Saturday, October 15, 2011

Giving Praise...Seeking Prayer

Hi Everybody!

This is just a quick update to let you know what has taken place over the past week, and to once again ask for your prayers.

I'm thrilled to share that the Lord has continued to raise up sponsors and as of today we are now in need of just around 55 more to fully fund the Anslay Church of God Child Survival Program.  You can sign up to become a sponsor today by clicking here!

In addition, this weekend we have been given the special privilege to share about the CSP with our church family both at this evening's service at 6pm EST, and for each of the Sunday morning services at 9:30am EST, and 11:30am EST.

The following video will be played before the congregation at a scheduled point in the early portion of each service and then I'll be given the microphone to provide more detail about the CSP and to invite others to participate as sponsors.  We are naturally excited for this opportunity but our greatest desire is that Jesus would be lifted up and glorified as we dedicate the lives of these young families in Mbulu, Tanzania over to Him.

Would you be willing, after reading this post, to pray that God would work in and through us, and that if it is His will, that He might use this message to provide the remaining sponsors?  He is sovereign and we give Him the highest praise no matter what He has in store.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Days of Grace

Hi everyone. Well, so much has been happening over the past few weeks that it’s truly difficult to know where to start.

Several months ago we were blessed to connect with Rita Haworth who helps lead the missions, or “Going” team as it’s called, at our church.  I had the opportunity to speak with her about what God was doing and the journey He had been taking us on as we sought to fully fund the Anslay Church of God Child Survival program in Mbulu, Tanzania.

After hearing the story Rita began to brainstorm about ways to help us take this message to the congregation at Apex Community Church. Midway through the month of September she called and asked if we would like to set up a display table in the lobby for all three weekend services over the period of about three weeks. At the close of those weeks we would then be given the opportunity to share about the CSP with the congregation during the announcements at the beginning of each service.

We were ecstatic to have this opportunity and humbled to see how the Lord was working to open doors- doors that only He alone could open. I pause to say this because up until then it seemed that virtually every opening had slammed completely shut. This experience has been at times frustrating and ultimately humbling since I believe God used this silence to reveal areas of personal pride and a focus upon the work instead of the one who gave us this burden to begin with. How easily we can forget that He is the one who provides, and that apart from Him we can do nothing! (James 15:5)

Well, since those initial plans began to take shape at the church, we were eventually given permission to keep our table on display for another three weeks. As it turns out scheduled appearance in front of the congregation needed to be extended out to the weekend of October 15 and 16, but Rita graciously offered to let us keep our display up and running. The result has been nothing short of amazing, and it’s been such a blessing to meet and talk with so many people who God is convicting and using for the work of his kingdom.

One person has listed Jesus as the CEO of his business, while another leads a ministry that gathers shoes for Dayton’s poorest children. Others are engaged in the ongoing efforts to provide physical relief and the message of the gospel to the people of Haiti. Another simply chose to live in the midst of inner-city Columbus where she ministers to the people in her neighborhood. My initial reaction to all of these stories is to say that the body of Christ is amazing, though I’ve been taught through our own humbling experience, that it is Christ in an otherwise lifeless the body that deserves all the glory.

It is all his from top to bottom, and I continue to be amazed that He chooses to graciously teach and love us while still using us to accomplish His will. What amazing love!  By His will alone we will be standing by our display table yet again this weekend, and by His will we will have the chance to share about the CSP with so many others in the coming days. Will you join with us to pray that He will move in the hearts of His people to provide additional sponsorships?

Prior to the start of our first week at the church we needed 88 more sponsorships to fully fund the Anslay CSP. I’m pleased to report that as of now that number has since dropped down to 60! God is doing amazing things and above all, His gospel is being carried to mothers and children in a tiny African village because of how He has moved and He has provided!