Sunday, May 31, 2015

C.S. Lewis Daily - Today's Reading

Presented by Bible Gateway
Today's Reading

TO PETER BIDE, whose wife, Margaret, also had cancer: On the propriety of praying prayers that question God and challenge God rather than insincere prayers; and on the need to risk the heresy that God the Father suffers (Patripassianism) in order to avoid the greater heresy that God is indifferent when we suffer.

14 June 1960

I know your faith will stand firm.

Joy says (do you agree?) that we needn’t be too afraid of questionings and expostulations: it was the impatience of Job, not the theodicies of Elihu [Job 32:2],that was pleasing to God. Does He like us to ‘stand up to Him’ a bit? Certainly He cannot like mere flattery—resentment masquerading as submission through fear.

How impossible it would be now to face it without rage if God Himself had not shared the horrors of the world He made! I know this is Patripassianism. But the other way of putting it, however theologically defensible, lets in (psychologically) perhaps a more serious error.

Joy had her right breast removed about 10 days ago, or—as she characteristically put it—became an Amazon. . . .

Thus we can still play the fool . . . you will not misunderstand it. I wish we could meet. Till we do, be sure of our prayers.


From The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis
Compiled in Yours, Jack

Today in the PC-USA Mission Yearbook

The Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is a daily devotional with 365 inspiring mission stories that come from next door and all across the globe. It inspires thousands of Presbyterians daily as they uphold the mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in intercessory prayer. How often have you wondered, where are the young adults in the PC(USA)? Wonder no longer. The 2014 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is devoted to the theme of young adults in the church. Its stories, many told by young adults, lift up how Presbyterians of all ages are engaging and joining with Presbyterian young adults in reforming the church for Christ’s mission.


Today in the Mission Yearbook: May 31, 2015

MINUTE FOR MISSION: MULTICULTURAL CHURCH - When I worshiped at New Covenant Fellowship, a multicultural worshiping community in Austin, Texas, I had no idea I would be inspired and feel so at home. My row was empty when I sat down, then people came and sat next to me. Rev. Trish Holland, a parish associate, was one of those. “In this worshiping community,” she said, “I can be myself.” Rev. James Lee preached a passionate sermon to a congregation made up of African Americans, European Americans, Latinos/as, Africans, new immigrants, persons with intellectual disabilities, and children. It is a beloved community of Jesus Christ ...

CLICK HERE to read more.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

In the News ... "Vacation Bible school list"

MRT Photo by James Durbin
• Submit YOUR activities for this list

Staff Report
Midland Reporter-Telegram

MIDLAND, TEXAS - Churches around Midland are hosting a variety of Vacation Bible School Activities in the weeks ahead. To add your event to this list, please email Megan Buck at mbuck@mrt.com ...

visit the MRT calendar

C.S. Lewis Daily - Today's Reading

Presented by Bible Gateway
Today's Reading

Lewis, grieving the death of his wife, Joy:

No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear. I am not afraid, but the sensation is like being afraid. The same fluttering in the stomach, the same restlessness, the yawning. I keep on swallowing.

At other times it feels like being mildly drunk, or concussed. There is a sort of invisible blanket between the world and me. I find it hard to take in what anyone says. Or perhaps, hard to want to take it in. It is so uninteresting. Yet I want the others to be about me. I dread the moments when the house is empty. If only they would talk to one another and not to me.

There are moments, most unexpectedly, when something inside me tries to assure me that I don’t really mind so much, not so very much, after all. Love is not the whole of a man’s life. I was happy before I ever met H. I’ve plenty of what are called ‘resources.’ People get over these things. Come, I shan’t do so badly. One is ashamed to listen to this voice but it seems for a little to be making out a good case. Then comes a sudden jab of red-hot memory and all this ‘commonsense’ vanishes like an ant in the mouth of a furnace.


From A Grief Observed
Compiled in A Year with C.S. Lewis

Today in the PC-USA Mission Yearbook

The Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is a daily devotional with 365 inspiring mission stories that come from next door and all across the globe. It inspires thousands of Presbyterians daily as they uphold the mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in intercessory prayer. How often have you wondered, where are the young adults in the PC(USA)? Wonder no longer. The 2014 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is devoted to the theme of young adults in the church. Its stories, many told by young adults, lift up how Presbyterians of all ages are engaging and joining with Presbyterian young adults in reforming the church for Christ’s mission.


Today in the Mission Yearbook: May 30, 2015

MALAWI (continued) - Rev. John Gondwe, director of the youth department of the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian–Synod of Livingstonia, and project officer Mr. Grijack Zimba shared with us about their project “Church and Community Mobilization through Self-Help.” The accompanying literature said the project aspired to “change the perception ... that foreign donors and civil society organizations are responsible for meeting the basic needs of underprivileged people and special groups.”

They spoke of their desire to teach communities and congregations ways to mobilize local resources to address problems of children and youth (ages 12–35) rather than rely on donor funding ...

CLICK HERE to read more.

Friday, May 29, 2015

From ServLife International: "167,000 People, 2 Churches"

ServLife International is a movement defined by values of God’s kingdom, not programs built around human efforts and activities. The reign and rule of God should be made apparent to every person on the planet, despite their religion, race or socioeconomic status. We believe that issues of justice are inseparable from the good news that Jesus Christ came to proclaim. ServLife exists to take the gospel of Christ and the hope of a better, more just, world to the lives of people we touch. This happens through individual contributions of time, creativity, resources and dreams.



There are 167,026 people in Nepal's Bhajang District, but only two churches ...
In fact, there are around 2,000 villages in Nepal that have not yet heard the gospel. ServLife's Pastor Madan started the second church in Bhajang in 2012. In the past three years his church has grown to include 180 people across six villages, including those who meet for bible study and fellowship in other areas.


Growth has not always been so easy for Madan's church though. Many people of high caste initially rejected his testimony because he is from a caste of former slaves. Madan was born into a family that had been in bonded labor due to debt for generations. At ten years old his job was to carry 50 kilogram bags on the farm for which his family was forced to work. Madan knew first hand how transformative the power the Gospel is for the poor and oppressed, but it was difficult to get the more affluent to listen to the good news.

So, in the course of his ministry, pastor Madan began caring for the poor and the sick. Miraculous healings began to happen when members of the church prayed for the sick. People who had been ill or paralyzed for years were suddenly well, and were telling their stories to their families and friends. People could no longer deny the power of Christ, and attendance at his church soared.

Now, Madan hopes to help people like himself: former slaves who were freed by the government but have no support or source of income. His dream is to start a micro-finance program, like ServLife's HOPE Fund, to help former slaves in his area start businesses. This is also a wonderful way to share the Gospel, Madan says. He hopes that while caring for their physical needs he will be allowed to care for them spiritually as well.

Madan needs prayer for the Gospel to continue to spread in his area and similar areas that have not yet heard the good news.

Find out more on our Planting Churches
and Pastor Sponsorship pages.

Thank you,

Adam Nevins 
From Adam Nevins
Executive Director
ServLife International Inc.




Join Our Mission


ServLife International propels reconciliation and justice by building global community to plant churches, care for children and fight poverty. Compelled by the message, life and love of Jesus Christ, we seek to care for the spiritual, physical, social, and economic areas of life in northern India and Nepal.  Learn more about our latest news, featured stories, and how to get involved at servlife.org

Support a Pastor

Our church planters spread the love of Christ in some of the most difficult
 environments in the world.
Support Them ... 

Sponsor a Child

For only $30 per month you can help give a child food, education, care and, most importantly, hope.
Sponsor Now ... 

Fight Poverty

The HOPE Fund, our micro-finance program, provides start-up funds for a small business, paving a way out of poverty for families in need.
Learn More ...



ServLife International, Inc.
P.O. Box 20596
Indianapolis, IN 46220
USA


From @FWMission ... Friday Story: "Blessings for a Mother"

Founded in 2001, Free Wheelchair Mission
is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to providing wheelchairs for the impoverished disabled in developing nations. Headquartered in Irvine, California, FWM works around the world in partnership with a vast network of humanitarian, faith-based and government organizations, sending wheelchairs to hundreds of thousands of disabled people, providing not only the gift of mobility, but of dignity, independence, and hope.


Friday Story: "Blessings for a Mother"

Greetings, and happy Friday!

In the developing world, healthcare is not easily accessible and poverty limits treatment even when it is available. The same was true for Erlinda in this week’s Friday Story:

Erlinda is 77 years old and has a wonderfully large family. She lives with her husband and two of her adult children. Over the years, she has developed osteoporosis, causing her great pain and has immobility. On most days Erlinda is bed ridden ...


read the rest of this story ...



Want to take one of these wheelchairs for a test drive? During normal business hours, visit the lobby at the Texas Street entrance of First Presbyterian Church-Midland, at the northwest corner of Texas and A streets, on the west side of downtown Midland. You can give the gift of mobility. The cost of $72.00 is a bargain to us ... but it is a life-changing gift to impoverished and disabled recipients ... and there are times when your contribution will be matched, reaching not one - but TWO, and sometimes FOUR recipients. Please note on your check "Wheelchair Gift."

In the News ... "Power of Prayer Protects Fort Stockton"

KOSA Photo
• Soon, it seemed like more of a scene out of the Bible than a shelter

Jon Traffansted
KOSA-TV


FORT STOCKTON, TEXAS - The sun may have been shining in the West Texas for most of the day, but Fort Stockton has seen some severe weather over the last few weeks. Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Fort Stockton, Philip Rigel, knew he had to do something to help ...

read the rest of this KOSA report ... 


C.S. Lewis Daily - Today's Reading

Presented by Bible Gateway
Today's Reading

On the holy spirit

It is quite right that you should feel that “something terrific” has happened to you (It has) and be “all glowy.” Accept these sensations with thankfulness as birthday cards from God, but remember that they are only greetings, not the real gift. I mean, it is not the sensations that are the real thing. The real thing is the gift of the Holy Spirit which can’t usually be—perhaps not ever—experienced as a sensation or emotion. The sensations are merely the response of your nervous system. Don’t depend on them. Otherwise when they go and you are once more emotionally flat (as you certainly will be quite soon), you might think that the real thing had gone too. But it won’t. It will be there when you can’t feel it. May even be most operative when you can feel it least.


From The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis
Compiled in Words to Live By

Today in the PC-USA Mission Yearbook

The Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is a daily devotional with 365 inspiring mission stories that come from next door and all across the globe. It inspires thousands of Presbyterians daily as they uphold the mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in intercessory prayer. How often have you wondered, where are the young adults in the PC(USA)? Wonder no longer. The 2014 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is devoted to the theme of young adults in the church. Its stories, many told by young adults, lift up how Presbyterians of all ages are engaging and joining with Presbyterian young adults in reforming the church for Christ’s mission.


Today in the Mission Yearbook: May 29, 2015

MALAWI - On our way to market, Mrs. Alinane Madimbo told me about a trip she and her husband, Rev. Gracious Madimbo, had taken to Mozambique. Since taking his first congregation, in a predominantly Muslim area, Rev. Madimbo has developed a passion for reaching out to those who have not heard the good news that all are loved by God. Their trip to Mozambique took 12 hours of travel over bad roads. They spent a few days there sharing the good news of Jesus Christ and his resurrection that the world was celebrating that Easter weekend.

Just a few weeks earlier, Rev. Madimbo had said good-bye to the congregation he had pastored for the past three years ...

CLICK HERE to read more.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

C.S. Lewis Daily - Today's Reading

Presented by Bible Gateway
Today's Reading

After a bit the lion took me out and dressed me—”

“Dressed you? With his paws?”

“Well, I don’t exactly remember that bit. But he did somehow or other, in new clothes—the same I’ve got on now, as a matter of fact. And then suddenly I was back here. Which is what makes me think it must have been a dream.”

“No. It wasn’t a dream,” said Edmund.

“Why not?”

“Well, there are the clothes, for one thing. And you have been—well, un-dragoned, for another.”

“What do you think it was, then?” asked Eustace.

“I think you’ve seen Aslan,” said Edmund.

“Aslan!” said Eustace. “I’ve heard that name mentioned several times since we joined the Dawn Treader. And I felt—I don’t know what—I hated it. But I was hating everything then. And by the way, I’d like to apologize. I’m afraid I’ve been pretty beastly.”

“That’s all right,” said Edmund. “Between ourselves, you haven’t been as bad as I was on my first trip to Narnia. You were only an ass, but I was a traitor.”. . .

It would be nice, and fairly nearly true, to say that “from that time forth Eustace was a different boy.” To be strictly accurate, he began to be a different boy. He had relapses. There were still many days when he could be very tiresome. But most of those I shall not notice. The cure had begun.


From The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
Compiled in A Year with Aslan

Today in the PC-USA Mission Yearbook

The Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is a daily devotional with 365 inspiring mission stories that come from next door and all across the globe. It inspires thousands of Presbyterians daily as they uphold the mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in intercessory prayer. How often have you wondered, where are the young adults in the PC(USA)? Wonder no longer. The 2014 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is devoted to the theme of young adults in the church. Its stories, many told by young adults, lift up how Presbyterians of all ages are engaging and joining with Presbyterian young adults in reforming the church for Christ’s mission.


Today in the Mission Yearbook: May 28, 2015

ZAMBIA (continued) - I met Rev. Happy Mhango in early 2010 at Chasefu Theological College, a seminary of the Church of Central Africa–Presbyterian Synod of Zambia (CCAP Zambia). He told me: “I know that I have been called to ministry, because the Lord’s voice whispers to me to reach many more souls with his word. Before coming to Chasefu, I planted churches, and when I graduate I pray the synod will send me to a congregation where I can evangelize and help develop the community.”

Upon his graduation in 2012, CCAP Zambia did exactly that ...

CLICK HERE to read more.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

WAW Wednesday: "WOW! Just WOW!!!"

"The Word at Work is a ministry that mobilizes churches and individuals to answer God's call to minister to those in need," writes Rev. Tim Tam, Director of the Amarillo, Texas-based ministry. "Through our relationships, God reveals needs and opportunities for service. As we come along side the poor, new friendships develop and doors for ministry open. As we serve, God provides the resources to supply for the needs he reveals."


Much to Celebrate!!

Ebenezer Church in Burial Grounds Reaches Goal

Our friends in the Burial Grounds have been working hard to raise funds for half of the blocks needed for the next phase of building their new church -- Kenny tells us they have reached their goal and raised the funds to purchase 600 blocks!! This is one of the most materially impoverished areas of Belize; but, clearly they are resourceful and were able to rise to the challenge and partner with our US churches to make their vision of a new church a reality. Thanks be to God!


King's Children's Home Fundraiser an Amazing Success

Our friends in the Clovis area pulled off an amazing evening of fun, fellowship and incredible fundraising as over $103,000 was collected to provide solar energy and a cistern system for KCH! Momma Leonie was glowing after the event. Thanks everyone for making the evening a success - especially event organizer, Matt Ware pictured here with Leonie. Guests from Belize, Washington State, Texas, and New Mexico made the journey.



Healed and Heading Home!
We are so happy to share that Gabby has been released to go home! She and her mother Christine have had a long road here - they arrived in late January for treatment of suspected cancer that turned out to be chronic osteomyelitis. This nasty infection needed surgery, IV antibiotic treatment, and time. We are grateful to Dr. Keith Bjork (pictured here) for rallying his physician friends to provide treatment - and to BSA hospital for providing incredible care. The Amarillo community embraced these two lovely women, hosting them in their homes, providing tutoring, including them in their faith communities activities and so much more. Chris & Gabby will be reunited with their family in Ladyville very soon. God is faithful...may He be glorified by the healing and hospitality that Gabby has received!


And Finally ...

She made up her mind and counted to 3 ... on May 17, 2015, our Operations Manager Mollie was joined in marriage to a strong man of faith, Mr. Mike Swafford. I had the privilege of presiding over the ceremony ... Pastors Kurt Oheim and Ron Holmes backed me up ... It was a truly beautiful celebration of God's goodness and Mike vowed to let Mollie continue her travels to Belize!! We're all really happy for Mike & Mollie! Note to Mollie - get those business cards changed - oh, and your passport!


Blessings
TT (Tim Tam) The Word at Work

ps: Our Ministry Associate team gathers school supplies, toys, and stuffed animals through out the year ... we've discovered blankets are an ongoing need as well, so please be saving them, too. Click here to learn more about becoming a TW@W Ministry Associate, or get in touch with Tim Hagen for more information!


EDITOR'S NOTE: Speaking from my own first-hand experience - working side-by-side with Tim, Kenny and our brothers and sisters in Belize - won't you give thoughtful, prayerful consideration to supporting the efforts of Tim, the Word At Work staff and their partners? Please please fill out this Commitment Card and return it to their office!

Also, remember that you can follow The Word At Work on their Facebook page!

C.S. Lewis Daily - Today's Reading

Presented by Bible Gateway
Today's Reading

Lewis, grieving the death of his wife, Joy:

There’s a limit to the ‘one flesh.’ You can’t really share someone else’s weakness, or fear or pain. What you feel may be bad. It might conceivably be as bad as what the other felt, though I should distrust anyone who claimed that it was. But it would still be quite different. When I speak of fear, I mean the merely animal fear, the recoil of the organism from its destruction; the smothery feeling; the sense of being a rat in a trap. It can’t be transferred. The mind can sympathize; the body, less. In one way the bodies of lovers can do it least. All their love passages have trained them to have, not identical, but complementary, correlative, even opposite, feelings about one another.

We both knew this. I had my miseries, not hers; she had hers, not mine. The end of hers would be the coming-of-age of mine. We were setting out on different roads. This cold truth, this terrible traffic- regulation (‘You, Madam, to the right—you, Sir, to the left’) is just the beginning of the separation which is death itself.

And this separation, I suppose, waits for all. I have been thinking of H. and myself as peculiarly unfortunate in being torn apart. But presumably all lovers are. She once said to me, ‘Even if we both died at exactly the same moment, as we lie here side by side, it would be just as much a separation as the one you’re so afraid of.’ Of course she didn’t know, any more than I do. But she was near death; near enough to make a good shot. She used to quote ‘Alone into the Alone.’ She said it felt like that. And how immensely improbable that it should be otherwise! Time and space and body were the very things that brought us together; the telephone wires by which we communicated. Cut one off, or cut both off simultaneously. Either way, mustn’t the conversation stop?


From A Grief Observed
Compiled in A Year with C.S. Lewis

Today in the PC-USA Mission Yearbook

The Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is a daily devotional with 365 inspiring mission stories that come from next door and all across the globe. It inspires thousands of Presbyterians daily as they uphold the mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in intercessory prayer. How often have you wondered, where are the young adults in the PC(USA)? Wonder no longer. The 2014 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is devoted to the theme of young adults in the church. Its stories, many told by young adults, lift up how Presbyterians of all ages are engaging and joining with Presbyterian young adults in reforming the church for Christ’s mission.


Today in the Mission Yearbook: May 27, 2015

ZAMBIA - If sleeping on the ground outdoors in the cold, or with mosquitoes biting in the heat, is necessary to preach good news to the poor and freedom to the oppressed, our student Mphatso Matemba is willing to do it. On one level, I think any follower of Christ would be. But how often do we actually do so—put ourselves in places where we must make physical sacrifices on behalf of others?

Mphatso is studying with us at Justo Mwale Theological University College in Lusaka, Zambia, to become a pastor. Our school trains pastors for Christian bodies in several southern and central African countries, particularly Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Malawi. In these countries the Christian faith has grown like wildfire in recent decades. In 1900, for example, about 0.3 percent of Zambians claimed the faith; now over 80 percent of Zambia’s population is Christian ...

CLICK HERE to read more.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Today in the PC-USA Mission Yearbook

The Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is a daily devotional with 365 inspiring mission stories that come from next door and all across the globe. It inspires thousands of Presbyterians daily as they uphold the mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in intercessory prayer. How often have you wondered, where are the young adults in the PC(USA)? Wonder no longer. The 2014 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is devoted to the theme of young adults in the church. Its stories, many told by young adults, lift up how Presbyterians of all ages are engaging and joining with Presbyterian young adults in reforming the church for Christ’s mission.


Today in the Mission Yearbook: May 26, 2015

ZIMBABWE - Zimbabwe is not an easy country to describe or, certainly, categorize. Striking contrasts mark a landscape replete with sublime beauties, from soaring mountains in the East to the crashing waters of Victoria Falls in the Northwest.

Contrast of another sort, however, offers an altogether different prospect. Although rich forests and farmlands blanket Zimbabwe, hunger resides in every city and village. And Presbyterian congregations—those of both the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian and the Uniting Presbyterian Church’s Presbytery of Zimbabwe—share this countrywide hunger for well-being and stability ...

CLICK HERE to read more.

Monday, May 25, 2015

From ChinaAid: "Zhejiang religious persecution campaign continues; 3 crosses removed "

The China Aid Association is a non-profit Christian organization - based in Midland, Texas - with a mission to uncover and reveal the truth about religious persecution in China, focusing especially on the unofficial church. They do this, they explain in their website, by exposing the abuses, encouraging the abused and equipping the saints to advance the kingdom of God throughout China.

ChinaAid Photo
Zhejiang religious persecution campaign continues; 3 crosses removed
Distributed by ChinaAid, April, 2015 ...

NINGBO, ZHEJIANG, CHINA – Despite previous reports of the “Three Rectifications and One Demolition” campaign’s end in China’s coastal Zhejiang, government employees removed three churches’ crosses and threatened another with demolition and a fine earlier this month in a continuation of the province-wide campaign ...

more on this story from China Aid  


Saturday, May 23, 2015

C.S. Lewis Daily - Today's Reading

Presented by Bible Gateway
Today's Reading

“When the lion said—but I don’t know if it spoke—‘You will have to let me undress you.’ I was afraid of his claws, I can tell you, but I was pretty nearly desperate now. So I just lay flat down on my back to let him do it.

“The very first tear he made was so deep that I thought it had gone right into my heart. And when he began pulling the skin off, it hurt worse than anything I’ve ever felt. The only thing that made me able to bear it was just the pleasure of feeling the stuff peel off. You know—if you’ve ever picked the scab off a sore place. It hurts like billy-oh but it is fun to see it coming away.”

“I know exactly what you mean,” said Edmund.

“Well, he peeled the beastly stuff right off—just as I thought I’d done it myself the other three times, only they hadn’t hurt—and there it was, lying on the grass, only ever so much thicker, and darker, and more knobbly-looking than the others had been. And there was I as smooth and soft as a peeled switch and smaller than I had been. Then he caught hold of me—I didn’t like that much for I was very tender underneath now that I’d no skin on—and threw me into the water. It smarted like anything but only for a moment. After that it became perfectly delicious and as soon as I started swimming and splashing I found that all the pain had gone from my arm. And then I saw why. I’d turned into a boy again. You’d think me simply phony if I told you how I felt about my own arms. I know they’ve no muscle and are pretty mouldy compared with Caspian’s, but I was so glad to see them.”


From Voyage of the Dawn Treader
Compiled in A Year with Aslan

Today in the PC-USA Mission Yearbook

The Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is a daily devotional with 365 inspiring mission stories that come from next door and all across the globe. It inspires thousands of Presbyterians daily as they uphold the mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in intercessory prayer. How often have you wondered, where are the young adults in the PC(USA)? Wonder no longer. The 2014 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is devoted to the theme of young adults in the church. Its stories, many told by young adults, lift up how Presbyterians of all ages are engaging and joining with Presbyterian young adults in reforming the church for Christ’s mission.


Today in the Mission Yearbook: May 23, 2015

MINUTE FOR MISSION: PRESBYTERIAN HERITAGE - Maria Fearing grew up a slave on the Winston Plantation near Gainesville, Alabama. While her mother worked as a house servant, Maria listened to Mrs. Winston read Bible stories to her children—stories that freed her imagination from bondage. Despite receiving no instruction in reading or writing, Maria dreamed of becoming a missionary to Africa, where she might share those same Bible stories with the African people ...

CLICK HERE to read more.

Friday, May 22, 2015

From ServLife International: "Witnessing Christ's Love"

ServLife International is a movement defined by values of God’s kingdom, not programs built around human efforts and activities. The reign and rule of God should be made apparent to every person on the planet, despite their religion, race or socioeconomic status. We believe that issues of justice are inseparable from the good news that Jesus Christ came to proclaim. ServLife exists to take the gospel of Christ and the hope of a better, more just, world to the lives of people we touch. This happens through individual contributions of time, creativity, resources and dreams.



Nanda was inspired to become a pastor as he saw the hardships around him as he was growing up ...
His neighbors were animists, they believed spirits of ancestors and nature, and worshiped idols to them. He wanted to share the release his family had found in Christ, and show his neighbors how a Christian community can provide freedom from oppression and even poverty.

So, after training at ServLife's pastor training school, Nanda began to preach the Word among the people of his hometown. People quickly began witnessing the power of Christ through Nanda's church. Many sick people were healed when members of his church prayed over them. One man had been paralyzed on one side of his body for over a year due to a neurological condition. After living in the church and being prayed over for two months, he was completely healed. Nanda's church has since grown to include over 100 people and he has started 3 more churches in nearby areas as a result of the miracles people have witnessed.

Sharing God's word is not always easy, however. Nanda lives in an area that many people have to travel through to get from one end of Nepal to the other. So there are all types of people living there, some of whom are opposed to Christians sharing the Gospel. Traveling Hindu priests stop in the area and make their living by performing ceremonies and getting paid to intercede with Hindu gods on behalf of the people. They are therefore opposed to Christians sharing the Gospel, because it takes away from their clientele of people desperate for help from the gods. The priests and zealous followers of other religions often threaten Nanda and his congregation as they attempt to minister to the community.

Pastor Nanda believes that he can help even more people witness the love of Christ through a micro-finance program to help local people escape poverty. He thinks that if the people are no longer in the clutches of desperation and have a community of believers offering to support them, then they will see God's love at work and be more open to receiving Christ.

Please pray for Pastor Nanda to reach the lost in his community and to find strength to stand against the opposition the church faces. Pastor Nanda and many pastors like him also need a sponsor to encourage and support them.

Find out more on our Planting Churches
and Pastor Sponsorship pages.

Thank you,

Adam Nevins 
From Adam Nevins
Executive Director
ServLife International Inc.




Join Our Mission


ServLife International propels reconciliation and justice by building global community to plant churches, care for children and fight poverty. Compelled by the message, life and love of Jesus Christ, we seek to care for the spiritual, physical, social, and economic areas of life in northern India and Nepal.  Learn more about our latest news, featured stories, and how to get involved at servlife.org

Support a Pastor

Our church planters spread the love of Christ in some of the most difficult
 environments in the world.
Support Them ... 

Sponsor a Child

For only $30 per month you can help give a child food, education, care and, most importantly, hope.
Sponsor Now ... 

Fight Poverty

The HOPE Fund, our micro-finance program, provides start-up funds for a small business, paving a way out of poverty for families in need.
Learn More ...



ServLife International, Inc.
P.O. Box 20596
Indianapolis, IN 46220
USA


From @FWMission ... Friday Story: "A Bright Future"

Founded in 2001, Free Wheelchair Mission
is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to providing wheelchairs for the impoverished disabled in developing nations. Headquartered in Irvine, California, FWM works around the world in partnership with a vast network of humanitarian, faith-based and government organizations, sending wheelchairs to hundreds of thousands of disabled people, providing not only the gift of mobility, but of dignity, independence, and hope.


Friday Story: "A Bright Future"

Greetings, and happy Friday!

Many of our recipients would love to help their families, but because of a lack of mobility, they are confined to their homes. This week, I wanted to share with you a story from China, and how a woman with determination and the gift of mobility was able to help her family.

As a young child, Wang suffered from polio, leaving her unable to walk. Her family struggled to make ends meet, but that didn’t keep her from dreaming of one day owning her own wheelchair ...


read the rest of this story ...



Want to take one of these wheelchairs for a test drive? During normal business hours, visit the lobby at the Texas Street entrance of First Presbyterian Church-Midland, at the northwest corner of Texas and A streets, on the west side of downtown Midland. You can give the gift of mobility. The cost of $72.00 is a bargain to us ... but it is a life-changing gift to impoverished and disabled recipients ... and there are times when your contribution will be matched, reaching not one - but TWO, and sometimes FOUR recipients. Please note on your check "Wheelchair Gift."

In the News ... "God-sized goals for new Christian Church pastor"

MRT Photo by James Durbin
• Parishioners look forward to the church’s growth

Jill Malcolm, Reporter
Midland Reporter-Telegram

MIDLAND, TEXAS - Pastor Steve Knisley was looking for a new challenge in his ministry when a speaker at a Christian conference opened the realm of possibility to leave his home in Eastern Kentucky, lead another church and help it grow.

“‘Go and help a smaller church and look at Texas,’ is what I heard at that conference,” said Knisley. “I felt they were talking to me.” After weighing the decision with his wife, Lisa, and talking and listening to God through prayer, they decided to make the move to West Texas.

Nine weeks ago he preached his first sermon to the Christian Church of Midland on Neely Avenue. Though the congregation is small, it is well-established in the community and prime for expansion ...

 • read the rest of this MRT report ... 


C.S. Lewis Daily - Today's Reading

Presented by Bible Gateway
Today's Reading

I find I must borrow yet another parable from George MacDonald. Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on: you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently he starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of—throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were going to be made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.

The command Be ye perfect is not idealistic gas. Nor is it a command to do the impossible. He is going to make us into creatures that can obey that command. He said (in the Bible) that we were ‘gods’ and He is going to make good His words. If we let Him—for we can prevent Him, if we choose—He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess, a dazzling, radiant, immortal creature, pulsating all through with such energy and joy and wisdom and love as we cannot now imagine, a bright stainless mirror which reflects back to God perfectly (though, of course, on a smaller scale) His own boundless power and delight and goodness. The process will be long and in parts very painful, but that is what we are in for. Nothing less. He meant what He said.


From Mere Christianity
Compiled in A Year with C.S. Lewis

Today in the PC-USA Mission Yearbook

The Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is a daily devotional with 365 inspiring mission stories that come from next door and all across the globe. It inspires thousands of Presbyterians daily as they uphold the mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in intercessory prayer. How often have you wondered, where are the young adults in the PC(USA)? Wonder no longer. The 2014 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is devoted to the theme of young adults in the church. Its stories, many told by young adults, lift up how Presbyterians of all ages are engaging and joining with Presbyterian young adults in reforming the church for Christ’s mission.


Today in the Mission Yearbook: May 22, 2015

MINUTE FOR MISSION: 1001 WORSHIPING COMMUNITIES - A worshiping community in a remote corner of southwestern Virginia is living into the psalmist’s plea to all God’s creatures: “Sing to the Lord a new song . . . all the earth! Sing to the Lord, bless God’s name” (Ps. 96:1–2).

Built 100 years ago, this mission church never had more than 50 members. Several times it closed. Eventually someone who loved it would gather new disciples to worship and serve the community of Floyd County...

CLICK HERE to read more.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

In the News ... "Family Promise hosts hands-on financial management training"

MRT Photo by James Durbin
• Nonprofit thinking about growing it for the future

Steve Kuhlmann, Reporter
Midland Reporter-Telegram

MIDLAND, TEXAS - Managing personal finances can be difficult, but for families trying to make ends meet, it is nothing less than crucial.

In an attempt to meet this need, Family Promise of Midland partnered with My Community Federal Credit Union to host a financial management training event for current and former Family Promise families last week.

The hands-on event featured representatives from businesses and organizations around the community ...

 • read the rest of this MRT report ... 




C.S. Lewis Daily - Today's Reading

Presented by Bible Gateway
Today's Reading

TO MARY WILLIS SHELBURNE: On the return of Joy’s cancer.

18 October 1959

Will you redouble your prayers for us? Apparently the wonderful recovery Joy made in 1957 was only a reprieve, not a pardon. The last X Ray check reveals cancerous spots returning in many of her bones. There seems to be some hope of a few years life still and there are still things the doctors can do. But they are all in the nature of ‘rearguard actions’. We are in retreat. The tide has turned. Of course God can do again what He did before. The sky is not now so dark as it was when I married her in hospital. Her courage is wonderful and she gives me more support than I can give her. The dreadful thing, as you know, is the waking each morning—the moment at which it all flows back on one.


From The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis
Compiled in Yours, Jack

Today in the PC-USA Mission Yearbook

The Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is a daily devotional with 365 inspiring mission stories that come from next door and all across the globe. It inspires thousands of Presbyterians daily as they uphold the mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in intercessory prayer. How often have you wondered, where are the young adults in the PC(USA)? Wonder no longer. The 2014 Presbyterian Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study is devoted to the theme of young adults in the church. Its stories, many told by young adults, lift up how Presbyterians of all ages are engaging and joining with Presbyterian young adults in reforming the church for Christ’s mission.


Today in the Mission Yearbook: May 21, 2015

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO (continued) - Thunder pounded. Lightning flashed. The heavens opened wide. Packed into a Toyota Land Cruiser, we made our desperate flight from Kaniema, a border town in Katanga near East Kasai. The rains meant destruction of the road; time was short. While all of us were enjoying fellowship and the thrill of coursing along Congo’s treacherous roads, Pastor Mukenge sat silent. The rains signaled our mission would be cut short. Our visit to the adjacent region of Kanyintshina would be postponed. Our friend looked like a boy on the verge of tears. I found myself fixated on his downcast spirit ...

CLICK HERE to read more.