Dec. 6, 2022
I love the words from Luke, “A Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.” A Savior – born to us! If this had not happened… I shudder even to think. I’m looking forward to Christmas, gathering together as family and truly celebrating the coming of Jesus to be with us.
1. Thanks to so many of you who have been praying for my wife, Janna, as she is in the middle of the process of knee revision surgery due to infection. She has finished the IV antibiotics and now we wait to make sure the infection is completely gone. If so, surgery has already been scheduled for January 9 for the final knee placement, then rehab.
2. I will be traveling to California this weekend and for Monday and Tuesday following. I’ll visit a couple of churches, several pastors and will also be doing some much-needed raising of funds for our USMB ministries.
3. USMB staff members Henri Ngolo, Integrated Immigrant Coordinator, and Brian Harris, Church Planting Mobilizer, continue to work hard with their respective responsibilities, building a lot of connections and casting vision for enhancing our immigrant ministry and national church planting. Henri is well-respected among Congolese pastors and leaders and has already been doing much of this work on our behalf. He began a paid part-time position on the USMB staff November 1. God has graciously brought immigrant ministry to our doorstep. Connecting/partnering with these wonderful churches involves us all!
4. I’m encouraging all USMB churches to connect with another church for vital connection, relationship, fellowship and ministry engagement. Sister churches can provide a lot of synergy and fulfillment. As I’ve said before, I will continue to preach this vision over and over again: “Churches, let’s get outside of ourselves and happily connect with another church for a long and lasting relationship, whether that be a church close by or a thousand miles away, one similar to ours, an immigrant church or a church across the ocean.”
5. The National Pastor Orientation (NPO) planning committee met this week. The next NPO is scheduled for April 17-19 in San Diego. If your church has a new or fairly new pastor (lead, associate, worship, children’s, etc), make sure they attend the NPO, and with their spouse if married. It’s a great time for them to learn more about our USMB family and to get to know several district and national leaders and also their fellow pastors. Most churches provide funds for the travel and registration needed to attend. Some districts assist as well, and USMB significantly subsidizes the NPO.
6. Funds are needed immediately for supplying heating stoves for our Ukrainian brothers and sisters as winter approaches. Read here about the need and two ways to give right now (MB Foundation and Multiply).
7. As I mentioned above, I’m responsible for raising a significant portion of our USMB budget. Currently, our budget is in quite a deficit. Church giving/support continues to decline. Plus, I need to raise more this year to help cover some important things that we have recently implemented for increasing USMB’s ministry among our churches. Would you pray with me for the resources needed to continue to be able to provide crucial ministries and initiatives for our pastors and churches?
8. We’re increasing the development of the CORD program, a platform where churches can partner with a Congolese church (MB). And look at this! MB Foundation will match, dollar for dollar, funds needed to support one Congolese congregation in the CORD Program. Funding for one church costs $55,500, and MB Foundation is committed to matching the next $27,750 donated for this program. Thanks, MBF!
9. Please pray for me that the Lord might grant discernment, direction, wisdom, compassion, understanding, gentleness and grace. By the way, I am so thankful for our dedicated USMB staff. Thanks for your prayers!
10. Merry Christmas!
USMB National Director
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