Posts Tagged With: missions

Celebrating missions

What a whirlwind it’s been lately! With the fundraising appeal prep work, the special writing assignment, the magazine redesign and issue, and new prayer cards, I’ve been blessed with a great flurry of work.

Now, it’s time to celebrate some more!

Every year, Browncroft Community Church (2530 Browncroft Boulevard, Rochester, NY 14625) dedicates a week to celebrating missions and the work they help support. It was Tracy’s home church growing up and launched each of us into missionary work, so it’s always a joy to visit them and celebrate together. I’m excited to share our new prayer cards and preview the new magazine (finalized and approved earlier this week) at this year’s Global Outreach Celebration.

They hold their worship services at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. We’ll be there in the morning (and other times throughout the week), so come on down and say hello! It’s always a wonderful place to worship God.

Please pray for us to bless and be blessed in each of these opportunities:

  • sharing about our ministry at a display table between services and after second service
  • sharing about our ministry in a breakout group at the Women’s Fellowship
  • attending the 20th anniversary celebration of BCC’s partnership with the Wolof people group, which is also how Tracy and I got involved in missions and where we still have many friends
  • a missionaries-only retreat luncheon (always a blessing to us and a wonderful time to connect with others in this work)
  • presenting about missionary work to their Kids Club
  • sharing about our ministry (along with several other missionaries) at retirees group
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Too much for us but not for Him

Please pray for us.  We’re not doubting our calling or facing disease.  Debts aren’t piling up and collectors aren’t after us.  The kids are fine and enjoying summer.  Karen’s even at sleep-away camp.

But we’re swamped.  We’re in a hectic season that’s very stressful.  There are more tasks to do than we can possibly accomplish in and through ourselves.  In just twelve days, we have to be out of the house that we bought when we thought God wanted us here forever.  The house just across the creek from where I grew up.  The house that had room for a workshop so I could be the kind of Dad who made things for his kids.  The house I saw while walking late one night twenty-some years ago and thought, “what a neat old house,” and that I saw five years ago and noticed was for sale.  The house with stately old trees and a pool, just like I always wanted.

The house that got full of things and that now needs to be emptied.

For weeks, we’ve been sorting everything we own into five categories:  a small amount of things to put into long-term storage here, things we’ll take with us to South Africa, things we’ll need in the temporary home we’ll have until we leave, things we need to sell, and things to just purge.  This last category has filled the 96-gallon recycling and garbage toters almost every week; my old school papers did it twice.

It’s hard.  The books I’ve loved and the ones I’ve never gotten to.  The ornately carved piano my parents restored, a piece I’ve always loved and kept and had hoped to pass down as an heirloom…  The beds I made for the kids… too big to store in our 6×12 cargo trailer.  There are stories to tell here but not the time for them now.  I want to tell them but have to get back to other tasks of sorting, purging and packing.

So I’m asking for prayer.  I’m asking you to join me in consciously connecting with God, in thanking Him for his blessings and guidance and asking for his strength and wisdom and encouragement.  I’m asking you to intercede with Him on our behalf.  He taught us He would always listen and He does, especially when we ask Him together, and we have faith that He does and will.

“Is anyone among you sick? Then he must call for the elders of the church and they are to pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer offered in faith will restore the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him.”

James 5:14-15, New American Standard Bible

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A blessedly busy month begins!

We would appreciate your prayers for us as we enter a month of great opportunities to talk about the work God has for us!

From Sunday through Tuesday, we will attend the Missional Holiness Conference in Bethlehem, Pa., where we will have a display about our mission to South Africa.  Please pray that God blesses us and the other attendees through this time and the conversations we will have as we speak about God’s work in and through us.  Please pray that we develop relationships that lead to further support partners and opportunities.

Once we’re back, we’ll begin preparing for our official introduction as missionaries at our church, Crosswinds Wesleyan Church in Canandaigua!  This is a very exciting and encouraging development for us.  During all three services on November 8th and 9th, Pastor Craig Cooper will interview us in front of the congregation about our journey into missions and about the work ahead; we will also have a table set up outside the ministry center.  Please pray for us to contagiously convey an enthusiasm for missions and that many would be inspired to pray about both supporting missionaries and discerning what roles God has for them.  Please also consider attending Crosswinds that weekend (or any! all are welcome; 3360 Middle Cheshire Road, Canandaigua; services at 6 p.m. Saturday, 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. Sunday).  We would love to see you there!

The following week, Crosswinds will begin its second annual “Global Impact Festival” (Nov. 16-23), celebrating God’s work around the world and encouraging our church members to support missionaries and ministries here and abroad.  This year’s theme is James 1:27:  “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this:  to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”  During this time, please pray for people to be touched by God’s heart for us to help those in need and His call for us to avoid the temptations and beliefs so common in our world.

As always, thank you for your encouragement, prayers, and support!

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Getting the Word out

God is so faithful and good.  We have been blessed with an interview about our life and work in today’s Finger Lakes Times, the newspaper for which I used to work.

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