Too many times in the past, after posing a question to our house church, I have waited, hoping for an authentic answer, only to hear what sounds like a memorized statement. This happens all to often with men. We men tend to stand proud, laugh at weakness, and talk like life's obstacles are easily overcome. Santiago often tells the group how he offers up the same prayer each morning and it gives him all he needs for the day. While that might work for him, such a simple pattern has never worked for me or, I would venture to say, for most of us.
I love the way God uses Scripture and His Spirit in us to shake everything up. I almost couldn't believe my ears at our last house church meeting when Santiago vulnerably shared some temptations of his. We had been studying the temptation of Jesus and split into men's and women's groups to discuss it deeper when Santiago surprised me with his response. As a result, the whole group began to share similar temptations and we found ourselves talking about our common weaknesses. We were transparent with one another in a new way that I could never have made happen. It was powerful!
Perhaps the greatest fruit of this was to hear us confess humility toward God and our need for Him. No, Santiago didn't revert back to saying he would pray that same prayer and all temptation would go away, but instead recognized how important a heartfelt plea to our Father is in our times of need. I pray that this heartfelt plea to God touches each day and every area of these men's lives and that God would amaze us all by His Almighty Power.
In other news:
- Several of our Bhutanese ESL classes have enjoyed field trips the past two weeks. Classes learned about shopping at Sunfresh, fixing household problems at Lowe’s, and geography at Kaw Point Park. These practical out-of-the-classroom experiences empower students to use community resources and create opportunities for relationships to grow between volunteers and students. And, best of all, it’s fun!
- Our summer interns are reading the great missionary biography Bruchko, about a 19-year old American who embarks on a mission to share the gospel with a Stone-Age tribe in the jungle region between Venezuela and Colombia. Beyond all odds, and in the face of disease and hostility from many directions, Bruce Olson was used by God not only to bring the gospel to this untouched tribe, but also to advocate for their rights in light of violent encroachment by Colombian settlers and foreign oil companies.
- At Bhutanese Teens Club we heartily encourage our volunteers to hang out with students outside of our weekly programming. The past few weeks our volunteers have really stepped up to the challenge, inviting students over for family fourth of July celebrations, practicing reading skills with students in their homes, and attending Nepali dinners. It’s fun to see cross-cultural friendships built where everyone can laugh and learn about each other’s cultures.
- One group of Latino teen girls is about to start a Bible study of their own initiative, as a result of a hunger for God that was stirred up at camp last month. Please prayfor the deepening of discipleship relationships with the teenagers and for more small groups to naturally form.
- Please pray for the children and adults in our outreach programs to stay connected to us and
finish strongthese last two weeks of the trimester.
- Please pray for moderate temperatures (under 100!) for our end-of-trimester picnics so we can safely enjoy this special event.
- Please pray for our friend and volunteer Daylin as she travels to her native Cuba to help develop leaders.
- 1-3 NIV or NLT Teen Bibles, 1-5 "True Images" Bible for teen girls (will be on sale at Family Christian Bookstore starting Aug. 3) Please contact Brooke at firstname.lastname@example.org if you can provide any of these Bibles.
- Wireless Internet-capable laptops for use by our Leaders In Training during the upcoming school year. It's okay if the battery doesn't work! Contact Megan McDermott at email@example.com Kristen Maxwell at firstname.lastname@example.org if you can provide one.
- Ten 60"x102" rectangular felt-backed plastic tablecloths. We spread them on the floor to use them as "activity centers" for our Bhutanese Children's Outreach. We've recently seen them on clearance at discount stores. Contact Kristen Maxwell at email@example.com if you can provide any of them.
- Thank you, everyone who has donated items to our Resource Center, which distributes clothing, household goods, and food to immigrants in need. If you have items to donate, please contact Molly at 913-281-6274 x5 in advance to schedule a time to make the drop-off. Calling ahead will help us tremendously to keep things orderly around here!
- August 2: Final observation night. Ever wondered what goes on here on a typical evening of programming? Come on up for our Latino outreach this evening and find out! Come to 22 S. 18th Street, Kansas City, KS 66102 between 6:30 and 8:30.
- August 12: Summer Parties at Wyandotte County Lake Park, 91st and Leavenworth Road, Kansas City, KS 66109. After entering the park, you'll come to a fork in the road; go left.
- The Latino party begins at 3:00 with an informal time to socialize, followed by a pot-luck meal at 4:45 and program at 6:00. It will be in the "Beach Shelter." Turn right after passing shelter #6.
- The Bhutanese party begins at 4:00 in shelter #6.