|Subject: Prayer request from Missionary Stephen Mills
Pastor Owens wrote:
Hello friends and family,
We want to make a special appeal for your prayers a this time. We are facing some very stressful and difficult challenges at this time. We sense that the enemy is doing his best to discourage us, but we remain confident that God is still on the throne. As I was thinking and praying today, the verse came to mind in Proverbs 3:6 that says, In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. What we need more now than ever is the direction and leading of the Holy Spirit. I would like to share with you the two big challenges that we are facing.
1. The other day we got a call from a lady saying that I (Stephen) had hit and scratched her parked car with the mission vehicle. She said it happened at the gas station. Well the times and day match up because we did get Diesel on the day that she said it happened. But, what is strange is that I was not alone; Kezia and Rev. Paul Case Sr. was with me, and we all agreed that we did not hear, feel, or see anything happen. Well, when we decided to do things the legal way and not hand over money to her, she got super mad. So, though we confide much in God, there is that natural fear that she could do something to retaliate against the Mission or us personally. We do not know what the outcome will be. We went to the police station to ask their advice and they advised us to handle things according to the law. They warned us that if we just gave her money then she could come back later and demand more or even try to take us to court. So that situation is heavy on our minds right now.
2. The second issue involves the finances of the Mission. We are considered a tax exempt institution here in Brasil (for now). But just because we are tax exempt, we still have to file taxes every year. Not only are there yearly financial reports to file, but as we find out today, there are monthly and semi-annual reports that are to be filed as well. Well, we have not filed anything for at least the past five years. Every month that goes by, fines are accumulating. We have been trying to resolve this issue since we came here two years ago, but it seems that we are making one step forward and two steps backwards. Today we went to talk to our accountant and found out some more very discouraging news. Pray that God will give us the wisdom that we need to get everything up-to-date.
Sometimes we wonder how all these things relate to winning lost souls. But what we do know is that God is able and we continue to trust in Him!
Stephen and Kezia