A New Dinghy and Motor

February 29, 2008 at 1:42 pm

Quick Update:

·         This month we are thanking God for a new motor, dinghy, visa paperwork accomplished, and help to get the boat modified for life on the Amazon!

·         We are making plans to return to Brazil in mid to late April.


More Details:

Dear Friends and Family,

            It has been sometime since we have sent out an update.  We have been able to see so many things come together this last month to help prepare this boat for life on the Amazon.  The Beard family, Tony and Nicole with their 4 kids arrived here to help build a television station here in Grenada, with the Bartels’ family.  Tony is a contractor from Montana who owns his own company building and selling homes.  While he is waiting for certain parts to fall in place for building here, he has been available full time to help on the boat.  The 2 hulls are quickly becoming homes.  Windows and hatches are now installed to provide sunlight and fresh air.  Bunk beds are being built for more sleeping quarters.  I checked in to getting the windows put in by a boat yard here on the island and they wanted to charge about $40 per hour for labor.  With Tony and I working together we have already spent over a week putting in all 10 windows and four hatches!  God provided volunteer help at the right time!

            Some friends from the States call us often to get updates on all the details of the boat.  We love sharing all the things that make life on a boat interesting and challenging.  We shared the story of our dinghy, our only transportation from the boat to shore and back each day.  The day we arrived in Grenada the 1.5 HP outboard motor on the dinghy died.  On multiple occasions we took the carburetor apart and tried to fix it: the float valve was not sealing.  After searching for multiple companies, we found that the part was no longer manufactured or available.  So on our daily trips we would say a prayer and hope the motor would get us to shore.  On windy days, if the motor went out, you could paddle with all your might and not be able to get to shore where you needed to be, but much further downstream.  One day I was about 10 feet from home, the boat, when the motor died.  I quickly jumped up and began paddling with all my might.  The winds were fierce.  I had to paddle for nearly 10 minutes just to get back to the boat!  We shared these stories and laughed with our friends.  Later on, they called us and notified us that they wanted to donate the money to buy a new and dependable outboard motor.  For life on the Amazon wouldn’t be safe without dependable transportation.  So we now have an 8 HP beautiful Yamaha outboard engine.  It is so wonderful to get back and forth to shore with no worries at all!  They also decided they would like to donate money for a new dinghy as well, since our inflatable dinghy had to be pumped up every day.  We have ordered a new hard dinghy, which will be much safer for traveling through the dangerous waters of the Amazon.

            Last Sabbath I received a call from the doctors in Brazil with whom we are working.  They were so excited to inform us that God had helped open the doors to get the paperwork done.  Instead of the three months time they had been told, they were able to get the paperwork done this week!  Now all the needed papers are in place for us to be able to present to the Miami Brazilian Consulate to apply for our missionary visas to work in Brazil! 

            At this point the only thing we are waiting on is the boat import paperwork.  With the boat officially in Gospel Ministries International’s name, the paperwork for the import process will move forward so we can have permission to bring the boat in to the country.  I often say, “But Lord, shouldn’t we already have the boat in Brazil?  Why are you allowing it to take so long to import?”  Then I read Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding.  In all of your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths”.  Then the realization hit me: Had we taken the boat straight to Brazil without having this mandatory detour in Grenada, we would not have been able to get all the modifications done on the boat with volunteer support!  If we trust God completely, even in the face of uncertainty, He WILL direct our paths!

            Lina and I are making plans to return to Brazil in mid to late April, with or without the boat.  If the paperwork is not done, we will go back to help finish the process in Brazil, leaving the boat in a slip here in Grenada.  We are certain God will open the doors for the boat in His timing.  We have our first visitors scheduled to arrive in May to Brazil.  Then we will have more friends coming to help out for the summer.  And finally, our first student missionary will arrive at the end of the summer.  Until our boat can be there full time, we will start renting a boat to reach the people on the Amazon!

            Please continue to keep this program in your prayers.  Please pray that God will lead us to get the paperwork done for the boat importation.  And please join us in praising and thanking God for His faithful provisions for this program.  This month we are thanking God for a new motor, dinghy, visa paperwork accomplished, and help to get the boat modified for life on the Amazon!


God Bless,

 Brad, Lina and Levi Mills


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Entry filed under: February 2008.

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