Saturday, August 5, 2017

Deep calleth unto deep

His feet is where I want to be; 
His heart is what I want to see. 
God is beautiful and so gracious. 

I have experienced the Lord in ways I never had imagined I could. It blows my mind that every time you feel like you know a part of God, He takes you deeper and it makes you fall more and more in love with Him. "Deep calleth unto deep" - the depths of my soul cries out to the depth and inexplainable purity of who God is.

This summer I learned MANY things. So many that it will take weeks to even be able to decompress it all. 64 days... 8 weeks in villages of the Philippines sharing the raw Gospel everyday has not only blessed others with hearing His truth but blessed me in my understanding more of who I serve. I can't wait to share more about what God has done this summer and what He is still doing in the hearts of many!

-Lauren P.
Advance Team
Bohol, Philippines

Friday, August 4, 2017

Going home & ready to share

This was hands down one of my favorite nights.
We played Uno with my translators and host family and the punishment for losing and having the most cards left over was putting ash on our faces.
This was the end result of two games and this was just one of the thousands of stories that I have to share about my time as a summer missionary in the Philippines.
There were so many hard days but y'all there were so many good ones too. I'm in the process of transitioning and readjusting to life in the US. But I'd really love to chat with whoever wants to hear how the Lord moved this summer.
Pray for me as I adjust into the US!

Mountain Harvesters Team
Butuan City, Philippines

Safe Travel Home

It was the Lord our God Himself who brought us... He protected us on our entire journey... Joshua 24:17

Pray for team members and facilitators as they travel home. Pray for team members as they adjust to their home culture. Pray for them as they share their testimonies of God's goodness of this summer with friends and family.

Thursday, August 3, 2017


I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now... Philippians 1:3-5

Praise God for each team member who served this summer. Pray the team members would also have grateful hearts for this opportunity to minister.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Answered Prayers for Softened Hearts

In West Africa, people walk around leisurely and talk to everyone they encounter to show them they are important. They do this a lot, so now that we have become more a part of their community, we get to do it as well. It affords us the opportunity to tell stories about Jesus.

One evening, we were making a circuit of the compounds at the far end of our village. We left one compound after an hour and a half of talking and we were feeling really discouraged. We wanted them to know the truth so badly and it seemed like they’re trying to understand but something was in the way. As we walked through another compound, we stopped to talk at an old woman’s house.  Read more....

-Walk with People of Far Village

Conviction in the night

This week we had the privilege of meeting with a short-term team from Ohio that spent the week staying in villages that our team had recently visited. At the beginning of the week they had the opportunity to go to T village, which is where my team first met with a man named H.

While we were in T village, we shared with H for several hours and he even invited us to come to his house the next day. After presenting the Gospel to him, we quickly learned that he had never heard about Jesus before. He said that it was “a very beautiful story.” After hearing each Bible story, he was asking us to teach him more about our Holy book. He seemed so incredibly receptive to the Gospel, however we were unable to spend much more time with him due to extenuating circumstances.

When we left the village, we hoped that we could see him once more before we left Southeast Asia so that we could share more with him and see where he was spiritually. Unfortunately, we were unable to see him again. However, the Ohio team just so happened to run into him on one of their last days in T village.

H is a very hospitable guy so after their first encounter, he invited them into his home for tea and coffee. While they were spending time together, the Ohio team was granted the opportunity to share the story of Jesus with him once more. After hearing all of the Bible stories he told them, “I had a group of guys tell me about the same message just a few weeks ago. I have been restless every night since they shared about Christ with me.”

Every single night H has been meditating on what we shared with him. The Lord has been working in his heart and we expect God to do amazing things in him. We must remember to continue to be obedient to the Lord and his commandments. Our obedience to the Lord, or lack thereof, could affect the eternal destination of those that we come in contact with. We must be intentional with everything that we say and do, because we may never know how our actions will affect those around us.

My prayer is that the Lord continues to work in the heart of H, and that H will recognize his need for God. Please continue to lift him up in prayer so that he will hear the call of the Lord and hopefully one day choose to follow him.

-Caleb W.

Seeking God's Plan

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

Pray for team members to seek God's good plan for their future. Pray they would believe God is working in them for their good and His glory.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Making Your "Goodbye" Count

This week our team has been learning about purposeful goodbyes. As we have been preparing for saying goodbye to our summer home, and the people that have become so dear to our hearts, our team has struggled and wrestled with the idea of saying goodbye well. 

In Acts, Paul gives us an example of a way to do exactly that. He shows us that we can do this by affirming the person in what they have meant to you, encouraging them, and then praying with them. Our team has been given the opportunity to do exactly that as we have been able to make our goodbyes purposeful for the sake of the Kingdom.

Please be in prayer for us as we continue to say goodbyes to people who have become so special to our hearts that we will affirm them well, encourage them, and be given the opportunity to pray.

-English in Africa

Power to Change Lives

Elizabeth and I were able to join one of our teams for ministry for a few days on a small island just off the coast of eastern Samar. In the afternoon we crossed over on a small paddle boat to an island with only around 20 houses. 

We approached a house and we met Ate S. One of the team members shared the Bridge tract with her, explaining how Jesus' death and resurrection are our "bridge" back to God. Ate S. was very interested and we explained that Nehemiah Teams was not there to bring a religion, but only a relationship with God. When Ate S. heard this she lit up and said "I heard a man on the radio say that!" She was happy to schedule a Bible Study for the next day.

When the team returned and began Bible study they pulled out a Bible in her language, Waray-Waray, and handed it to her. She was very excited and told us that she had never held a Bible before. They showed her the passage for Bible study and asked her to read, and she could hardly wait. The team further explained salvation by faith alone through grace alone in Jesus Christ to be received as a free gift. Ate S. prayed to confess her sin and ask for forgiveness and new life. 

When it was time for us to leave, Ate S. started to hand the Bible back to the team, to which they replied, "No, we want you to have it!" She was almost overcome with joy and hugged the Bible. What a wonderful reminder of how precious God's Word is and the power it has to change lives.

Please continue to pray for Ate S and others like her who have made the decision to follow Christ this summer.


Safe Travel

It was the Lord our God Himself who brought us...He protected us on our entire journey and among all the nations through which we traveled. Joshua 24:17

Team of the Day: All Teams

Pray for all team members as they begin travel back to the United States for debrief. Pray for safety and ease through airports and customs.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Planting... watering... cultivating

As our time serving in Southeast Asia comes to an end, I can rest in the fact that our hearts will be full with memories we have made & friends we have grown to love. The Father will continue to work through the seeds we have planted. We are assured that He will water & cultivate faith through our ongoing prayers for these we have worked with this summer.

One unique opportunity we were given during our time here, was through our visits each Wednesday to a women’s prison. On our very first visit, we began by introducing ourselves and sharing with them about our family’s, where we lived and grew up, our schooling and the careers we were studying for. These ladies enjoyed getting to know us through our weekly visits and wanted us to come back again and again. We began planning specific activities that we would do with them. Some of these activities included using Mad Lib stories, specifically planned questions to encourage discussions and some modern day parables we could examine. In order to help develop relationships with each other, when we would begin our visitation sessions we asked how their week had gone and tried to encourage them to share about themselves on a more personal level. They all seemed to have wonderful attitudes about participating and they got along with each other quite well. As we prepared our questions beforehand, we wanted to try to get the women who are followers of Christ to open up about their experiences as to how He has changed their lives and in what ways He had worked in their hearts during that particular week. This was one effective way we were able to bring the ladies who are not followers into the discussions and communicate just how Christ can become a helpmate to them all. The ladies that we worked with at the prison always seemed to be able to show joy in such a meaningful way regardless of the circumstances face daily. 

At our last meeting as a team with them, we read a modern parable and one of the followers said that she remembered a similar story she heard from the Good Book! WOW!! They were making connections & growing in their knowledge of Him simply through our weekly discussions. Several of the ladies made bracelets that spelled out our names and headbands for each of us. These small gestures mean so much to us! Even though these ladies are in prison and have little to nothing, they took the time to make something special that we can take home with us. I know I will miss them so very much and will continue to pray that they stay strong in their new knowledge of Him.

Our final get-together with all our friends at the “Center” was Saturday night. We celebrated Anna’s, Michael’s and A’s birthdays from this past week. One of our new friends, T, cooked dinner for all of us so we decided he needed to become a chef! I had a very special conversation with a friend who told me that he can see a difference between us and other Americans he has known. I shared with him that it is because we want to spread the love we have in our hearts that comes from our relationship with C and the Holy Spirit. Another seed was planted……

-Great Commission English Center

One Chapter to the Next

This summer has been a truly life changing experience for all of us. It has been filled with memories that will never go away, both joyous and alarming. We have so many inside jokes that we will remember forever. God blessed us with the opportunity to share the Gospel with many people, and I am very thankful for that. 

God is on the move, but there aren't enough Christians joining Him. 

Short term trips are a wonderful thing that can be used to prepare long termers and assist long termers, but there aren't enough people here doing long term work. I have spent 2 months on the most densely populated island in the world passing by many people who, as of now, will spend an eternity in Hell. Men's souls are dying without hearing any of the hope we have in Jesus Christ. Through our team about 200 people heard the good news which is truly an awesome thing, but we passed by more people each day who haven't heard. 

Here are a few things I learned this summer:

  1. We must go share Jesus to the unreached people groups urgently.
  2. We must pray for the lost urgently.
  3. We must give our finances to sending agencies urgently.
  4. We must mobilize in churches and share a world vision urgently.
  5. We must break the cycle of our daily routine and fight for the souls of men, being led by the spirit, urgently.

All of these things have two things in common. They are required to fulfill the Great Commission, and they state the importance of doing these things urgently. 

  • Pray for workers to be sent to the unreached people groups
  • Pray for God to move in a swift and mighty way
  • Pray for God's will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven
  • Pray for mosques to be useless buildings of the past
  • Pray for those mosques to be turned into Churches
  • Pray for the Great Commission to be completed in this generation
-Urban Catylysts 

God's work coming full circle

During the summer of 2016, I traveled to Southeast Asia for my first overseas mission trip. It was a great experience filled with many stories of how God demonstrated his power and presence while we shared His Good News. When I arrived back in America, I told about all that I had seen God do in our short time in SEA. Though we saw many amazing works by God during our very short trip, this week I finally realized the extent to which God used my team and me.   

Last summer, we stayed in L village for a few days. During our stay in this village, we went around sharing the Gospel and praying for all those who were ill or oppressed. On one of the last days in this village, me and a couple of guys came across a young man who had been plagued by a blood disease for many years. We expressed our sorrow for his situation and asked, “if we could pray for him in the name of Jesus?”  He welcomed our prayers and then we visited with him for a short time before we went on our way.  We left the village very shortly afterwards and never saw or heard from this young man again.

This summer, my team and I returned to this village but we never saw this young man during the whole week we were in L village. This past week, a short-term team from Ohio visited L village and did similar things as my team did this summer and summer. During their visit this past week, they came across this young man and he told them about how a group of guys had prayed for him last summer, and how the next day he was completely healed. He never experienced anymore symptoms from that particular disease from that point on.  When I heard this news, my team and I could only praise the Lord with the Ohio team and our M.  God is alive and active!

This miracle has demonstrated to me that God is always at work, even if we do not see the result of our work immediately!  Trust Him and remain obedient!

-    -Aaron G.