"For my name will be great among the nations, from the rising of the sun to its setting." Malachi 1:11

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Warren Family Update - July 2009

Greetings from our little corner of Swaziland! As most of you are experiencing some pretty HOT temperatures, and enjoying those beautiful summer nights grilling outside ... it feels more like we should be celebrating Christmas here! Although I must say that I am thankful for the change in temperatures, and not complaining!!!! We pray that each of you had a wonderful 4th of July celebrating the gift of our freedom.

As I sat to begin to write this update to you on all the happenings here in Swaziland, God gently tugged at my heart and had a different plan for this month's newsletter. Today I'd like to share with you what I was reading when He spoke .....

"And then he told them, 'Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.' " Mark 16:15 (NLT)

(The following story was taken from a Proverbs 31 Ministry Devotion I received written by Tracie Miles, www.proverbs31.org)

"I recently heard about a little boy who was involved in a serious accident, and lay in a coma in the hospital with massive internal injuries. The following day, the little boy's kindergarten teacher was talking to the students about the accident, and asking for suggestions on what they could do for their injured classmate. Several children made suggestions such as taking food, writing cards and drawing him pictures. Then one little girl suggested that the class could pray for him. A few seconds passed, and then a young boy, who had been intently listening to the discussion, asked quietly, "What is prayer?" The little girl proceeded to tell him how Christians pray to Jesus. The boy looked at her inquisitively for a moment, and then said, "Who is Jesus?"

This little girl, along with a few other classmates, proceeded to witness to this young boy, telling him all about Jesus. They shared that He is God's Son and was sent to earth to die on the cross for our sins so that we could have eternal life and go to Heaven. The teacher stood there with tears in her eyes, as these precious little children, barely knowing their ABC's, shared the gospel with intense knowledge, passion and commitment, and without any hesitation or fear. They were proud of their Jesus, and wanted to share God's love and promises with this little boy, who was completely unaware of Jesus.

We can be there too, just in a different circumstance, with different people, and at a different time. I was reminded that opportunities for sharing the good news of Jesus are everywhere: around every corner, in the next cubicle, in every neighborhood, and in every classroom. We simply have to grasp the opportunities that are presented. Scripture tells us that everyone will be accountable to God (Romans 14:12), even if they have not heard of Him, which is the basis for global missions work. As Christians, it is our duty to make sure that people become aware of Jesus.

As I sat and read this story, my heart just melted. It reminded me again of how we need to be continually praying for God's "eyes" every day to see those all around us who are lost or need encouraging, the ones He is calling US to share His message of love with. I couldn't wait to share the story with Bert, and after I finished reading it to him, he shared this story with me ....

"It was past noon as Pastor Masuku and I were returning from follow up ministry work and making our way along the long gravel road back home. We came upon four teenage boys who were flagging us for a ride into the next town. (It is very common here to give rides to those who are asking if you are able, so to these young boys it was not uncommon for a perfect stranger to stop and pick them up.) After the four boys squeezed into the back seat and we were on our way, I told them that this ride was going to be different. It was going to cost them to ride. Silence fell among them all as they heard my words. I asked if they would like for me to tell them the cost of the ride, and nervously one of them answered, “Yes”. I explained that the cost of this ride would simply be that they would have to listen to the difference that Christ had made in my life. They listened as I shared my testimony. We were now entering the small town where they needed to go. As I was pulling up to the curb to let them out I asked if there was anyone who would also like to have the assurance of salvation in their life as I had in mine. Instantly one of the boys said, “Yes, I would like to know how!" So, we all got out of the truck, and stood right there on the sidewalk in town. We explained from the Bible how to repent and place your belief in Christ for eternal life in Him. Today, Mandla Tsabedze Nkulalini is our brother in Christ. The cost of his ride cost the same as our ride ... nothing, but to repent and believe, receiving the gift of salvation through the grace and mercy God the Father has for us all."

The people we encounter can be a divine appointment… whether it be here in Africa or back home in the US. It IS our responsibility to share His message of love, we are not responsible for their decision .... ultimately that is their choice. BUT how can they make this life-changing decision if they've never heard? May God shine in and through you as you continue to serve Him wherever He places you ....

Praises/Prayer Requests:

~ Praise the Lord for a wonderful time of ministry with Hunter & Brinkley Johnson (South Roanoke Association Team), and Rev. Steve Willis & Jeremy Allen (West Virginia Team), and for their hearts to serve and share the love of Christ with the people of Swaziland.
~ Continue to pray for direction in future orphan and HIV/AIDS ministry, and also for partnerships with other mission organizations. Meetings are being scheduled to meet with Samaritan's Purse, and the Red Cross. Pray for the Lord's will to be accomplished.
~ Pray for the Lord to be glorified through the new structural changes that are being implemented beginning this month by the IMB. (www.imb.org)
~ Pray for the many new believers throughout Swaziland, as they begin their walk with the Lord. Pray that they would seek Him with all their hearts and be grounded in His word daily.
~ Continue to pray for Lisa's Dad, Lloyd Claiborne, as he continues to recover from his stroke. Pray for strength and patience as he seeks to regain use of his left side.

Thank you for all your love, support and prayers and the many different ways you are ministering to our family.

~ The Warren Family ~
bert, lisa, jessie, matthew & sarah

SPECIAL NOTE: We are in the final stages of completing a Ministry DVD to be shared with our prayer partners/churches back in the States. If you are interested in receiving one, please email us your mailing address. We'd like to say a "BIG" thank you to our home church, Euto Baptist, for copying and distributing these DVD's !!!!

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