Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Pack Prayers First

There is a people group in Asia regarded as lower than their countrymen: denied citizenship, unwelcome in schools, unable to get a drivers license, and hard pressed to find anyone to employ them. Resulting poverty took them from life in spiritual darkness amid the smoke of opium filled rooms to modern day destitution where some do the unthinkable to survive.

Many accept invitations from temples to give their children over, in exchange for promises of education, food, and care ... promises that are all too commonly broken. Others have fallen into the sex trade out of harsh realities that leave few options. Here among these tribal villages, the truth of God's Word is bringing people out of darkness and into light. In the midst of rich cultural beauty, truth is being taught, children are being rescued, lives are being changed. Our partners are national believers who know what it is to look out of that great darkness and see little hope.

It's been 7 years since our family returned from ministry in Asia, and while we know we are where God wants us now, our hearts still brim with our love and longing to see the people of the world's most populous regions experience the truth of God's grace and mercy.


I'm behind in packing (leaving Saturday morning), but before I start stuffing work clothes, ministry tools, and travel gear, I feel the need to get some prayer going. Would you pray with me as I leave for a week of ministering with a team in Asia?

Family ~
  • This will be the longest I've been "solo" from my fam.
  • Pray for Jeff, Jo, and Jake as I'm away.
  • The kids are wrapping up school work; I'll be home in time for exams!
  • I need to have an easy time of jet lag ... more on that when I get back home. ;)
Travel ~
  • Have you heard about the weird travel events this week?
  • Pray for us to be full of the fruit of the Spirit and to grow in character as we travel a LONG way.
  • Ask God for safety and provision as we go.
  • Pray for the health of our 6 member team.
  • I appreciate your prayers for my voice as I go. It's my "souvenir" from our ministry in Asia. On occasion I still struggle with this, and I pray my voice will be strong to proclaim truth and be a voice of kindness.
Ministry ~
  • We'll have the privilege of spending time with children at a special home for children in need/orphans.
  • Pray for me to teach my Bible lessons in culturally meaningful ways.
  • Pray as we sometimes work through translators.
  • We really want to be an encouragement to our national partners.
  • We'll get our hands dirty and serve in a mountain village; pray for God's love to surpass cultural barriers.
  • We want to serve in ways to advance the work of our national friends.

Finally, I appreciate your prayers for a "large heart" as I go. Our time as missionaries was both wonderful and challenging, and our hearts continue to beat with a passion for the world and for missionaries. It's so kind of God to make much of our current ministry global. But ... this will be my first time back to Asia since we came back to the States, and I anticipate a full heart. Jeff says I have to come back. ;)  I know of at least 3 reasons why I'm sure I will ...

My "plan" is to blog as I'm able to give you updates and glimpses. I know it's easy to be overwhelmed with email, but if you want to subscribe to blog updates in your email or join the Come Have a Peace Facebook page, you'll be sure not to miss an update or photos. And if you want to "opt out" afterward, that's fine. :) I will love you in your unencumbered state. :)

Thanks for your friendship in prayer!

I'm speaking to a MOPS group tomorrow, and I have something from my talk that I'll be sharing here tomorrow. It's very fun, and I hope you'll stop back by to enjoy it!

1 COMMENTS ~ Click here to leave a COMMENT:

Kristi Stephens said...

Praying for you, my friend!! Looking forward to hearing what God does in and through you during this time!