Joshua Ministry in America - Newsletter 



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Dear Ministry Partners


Greetings

It’s very HOT in Arizona. For weeks we waited for the Monsoon season so that we could experience some rain..... but along with the rain came the humidity. We are now learning to adjust and to take the weather.....one day at a time. This March, marked 3 years since we first came on mission to Arizona. We can hardly believe that it has been so long, and we thank God for every step in the journey. We have had 3 moves since December 2012 and in July, we accepted a 3 yr house sitting opportunity for a family who relocated to Canada to work. This is a real blessing.....and we thank God for them.


Building a community

Trust, love and respect grows when it is nurtured by spending time together. 'Hanging out' is what the Apache people like to do. This means attending events, like graduations, wakes and funerals, seasonal ball games, going fishing and swimming, accepting invitations to share meals etc and just simply using every opportunity to display Gods love. 


Our community is slowly growing and we see little by little how people are changing. We would like to see big things happen, but instead we are seeing small things happen in a big way. Like our atheist friend who has been coming to church for a few months now. A few Sunday's ago he took the tambourine for the first time during our singing. He was a base player in an Apache band and we are now practicing together hoping to start a church band. He attends our Friday night Bible study, comes to band practice on Wednesdays, church on Sundays, pops in at our house whenever he is in Globe and says that he no longer has strong atheistic beliefs. He also says that there is a battle going on inside as his thinking of following Jesus, so please do remember him in your prayers. 


One Sunday while preaching I could tell that a lady sitting in the front row was having some severe pain. We came together after the service and prayed for her. Before we started praying she was experiencing severe stomach spasms which caused her to jerk as we sat her down. After a few of us prayed, she burst into tears saying that the pain was gone – it was clear to all present that she was relieved from her discomfort.


We have also seen how the people are starting to take ownership of the church. Over the months, we have gone from us doing everything to others locking and unlocking the church, setting up the sound system,  managing the fans and the cooling/ heating system, someone counting and recording the offering, some doing the tea after the service, others opening the service in prayer and testimony, and making their ' I will' statements, etc. What started out as Michelle and I praying just before the Sunday service, has now grown into the men in the church gathering for prayer. The first week, they just gathered with us, but the second week, one of them opened in prayer. Please pray that more and more they begin to take the lead.


We are so excited to share that our church has decided to partner with a ministry in Cape Town, SA. As from 1 July, our childrens offering go to New Dawn Ministries in Kewtown. It warms our hearts and we thank God that our small fellowship is growing in their understanding of world missions. We pray that our little will become much as we place it in God’s hand.  


Superstitious

We continue to learn that the Apache are very mystical and superstitious. For instance a man who attends our Bible study said that he knew there would be a lot of deaths soon because of the red sunset the day before. He said that he’s grandfather taught him this. I know about that day, because I also saw the sunset and it was beautiful. I saw beauty, he saw death. It was the next day when we heard of the nineteen fire fighters who died while fighting a fire. He connected the red sunset to their deaths. We are learning not to correct them or argue against what they believe, but simply to believe that God is a great God and he can change their hearts. All He wants us to do is to show up, to be his hands and feet.


Oats on toast

For years I have been ridiculed by family and friends for eating oats on toast. Michelle shared this quirk of mine with the Apaches and to her surprise they said that they eat their oats in exactly the same way. One of them said, “Oh, he will fit in with us.” I am amazed at what God can use to build bridges. Finally I found some like- minded people.


Sunday School

Our childrens ministry has been a true blessing to our fellowship. The kids show up and cannot wait to be dismissed from the service to go into Sunday School. We recently met an Apache lady who now lives in another state and this is what she said,

' p.s. And I just want to add don't be discouraged...somedays you may wonder if your reaching anyone at all...don't give up!!! I was once a lil kid who was picked up by a church van for church service...my mom didn't go to church back then but she allowed us to go to church. It was there were I first developed a relationship with God. It has stuck with me from that very day. This is why I believe it is the children's heart you have to reach and go after...I'm sure God has something in store for this generation!!! 


VBS – Vocational Bible School

The schools are on Summer break and it is VBS season. Michelle and I were invited by the Sun Valley Baptist Church to present our mission and work with the coaches at their VBS in Surprise Arizona. The 3 hr trip took us more than 5 hours because we got lost, but we had such a great time there. It was wonderful to encourage and tell young children that God answers children prayers, (Michelle shared her testimony) and I could share how I was on a VBS camp as a young boy, dressed up as an Indian, not realising that God was already planting a seed in my heart for the American Indian People. The Sun Valley Church has since partnered with us and we thank God for them. We also had a group from California at our church who did a week long VBS program to about 40 Apache children. Their theme was the Fruit of the Spirit. It was great to see and meet young people who are committed to serve Christ in that way. They also did some maintenance work on the church during the day and in the evening they held their VBS. It was a good opportunity to connect with many of the Apache parents. Some of the girls who stayed away after the Bible quizzing, ended up attended the VBS and we are in the process of starting a youth group with them. We thank God for the helpers He has sent along to grow our ministry and ask that you continue to pray for His direction and blessing.


Family

Keenan celebrated his coming of age on 27 July. We had no idea that we would be able to be with him on this special day, but again God showed us His provision. With our support steadily growly, we were clear not to use any of our ministry resources, so we shared this desire with our brothers and sisters in Globe and we prayed. Someone paid for Michelle's ticket upfront, and we planned 2 fundraising events to repay this person. We were in awe as we saw hearts respond so that  Michelle could be with Keenan and Robyn. The yard sale and the international food festival was held at Bernard’s Coffee Station and they were both a success. Thanks to all our friends in Globe who generously contributed. We are very thankful and humbled by their kindness and generosity.  I was at the event via SKYPE and it was a very joyous occasion – all praise to God. So Michelle is in Cape Town - the trip coincided with the eventual sale of our flat, so she is taking care of some business. Bradley has also set up visits to churches and cell groups, so Michelle is doing deputation and reports that the visit to Strandfontein Baptist last Sunday and the Durbanville cell group on Friday went well. We trust God for the new interest to support the mission. Our friend Hyon,who started a Bible study with some Apache women 12 years ago, is with her and they are having a blessed time sharing about the ministry to the Apache people on San Carlos.  


While Michelle is away, I am the substitute South African chef at the coffee shop on Wednesdays. I told Michelle that her job is under threat.....LOL!!! Yesterday I skyped her from the kitchen to show her that everything is under control. My first day, went well I guess since I managed not to burn the food. I make Beef currie; Lentil (vegan) currie; Breyani and dhaltjies with a rooti. That’s a lot to deal with all at once for an inexperienced cook like me, but it all worked out well in the end. Robyn is a bit sick at the moment, so she is happy to have Michelle as a roomie. Keenan is between courses, and we ask that you continue to pray for our family.


Finances

We are seeing more and more how God is providing in unconventional ways. And while we may not be able to prove on paper and project that we have ex amount for a given period of time, we have lacked nothing and our faith in Christ has been strengthened. Thank you to all whio are partnering with us, pray with us for more financial partners.


PRAYER

We have mentioned some prayer request through out the newsletter.

Pray for families in our fellowship, some are having difficulty with their health, others with alcohol and drugs. Pray for the establishment of the youth and band- this will keep the young kids positively occupied. Pray for us, we need wisdom as we face some tough decisions at times. Pray for more prayer and financial ministry partners.  


Specific Prayer request

The ministry vehicle (7 seater) that we got in 2010 has packed up. The transimission needs to be replaced. Other than the transmission, there is nothing else wrong with the car, we just fitted 4 good 2nd hand tires. Approximately, $2000 is needed to repair the transmission. 

The 7 seater works well for trips to San Carlos on Sundays and Thursday. Please pray with us for wisdom regarding this.


PRAISE

God is at work.

Hearts are being changed.

Our needs are being met (someone gave us money to buy a small, 2nd hand car when they heard about the 7 seater, they wanted to see the ministry continue.

Here are our bank details if you feel led of our Lord to make a deposit and bless us to be a blessing together with your help:

South Africa:

Name of account: Arizona Mission

Bank: FNB Heerengracht Branch Code: 200-809

Account Number: 62202719730

 

For USA

Kindly mail your cheque to:

American Indian Missions Inc

PO Box 1459

Gallup

NM 87305

Reference number: 728 (PLEASE INCLUDE THIS).

 

Email: rjoshua7@gmail.com

© DPC 2013