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Happy New Year!
We hope each of you had a blessed Christmas celebrating the birth of our Saviour.

If the Lord wills

"A man's heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps." - Proverbs 16:9

As most of you know, and have experienced in your own lives, plans change.  For some, it’s just a small annoyance or inconvenience. For others, it can be life changing.  We feel like we fall somewhere in the middle when we look back over this year.  Our plans when we set out for New Zealand in 2016, were to minister there for four years and then come home for furlough.  Those plans were cut short when we returned in March with the purpose of changing mission agencies.  We welcomed our third son, Callum, in April and began researching agencies as we travelled to report to supporters.  In August, we joined International Gospel Mission (IGM) and planned to take a short trip to NZ with our pastor this past fall. However, it was not God’s will and those plans changed. As we continue to follow the Lord’s direction our plans are to begin the visa process in January and pursue a ministry opportunity in Christchurch, New Zealand in March.  As we plan, we keep James 4:13-15 in the forefront of our minds.  We know and understand that God is ultimately in control of our lives and are sure He will get us back to New Zealand in His timing.  He desires us to trust Him, and by His grace we are endeavoring to do that.  Our burden for Kiwis has not changed — if anything, it has gotten stronger.  We are so thankful for each of you and grateful for your love, prayers, support and encouragement through an otherwise discouraging season in our lives.  As you look toward your plans for 2019, may our lives encourage you to trust the Lord whether your plans come to pass or not.

Prayer requests:

— Smooth visa process and quick turn around

— Pursuit of God's direction in Christchurch, NZ  

— Ability to move back to NZ in March

Levi is 5 1/2 and getting so tall!  Right now, we are enjoying a little break from homeschool for the holidays.  He enjoys science and the chapter books we read together.  He received two LEGO sets for Christmas and has enjoyed putting them together.  One set has 239 pieces in which he followed directions and put it together all by himself!  He is our crafty boy and is often found drawing or creating something.
Ronan is 2 1/2 and learning so much.  It’s fun to be able to have a conversation with him and know exactly what he’s saying.  One of his favourite questions to ask people right now is, “what is the colour of your eyes?”  We bought the boys a guitar for Christmas and Ronan will sit and “play” for quite a while!  It will be interesting to see his love for the guitar develop over the years.

Callum John is 8 months old!  He weighs around 25 pounds and is wearing 18 month clothes!  He is a happy baby and loves being around and watching his big brothers.  He started crawling on Thanksgiving Day and started pulling himself up shortly thereafter.  We think he will be walking very soon.  He has two teeth (working on more) and is just starting to enjoy solid foods.  So far, his favourites are banana and sweet potato.  He is also the first of our sons to say, “mama” first!! :-) 

Copyright © 2019 Jacob and Jamie Sechrest, All rights reserved.

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