My First Official Newsletter!
October 15, 2019 | Justin Allen
I know this is a little overdue, but it’s better late than never I suppose haha! For those who aren’t aware, I am starting my second year in the home office of Tentmakers Bible Mission as an assistant bookkeeper in the mornings. After lunch I help out over at Frontier School of the Bible in the library. Along with that, I’m working in the snack shop two nights a week and helping organize Sunday night chapel sessions this year. In return, they are allowing me to stay in one of the apartments for students, plus a majority of my meals are free.
This has been a HUGE blessing since I have only raised my support level to about $200 a month so far. My goal currently is to raise it to $2000 a month, that way I can find a place to rent here in Lagrange and work full-time in the home office. In the meantime, I have been working as a web design assistant for the executive director of Tentmakers.
This year there are a few new things happening for me. I have an apartment to myself like I mentioned earlier, I have been helping plan chapel speakers Sunday nights, and I have recently started dating a lady named Haley.
For those who are unfamiliar with what I do for Tentmakers, I process all of the checks that donors send in for our missionaries, I help enter the EFTs (Electronic Fund Transfers) each month, I also track/organize reimbursement requests for our home office director on a spreadsheet, and lastly I try to take care of any other odd jobs that need done so it doesn’t take away from the work of the other staff.
It’s always a huge encouragement, as I process the checks, to think about how God is using these donors who faithfully give throughout the year to support His missionaries, especially as I am preparing to actively try and raise my support as well. I will admit though, the idea of raising support is a huge and intimidating process that I have secretly been dreading because I had the wrong mindset about it recently. Over the last few months the staff at Tentmakers have been a HUGE well of wisdom and advice for me as new missionary and I couldn’t be more thankful for them.
At this point you’re probably wondering what my future looks like with Tentmakers, well let me briefly cover some things I am praying about for the next few years. Some of these have only recently been added, like within the last 2 or 3 weeks have they been brought up, so it would be a HUGE blessing and encouragement to know that people are praying with me about what I am going to share!
To begin with, I am looking into taking one or two classes a semester online so I can work towards an accounting degree to be of more use to Tentmakers. This obviously depends on how much I can put together for scholarships and grants because I do not want to take loans out for school. The end goal with this is to eventually be certified to help with taxes, so our own missionaries and possibly other missionaries nearby don’t have to pay other groups to help with their taxes.
An obvious next step I am praying about is my relationship with Haley and a possibility of a future together and what a rough timeline would look like for us. This is kind of a big step for me but also kind of an exciting thing to pray about for the both of us since we both have a passion and desire to help with ministry in Utah.
This brings me to the last thing I am looking at in the near future. For a while now I have been praying about my desire to find a way to be able to move back to Utah, and still find a way to work remotely for the home office while living there. I recently learned that this might not be as hard to figure out as I had thought! If marriage is a possibility in my future with Haley we were asked to pray about and consider moving to Utah for her internship after her senior year at Frontier. It was encouraging to find out that I wasn’t the only one who had been praying about that for a little while, as well.
If this move happens, my goal is to get a job in a bank full time while helping out with the local church. When I move, I will take a year off of college classes in order to work so I can apply for in-state tuition at a nearby school. This way it will be much more affordable. In the meantime, I will try to learn how book-keeping works from a church perspective so I can be of more use to any church plants I will be working with in the future. After that first year of living in Utah I will look into seeing if the bank I would be working with would be willing to help cover the costs for finishing up my accounting degree while still working full time.
So yeah, that’s what I am thinking about and praying about for the next few years. If you would be willing to partner with me in prayer on this that would be a huge encouragement. That’s all for this time. Next time I hope to have more clarity on the details so I can update you on things. You’re also welcome to contact me at any time with questions about current or future things.
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