January, 2017

Dear Praying Friends,

In Deuteronomy 31, we find Moses commissioning Joshua as Israel’s new leader. Moses declares the following to Joshua in verse 8: “It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; He will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” We have experienced this promise in very specific ways during this past month. In particular, we have witnessed God going before us, preparing our way to Knysna.

As most of you know, our ministry plans in Knysna consist of three components: theological education, church planting, and community outreach. God has gone before us in a couple of these areas, bringing clarity and specificity to some specific questions we’ve had. Concerning theological education, we hope to start a theological institute that will offer biblical training to national pastors and others preparing for vocational ministry. One of our questions is how to offer credit for our courses so that students can work toward a formal degree if they so desire. To do this, we need to have an established educational institution to partner with, such that our students’ work can count toward a degree program. Without going into specifics here, a qualified education institution in South Africa has provided a partnership in which we can participate! In the words of Dave Rudolph, one of our team members already serving in Knysna, “we do not need to look anywhere else for an undergrad degree programme. PTL!” Praise the Lord indeed, who has gone before us!

Another area where we’ve had questions is in our church planting efforts. We have been praying about where we could plant a church and with whom we would partner. We will be working with Herb and Janet Hunter, dear friends of ours who are planning to join the team in Knysna later this year. Over this past month, we have narrowed our focus to the west side of the Knysna Lagoon, where there are a few neighborhoods in which we could minister. It has been a blessing to see these key details begin to come together. Now we have a more definitive plan for where we’ll seek to live and work in our church planting ministry. Once again, God has gone before us!

Please continue to pray for us in several areas:
First, pray that our support would come to completion. We are fervently praying that we’ll be at or near 100% in springtime so that we can formalize our plans to leave for South Africa in August. Our biggest need is monthly/annual commitments – we are trusting God to work in the hearts of those with whom He wants us to connect.
Second, please continue to pray for our family’s health. While we’ve seen significant progress with Alyssa and some of the battles she’s had, she is going through some residual discomfort and illness in recent days. Please pray that she makes a full and final recovery!
Third, please pray for the other ways in which God will go before us. Prior to our arrival in Knysna, we’ll need numerous other details decided. Please pray that these items will be clear and resolved at the right time and in the right way.

We are so grateful for each of you who’ve committed to pray for us regularly. Please let us know how we can be praying for you as well. Thank you for your faithfulness to God on our behalf – may He richly bless you, in Jesus’ name, for His glory!

With Love,
George, Amy, George David, Ashley, and Alyssa