Sunday, January 9, 2011

Happy New Year!

January 9, 2011 – Happy New Year! :)

Dear Family and Friends!

“…God does great things, and unsearchable, marvelous things without number…” –Job 5:9
“…But God knows the way that I take; when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold…” Job 23:10

Short Version
*Mercy Teams - “Can you hear me?  I can’t hear you…” – the joy and frustration of communicating via the internet, with my story teams in South Asia!
*Tea Town Teams – It would be great if the final recordings of their stories could happen in March, but there is a lot of work to do between now and then.  There are also concerns for visas and health for colleagues involved…
*How might God describe you?...and Hold fast! (Chronological Bible Reading Update…) - I am reading through the Bible in (hopefully!) less than a year for the second time in my life.  Here are some thoughts from recent readings in Job…

Longer Version:
Mercy Teams- “Can you hear me?  I can hear you…” – Over the past few weeks, I’ve had several skype calls with my teams in South Asia.  For the most part, technology has been wonderful and truly aided the work- allowing the teams to share what they have been doing, and giving me insight into their lives and their work, so I can help guide and direct.  The frustration of bad connections is outweighed by hearing the voice of ‘Abraham’s’ daughter in the background, or solving a technical issue through a lot of patience!  Abraham, Andrew and Adam from the Mercy team have all asked for prayers for their families, and their story work.

Tea Town Teams- Final Recordings in March?– Lazarus (my on-the-ground point man for these 6 teams) recently wrote that he will be meeting with the teams again soon.  I am hoping they will be ready for final recordings in March, however there is much to be accomplished by that time.  In addition, “Alice,” an Eastern European woman who helps with some of the logistics of these projects is waiting to get her visa to return to Tea Town- she does not know when this will be granted.  In addition, “Eduardo”- a South American man who has agreed to help with final recordings has recently shared that his wife has had increased medical complications.  These two people are essential to these projects finishing (at least in my minimal view of things!)!  We are all eager for these unreached groups to hear His story, and the Enemy is just as eager to stop the work, as we get closer to that reality.  And yet, I know that God is in control, and as usual, He is giving me yet another opportunity to trust Him for the outcome, and timing!

*How might God describe you?...and Hold fast… (Chronological Bible Reading Update…) - The past few days, I read Job and was struck by God’s description of Job- (chp 1: 8, and chp 2:3- “Have you considered my servant Job…a 1) blameless, 2)upright man, who 3) fears God, and 4) turns away from evil.’  I thought about each of these qualities and wondered if I could ever receive such a description.  I certainly asked God to grow me in these areas!

The story of Job is fascinating.  As Job questions God’s good presence in his life, his friends don’t offer very helpful advice.  Even Job’s wife suggests that Job turn and curse God.  In Job’s most desperate time, He is alone, and eventually, it is God himself who answers his questions.  This is a reminder to Job that everything in life will eventually fail him, but God remains constantly present in our lives.  He is One we can depend and He will never let us down, even through suffering and frustration.  Although it is not easy, it is a joy and truth to hold fast to!  “For I know that my redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth.  After my skin has been thus destroyed, yet in my flesh I shall see God.” – Job 19:25-26.  It is my prayer that my confidence and dependence is firmly fixed on the One who can hold me, and everyone else, no matter what!

Praise for encouraging time home with family over Christmas.
Praise & prayer for good communication with teams in South Asia
Prayer for Tea town teams: Alice’s visa and Eduardo’s wife’s health concerns.
Prayer for my upcoming trip to South Asia in February-March.

Picture: Enjoying a few inches of snow while at home for Christmas! (my sisters Jennifer and Natalie)
Til All Have Heard,

~ Elizabeth

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