It is very difficult to believe 2016 is almost over. This has been a year of much transition and one of new opportunities. We have watched God do incredible things both in ministry and personally, that we continue to just stand in absolute awe of Him. He is truly a good, good Father! Thank you for your partnership in praying, giving and going. We can't serve in ministry without you and we also know that 2017 will present many opportunities to serve our God and King.
Less than half of one percent of the Republic of Ireland are Born Again, Evangelical Christians. It is time for the gospel roots of Ireland to be awoken! The Celtic Christians once played a large roll in transforming all of Europe and we believe God will raise up laborers in Ireland to see it done again. Our goal is to start a church planting movement in Ireland that will not only affect Ireland, but all of Europe.
God is already at work, as He helped us to identify key leaders in Ireland and partnerships that will aid us in our quest to proclaim the gospel, make disciples and see healthy, reproducing churches planted. Andrew Clements has become our e3 National Director and has already seen fruit from his labors. Read more about Andrew on his blog at : http://www.andrewclements.net/
We will be leading our first two expeditions to Ireland in 2017 - Please pray about joining us:
A year ago we where excited about the prospects of being part of the e3 Europe Team. At that time, we thought that we would spend several years developing the Ireland country strategy and then we could potentially move on to start in the development of another European strategy. But God however has other plans! We will be leading another trip to Poland August 5-13, 2017 and a strategy for the country is being developed...we will keep you posted on the progress!
On our October mission trip to Poland, we did outreach on a college campus and would engage people as they were coming and going to classes. Our main goal in doing this, was to train our Polish leaders how to do outreach using the tools that we had trained them in; they were a little skeptical at first. However, as we started talking with students, praying for them and sharing the gospel, they began to see how open people are to engaging in spiritual conversations and to understand that there is power in the gospel. We asked a group of three students if we could pray for them. They all said yes. One asked for prayer that he would stop drinking so much, another just for general blessing, but one girl asked to pray that she would have eternal life. We prayed for them and all three were receptive to us sharing the gospel with them. After sharing, they all admitted that they were living in brokenness and desired to follow Jesus. Unfortunately, the bell for class rang and they all had to run, but we were able to get them some information for follow up. By the end our our time in Poland, our leaders had come to the understanding that they needed to be sharing the gospel and committed to continue to go and out and train others as well. We're excited for the future of Poland.
At the beginning of the year, we began to meet with other ministry leaders in Tulsa to pursue the NoPlaceLeft vision of helping churches in evangelism, discipleship and building healthy churches. This past year, NPL movement has taken root and there are many churches in the Tulsa Metro area, and beyond, that are involved in both training their congregations for local outreach, but also to send into the foreign mission field. We have had the privilege of doing training and working with 8 different churches and it looks like this number could either double, or triple, in 2017.
We read in the Scriptures that God says the harvest is plentiful but the laborers are few. One of the biggest blessings we have seen this year, is the increase in the amount of laborers. As we have gone out to encounter people in the Tulsa area, we have seen a great need for the proclamation of the gospel. We sometimes assume, that because we live in the Bible belt, everyone has heard the gospel but as we've engaged people, we have found there are many who have not. It may surprise you to learn that people really do want to discuss spiritual matters, they want to be prayed for and have someone listen to them, many feel unloved and unworthy to be loved and so many are hurting and really searching for hope...It is tough work, but it is such an honor to be God's Ambassador and share His message with the people here at home. God is moving mightily here in T-Town, please pray about joining us and being part of reaching the Tulsa area for Christ in 2017...no passport required just a love for Jesus and a willingness to talk to people!
Please pray about partnering with us in praying, giving and going. If you would like to become a financial partner please go to:
How Do You Eat an Elephant? One Bite at a Time!(No Elephants were harmed in the writing of this newsletter)
e3's strategy for Ireland is '32 by 32' and while this seems like an impossible task, we know that God is able to accomplish it. We've just returned from our latest expedition, serving with the Transformation Center, a church in Lisburn, N. Ireland, and we feel like we have taken another bite out of this elephant-sized vision. God assembled 16 amazing people to produce our largest and most diverse team we've had the privilege of leading.
Time well spent...
The team was blessed to worship with the Transformation Center on Sunday morning and held a training for the church that evening, Monday through Friday we went out into the harvest (going into the community to share the gospel), serving in the local Lisburn area and also went back to the Twinbrook community in W. Belfast (an area that not many ministries are willing to go to because of their troubled past). …
Being missionaries, it is easy to say we're doing enough in our overseas work in Ireland and Poland, but God says we are to make disciples as we go, where we are at, baptizing and teaching them to obey. Our desire is to be used of God in our Jerusalem (Tulsa, OK), as well as in Ireland and Poland. We've had the privilege of training over 300 people in the Tulsa area and 11 churches. Recently, we began a partnership with Southern Hill Baptist Church and P61 Ministry to take the gospel and make disciples in London Square Apartments. In the past two months, we have had six professions of faith, two homes open up for bible study and today we had the privilege of baptizing Adam and Kimberley. May God continue to give the increase as we seek to advance His Kingdom.
As we seek to develop a mission strategy for Ireland,
I thought I would take a minute to answer the question: "If you could
serve anywhere in the world, why Ireland? Isn't Ireland already mainly a
Christian nation?" Our initial thought was the same, and then we
visited Ireland after a mission trip to Africa. We began to talk
with people about the spiritual state of their country and we found that most people
we talked with wanted nothing to do with their Christian heritage.
We found this interesting and after returning home, we did a little
more research. "Research published in 2006 by the
Evangelical Alliance Ireland (EAI) shows that the number of evangelicals
tripled from 10,000 in 1980 to 30,000 in 2006. However, evangelicals still make
up less than 1 percent of Ireland's population. More than 60 percent of
evangelical churches have started in the last 25 years; 40 percent in the last
10. Nearly half claim no denomination.”[i] We began to talk with e3 Eur…