Today a friend shared a story with me. He said a lady he was talking to had been in a car wreck on Saturday(My friend runs a body shop). She was still very upset and stressed about the accident. My friend tried to let her know that the car is just a possession and that the good thing is she was not injured in the wreck. The next day she called back to talk about her car. She said that her daughter had called her on Monday and in their conversation, her daughter asked her why they have not had her funeral yet. Her daughter gave her a CD from NewPointe Church. The topic was Purpose is Essential. She loved the message and now knows why they have not had her funeral yet.
Do you know why we haven’t had your funeral yet? Why are you still here? If you want to find out check it out for yourself. Purpose is Essential
As many of you know, I was part of a team that went to Amman Jordan and then to Dohuk Iraq. I have been back a few days now and thought I would share some of my thoughts about the trip. The main purpose of this trip was to encourage the Christians in Iraq. We put on a conference for them in Dohuk for four days.
- I was surprised by all the progress in Iraq. Lots of construction and activity going on. We were in the Northern part of Iraq, which is a safer area. This area is definitely growing and thriving.
- There were a lot of young people. Young adults, teenagers and children were everywhere. I was surprised that most of them wore designer jeans and shirts. Kind of a European flare. I saw lots of children with suits and dresses on. Of course this was during one of their holidays after Ramadan.
- We heard that 80% of the Christians have left Iraq.
- The Christians in Baghdad and Mosul continue to be in danger. They must be very careful, because the terrorists are still very active in those cities. We met with 22 Christians from Baghdad and one family from Mosul.
- The Christians we met with really know the Bible well. It is obvious that they read it a lot and are hungry to learn more. They also are very passionate when they sing and worship.
- The people I met are very similar to us. They love their families and friends. They like to have fun, eat and fellowship. They face many of the issues that we do like finances, work, relationships, marriage struggles.
- The church in Dohuk is growing and they hope to build a new building soon. They have land, but need to develop it before they can build.
- There are some great possibilities for church plants in several cities near Dohuk. God is opening up doors in areas without Christian churches.
- The churches in Amman are changing. Most of the Iraq refugees have moved on, so now the growth is coming from Jordanians. We have two churches in Amman with young energetic pastors. We are looking at a third location in a newer part of the city.
- I am very encouraged after meeting the leaders in Amman and Iraq. These are strong, confident leaders that have a vision for their cities and country. These men and women are being strong and courageous for Jesus.
- We need to pray for the churches in Jordan and Iraq. Pray they have favor with the authorities. Pray that they are bold and courageous with their faith. Pray that families will be attracted to these churches. Pray that they can reach children and teenagers in creative ways. Pray for financial strength and integrity in the churches.
Everyone can play a part in helping in Jordan & Iraq. You can pray regularly for the churches there. You can give money to NewPointe’s missions budget to help fund the work. You can go on a mission trip and give your time. Pray, Give, Go.
Well, my trip to Jordan & Iraq was amazing. We had a chance to meet some great people and really encourage them. The language barrier was a little tough, but I made some friends without talking much. It’s amazing how similar people are no matter where you are from. Families, children and teenagers are all similar. We are just wrapping up the trip. About to head for home in about a half hour. When I get home I will be posting some pictures and writing out some of my takeaways from this trip. God had me here for a reason. I am so grateful for this opportunity to make a difference for Him.
God also had some lessons for me as well. Got to go for now.
We welcomed 22 people from Baghdad today. We had another 30 or so from Dohuk. Scott Bell started off the night by talking about God’s part and Our part in being good stewards. Afterward we had chicken and beef sandwiches and got to know each other better. Several could speak English, but most could not. Many young people, which surprised me. Lots of young families. This is very encouraging. I am up tomorrow morning at 10 am our time. I am talking about Debt and Elizabeth will talk about Counsel. Then we will participate in some baptism’s after lunch. They have an inflatable pool they set up tonight. I can’t wait to see the baptism.
I can see that family and their faith are very important to them. They are looking for meaningful relationships and to see hope in a difficult world. Many of the people we are meeting have great joy, even though they are living very hard lives. One young man talked about his job as a truck driver in Baghdad. He said it is very dangerous and he did not see much hope for improvement in the future in Iraq. My prayers go out to all those that are feeling that helpless and hopeless feeling. These few days are important. God is using this time to shape me and each of the people that are here. Well I need to work on my Debt talk. Blessings.
We are alive and well in Jordan. Made it in yesterday and went straight to a church to preach. I talked about Seeing yourself the way God sees you and not those around you. When David was annointed King, no one, not even his family believed he had King potential. But God told Samuel to annoint David King anyway. God looks at our hearts, not our outward appearance. He sees what is in us and what we could be, if we follow His plan. David went on to do great things for God, because he caught the vision God had for his life. He made mistakes along the way, but his heart was right.
I Got no sleep on the 11.5 hour flight over here, so I was exhausted last night. I Got a good night sleep last night until the 4:40 am Mosque loud speakers started blaring.
We are 7 hours ahead here, so I am getting ready to eat breakfast. We will spend the day in Ammon, and then leave for Northern Iraq tonight. Blessings