If it’s January, it’s time to flee the cedar pollen in Austin and fly to DR Congo!
Ivan, Mike, Josh and I left on Wednesday and will arrive in Bukavu Friday afternoon. We return on January 21.
We are looking forward to building existing relationships and beginning some new ones. We go because we are convinced that God uses these relationships to bless us, them and many others.
Many of you have been receiving these emails since my first trip over five years ago. I appreciate your faithfulness in praying for the people of eastern Congo and specifically Bukavu.
In many ways, the theme of this trip could be summed up as, “Subdue the earth and love your neighbor.” In America, we take for granted the thousands of ways in which we have harnessed God’s creation to make it work for us. We have a long track record of creation, innovation and persevering work. Not so in Congo. Furthermore, the golden rule (i.e. love your neighbor) is ingrained in us at an early age. Not so in Congo. So we go to exhort, to encourage and to equip – in essence, to love. We can go so why would we not? Or, as my son Ben said when we were praying about whether we should go on a trip to Congo as a family, “Why would God not want us to go?” This is one case (the only case?) where the wisdom of the teenager is superior to the wisdom of his parents! Perhaps, you may want to follow Ben’s wisdom and go with us on a future trip.
Here’s a list of requests that you can join us in praying:
Prayers for Bible Distribution:
That God would use us to inspire a vision for Bible listening and prayer that would help the Congolese know a powerful and personal God.
That the recipients would share the Word with many others. That they would listen to God’s Word together, grow together and lead together.
That God’s Word would teach husbands to love their wives the way Christ loves the Church.
That the Holy Spirit would convict people of sin, righteousness and judgment.
Prayers for Business Formation Seminar:
That God would speak clearly through us as we speak truth from His word.
That God would show people how to start and build profitable, Christ-centered businesses.
That God would prompt people to live a life like Jabez who blessed generations to come (1 Chronicles 4:9-10).
Prayers for Relationship Development:
That God would help us understand how the Congolese think and view the world.
That God would help us be creative in communicating the need for counter cultural leadership.
Prayers for the Trip:
That God would show Josh and Mike how to use video in Bukavu to bring glory to Him and help the people.
That God would give us keen insight into His creation – resources, environment, culture, and people – and show us a creative approach to help the people develop economically and spiritually.
That we would be strong in the Lord, with the full armor of God, able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.
That the Holy Spirit would give us great discernment as to the spiritual battles around us.
That God would keep us free from unnecessary health and safety issues.
In Christ and for the team,
P.S. If you would like to sponsor a Bible in the form of a solar powered MP3 player, just reply to this email and say, “I’m in.” Sponsorship means that you agree to pray for the person or group of people who will be listening to the Bible. We put your name on the Bible so people will be encouraged that you are praying for them. Inevitably, people ask how much they cost and whether they can donate. The answer is about $30 and you can donate by going to our Indiegogo page. You will find more information and some pictures there as well. Thanks!