Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Being helped

The dark rainy view from my apartment in Maubeuge,(mow boojz) France.

As most anyone who knows me knows that I am someone who likes to help others. I often lend a hand of service to others and find it hard to say "no" (or "non" when I am in France). What you might not know is that I received a "Most Helpful" award in high school. At the print shop I get to help my coworkers often.

Something I've noticed that it is, for me anyway, harder when I need to be helped for two reasons. One needing to be helped means that I have a problem that needs fixing. Its easier to deal with something that you aren't in the middle of. The other reason is that it is humbling to ask for help. Oooo ouch.

I needed help and got it twice today. I have great friends. This is my first mac computer and its been going great until last evening when my lovely laptop didn't want to connect to the internet and wouldn't shut down right. Not knowing macs I called Daniel K. and this morning he helped me repair the problem with advice for the future. Thank you, Daniel!

Another first, my first car in France, and this evening I saw steam from the hood. It looks like the water hose has a hole. I am not the most gifted with cars so I called Roger S who came by to look at it, and make sure things were good until I get to work tomorrow. Thank you Roger!

And thank you everyone else who has helped me.

Anyone who needs a hand here is a photo of mine.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

My French Adventure, Germany, the Czech Republic… and some USA

Hello Friends,
Click here for the PDF file MFAAugust08.pdf

I want to thank you for your prayer and financial support. Sometimes our plans, no matter how difficult they seem to be, just tend to work out and we praise God for those times. Then there are other times when we are stuck in a situation and we don't have any control over. In those times, like when I missed the train in Germany or I got on the wrong train, we pray to God just to get us through it.

In August most of France shuts down for vacation. Offices and even some stores are closed for some important time off. Here at BLF Europe we only take three of the four weeks off. During these three weeks we have the opportunity to relax and explore Europe.
For ten days of my vacation I decided to visit my sister Colleen. Her husband, Jacob is now stationed in Germany with the Army. I took the train from Mons, Belgium to her town in Germany with stops to change trains in Brussels, Belgium, Koln, Germany and Nuremberg, Germany.
It all seemed straightforward, at the stops where I was to change trains I would get off and see where I would catch my next train. That worked great in Brussels and the most beautiful part of the ride was between Liege, Belgium and Aachen, Germany. It was in Koln where it got confusing. All the announcements on the train were in German, French and English. I think their English wasn't great because I remember hearing an announcement about the next stop but I didn't understand it. I looked for the right platform, I found out it was the one across from the train I came from. By the time I got there the doors were closed and the next train didn't come until another hour at a different station.

I took the next train and was ok until the next change in Nuremberg where I had to buy a ticket for the last train. I lost some time looking for the place to buy my ticket so I ran to the train and sat down. I used the important traveling phrase "do you speak English?" to borrow someone's cell phone and I called Colleen to tell him I would be late. The person next to me was the one to discover that in the hurry to get to my train I had got on the wrong one. I got off at the next stop and called my sister to tell her the name of the small German town where I was.

I was learning the train system in Europe, Colleen and Jacob were learning their GPS. They entered in slightly the wrong town name and were coming from the north and they ended up one hour south of where I was. I got home to their place late but it wasn't bad, I finished the book I was reading. I had a great time in Germany. One day when Jacob, my brother-in-law, was left for field traing, Colleen and I took a day trip to Prague for lunch. The American Military base was very "American". From fast food restaurants, large cars (compared to European cars) and everyone spoke English. That is normal for some, but I was used to being in France and Europe. It was as Bases generally are, 'little piece of America'.

As great as it was I am glad to be home where I can struggle with my French around Maubeuge. We started working back at the print shop the 25th of August.

Three new books at BLF Europe!
Before going on vacation BLF Europe finished three new titles. They are on shelves as we speak. I was a part of all of these from making the plates to gluing and cutting. Many thanks to all the others there that put their time and energy into these books. Please pray for these books and those that will read them.
"Moi aussi je voudrais croire ! Mais..." (Me too I would like to believe, but...) Is a book written by Raphaël Anzenberger to specific questions that French people have about Christian faith. Soyez dynamiques (Be Dynamic) by Warren W. Wiersbe is a commentary on the book of Acts Chapters 1 to 12. Soyez vigilants (Be Alert) by Warren W. Wiersbe is a commentary on 2 Peter, 2 & 3 John and Jude.

I have been blogging at http://nathansfrenchadventure.blogspot.com. A blog is an online journal with my photos. The name comes from the shortening of the word weblog. I try to keep it updated a few times a week if not daily. You can subscribe to my blog so you will receive emails as soon as I update.

Did you know?
Depending on who you ask french fries either come from the South of Belgium or the North of France. In the North of France (where I live) there are friteries (translates to "fry shops") where one of the popular things to order is what is called an "American" which is a piece of baguette with some meat inside like a sandwich then they cover it full of fries and then sauce.

Nathan Phillips
Residence Touraine N 32
2 Rue De Normandie
Les Provinces Françaises
59600 Maubeuge


To call from the US
011 33 3 61 21 10 92

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Distributing tracts

In America it is illegal to put anything in any mail box. In France it is perfectly legal. The Christians here say "Ah ha, we can distribute tracts in mailboxes".

Today Stephane, Jeremie (my director's sons), Rachel (their cousin), and I distributed in Recquignies, the town where Stephan and Jeremie live. We did the whole town and distributed around 941 tracts in mailboxes. We were on bike and on foot to give out this tract here, "Le message essentiel" (which easily translates to "The Essential Message").

We now pray for responses that the people who receive the tract that they would come to know the Living God. Sometimes when there were people already outside and we handed the tract to them. From those people I noticed a positive response to at least receiving the tract.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

3 new books

Before going on vacation BLF Europe finished three new titles. They are on shelves as we speak. I was a part of all of these from making the plates, folding, sewing, collating, gluing and cutting. Many thanks to all the others there that put their time and energy into these books. They are available for purchase at BLF Europe's site.

Moi aussi je voudrais croire ! Mais... (Me too I would like to believe, but...) Is a book written to French people who have questions about the Christian faith.

Soyez vigilants (Be Alert) by Warren W. Wiersbe is a commentary on 2 Peter, 2 & 3 John and Jude.

Soyez dynamiques (Be Dynamic) by Warren W. Wiersbe is a commentary on the book of Acts Chapters 1 to 12.

Torndado in my area

I left to visit my sister in Germany. The night be fore I left there was a huge wind and strong rain. Later that night my power in my apartment went out for about 30 minutes. When I got up and left for the train station the next day I saw some of the destruction caused by what I found out was a tornado. The worst of it hit Haumont a town near Maubueuge (where I live) where several houses were destroyed many damaged. Three people died and around ten were injured.

This has changed the shape of the town. things are totally different.

click here for more photos others took

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Sore Hip

For those of you who know what time it is here you would know that it is too late to be up. It is 12:10 am, but I am awake normally at this hour. I am watching soccer (Liverpool against Standard, English teams) and eating compté, my favorite cheese.

I got back yesterday from visiting my sister Colleen in Germany. Today I had free so I did some dishes and some laundry. This afternoon I watched the World Champion Parachuting competition. It just happen to be this week in the same town where I live, Maubeuge, France. There were teams from around 30 countries around the world. Today they gave out the medals for the winners. The teams were scored on the stunts and acrobatics that they did in the sky before opening their chutes. Team USA won 1 bronze 2 silvers and 1 gold. I lost track of how many medals France won. They have a great team. I bet you the only medals given out today were in China. They also had an air show with biplanes and jets.

After all that happened in the sky and after dinner I wanted to get out. I went for a jog along the same path that I jog on every Saturday, but this time I jogged to the same bridge from my place which is the opposite direction. I ended up running at 9pm around 5miles (8k) one way and I walked back. I would have ran more but my hip was killing me with an acute pain and my knee was giving me pain too. I'd like to do this run often but without the pain part. hopefully when I am in more shape it won't be as bad. We will see.

ok time for bed

Sunday, June 29, 2008


Saturday after jogging Nicolas and I started some work in the yard. He wants to put in a fence in the backyard on the side facing a path. To do this we needed to move a stump that was in the way.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Dieu est fidèle

I want to say greetings from France and thank you for your prayers and financial support. I have been back in France for two weeks now, and things are going well. Until I find an apartment, I am living with Nicolas, the press operator, and his family. Nicolas' wife is Sabrina, and they have two kids: Noah (20 months) and Bérénice (2½ months). They are French, so speaking with them has helped my French language come back quickly.

I am finding my place back at the print shop. In my first two days at work, I made 14 plates for the inside pages of a book; and since then, I have made 18 more for tracts and book covers. When I make plates, it frees up Daniel to do other things. I have also helped collate approximately 6000 New Testaments.

God has blessed me with a car! Nicolas had a car that he wasn't driving, and he gave it to me. When it changes ownership, it needs to pass a thorough test for safety and emissions. Right now, it is in the service center to get work done so it will pass the tests. This could cost some or a lot of money.

I have 90% of my support. I am ok now; but to continue here for the full four years of my term, I will need to be at 100%. That means, I need another $240 a month to fill the gap.

Praise God:
- For the car Nicolas gave me.
- That my French has come back rather well.
- For all the literature that we have been able to produce.

Please pray:
- For the team here at BLF Europe—especially Françoise, our editor-in-chief, who is having trouble working.
- That my car would pass all the tests just fine and that it won't be difficult to get insurance.
- That all the machines and the press would work smoothly. When the machines don't work as they should, it really throws things off.
- For all of those on the receiving end of all of our tracks and books.

Nathan Phillips
Rue de Maubeuge 59164 Marpent, France

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Je suis là (I am here)

I waited as everyone boarded the plain to Brussels. I watched as the gate seating area emptied the monitor informed me that business class was filled and probably coach as well and even if there were room in first class I couldn't sit there as standy. When It looked like everyone was on I went again to talk to the man at the counter (in my head I was preparing myself to accept that I would need to make arrangements to stay the night in DC until the next days flight. He said he would see what he could do and we just needed some luck, to me that meant prayer. In a minute he called me up asking me to follow his instructions carefully. That I am to take my ticket but there is someone there and this person in business class is to change seats to first class.

God is good. He is faithful. He worked things out. On my way down I read Psalms starting at ch 1 and I continued to Brussels. I read up to Ch 42.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Arrived in Chicago

Yesterday my flight took off at 8:15 am. My family, my pastor, youth pastor and a deacon came to see me off. I was chosen for a more thorough search, which went great. At the gate my stand-by ticket was turned into a Economy Plus seat at the exit row which meant more leg room.

I am here at the BLF USA offices for a briefing before going to France. I will be here one more night and leave 1:30 pm Chicago for Brussels, Belgium with a layover in Dulles (Washington DC). I am flying standby and as of right now the Chicago to Dulles flight has lots of room but the empty seats on the Dulles to Brussels flight are growing fewer. I would prefer not to spend the night in DC but I am willing to accept the adventure where ever God takes me.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Last day

Today is the day when I finish packing and pick up last minute items. God is faithful.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

visa in hand

A couple of days ago I received a Fed-ex envelope and inside was my passport with the visa inside I am official now no red tape left. Well there is the whole standby ticket thing. There is plenty of room but... it is exciting I might not get on the flight that day or.... I might get bumped up to business class.

Monday, May 5, 2008

MY FRENCH ADVENTURE May 08 Back in France 31 May

Hello everyone
Here is my May update. I currently have 86% of my monthly support. I will be leaving Seattle May 28 and arriving in France May 31 with one day in Chicago. Thank you for your prayers. You can either download the version I designed to look nice or just read the text in this email.

To download this newsletter in color click here: MY FRENCH ADVENTURE May 08 Back in France May 31

If you don't have Adobe Acrobat Reader you can download it for free
here: Adobe Acrobat Reader

God bless
Nathan Phillips


MY FRENCH ADVENTURE May 08 Back in France May 31

Hello Friends,
I need to apologize for not updating you on what I have been doing. My computer died and it took a while to find all the email addresses. My email that is working best now is nwphillips@hotmail.com. I was fully supported at my previous goal of $1,958 but there is always the unknown factor, which can intervene at any time. Since my quota was set in June 2007, the US dollar has fallen even further. At this point my departure won't be delayed but I am at 86% of my monthly goal of $2,329 and I have 100% of the $4,000 in start up costs. I want thank all of you who have supported me in prayer and financially. If you would like to partner with me financially to reach others for Christ you can email me or call me. I will be flying from Seattle to Chicago May 28th. Then I will stay a day in Wheaton in the BLF office. I will leave Chicago May 30th and arrive in France on the 31st. Before leaving I flew down to the French consulate in beautiful San Francisco to apply for my Long-stay French visa. It took a quick 13 days to get the call of approval.

Did you know?
Just a short walk from the BLF Europe print shop in France is a windmill that dates back to the 1100’s. There are plans to restore the blades that have come off over time.

Giving God 100%

Getting very close to going back to France and again working at the print shop makes me think of when I first arrived back in Seattle after a full year in France. I wanted to jump back on a plane to return to France. Looking back I have grown tremendously in many ways. Since being back in the great Northwest I have spoken and sometimes preached at (21) twenty- one churches and one school. I’ve driven from Seattle to as far north as Bellingham, Washington, as far south as Oakland, Oregon as far east as Boise, Idaho and as far west as Sequim, Washington. I have learned a lot and become more confident at public speaking and sharing what God has put on my heart. I have also learned more about God and who He is. One night in the past couple months as I was laying my thoughts before God asking him to provide 100% of my support so that I could return to serving him in France. Then thought came to me “Have I given 100% of myself to God?”. Too often I ask God to provide for me when I have yet to surrender all of myself to him. I am still working on giving God 100% of myself daily. I believe only when we give ourselves 100% to God we can experience true joy.

Youtube video

Have you ever wondered how the books on your shelf were made? I have put together a couple of videos
of how books are made at BLF Europe. The videos can be viewed at: www.youtube.com/frenchadventure.

Urgent needs in Europe

There are several key positions that BLF Europe is lacking. See the list of positions below. If you or someone you know has skills in these areas and would like to work with a great team in France while
serving God you can contact Tom Rice the personnel director: consultant_hr@hotmail.com. Please pray that these positions are filled and pray for the staff that is currently working hard while we seek God for
additional staff.

BLF Europe
Missionary opportunities:
Accountant – manage and oversee publishing house financial operation
Bindery Operator - operate machinery involved in all aspects of bindery
Equipment maintenance - maintain bindery equipment
Pressman - experience necessary
Printer Apprentice - assistant to pressman
Production Coordinator
Graphic Artist Assistant -
assist with book & promotional art work
Office Assistant - variety of duties
Building maintenance - repair and renovations
Host & Hostess couples - care for Impression Teams

• Praise God for supplying 86% pledged monthly support.
• Praise God for good health. I have been running 10 miles (16km) weekly
• Praise God my visa is approved and they should mail it to me soon.
• Please pray that the rest of my monthly support would come in. $321 more will put me at 100%
• Please pray for the staff currently working in France and that more staff would come.
• Please pray for safe travels and that both my standby flights would go smoothly.

Nathan Phillips

US Address
5422 16th Ave. SW Seattle, WA 98106 USA

Sending church
Southcenter Community Baptist Church
Pastor Scott Clements
14742 Macadam Rd S. Tukwila, WA 98168 USA

Mission Address
Bibles & Literature in French
P.O. Box 629 Wheaton, IL 60189-0629 USA
http://www.blfusa.org/ • info@blf.org
Rue de Maubeuge 59164 Marpent, France


Hello everyone
Here is my September update. I currently have 64% of my monthly support.
Thank you for your prayers. You can either download the version I
designed to look nice or just read the text in this email.

To download this newsletter in color click here:

If you don't have Adobe Acrobat Reader you can download it for free
here: http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2_allversions.html

God bless
Nathan Phillips



During the month of August I escaped from Washington state while visiting churches. August 5th I was spoke at Parkview Bible Fellowship in Boise, Idaho. The eight hour drive on August 4th took me along I-90 to I-82 and I-84 to Boise. This was the longest single drive that I have made by myself. The drive from Seattle to Idaho stayed
interesting because most of it is either up or down several mountain ranges. The word Boise means ‘woods’ in French and after seeing Boise from the east I could see how someone would call it that after traveling over the treeless mountains and coming to the forested area of Boise. I spoke both in the adult Sunday school and the morning message. On August 11th I drove south on I5 four hours to Salem, Oregon to share with Bethany Baptist Church.

At Bethany I presented to the middle school students during the Sunday School hour. They should now all be experts on reaching the French world for Christ. The pastor at Bethany is Tim Baker a long time friend of my sending pastor Scott Clements. After church my hosts for the weekend took me thirty miles east of Salem to Silver Falls State Park. The park has many miles of trails and several waterfalls. We took to the trails for the two largest falls, the North Falls and the South Falls. Silver Falls is a great park with lots of shaded trails. I recommend it for anyone that finds yourself near Salem. When I got back from enjoying the falls I was exhausted, so I took a nice two hour mandatory nap before hitting I-5 North through Portland into Washington and back to Seattle.

Living Water
The fourteenth of July is the French national holiday celebrating its freedom from the tyrannical King Louis XVII. It is the equivalent to what the Fourth of July is to America. On July fourteenth, but unrelated to anything French, mychurch, Southcenter Community Baptist, participated in the Tukwila Days community festival with a booth of information about our church. We distributed cold bottled water for no charge during
the warm July day. We kept the water cold in coolers until just before it got to the hand of labeled the bottles with information about our church and the Bible verse John 4:14 (But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst). I have to say that it is really fun to hand out something free that people want. Some people were really shocked to get free water without a ‘catch’.

Needle in the Foot
In my last letter I told you about my bad sprained ankle. I am glad to say that my ankle is much better, but I have to report that the same foot ran into more trouble. In August after the rug was vacuumed I walked across the floor getting ready for work.
My right foot found a needle that had been pulled up from the vacuum. I heard a snap as it went in. I found the larger half of the three inch needle but the smaller part had broken off and was no where to be found. I went in to work as scheduled but I couldn’t put any pressure on my right heel because of the pain. The next day I had
to get it checked out and see if the missing half was embedded in my foot. After getting my foot X-rayed at the Emergency Room the doctor was able to tell me that, yes, he had found the rest of the needle. The inch long needle was sticking up five
millimeters from the skin on the bottom of my foot. After a painful Novocain shot a different doctor was able to cut into my foot and pull out the invading metal after a painful Novocain shot. I received one stitch to hold my foot back together. Now after some time to heal I am back to hiking weekly. Also two months ago my mom was in a car wreck where her right ankle was broken and her left was badly sprained. She is now up and walking slowly.

On the road again...
In September I was on the road again. I attended the Baptist Network Northwest Pastor and Wives Retreat September 10th to the 13th. It was a great time of relaxation and fellowship. Here are some places where I have been and will be this fall. September 16th - Mount Tahoma Baptist Church in Lakewood, WA. Mount Tahoma is the Native American name given to Mount Rainier. September 23rd - Faith Baptist Church of Skagit Valley in Burlington, WA. September 30th - Calvary Crossroads in East Wenatchee, WA. October 26th, 27th & 28th - Southside Baptist Church in Tacoma, WA. November 11th - Trinity Baptist Church in Yakima, WA.
November 18th - EmmanuelBaptist Church

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

my visa is now APPROVED!!

Today at 4:50pm Seattle time I got a call from the French consulate in San Francisco saying that my visa is now APPROVED!! I just need to buy a plane ticket and they will mail it to me.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

the falling US dollar

I am planning on going to France in May.

The US dollar continues to fall against the Euro. 'It appears at a time that I am fully supported, but there is always the unknown factor which can intervene at any time'.
Since my quota was set ,in June 2007, it has fallen even further. At this point my departure won't be delaying but I am at 85% of my monthly goal.