Thursday, January 26, 2012

Ministry Wish List

Ok, here goes! This post is kind of hard for me to write but I am going to give it a shot.

We are asked all the time, "What are some things that you need for your ministry?" We generally respond with the basic necessities, "First and foremost prayer" (which is by far the absolute most important thing) and then we continue with a few things that come to mind. We may list specific items that we are in current need of or we often just say, "Whatever you have will be great,"  and we honestly mean that. Our answer is generally followed by a few more questions which are generally trying to lead us to more specifics and some real concrete needs.

I love the heart of the people that support us and want to help! They truly are genuine, but sometimes it is humbling to say or admit that there are needs that you have. It is somewhat out of my character to ask for something or admit that it would be great to have a specific item, maybe it was the way I was raised. :)

Without exception, the concerned asker always says this statement, "Eric, we can't meet a need if we don't know about it."

The first few times I shrugged it off and went on about my business, but as this same conversation played out time and time again, God allowed me to truly see that His people want to be involved in reaching people with the Gospel and sometimes that means meeting tangible needs.

After many people encouraged me to make a "wish list" and make it known, I decided to take their advice and do it.

When you read this list you may think, "Wow, that's some big stuff" and some of it is, but when you are serving the One who owns it all, nothing is too big, right?

If you or your church/ministry are in the position to meet any of these needs, let us know.

So here it is: Our ministry wish list.  (In no particular order)

1. A. 15 Passenger Van

We are constantly transporting mission teams and supplies all over the reservations that we minister to. First Pima Baptist Church has been very gracious to allow us to use their church van on a regular basis, however when our family of four, (soon to be 5) is in the van it only allows us to transport 10 or 11 more people and our mission teams are often 20 to 25 people.

It doesn't have to be this nice or new, but at least it gives you a visual.

2. Folding tables (life time brand) and metal folding chairs.

Most every place that we minister is outside in the desert with little supplies and materials. The people who come to the church services we have or the kids that come for VBS often have to sit and work on the ground or a blanket. It's not the easiest thing to do in the desert :)

Something like this. They can be six or eight feet.

Any amount of these would be great

3. Video Projector

We could and would use one of these in countless numbers of situations. From the youth ministry at First Pima, to our church plant in Cockelburr, and all of our summer missions teams.

Something like this, however it could be any brand or size
4. Portable sound system

The people to which we minister are an outdoor culture. Most events we do are outside (revivals, church services, VBS, crusades, etc.) Not having a portable sound system limits the outdoor events that we can do.

Something like this that would give us the ability to project sound over a large area and has the capacity for microphones, music sound, etc.
5. Box Trailer

Like I said earlier, we cover a large amount of ground in our ministry which requires a lot of driving. Many times we are transporting construction materials and tools to rural villages to work or taking everything to have a VBS in a village several miles into the desert. Having a trailer would allow us to easily transport all of the supplies we needed without having to unload each night and re-load each morning. It would also help to secure our belongings while traveling.

This size would be ideal. At least 8 foot long or longer, but not huge, I have a 1/2 ton V8 pickup truck.
6. Craft Projects

We are constantly in need of different kinds of craft projects to do.  We do 1-2 craft projects a week on a consistent basis.  Projects that already come together are ideal (like in Oriental Trading magazine or sometimes they have them at Walmart and Hobby Lobby).  They are usually easier for the kids to do, and we always know that everything comes with it.

Here is just one example, but anything would be great!
7. Stand-up Shop lights.

Many times the things that we do during the school year have to be done after the kids get home from school and since everything is outside it doesn't give us much time to do alot before it gets dark. If we had 2 or 3 sets of these lights it would lengthen the time we could spend in the villages.

Here is an example of what I am talking about.
8. Generator

Many of the places that we work do not have a healthy supply of electricity, if any at all. If we had a generator it would give us the capability to have power when and wherever we needed. It wouldn't have to be huge just big enough to run tools, lights, etc.

Something like either one of these would be ok.

Thank you for taking the time to read our ministry wish list. As God provides we will use these items to help further the Gospel among the Native American people that He has called us to serve.

Even if you cannot personally donate one of these items, please pass this along to those who may be able to help.

In Christ,


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Latest Happenings

We have now been back in AZ for almost a week after spending Christmas and New Years with our families and friends back in KY!  We had an amazing couple of weeks there, but it does feel good to be back.  We feel refreshed and ready to get back into doing ministry!!

Unfortunately for us, our first couple of days back were spent saying goodbye to our friend, Doug.  Can I just say that I hate goodbyes?  I really do.  It's always hard to say bye to someone that you are close to and spend most everyday with.  In the past year, I think I can count on one hand the number of days our family did not see Doug (with the exception of when we were out-of-town).  He is more a part of our family than our friend.  Our son, Brayden (age 3 at the time), was the one who pointed that out to us.  We had only been in AZ a couple of months and we were talking about all the new things that we loved or liked.  I said, "Brayden, aren't you glad that we were able to meet Doug and now he's our friend?"  He answered back, "Mom, he's not our friend.  He's our family!"  And he was exactly right.

Doug at his first going away party!

We are really going to miss him terribly (who's kidding? we already miss him) but we are super excited for him and the new journey he is on.  For those of you who don't already know, Doug moved to KY to go to Mid-Continent University to finish his degree in Missions and Evanglism.  We know he's going to do well, and we know that God has big things in store for his life!

Eric and Doug

Doug and his dad, Joker

Here he is with his three kids- Honey, Casey, Levi
At the first going away party at the church, Eric was able to give a short "sending out" message.  Doug was able to share from his heart also.  He recapped the journey that God had him on and told of how God had totally transformed his life.  He had many family and friends that were there that needed to hear this message.  He told them that his desire was to see them going to church and following Christ.  It was a great party/service.

Our friends, Ken and Thurleen, were able to come up from Hickiwan to the party too!

He arrived in KY Monday night.  We  want to thank those KY friends who were able to go meet him at his new house for his surprise welcoming party.  We talked with him after everyone left, and he was truly appeciative and even a little overwhelmed at how many people came and brought groceries, gift cards, etc.  He said, "I don't deserve all this." 

Please continue to pray for him and us as we figure out how to minister without each other :)

On a ministry note, we went out to Cockelburr yesterday to check on everyone.  Everything seemed to be going well.  They said they were ready to start meeting again for church! So, next week Eric will lead the adults and I will teach the kiddos.

Tonight, our youth service starts back up at First Pima.  We got to see most all the youth at church Sunday morning, but we are ready to see the rest tonight. Wednesday nights are always a fun time with our youth and we can't wait to get that going again!

Tomorrow we are heading out to the village of Chuichu to check on everyone and see how things are.  We are going to be talking with the lady that lets us have events at her house to discuss future projects this year.  This village is going to be our big focus for this year.  We can't wait to see what God has in store!

We are also getting everything started for mission teams this spring and summer.  We have 2 weeks that no one has officially signed up for.  Let us know asap if you want to come out this spring or summer!

Last year was so awesome that it is hard to think about this year being any better, but our God is BIG and POWERFUL and does GREAT THINGS so we just wait with anticipation on what He is going to do this year!

Thanks for your prayers and support!