!' to the old fears that may have locked us up in the past. So I want to ask each of you...
"What will you capture in 2020?"
To start the ball rolling, I'd like to share what the Clinkscales family will capture in 2020 (so far as we can see now!) – We will capture the truths of God for the express purpose of passing them on to others! Our passion for knowing the Lord Jesus Christ more and more is too sweet to pass up, and we certainly don't want to keep it to ourselves! The way we share those truths may change from time to time, but the call of God to love the Lord, love our neighbor, and go make disciples is straight gospel. Here we are Lord, send us!
Each month we're going to send you one of these E-Newlsetters on the first of the month to fill you in on what's happening in Romania. Every quarter, if you'd like one, we're going to send out paper newsletters––so you better update your contact information with us if you want to see that paper! And because I'm a bit of a Star Wars geek (David), each Newsletter will have a "See 3-P Oh!" (C-3PO, get it?!) form for sharing a unique monthly Prayer, Praise, and Person report so you can follow our ministry here, and wind up saying...
"Oh! I'm so glad to see how the Lord is working in Romania!"
See how that works? I know, I'm a bit of a dork!
And, as always, we hope you'll catch the vision of the work being done here and partner with us in prayer and financial giving by going to our giving link! We literally cannot do this ministry without you, and we are so thankful for all of you who are making it possible –– we hope to show you in the months to come how the youth and families are thankful to you as well!
Prayer, Praise, & People – Here's a snapshot of the ministry right now:
Prayer – for the funding & the shape of our fledgling ministry with Youth For Christ Romania to solidify in 2020.
Praise – for the Lord bringing us this far, to work with such amazing youth and adults!
People – learn a little more about the people of Slatina, Romania by following our journey.
Us working with Youth for Christ shouldn't be a surprise to anyone who knows us. But in case you need to learn a bit about the change from Youth for Christ Military to Youth for Christ International in Romania, go read this blog.
Let's be honest: we know we have failed to let you all know what has been going on with us over the past year or two. We are sorry for that. There's no excuse for that, but we do want to show you our struggle. This January newsletter is for filling in the blanks. We haven't been giving you updates because we struggled with how to fill you in on the strange forward progress of raising funds for Youth For Christ Military. What could we tell you?
"No, we're not fully funded. Yes, we'll let you know when we are so you can start giving, but without the giving we won't get stationed. No, we can't share how the military mission is going because we're not doing military missions right now. Yes, we're doing missions work right here in Slatina. No, our heart is to still reach youth with the gospel of Jesus. Yes, we have these possible locations for our first assignment. No, it can't be set until we're fully funded and ready to go. Yes, I understand how that sounds very shaky to you."
We have been living it. This isn't hypothetical stuff for us. It's our life. Our family has been living with these conversations, with so much "unknowing," while we have been living here in Romania for the past year, plus. We'd been working on raising the funds and getting some great support from Youth For Christ Military staff, but we have also been having conversations about God's direction for us in this new place.
We asked the Lord to make it abundantly clear what He would have us do. After much prayer and seeking wise counsel from those who know us closely and minister with (and to) us, we believe He wet the fleece we laid out and went above and beyond our expectations to make it possible for us to serve with Youth For Christ International here in Romania. Our move closer to our believed mission field led to our working with amazing people and youth, and God made a way for us to keep our missionary feet planted right here in Slatina. We will build up a Youth for Christ branch in Olt County to reach out to this evangelically little-reached area with the gospel of Jesus Christ by maintaining the relationships we've already built and forging new ones.
Even better, this means we are planning regular, monthly E-Newsletters to share with you what we have been doing the past year, and are continuing to do. This is the beginning of that journey with you. The format may change somewhat as we iron out the details with Youth For Christ International staff, but we aim to send you these E-Newsletters every month on the first. Please go to this link to add yourself to our list or to update your information to make sure you receive your copy. I will also be sharing these newsletters on our website, along with additional material throughout the month that may not show up in the newsletter. Be sure to check back often to find out what's new.