April, 2016 Update

Greetings from Rwanda. I trust this letter finds you blessed and enjoying the fullness of your relationship in Christ.

In my last letter, I stated we had begun one weekly children’s Bible club and I was greatly desiring to begin another. One week later, we were able to obtain a location to rent, and began our new Bible club. Each club hosts well-over 100 children each week to hear the gospel. Their eagerness to learn, their excitement to share their Bible verses, and even their greeting me with memorized songs or verses we have learned when they see me throughout the week are a delight.

Randall and Jennifer Smith, who joined me here in Rwanda last October, have been a tremendous asset to the ministry of Love Alive. They have returned to the USA for a few weeks, and I am fervently praying that their time there is of great encouragement, rejuvenation, and spiritual uplifting as they see family and friends and accomplish all they need to do while there. We (I and so many Rwandans here) eagerly look forward to their return. Prior to their departure, Randall held our largest Bible Study Training seminar yet with about 400 attending. These attendees from 5 village churches were extremely excited to hear this “theology professor,” they are eager for him to come back and teach more courses, hoping they will also earn certificates! That same week, we were able to give 100 Bibles to one of the participating churches.

One of the most unique things we have had the privilege of being a part of most recently is helping two young boys obtain prosthetic legs. Each of these boys was living in the streets, begging to make a living when I met them. At ages 13 and 17, living in a country where about 85% of the people subsist on manual labor, life without a leg offered few opportunities. Even education became more difficult due to the rugged terrain and many mountains and hills, making getting to and from school miles away almost impossible. Eric, age13, has now received his leg, is in school and studying well, receiving physical therapy, and will soon be reunited with his mother. Isaac, age 17, whose leg was amputated due to cancer 3 years ago, has already returned to his family, who is actively involved in this process, and is excited about returning to school next year. He has been fitted and is to receive his new leg next week. I consider it such a blessing to be a small part in impacting the lives of these young boys that they may see the love of Christ and be blessed with hope and opportunity.

Our Salon and Sewing centers continue to go on well, with our students excelling. Due to an outpouring of sponsorship, we have been able to accept an additional 40 students. In truth, we are seeing so many blessings and God’s hand in our work, that I am completely sure it is due to our friends and partners who are bathing us in prayer. Thank you so much for praying on our behalf. I pray that God rewards you richly in spiritual blessings for you kindness toward us.

This past month our students each wrote letters to their sponsors, expressing their gratitude. Each letter stated prayers of God’s blessings for their sponsor. Several letters also stated, “I pray God gives you everything you wish for and grants you success.” As I translated these letters, I thought, “Wow, that’s a big over-the-top;” however, later that week, I happened to read Psalms 20:4 May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed. I think these kids are on to something.

In gratitude to each person who prays for or gives to this ministry, I pray that God may give you the desires of your heart and make your plans succeed.

 

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