Saturday, April 28, 2012

Baptist Indian Fellowship

Wow!  This last week has been crazy! We are currently in the process of getting geared up for our summer. We have been planning mission team projects, organizing supplies, making calls and visits, and trying to get everything in line. Things are going good; summer is just coming fast!

On top of all of that, I had the wonderful privilege of speaking at The Baptist Indian Fellowship Crusade this year. It is a five night event where eight Native American Churches come together for one reason and that is to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

The BIF crusade has been going on for years. They have had speakers from all over the country come in and speak over the years. So when they asked me to speak, I was extremely humbled and overwhelmed all at the same time. But I can truly say it was an awesome experience.

The crusade takes months and months to plan. There are a lot of man hours that go into making an event like this happen. But the thing I was the most impressed with was the amount of prayer that these churches put into the crusade. They met together often to plan and pray. They prayed for the churches, the speaker (me), the reservations, and most of all the people who would be coming.

I loved seeing all the churches come together! It was not something that you see every day. The eight churches that currently make up the BIF are spread all over the Central and Southern part of Arizona. Some of them traveled several miles to make it to the crusade each night. Mainstream American churches could have learned a lot from being a part of this crusade. Each night different churches were in charge of "serving."  They would take care of the nursery, food, and their choir would sing.

Getting ready to walk step by step through the Gospel- Night #1
Our Native American Churches are not lot large in size and there aren't a great deal of believers, but the believers that make up these churches are faithful. They were there and ready to go each night. And they were very gracious with this young Kentucky boy. They loved on me and encouraged me and prayed for me like I had never experienced before.

It was a pretty full house each night!

One thing I love about Native Life on the reservation is that it is an outside culture. We could have very well met inside in the church, but everyone wanted to meet outside under the Ramada. They wanted not only those who were present to hear the Gospel, but they also wanted the entire community to hear it as well. So we cranked up the sound system and the Gospel went out.

All Nations Baptist Church preparing to sing

Our family truly feels blessed to serve alongside such a great group of believers! The entire BIF has made us feel like family. We look forward to each time we get to see all of them.

Felix Juan- BIF Chairman
Please pray for him as he leads.

Like I said. I was truly humbled to be able to be asked to speak at the crusade this year. The Gospel was proclaimed and God was glorified.

Please make this group a part of your daily prayer life.

Here are the churches that make up the BIF:

First Pima Baptist Church
Santan Baptist Church
Casa Blanca Baptist Church
Blackwater Baptist Church
Mesa Baptist Indian Fellowship
All Nations Baptist Church
First Indian Baptist Church
First Papago Baptist Church

In Christ,

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Summer Interns

We would like to introduce you to the newest team members of Live Love Ministries!!

Mark and Jessi Davis will be our summer interns!!

We are so excited to have them come out and serve with us this summer!!  We look forward to all that God has in store for them and us!!

It's hard to believe they will be here in a month and the summer will be starting!! 

Please be in prayer for our summer: projects and mission sites, mission teams, our new interns, and our family as we prepare for the busiest time of the year!!


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Hardin Baptist Mission Team

(Taken the last night @ Chuichu)

The week of March 17-23 we had a mission team from Hardin Baptist Church in Hardin, KY come out and help us.  The team consisted of 28 people!!  (By far, the largest team we have ever had.)  This was a special team to us because Hardin Baptist is our home church, and it was great to see some familiar faces.  Also, a part of the team were my (Brittany) parents.  And although we knew several team members, some were new to us because they are college students that attend Murray State and are new to the church since we moved.  So, it was great meeting new people as well.

We started the week by attending church on Sunday at First Pima.  Several of the team members taught a Sunday School class and Chris Lawrence, college pastor at HBC, brought the message that Sunday morning.  It was a great day of worship!!

Breakfast together and time to get to know one another

Whitney, Lauren, and Taylor singing a special song

Chris preaching

I should also mention that the first couple of days that this team was here were the COLDEST days of the year.  Funny that it was their spring break and you usually associate spring with sun :)  It rained and even hailed on Monday of that week.  It was the first time that it had rained since Christmas and the first time it had hailed since we have lived here.  It was absolute craziness!!

But they were troopers!!  They just kept going anyway!!

Sunday night was supposed to be a cookout in the village of Chuichu to promote what we were going to do that week.  We did end up having it but it was very cold and not many people came out.  Also, part of the team broke down on the side of the road in our new, but very used van that we recently bought.  The team named the van Hardcore 101 because that is what the former owner put on the front windshield.  So, that group had to wait for me to come pick them up and take them back to church at First Pima.  The thing about this whole event was that the group loved it.  They got to explore the desert while they were waiting for me to pick them up, and according to them, they had the best service that night at the church sharing testimonies.  I hate that I had to miss it to go pick up the rest of the team.
Trying to keep warm by the fire

Love this picture of Katie playing basketball and wearing her gloves

Cooking the hot dogs
Poor Roger was so cold

Hardcore 101 broke down on the side of the road:(  

On Monday, the team split into two groups.  One group went door-to-door in Chuichu that morning and spent the afternoon painting at First Pima.  The other group started building the ramada in Chuichu.  The ramada is going to be the place where we start having church services. 

Unloading all the building materials

Brayden holding the hail

Master painters

The hallway crew

Every night during the week, the team did a Kids Camp in Chuichu.  There were classes for all ages, even adults.  It was neat to see the adult class go from very few to having over 10 the last night.  This is a huge deal in this village!!!

When we pulled up Monday night to get started with the Kids Camp this is what we saw as we drove up:

We had no idea they would get this much done in 1 day!!

Here are some pics from Kids Camp that night:

Zack sharing his testimony

Tuesday was a day spent on the Tohono O'odham reservation.  Our first stop was at a new village we have just started working with called Kohatk.  While there, the team went door-to-door in the village and we had a Bible study at one of the homes.  There were only 3 people that were in attendance, but that is 3 more than were there the week before.  It was a great Bible study!!  Everyone participated and one person for sure was thinking about what it means to be saved!!

Margaret playing with our kiddos :)

After leaving Kohatk, we went to the next village up the road- Cockleburr.  The team passed out bags filled with hygiene items and coloring books donated by New Covenant Christian Academy and also some other goodies donated by Maddie Ross's school (sorry I forgot the name).  They also got the chance to share the Gospel with some of the people in the village.  Seeds were definitely planted here!!  Other team members spent time with the kids that were there.

Eric and his buddy Clinton

David and Martha talking with Clinton and Melissa

Some of the team sharing the Gospel at this house

Coloring and playing with the kids

Mariah and her buddy Angel

We finally got to eat lunch about 4:30 that day!! :)  We had a picnic outside at a beautiful spot.

Then it was off to Chuichu for some more Kids Camp and to see the progress of the ramada!!

Wednesday was spent with most of the group doing door-to-door in Sacaton during the day.  I think we knocked on 90% of the doors in Sacaton.  They invited them to church at First Pima and some of them got the chance to share the Gospel!!  Some of the group got the chance to visit the group home and invited the kids to youth group that night.  And guess what?  They actually came!!  This was huge!  We have never been able to get that to happen until this day!!

Eric giving the instructions

Off they go!!

These guys had a long conversation!!

Stephanie and Margaret had an awesome convo with this girl!!

I think Chris was a little tired :)

Here are some pics of Kids Camp that night:

Ryan sharing with the adults

Tired Boy

Thursday morning was spent going door-to-door in District 2.  During the afternoon, most of the team went back to Kohatk (to build an outhouse and visit) and Cockleburr (to follow-up with the guys they shared Christ with). 

Wish I had a picture of the finished product, but that's the beginning :)

Thursday night was the last night of Kids Camp.  We had such a great week out at Chuichu.  The team was able to get finished with the ramada.  John and some other team members were able to fix CB's propane tank so that she could have hot water and they fixed some plumbing as well.  CB was so thankful and tears just flowed down her face with gratitude.  She was so excited about the ramada and being able to use her space to bring glory to God! 

After all the kids had been taken home, we met as a group with CB and her kids under the ramada for a time of prayer.  We also wrote our favorite Bible verses on the ramada.  We later learned that CB and her oldest daughter had Bible study under the ramada a couple of days later and looked up all the Bible verses that had been written!!!

We had an awesome week with an awesome team!!!  Many seeds were planted, and we can't wait for them to come back and hopefully see some of the harvest!!!  Thanks for all your hard work HBC mission team (#HBCarizona)!!