New Year, New Ways to Grow

2016 is well underway and we’re already learning and growing a ton. This maybe be our only full calendar year in Albania and we’re excited for a slew of new opportunities, new visitors and new lessons to be learned.

We’re not really New Years Resolution kind of people (not that there’s anything wrong with those people), but there are some ways we’re praying and working to grow:

Nathan is praying to grow in his positivity, perseverance, and perspective (holding on to God’s perspective).

Elena is striving in new ways to see God’s perspective as well, to seek Him more in prayer, and pursue His purposes and glory above all else.

Although these seem like basic “Christian resolutions”, the stories behind them are heartfelt and real to us. We’re seeing our need for our Savior more and more, and see ways these qualities will bear fruit for a lifetime. There are cultural challenges that necessitate these, language frustrations that reveal these, and also normal life “I’m less holy than I thought” situations that show our true need for Jesus’ help always.

We have a list of hopeful guests and visitors this year – if you want in on this Balkan action let us know!

We’re really thankful for your prayers and support. It’s not easy living and ministering cross-culturally, but it makes a huge difference knowing you’ve got our backs.

Thank you.


Here are some pictures from January



We got to have beer and pizza with a great couple who had us over for New Years as well. They don’t speak English but they are patient and gracious with our sparse Albanian.



A beautiful old bridge around 20 minutes from our place.


We celebrated the return of one of our students who had been kept in police custody for just over a month on false charges. We had a large gathering of our Connection Groups, then ate great food and danced (hard). Elena may have done a backflip during a lull in the dance, which no one (even us) saw coming.

p.s. here are the books we’re reading. Because I’m sure you’re interested.

Nathan is reading The Cross of Christ by John Stott, Calvin’s Institutes (slowly), Napoleon the Great by Andrew Roberts (also slowly), Dangerous Calling by Paul Tripp, and the NT in Greek!

Elena raced through The Scarlet Pimpernel by Emmuska Orczy and is currently working on Journey to the Center of the Earth by Verne.


New Year, New Ways to Grow