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Brandon & Maddi Metzler Newsletter (Winter 2022)

Hello all!

We hope you all had a splendid Christmas and a happy New Year! Our family is looking forward to another year in which we can serve and glorify Christ here at Teen Missions! The beginning of a new year is often a time where people take a moment to pause and reflect back on what all God has blessed them with and brought them through. Our last newsletter to you was sent in September, so now we would like to reflect with you on the rest of 2021.

South Africa:

As you can recall from our last newsletter, Teen Missions asked us to go back to the base in Pretoria, South Africa (the same location we were at with our summer team) to continue with a few work projects and inspire/encourage the staff who live there. Upon arrival, we walked through the property with the base coordinator, Mr. Robert, and decided that the best place to start would be the Conference Center. This building on the base is serving as a place to house pastors and teachers who come to teach at the Bible School, as well as volunteers who help during their Boot Camp. It also housed our summer team while we were there serving for the month of July. The vision for this building going forward was to totally update it and get it in better working condition so that it could be rented out for church retreats, conferences, and other purposes, hopefully generating some income and church connections for the base. 

Brandon and I had a lot of fun pretending to be “Chip and Joanna Gains” as we fixed up the place. Of course, Brandon did most of the hands-on work, but I, along with Mr. Robert’s wife, got to pick out all of the paint colors, decorations, curtains, furniture, etc. Brandon built doors from scratch, hung crown molding and baseboards, installed all new electrical outlets and light fixtures, painted, and so much more. He also had a few side projects going like removing a large tree, and working with a local company to get a new bore hole drilled on the base. He enjoyed making trips to town to the local hardware stores, driving on the opposite side of the road. I was impressed how quickly he had the town memorized. 

My days were spent mostly caring for Darrell, along with a few other staff children who stayed glued to our side throughout the day. Tahelia and Thondo quickly became great friends with Darrell. I was also kept busy keeping our little apartment clean, baking treats for the staff, cooking and grocery shopping, and helping out around the base in small ways (painting, pulling weeds, etc.) when I had occasional time away from the kids. 

Living amongst the staff at the base was a neat experience that we will not quickly forget. We developed lots of relationships with the staff and students that we will cherish in our hearts. The only time we really got off of the base was to grocery shop, visit markets, hardware store runs, church, a trip to the zoo, and occasional trips to a restaurant on the weekends. It was always a highlight in our day to load up in the truck or bus to go to town. Another highlight was also on Fridays when one of the Sunday School Circuits came to the base. It was a fantastic way to get to know the local children, talk about Jesus, and build friendships. By the end of our time, Darrell had several kids from the Sunday School who he trusted to tote him around, and I had a little boy who sought me out to fall asleep in my lap. We continue to keep the base in South Africa in our thoughts and prayers going forward as they continue to run their multiple ministries: Sunday Schools, Bible School, and Boot Camp.

Return to the States:

We spent a total of two months in South Africa, returning to the States on December 6th. If you followed our journey on our Facebook Group (Metzlers in Missions), you know that getting back to the states was a bit hectic. I had a false positive COVID test, we were locked in a gate overnight at the London airport, and we missed a flight in Miami. However, God was faithful through it all, keeping us safe and bringing us home! We were home for a few days before going to Alabama for Christmas vacation. When we arrived home from vacation, the next day we had Former Team Members to pick up at the airport for a South Africa team reunion at our house! It was a whirlwind way to end the year, but it was oh so good. We are blessed immeasurably by all of our family and friends and new relationships that have entered our lives. Few things bring me as much joy as visiting and connecting face to face with people and the last few weeks of 2021, we got to do a lot of just that!

Looking Forward:

Currently, I am teaching a class in the Bible School here at the Merritt Island base. The class is Biblical Places, Peoples, and Customs and it is kicking my tail, but in a good way. I am digging deeper into God’s Word and reading all kinds of other literature in order to teach this class to the best of my ability. It is a lot of work, but I am definitely enjoying it. I continue to come into the office three afternoons a week to work in the Video Department. Lately, some of my responsibilities are crossing over into the Promotions Department to help fill some needs there. I’m excited about some upcoming opportunities I may have to travel to schools in Florida to promote our summer program.

Brandon has resumed work in the Maintenance Department, fixing equipment and vehicles, cutting grass, and the likes. He has also begun preparations for the 2022 Mud Run coming up in May. He will once again be one of the people in charge of this awesome event.

Darrell will be two this month! He is such a trooper and we just love him so much! Some big milestones he has reached lately are sleeping in a big boy bed, no longer crying when he goes to his sitter (he actually immediately begins playing and couldn’t care less that I’m leaving, lol), and constructing the most adorable sentences. 

It goes without saying, but I must say it: We are so grateful for you. Really and truly. Your financial gifts and prayers are carrying us through this season in life. It baffles me how amazing the body of Christ is. So, thank you, from the bottom of our hearts!

In Christ,

The Metzlers

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