Wednesday, April 25, 2012

War Again in Sudan?

One of our teammates posted an article on his blog today about our response to the war in Sudan (  His words and sentiments reflect our hearts as well, so I wanted to share what he wrote here:

This is a response my boss, Mike Congrove, recently sent out regarding the latest news on talk of war in Sudan. I’m sure many of you have been wondering how these things affect our work. His words represent mine so I thought you’d appreciate what he has to say…
“War Again in Sudan?
Several of you have asked about the renewed fighting in Sudan. I am not an expert, but here’s my quick take.
Yes there has been fighting over oil towns in the border region of Sudan and South Sudan. This included bombings by the Northern government. The president of the North, Omar al-Bashir even said, ““Either we end up occupying Juba or you end up occupying Khartoum but the boundaries of the old Sudan can no longer fit us together, only one of us has to remain standing.”
He also called the Southerners “insects” and threatened to teach them a lesson in “jihad.” How much is real and how much is posturing is a question beyond my expertise, but both are in the mix.
The areas where we have work have not been affected. In the far South, things are normal (for Sudan) and we’ll continue to send teams and operate as normal. All is well.
But What If?
Our call and commitment to bring the Gospel to Sudanese (Southern and Northern) who have never heard, make disciples of Jesus, and plant churches doesn’t change or waver due to circumstances.
In fact, we believe God is in control and no matter what happens, He will redeem and be glorified regardless of circumstances. If that means we alter strategy and tactics to fit a war, we’ll do it.
Nevertheless, pray for peace. And pray for our team. The North beckons with some of the most unreached, unengaged (zero missionaries) people groups on earth. We’re asking God have us do.”
Thanks again for all you do,

Thursday, April 5, 2012

April Update

But he who boasts is to boast in the Lord. For it is not he who commends himself that is approved, but he whom the Lord commends.

- 2 Corinthians 10:17-18

The last few months have been kind of a whirlwind tour for Amy and me. Shortly after writing the last update, we made a trip to St. Louis to visit with some of Amy’s friends. We came home from St. Louis and were back for a few days, and then left for a trip to Warren, Arkansas where we visited some churches from the Bartholomew BaptistAssociation.

The people in Warren, AR were so hospitable and open to our ministry. We were extremely blessed to meet the brothers and sisters at Saline, Macedonia, Ebenezer, Immanuel and New Light Baptist Churches, and are looking forward to our relationships with them.

We got home from Arkansas and a few days later received news that Amy’s grandmother, Elsie Carlson, was in poor health and might not make it through the weekend. We left the next day and drove to Columbus, GA where we spent a few days visiting with grandma and Amy’s parents. We are extremely blessed with loving families, and it’s always hard to leave them behind. Elsie passed away on April 6th at about 12:30am.

Throughout these busy weeks we had a chance to see God’s hand in providing for us in some major ways. Our car had a major coolant leak from a bad timing gasket, a job we couldn’t afford to have done right away, so I was a little worried about making so many trips. We prayed that God would sustain the car for us, and although the mechanic told me I would need to stop every hour or two and check the coolant level, we literally lost no coolant for most of the trips. I went from adding a gallon of antifreeze to the car every 3 or 4 days to adding exactly half a gallon over 4,700 miles of driving in three weeks. God is good.

The car was not the only way that God provided for us. At the end of the whirlwind of trips I sat down and wrote in my journal about every time we prayed for something and had an immediate answer. It took three pages to write them all down. Amy and I have been studying 2 Corinthians lately, and Paul repeatedly says that the only way he is going to boast is in his weakness because it is through our weakness that God is powerful. It’s awesome and humbling to be so completely dependent on God and his providence to make it through each day, and to watch him actually provide when we ask him!

Amy is coming up on her thirteenth week of pregnancy. We had our first ultrasound a few weeks ago and saw our little 36.2mm baby moving around. The road trips have been difficult for Amy with the usual nausea and discomfort of being pregnant, but she has been quite the trooper!

Please pray for us as we keep going through the support raising process. We are now at 58% of our total goal. Also pray for Amy and the baby as she goes through this new world of being pregnant and all of the changes that come with it. Pray for our families, this was my grandpa’s first Easter without grandma around, and Ray and Karen as they adjust to not having grandma around after years of working very hard to take care of her.