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An Update from the Dominican Republic

October 11, 2017

Even though it was just over two weeks ago, the devastation from Hurricane Maria seems to be long forgotten by so many – except for those still digging out, cleaning up, and trying to figure out their next steps. Although our friends with 2nd Mile Missions in Bavaro, Dominican Republic did not experience the devastation that people in Puerto Rico experienced, they did take on severe winds and flooding that damaged the church, school, House of Hope, and many homes in the nearby village of Monte Verde. 

Here is an update from Nancy Wildman

It was my first experience. I have been through tornadoes, an earthquake and even a tidal wave in Hawaii. But, I have never experienced a hurricane and hope I don’t have to ever again. If I learned one thing during the long night of howling 100 mile per hour winds, it was to have a new respect for the power of God. I realized that the fierce wind that could snap trees, destroy homes and churn the ocean waves was just a whisper of God’s power. It was a humbling, and scary, experience.

Many people offered prayers for our safety which we are so thankful for. Many people have also asked about the consequences of the storm and wondered how they could help. After spending some time evaluating the devastation we so thankful that there was not one life lost. The damages are repairable and we know it could have been so much worse.

We will be raising money to help pay for the repairs of the church, school and House of Hope. If you would like to help please go to the link to view more information and some photos of the devastation. We lost many trees and some playground equipment. A few roofs and fences need repaired. The church tent was totally destroyed so we are helping to create a new temporary meeting space until a more permanent building can be built.

We thank you for your continued prayers and concerns. We know God has a purpose for everything and believe that God’s power and purpose can be fulfilled sometimes better through the storms of our lives.

For more details on the damage, as well as being able to help with repairs, go to the 2nd Mile Missions Hurricane Relief Fund page. And please continue to pray for our missions partners as they experience these setbacks and hardships throughout their ministry.

making the connection | October 8, 2017

October 5, 2017

There is a famous old English poem called The Hound of Heaven by Francis Thompson. The poem emphasizes the relentless pursuit of a sinner by a gracious, loving God. Have you ever thought of God’s love as chasing after you ­– persistent like a hound in His pursuit of relationship with you?

The Bible is clear on the love of the Father, our Creator, and how He desires relationship with us, His creations. (Check out the following examples: Psalm 136:26; Ephesians 2:4-5; John 3:16; and Romans 5:8) God pursues us, not because of anything we have done or because we deserve it, but because He has an unfathomable love for us.

There was once perfect fellowship between humans and God. When sin entered, shame and guilt also entered. Because of the fall, that relationship was broken making our natural response to run and hide from God.

Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?” (Genesis 3:8-9)

What Adam and Eve did not realize in their disobedience is that the pursuit of God was to draw them out rather than shame them out. God knew where they were, but He provided an opportunity for them to respond by answering His call. He desired for them to freely come back to their relationship with Him. Scripture is filled with examples of God’s tender pursuit. The parables in Luke 15 of the Prodigal Son, the Lost Sheep and the Lost Coin are great illustrations of this truth.

No matter what we do, no matter how far we run, and no matter how sinful we are, God pursues us with an everlasting, perfect love. He will never give up and He is waiting for us to respond to Him. – Bonnie Swanson

  • What are some ways you have noticed God pursuing you?
  • Have you ever tried to run from God?
  • How do you respond to God when He asks, “Where are you?
  • Read 2 Peter 3:9. Praise and thank God for His gracious pursuit in your life and the world around you.

RESERVE YOUR TICKETS TODAY!

September 28, 2017

 

Fellowship Missions is thrilled to announce that they will be hosting a special screening of this highly anticipated film on Saturday, October 21, at North Pointe Cinema. Trust us when we say you do not want to miss this unique opportunity to support the mission.

You will certainly be challenged and inspired by the remarkable true story of an unlikely friendship that changes hearts and reshapes an entire community.

Tickets are $10 and all proceeds benefit the shelter as we seek to serve the homeless in Kosciusko County and beyond.

Doors will open at 9am, show begins at 10am.

Visit Fellowship Missions or call 574.268.9555 to reserve your tickets.

making the connection | October 1, 2017

September 27, 2017

And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” (Genesis 2:16-17, NIV)

“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. (Genesis 3:4-6, NIV)

Did you notice how easily Eve was convinced? Our first reaction might be to judge her. But pause and think about it for a minute. Maybe put yourself in her shoes or think about your own life. Do you ever question God’s plans? Or doubt His goodness? Or forget His faithfulness? Of course you do. You’re human and you live in a messy, complicated world.

When Eve listened to the serpent’s lies, she began to doubt God and question if He’d made the right choice for her. Why would God deprive her of wisdom and the enjoyment of food that looked so pleasing? Why was God holding out on her? She couldn’t see the whole picture and got caught up in what was right in front of her. That’s often the case for us as well. We get so focused on right here and right now that we can miss what’s really going on. We start to question God based on the small picture in front of us. But God is so much bigger and really does know what’s best for us.

God created us. He loves us. He is the only one who can truly meet our needs. God wants us to trust in His goodness. We have the opportunity each day to discover that goodness by listening to His voice and trusting His wise plans. Whatever may come our way, we can know that He is working for our good. – Sarah Neel

  •  In what areas of your life do you struggle to trust God the most?
    • God’s ability to meet your needs?
    • God’s ability to give you purpose?
    • God’s ability to work out all circumstances for your ultimate good?
  • We all struggle with not believing or trusting God with the details of our lives. Take some time to tell God about your struggles in this area. Ask Him to help you trust Him with more and more of your life.

Is Substitute Teaching Right For You?

September 26, 2017


Local school districts are experiencing a critical shortage of substitute teachers.
These positions offer flexible hours and allow for a rewarding experience! EDUStaff is seeking applicants for immediate employment within Warsaw Community Schools.

We are looking for people who:

  • Have a heart for children and education
  • Are available and want to work
  • Ideal for:
    • Retirees
    • Stay at home parents
    • College students with 30+ credit hours
    • Education majors
    • Recent college grads
  • Must be able to pass a background check

Please visit us at www.EDUStaff.org to learn more or call us at: 877-974-6338

Support your community! Make a difference! Apply today!

 

making the connection | September 24, 2017

September 20, 2017

With the ease of access to do-it-yourself instructions and idea-sharing websites like Pinterest, it has never been easier to make something on your own. For me, I enjoy the process of thinking through how I am going to design and make something. When I look back at the things I have made, they express parts of who I am and what I value.

God created Adam and Eve expressing parts of who He is and what He values. He created them (and us) in His image. God has certain hopes and plans in mind for His creation. Three desires He has for His creation are for us to:

  • know Him personally as our Heavenly Father
  • experience a loving relationship with Him
  • use the freedom He has given us to live in God honoring ways

Throughout our lives we are in the process of being transformed in His image. In order for us to grow and become who God intended us to be, we need to make our relationship with Him a priority. We may desire that relationship, but if we don’t take the time to read God’s Word and pray, it will not develop. When we have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ we have the Holy Spirit guiding and directing us. The Holy Spirit also nudges us when we get distracted from God and His plan for us. – Scott Nieveen

  •  How have you seen people in your life be intentional in growing in their relationship with God?
  • What is one thing you can do to get to know God better? Make a plan right now to commit to spending time with God this week.

Concerts with a Mission

September 19, 2017

Allowing Christ To Shine (ACTS) is a ministry dedicated to helping the people of Haiti. Founded by Clark Shepherd after the devastating earthquake of 2010, ACTS focuses on partnering with local churches to provide shelter, education, food, teaching the Word of God, and showing God’s love. It is transforming lives and communities! ACTS also organizes short-term missions trips to allow people to experience what God can do when His Spirit compels us to advance the kingdom.

ACTS organizes worship concerts every fall as a “thank you” to the Warsaw community for their support, and to raise a major portion of the funding for the ACTS schools. This year on Saturday, October 7, at 7pm come and hear Building 429 w/ Chris August in concert at the Warsaw Performing Arts Center. And on Sunday, October 29, at 7pm its Tenth Avenue North — I Have This Hope Tour at the Grace College OCC in Winona Lake. Experience great music and worship, while providing children of Haiti access to education and teachers who share God’s love. For concert tickets and more information, drop by the ACTS display in the lobby after Sunday’s service.