New Year, Same Faith

IMG_0060 Day after day, regardless of work accomplished the day before and regardless of the geography, the Lord calls for obedience. The call of our mission is each and every day. Like Moses at the burning bush, the Lord has called and we cry “Here am I.” Like Moses, we have been given the privilege to serve the Lord and we are well aware of our incompetency. And like Moses, Lauren and I are blessed to know evermore the faithfulness of our Lord and His provision. Later, Moses would pray my favorite psalm, Psalm 90, as a reminder of our brief and fleeting lives. “So teach us to number our days, so that we may learn to live wisely (v.12).” Each day is a blessing to be a part of God’s mission. Each is an opportunity to reflect glory to God and make his name known. Regardless of the situation, our prayer is that when God calls, we answer, “Here we are” and we follow. “So we must not grow weary in doing good, for in due time we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, whenever we have an opportunity, let us do good to all people… (Gal.6.9-10)” God help us to be faithful in the present, continuing in the works you have prepared for us here, as we excitedly await your timing for the ministry you have for us in South Africa. Amen.


IMG_0211

November 16th, the Lord blessed us with our second child. Our daughter, Lola Dené, is now nearly three months and is just gorgeous. Our son, Lennon William, is a year and half. He is monster of movement and activity. He enjoys entertaining and just adores his sister. Too much actually. Once again, we are incredibly blessed as a family and have a wonderful network of support. God is too good.

God has blessed our ministry at our local church as well. We lead a small group that began with six, and has grown in the several months to 12-14. Praise God for a small group of followers to bear burdens, pray, encourage and study the Word together! Continue to pray for this group we call, “The Lesser Project,” as we just finished the 40 major events in the Biblical narrative and are transitioning into a study on godly marriage. Lauren continues to lead two discipleship groups with several ladies and I am still meeting regularly for “Theology Thursdays” at work and am beginning a new discipleship relationship.

Mountain View Baptist Church in South Africa is seeing the fruit of the work of the Holy Spirit; souls rescued, repentance and baptism. The Somerset West campus is growing and developing leadership. Praise God for raising up national leadership to begin to take on more responsibility in the church. The Hermanus campus church plant has moved to a location neighboring a provisional settlement (township or “slum”). This has drawn many children to the church. Praise God! Pray that by loving and investing in these children Christ so loves, their parents and families may come to know this love as well! Pray for teammates and campus pastor Wade and Tara McComas who also just welcomed their fourth child!

As for us, if it hasn’t been made abundantly clear, we are blessed. God is providing us opportunities upon opportunities to share His love here and invest in lives. We had a busy end to 2016, sharing our ministry and God-given passion and call in churches. Beginning last March, God has provided us with 32{94115f3f0ce78e17ae6fab5620d08dd86260dffed70bcd9a5a0ccd2442dba6d2} of our necessary monthly support, and 40{94115f3f0ce78e17ae6fab5620d08dd86260dffed70bcd9a5a0ccd2442dba6d2} of our Outfit and Passage. We have been encouraged by each of these opportunities and conversations, hearing how God is working in each of these communities.

We are filling up the schedule with church visits and appointments with individuals interested in being more involved in our ministry. Please be praying over the upcoming ministry dates:IMG_5322

Friday, February 17: Journey Church – Columbus, OH; Sunday, February 26: Grace Baptist – Minford, OH; Sunday, March 5: New Community Baptist – Avon, OH; Saturday, March 11: Private Event – Columbus, OH

 


Praises & Prayer Requests

Answers:

Thank God for the additional partnerships of First Baptist, Tallmadge and the Kenoyer Foundation!

Thank God for all the rest of the Bell Bunch prayer and financial supporters (32{94115f3f0ce78e17ae6fab5620d08dd86260dffed70bcd9a5a0ccd2442dba6d2} of our committed monthly support has been provided)!

Praise God for healthy babies and a healthy mom!

Thank God for a new position that grants more flexibility and personal development.

Thank God for the blessing of discipleship relationships, fruitful ministry, and encouragement!

Praise God for a few hours to catch up with Tom and Nancy Wolf and worship together!

Praise God for all the children attending the Children’s Church at Mountain View Baptist in Hermanus, South Africa.

Thank God that He indeed is Almighty and sovereign above all.

Requests:

Pray for clear communication as we present our ministry and for those the Lord is preparing to partner with us.

Pray for the number of upcoming transitions (housing, ministry, etc.) as we move closer to our ministry in South Africa.

Pray for the ministries in South Africa and for our team there as they share the love of Christ.

Pray for guidance as we navigate many responsibilities and for wisdom as we balance our time.

Pray that we continue to grow and follow as God leads and guides us.

Pray that God may provide the next 18{94115f3f0ce78e17ae6fab5620d08dd86260dffed70bcd9a5a0ccd2442dba6d2} of our support in order for us to reach 50{94115f3f0ce78e17ae6fab5620d08dd86260dffed70bcd9a5a0ccd2442dba6d2} of our committed monthly support by July, and attend our next ABWE training seminar.