At the beginning of the year, I was pretty overwhelmed with the season the my husband Garett and I were entering into. The weekends are among the best times for us to connect with our Bhutanese friends relationally, and it seemed that we would be spending most of them either out of town or working on our house as we try to get it in order for the new baby that will be coming, God-willing, in August. As I began praying about the dilemma, God showed me that this was to be a season of praying for them with expectancy. At first, I thought it would be one of those things that you commit to at the beginning of the year and then forget all about, but God has not let that happen. He has driven me into His Word, brought song lyrics into my mind that express my heart, and instructed me.
During that time, Garett and I were studying Matthew 6 along with other Mission Adelante Bhutanese outreach staff and volunteers. Two nuggets have stuck with me as I've continued to mull over them: First, He is our Father, as we see in Matthew 6 and throughout the New Testament, and second, He is head over the universe and deserves to be honored among all peoples, as Job 38 shows us. Oh, how I long for our immigrant friends to know Him! “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:9-10) Yes, yes, yes! Jon Foreman’s song, Your Love is Strong, emphasizes for me the power of The Lord's Prayer. It finds words for the ache of my heart, not only for the salvation of our friends, but for all peoples.
As I have been talking with God more and praying more for our friends, He has instructed me about ministry. For about six years, Garett and I have been friends with Indian Hindus that we got to know in college. In spite of the experience that gave us relating with culturally similar people, we have continued to learn a ton since being here in KCK with the Bhutanese. One of those things is that we need to err on the side of speaking about Jesus, rather than waiting for our friends bring Him up. Since becoming convicted of that, we have been able to use a situation to tell one of our good Bhutanese friends about Jesus' character. God is good. We thought that we would spend this season semi-absent from our ministry/friends and therefore praying as an alternate activity, but He has shown us that, rather, prayer is the critical work of ministry, and that which will transform the time we spend with our friends and make our conversations intentional.
We pray that prayer becomes even more central to our approach to ministry as God truly is the One who changes hearts and guides us to speak or not to speak.
In other news:
- Gang intervention specialist Amy Williams will be coming from Chicago to train Mission Adelante volunteers on Saturday, March 16 on understanding and ministering to the fatherless generation. We are eager to gain insight from her experience and wisdom!
- Snacks for the preschoolers at Kids Club, such as Goldfish, animal crackers, cereal, or pretzels. If you are able to supply any, please contact Kristen Maxwell at email@example.com.
- The Bhutanese and Latino LIT programs would love a generous friend to purchase healthy after-school snacks packaged in single servings for the kids. We would be blessed to receive 2 months worth of snacks. Please contact Megan McDermott at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Do you have experience as an early elementary school teacher or a reading interventionist, or know someone who does? The Bhutanese LIT program could use a few extra tutors to come on Monday, Wednesday or Thursday afternoons to work individually with students who are struggling with reading. Contact Kristen Maxwell at email@example.com.
- Five twin beds, two dressers, two kitchen tables, and a living room chair have been requested by families through our Resource Center. If you can donate any of these items, please contact Molly Merrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Bhutanese Kids Ministry Volunteer Dinner: Saturday, February 23 at 6:30
- Bhutanese ESL Volunteer Dinner: March 2 at Lauren Timberlake's house. Please contact Jenny Dunn for more details at email@example.com
- Observation Days: Tuesdays, March 5 & 12 (Bhutanese)/Thursdays, March 7 & 14 (Latino) 6:30-8:30 Have you wondered what all goes on around here on a typical evening of programming? Here's your opportunity to come and see for yourself!
- Bring-A-Friend Fund-Raiser for Bhutanese Teens Coordinator Hannah Hume: Saturday, March 9 Email Hannah Hume at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
- Training by Amy Williams, Gang Intervention Specialist: Saturday, March 16, 9:00-12:00 at Mission Adelante.