Marshall and Babs Mullinax

Prayer Letter/Ministry Update

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Ups and Downs

Ups and downs - we all have them. Life can be pretty bumpy sometimes, but it’s always good to know that we are never far away from Our Father’s thoughts. In fact, we are constantly before Him. His Spirit indwells us and His salvation speaks on our behalf.

So, while it can get bumpy, our Good Father never vanishes from our reality, even if it’s hard to perceive His invitations along the way. Sometimes there is struggle, there is joy, and there is challenge; and sometimes we reach a moment when all three of those actions are meeting with us simultaneously in our walk with Jesus. That’s where we are today in our journey, so it’s nice to know that people who care are still with us “Along the Way”.

Some Ups


It’s been a good year of home assignment for us. I (Marshall) have met many new faces, made many new friends, and met many new prayer partners during my two tours this year. We’ve also had the privilege to meet with some of our leadership and process the last term. We received word that the Strategic Review that our field team underwent in our absence turned out extremely well! Everyone felt more or less encouraged! Finally, we have enjoyed the scattered rest and retreats we’ve been able to take. However, this year has also been full of challenges.

Some Downs


We’ve had to try and navigate a new reality in our family, as my older brother and his wife have walked through a painful separation and then divorce. It’s been a hard walk, as we’ve seen pain in loved ones as they’ve wept, fought, been depressed, and been desperate for reassurance- particularly in my nieces and nephews.

Aside from our Heavenly Father, few things in life remain consistent, and oftentimes friends we left firmly rooted in place have been called on adventures elsewhere whilst we were overseas. This is normal, but it is still difficult to play “catch-up” on all the changes in so many lives at once. For example, some of our closest friends in Fort Wayne moved out of state roughly the time we arrived, though we did overlap for a week or two. We are extremely happy for them as we’ve seen them find new routine and enjoy new challenges, where they are (continued on back)
once again putting down firm roots. God is blessing them in their new soil.

More Ups


We’ve had good opportunities to catch up with our families and friends. We’ve enjoyed the challenge of outdoor work in our own yard for the first time in 10 years or so. Russell has adjusted extremely well to his new school and he has friends from church that he loves to hang out with. Being once again in our home church (Westview Alliance in Fort Wayne, IN) has been healthy for both Babs and Russell as I’ve seen them pick up old relationships, start new ones, and smile more than I’ve seen in a long time.

More Downs


This month, our dear friends and teammates in Israel received backlash from a particularly obstinate group of Orthodox. Numerous accounts have confirmed that this group surrounded our friends’ home, their ministry center, and the home of a good friend and lay leader connected to their ministry. This group then engaged in shouting, screaming, throwing rocks and bottles, physical violence as well as some verbal abuse and a few death threats. (As of the writing of this article, these “demonstrations” persist.) While the police do come and provide crowd control, it’s still an unnerving experience for our friends and the people connected to their ministry. Our friends are staying put and responding in love and compassion because of their commitment to Jesus. We feel a little powerless and very distant as we sit in the United States on home assignment, but then we remember that we can pray! Being seven hours behind them, we can be their “night guard” so that the prayers on their behalf are unceasing.

A Step in Faith


As a family, we have recognized that we have had some tough years overseas. We’ve had years marked by violence, uneasy peace, war, safety in the fray, rocket sirens, good friends, stabbings, military action, anger, joy, hurt, challenge, bitterness, successes, fires, transitions, conflict, family difficulties, and growth. We’ve also realized that we’ve been carrying much of this with us to the point that we’ve spent a lot of our lives in the last few years living in “survival mode” and not really dreaming with God about how and where we should be walking because there was so much that was needed in the present and the demand of “now”.

Even though we know we’ve been with God and walking where He had called us to walk, we’ve received some soul injuries. Admittedly, we’ve probably exacerbated these injuries by not taking time to mourn losses, step away consistently, and be filled again. We know we’ve heard in the moment from God, but sometimes the moments have also overwhelmed us as they passed and we’ve arrived in an unusual place.

After a significant season in prayer and trying to address some wounds, we’ve realized that the normal time table for returning to the field is simply not beneficial to us - not if we would like to minister out of a place of health. On a normal time frame we would be scheduled to return to Jerusalem in late June or early July. However, we feel we need to take a step back, a step back in faith, expecting to hear from our Savior once again.

As we considered our options for taking a step back, we felt that there was one option that maintained the most integrity and gave us the space we needed to heal. So, in faith, we’ve requested a leave of absence for the coming year rather than returning to Jerusalem this summer. A leave of absence means that we will rotate off of Great Commission Fund (GCF) support sometime this summer and seek to find employment Stateside, while we attempt to address those things in our spirits that we’ve found lacking. It does not mean that we are quitting; we are just calling for a “time out,” and stepping back for a season. Our credentials and our appointment to the field will remain active. I do anticipate renewing my visa this December, which keeps the door open for future return to the field, but in the meantime, our world is changing a bit.

Russell’s World

Russell will continue in the same school for his 7th grade year. For the first time in his life he’ll be in a Stateside school for two years in a row. We pray for him to find one good friend in school. It is our hope that this kind of stability will continue to have a positive impact on him. He will continue to engage in his youth group, and we enjoy seeing his spiritual growth.

Babs’ World

Babs has been dreaming again, and feels that she’s been released to reopen her business, “me & Grace.” She’s creating an experienced-based photography and design niche and will begin taking clients soon. She’s excited, scared, thankful, and nervous as she has created a business plan that carves out a significant percentage of income that will be directed into the local church and the GCF. She will also continue to write about what is on her heart on a blog.

Marshall’s World

Perhaps I am in the most uncertain place of our family. I’ve never been a big dreamer and I’ve recently enjoyed some of the best years of my career, although dampened by my family’s “survival mode”. I now find myself, for the first time in 15 years, searching for a job. This job search will be in a world that I’ve barely been in contact with since I was in my 20’s (I turn 41 this year). Scared, concerned, challenged, trusting, transitioning, and mourning are all words that describe these moments for me - often simultaneously. At the end of the day I know what I need to do and what my strengths and weaknesses are, but I have no idea specifically what it looks like on the other end of this transition. So, I’m praying, trusting, and trying to obey.

Prayer Requests/Answers to Prayer

OUR PRAYER FOR YOU

Dear Jesus, Increase our awareness of your presence - of the fact that you go before and behind us and you are with us, even unto the end of the age. Root that belief deeply in our hearts and may it result in a deep abiding peace, despite the circumstances. In Jesus’ name, Amen

Israel

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Updated: May 11, 2017

Children's Names
Russell
Country of Service
Israel
Address
7101 Chartercrest Dr
Fort Wayne, IN 46815

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