Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2021!

Merry Christmas from Gracethrufaith 2021!

I’m so grateful to you for your prayers and support. It truly feels like the Lord has brought us together as family. He has knit us together by heart and rooted us in His love. This community is one of the greatest blessings to come from the ministry. Thank you for being here!

I am in awe of how faithful the Lord is! I’m amazed at how the Lord has continued to grow this ministry, and I’m so humbled and grateful to be a part of it. This is the seventh Christmas letter I’ve written to you by myself, and I’m amazed how the Lord sustains this ministry every day. More people find GTF each day and discover the grace and love of Jesus. And we have been able to give and serve more than ever before. We now have two churches in a persecuted area of India! We were asked to journey farther into the jungle during the lockdown and plant another church. This area is only accessible the last several miles by foot. It will be our first Christmas with them, and I’m so excited!

We’ve been through a lot this year and have seen God’s faithfulness every step of the way. We experienced miraculous healings from Covid, when it went through our village in India. And entire hospital wings were introduced to Jesus when the other patients saw the peace of God with them. Our group began prayer and worship times in the most deadly place in the hospital. And not one patient got worse or died while they were there!  We saw continuing healing from leprosy for Shilpa. Who also had a baby no one expected to live while in the hospital with Covid. They are both doing great! We have just made it through dangerous flooding and the Lord protected them all! Covid ravaged many of the areas we serve in Mexico, but thankfully, all our volunteers were safe, and we were able to bring food and medical supplies to those suffering. We also began our first new home build since the beginning of the pandemic, and we’re repairing all the roofs we can before the rainy season. In both countries, we continue to provide daily schooling for all the kids in our care.

2021 has also been a year of waiting. Each advancement toward our community garden was delayed or thwarted. We are still praying and waiting for a housing solution for the tribe in our India church and for our head volunteers there. (We think we may be waiting for people and resources to come together for both of these. Maybe also new volunteers?)

Our kids are still waiting for their schools to open. We are still waiting to come out the other side of the pandemic. We find ourselves in the messy middle. And from talking with many of you, we’re in the middle together. The waiting/middle is often the most challenging part, but it’s also where the most significant transformation occurs. And I know from experience that what God does in us as we wait is often more important than what we are waiting for.

It’s the second week of Advent as I write this, and I’m reminded that in Christ, the wait is always worth it. The days are darker for longer, but we know the light is coming. We know that the seeds we plant need time to germinate and grow. We know that God is at work underground when it looks like nothing is happening above the surface. And we know it is God who makes things grow! Thank you for being with us in the waiting. As I reflect on the ministry and the work God has called us to, I am filled with excitement and expectation. I can’t wait to see the fruit from this time of waiting. I’m excited to go through whatever the Lord has for us together with you.

Many of you have asked for more group activities like our 40 day prayer challenges. Let’s pray together for this! I’d love to have more ways for us to grow closer to Jesus and become more like Jesus together.

All we do together is made possible by your prayers and generosity. Thank you! The need in our communities and our need for prayer have never been greater. Please continue to pray for us, this ministry, our volunteers, and those we serve.

I pray the Lord blesses you abundantly beyond all you can ask for or imagine, now and in the New Year!

We’ll share our Christmas outreaches and our year in review post coming soon so that we can reminisce together! Until then,

With love and gratitude,      

♥ Samantha

PS, You can see last year’s message here,  and our message from 2019,  our Christmas outreach from 2018, and our very first Christmas in India in 2017!