Since we last wrote we have enjoyed the busy summer ministry season and some vacation time, and we have returned to the US for a brief home assignment. We were so encouraged by the things we saw God doing this summer, especially among the teens in our church.
As we were planning for our discipleship week this year, we saw many things coming together to make it a great week – two of our former interns were returning to help lead the music and the prayer groups; the teens from our church were volunteering to play with the worship music team; and, we were able to secure our favorite place to hold the retreat. But we couldn’t find any translators for the evening program. We were right down to the wire when two of our teen-aged girls offered to provide the translation. And they did a wonderful job. Many of our teens helped in ways we couldn’t have imagined just a few years ago. They invited their unbelieving friends and God worked in their hearts, too. We were so blessed to see them taking the lead. That was clearly God’s work. We are so thankful to have been there to witness what he did.
When we arrived at English camp, the teens who played for our discipleship retreat held a jam session one night for several hours in which they played and sang the worship songs they learned for the retreat. We were moved to see their zeal for praising God. The adult music team from our church was also pretty impressed and invited the teens to lead the music during one of our evening programs. That was a first!
One of the students at English camp this summer was a man who has attended for more than 10 years. In the past, he has had little interest in spiritual things, and avoided the parts of our program which were explicitly Christian. This year, he was present at every program; his attitude was noticeably changed, too. This was another evidence of God’s work.
We wrapped up the summer with a very productive planning retreat. Our Czech leaders took the lead for part of the retreat, and created plans for themselves to step into new roles in the coming year. We were very encouraged!
Please pray with us for these things:
- That God would bless the work and the leadership of the Czechs who will step into new ministry roles over the coming year.
- That we and the Gradys would accomplish all that God has set before us over the next few months during our HMAs.
- That God would have mercy on Johnny’s mother as she is slowly fading from this world into the next.
- That God would bless and guide Madeline (Maddie) Edwards as she prepares for her mission service on the Czech team.
We are grateful for all you do to support and encourage our work. May the Lord bless each one of you as you seek his face.
Johnny and Annette