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Monthly Archives: August 2012

Week #4 Verse-John 16:33

For those of you that are keeping up with these verses, here is week 4’s: John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.”

Jesus’ words are important here because at the beginning of the verse it does not say, “I have made a way for you to have peace,” but “IN ME you will have peace.”  Jesus is the Prince of Peace.  It is only through our faith in him that we can have a peace about us.  Not a peace where there is no trouble, as indicated with the second part of the verse, but a peace with our future and with God.  A peace that hopes for eternity with Christ.

As stated earlier, there will certainly be trouble.  There will be different troubles for different people.  Some may seem more severe, some may seem minor, and some may seem life-altering.  We are not promised the same struggles and troubles as others, but we are promised trouble.  Through these we do not have to curl up and give in.  We do not have to forsake God and turn away from him.  Although the troubles may seem unbearable, we can overcome them because we serve a risen Savior that not only overcame sin, but overcame the world!  There has never been another like Jesus…and there never will be.  No one has overcome the world, except him.

This verse simply serves as a reminder in the tough times that Jesus empathizes with us and makes it possible for us to have peace and get through troubles, but only with his help.

 

We continue to be blessed by those that are supporting our trip financially and through prayer.  We have our malaria medicine and are getting ready to get the rest of our immunizations about mid-September.  We will be having a special Sunday morning service on September 16 at Avoca Baptist Church, exactly one month before we will be in South Sudan.  That Sunday we will be showing videos, pictures and simply talking about the mission at hand.  Thank you again to all of you who are taking interest in what God is doing with and through us.

In Christ’s Love…Take Heart!

Josh

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Posted by on August 27, 2012 in Josh, Uncategorized

 

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Week #3 Verse-Psalm 68:5

   Well, another week down, another verse down.  After memorizing Philippians 2:5-11, which we both successfully did, this week’s verse seems so small.

Psalm 68:5 “A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.”

We chose this verse because it answers the all important and often asked question, why?  We will be serving orphans that have been affected by the long civil war in South Sudan.  It is clear throughout the Bible, both in the Old Testament and the New, that God has a heart for those in need.  There are few that are more in need than children without parents, without providers, and without hope.

For myself, I notice more and more the need of a godly man in the lives of children.  Unfortunately, there are fewer and fewer men sticking around the home and raising children.  This is something that drives my efforts to serve these orphans, and even some of the youth that I currently serve.

For Gail, her family has been a large part of her relationship with Christ.  They have helped her groom her faith and grow into the devoted follower that she is today.  Therefore, her thought is, who will help these children?  She has a heart to share the gospel and help grow these children into devoted followers of Christ.

This verse displays a characteristic of God that we both desire, compassion.  In the verse it says that serving the fatherless and widows is where we find God in his natural habitat.  That is where we want to be.  We want to be covered in his holiness.  We want to meet God and interact with him in his dwelling place.

So, if you ask yourself, why are Josh and Gail going through all of this, the answer is found in Psalm 68:5; memorize it with us.

 

To give you a little update on the recent garage sale we were able to get about $200 to put towards our trip.  Praise God.  Gail sold a few of her blocks, not all of them.  So, if you had your eye on one of the blocks that were pictured in the previous post and would like to have one, we can certainly work something out.  She was asking $5 for each block.  Below are the pictures of the blocks that we have left.  If you would like one, contact us, or leave a comment in the comment section and we will see what we can do to get you one.  As always, we thank you for your prayers.

In Christ’s Love,

Josh

 
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Posted by on August 20, 2012 in Josh, Uncategorized

 

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A Couple of Prayer Requests

Right now we are on our way to Fort Worth to get our Yellow Fever vaccination. Please be in prayer that we don’t have any bad reactions, or that it doesn’t hurt too bad. 🙂

After we get our vaccinations we are headed to Nacogdoches and are getting ready for a garage sale with Josh’s parents this Saturday. At the garage sale I will be selling some wooden signs I made, please pray that people will be interested and buy them, any money we make from the garage sale will be put toward our trip. Here are a few pictures of the signs.

Thank you so much for your prayers and support.

gail

 
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Posted by on August 16, 2012 in gail

 

Week #2 Verse-Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:5-11 “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:  Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.  And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death-even death on a cross!  Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at that name every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Obviously this is the longest verse of the 10 weeks.  Therefore we put it at the front of the list in order to have it memorized by the end of the 10 weeks.  This one might be a bit more difficult to memorize but if we commit to learning it, it can certainly be done.

I want to give you a little background as to why we chose these verses.  It was interesting how it even got on the list because at the beginning Gail and I made separate lists of 10 verses.  I put these verses on my list because I thought they were very impactful but knew that Gail would not put them on hers.  Well, of course God has a sense of humor because Gail put the exact same verses on her list.  We thought it a sign.

These verses draw something out of every believer.  To me, these verses are almost a war cry or a pep-talk for Christians.  Once you beginning reading it you gradually read it louder and with more excitement, even if you are not reading it out loud.  It is so impactful because it is the story of the Gospel.  That God would come down in the nature of a servant and die on a cross is quite important.  But these verses take it a step farther to tell us not only the past but the future as well.  That one day every knee and every tongue and every person would confess that Jesus is Lord…for the glory of the Father.

It simply energizes me.  It gets me motivated to minister for the glory of the Father.  Hopefully memorizing these verses or noting them at the least will do the same for you.

 
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Posted by on August 14, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Facts About South Sudan

Today marks two months until we leave for South Sudan. I thought it might be fun to share some interesting facts about South Sudan with all of you.

# 1 – It is the Newest Country in the World. South Sudan celebrated its independence from Sudan July 9, 2011. Before this time the country had been at war for over 20 years and many Sudanese people have been involved or effected by the war.

# 2 – It is slightly smaller than Texas

# 3 – Lucky for us English is one of the official languages, the other is Arabic which includes Juba and Sudanese variants.

# 4 – South Sudan has a very Tropical Climate and we will be arriving towards the end of the rainy season.

# 5 – The capital is Juba. Juba is only an hour drive from Terekeka.

# 6 – While the country has 84 Airports only 3 have paved runways. Hopefully we will have no need to land on any of those runways while we are there.

# 7 – A South Sudanese refugee competed in the Olympics this past week. He was unable to run under the flag of South Sudan because they are not yet established with the Olympic committee, instead he ran under the Olympic flag for his country because he refused to run for the country that he had ran away from.

# 8 – South Sudan and Sudan are still in negotiations over the exact border line. There has been some violence due to the inability for the countries to agree, but there is hope that they will come to a decision soon.

# 9 – Zechariah Manyok Biar is a 2009 graduate from Abilene Christian University. At 12 years old he signed up to join the army. He saw many people die, but was given an education. And the people around him saw that he was special, he was able to obtain two Master’s degrees from ACU with assistance from Christian’s around the country. He has now returned to South Sudan and is a member of the new government.

# 10 – Harvesters Reaching the Nations has worked in South Sudan for over 11 years and is continuing to change lives and bring hope. They are continuing to grow and have been blessed with the opportunity to start a school in Terekeka and they are now in the process of opening a new orphanage in another region of South Sudan. God is using this organization to make change possible in South Sudan.

I hope that you have enjoyed these facts about South Sudan. Also, I hope that you will keep the country and its people in your prayers as they are transitioning to a place of peace instead of a country torn by war.

Love ya,

gail

 
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Posted by on August 13, 2012 in gail

 

Memorize With Us

Gail and I have decided to memorize a verse a week until we go to Terekeka, South Sudan, which is 10 weeks away.  We have listed the 10 verses below so that if you choose to, you can join us in this.  Though the  first week is almost over, you can still catch up.  We chose to start with Ephesians 2:8-10 because it is a reminder that we cannot do it on our own.  We must have the grace of God.  Also, if any good comes from us, it first came from God through Christ Jesus.  We must remain humble and fulfill the purpose that we have in the family of God.

Here is a list of the verses:

  1. Ephesians 2:8-10 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-not by works, so that no one can boast.  For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
  2. Philippians 2:5-11 “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who being in the very nature of God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.  And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death-even death on a cross!  Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
  3. Psalm 68:5 “A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.”
  4. John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.”
  5. Colossians 1:16 “For by him all things were created; things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.”
  6. Galatians 2:20 “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.  The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
  7. Ephesians 4:15-16 “Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ.  From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”
  8. Ephesians 5:1-2 “Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, Just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”
  9. 1 Peter 4:12-13 “Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you.  But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.”
  10. 1 John 3:1 “How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!  And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.”

This is just another way that we can join as the Body of Christ and serve him together even though we may be far apart.

In Christ’s Love,

Josh

 
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Posted by on August 11, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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