Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Ministry Update from Labasa, Fiji

Bula and blessings!





We are enjoying this time in the Fiji islands. The opportunity to be
here is a privilege, and we endeavor to be good stewards of it. God has been
gracious in revealing His purposes for each location we have stayed in
and leading us in how we as a team can share our specific gifts to the
best of our abilities.





Already, here in Labasa, we have seen fruit of our labors. As we have
shared in the local prison, bagged groceries for distribution to more than 250 poor families, prayed for the sick in the hospital, visited the
elderly in a nursing home, shared in a couple cell group meetings, and held a
kids’ club and church service, people have opened their hearts. We have
seen God save people, heal them, and touch their hearts.





One month into the outreach we have been able to pray for various
ministries as well as specific individuals. The YWAM ministry here in
Labasa, called “The Lighthouse” focuses on community outreach and
strategic prayer. During our 10 short days here we have been working
with Christian Outreach Center. On Sunday, I preached a word to the
church and we prayed for church members and spoke prophetic words over
them. I felt moved to pray for the children and the Pastor and his wife.
There are many Indian families in the neighborhood surrounding the
church which the Pastor has a heart to evangelize and disciple. We
blessed him and his wife and felt God would increase the ministry of the
church very soon, including salvations among the Indians, women’s
ministry through the instruction of the pastor’s wife, and people being
raised up to lead and minister the Gospel. The church members are
invited to a weekly family night here at the Lighthouse where we play
games and eat refreshments.





There are a couple stories Cynthia has told me that I’d like to share.
In Nadi, she got to talk to some Japanese students who were studying
English. They had never heard of Jesus or God, so she had a fun and
interesting time trying to find the words in English to describe God
with them and the idea that He wants to have a relationship with them.
She was trying to explain that there is a book from God that He wrote
for us called the Bible. She described it as an “e-mail”, which they
understood! It was a great experience for her to explain the Gospel to
people who had yet to ever hear it.





Earlier this week at a nursing home Cynthia sat next to an elderly
Indian woman who seemed just like a grandma to her. The woman allowed
Cynthia to pray for her and held onto Cynthia’s knee the entire time.
The woman said that she felt like Cynthia was her daughter. Through an
interpreter the woman told her that she had felt lonely and without
hope, which is exactly what Cynthia felt God say as she prayed for her.
Cynthia told this to the lady and told her own story, about how Jesus
gives us hope and in Him, we need never be lonely. The woman received
Jesus into her life and was encouraged to hear that she would one day
meet Cynthia again, in heaven! They smiled and laughed- it was a great
time for them both.





Jake shared his testimony in the prison last week. He shared his own
personal account of having spent time in jail for a day, due to some
unpaid debts from his past. We had to go back to his old hometown and
hear from the judge what the charge was. The judge told him that he had
to pay some outstanding fees. When we went to the place to pay, a woman
handed Jake a paper releasing him from the charge and stamped in red on
the paper were the words, “Paid in Full.” Jake told the prison mates
that that is what Jesus came and did for us. He paid our debt in full
and we are free and given a new life.





God uses the girls to share the gospel, too. Our family was in a taxi
and the driver was Hindu. I felt like God wanted him to know the story
of Jesus. As soon as I had that thought Kiera said to me, “Mommy, Jesus
died for us didn’t he?” I said, “Yes, Kiera. He did.” She then asked,
“Why did he die?” I told her, “Because he loves us and he wants us to
love each other.” We talked for a couple minutes about that. I wonder at
God’s ability to speak through our kids by them just being the gifts
that they are. I hope the taxi driver heard the truth being shared in
our conversation.





This base- the staff and present DTS- has blessed our team! It started
with them showing us our beautiful rooms and serving us coffee and fresh
doughnuts! Each day we have shared wonderful meals, sang, worshiped,
and played together. After a week full of ministry some of us took a
break and watched the movie “Up” last night. That was fun! One day there
was a huge rainstorm with incredibly strong winds. The next day a haze
stretched across the town. (There is a great view of the town of Labasa
here from the Lighthouse, as well as a view of the ocean.) That morning
after the storm we had breakfast outside on the patio overlooking the
view- it was beautiful.





This is a funny story. Julianna has been making more baby talk and on
Sunday, upon meeting the Pastor, she literally said, “Bula!” to him!
Ha-ha! The perfect baby syllables came out of her mouth. “Bu-la!” How
cute!





It is wonderful to have the joy and love that Jesus brings to those He
loves. My encouragement to you today is to spend time with the One who
holds your life in His loving and kind hands. It is so good to spend
time with our Savior, friend, and Lord!





“The very same God, who put things in orbit, runs to the weary, the
worn, and the weak. And the same gentle hands that hold me when I’m
broken, they conquered death to bring me victory! I know my Redeemer
lives… I know my Redeemer lives. Let all creation testify and this life
within me cry, “ ‘I know, my Redeemer lives!’ “





May His rain fall upon you!!!!







Michelle



for the Chico DTS team

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