On our way back from doing NPL vision casting in Japan last month, we had to overnight in Beijing China. So, we took advantage of taking a quick tour of the Great Wall, the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square. As we strolled through the world's largest square, our guide mentioned that the famous protests were 30 years ago. Wait! What? Lisa quickly consulted Google to verify this fact because we couldn't believe it was that long ago. Indeed, it has been 30 years. In December 20 years ago, the world was caught up in the fray of Y2K...remember that craziness? And this very week 4 years ago, we arrived in Ireland for the first time. While we had nothing but a few days of vacationing and sightseeing in mind, God had other plans for us. He used a conversation we had with our driver on route from the airport to our b&b to change our lives and the direction of our ministry. We had never thought of ministry in Ireland before but now it's difficult to believe it has only been 4 years because we either talk about Ireland, think about Ireland, pray for Ireland & the Irish people or speak to someone in Ireland...Every. Single. Day.
Ireland is in our blood now.
While we try to be faithful in keeping you, our partners, updated after each trip, we don't want to retell what has already been said in previous emails and blog posts. However, we will close out this year PRAISING GOD for what He is doing in Ireland!
The church He planted this summer in Dundalk as well as the "pub of peace" gathering in Northern Ireland are meeting every week to study God's word. Super exciting too, is that many of these believers are reaching out within their own relational networks to share Jesus or invite them to the bible study. Andrew Clements is now full time in ministry and meets regularly with people we've met on our trips to continue discipling them and pointing them to Jesus.
Here stateside, God is raising up churches who have a burden for Ireland. Next year, we will be leading at least 3 different churches on trips to Ireland. And all but 2 of our 7 North American e3 staff members of Team Ireland are fully trained and ready to lead trips themselves.
God is so good.
Our July team in Dundalk began each day with worship, devotional and prayer before heading out to knock on doors.
Tony sharing with a hotel employee in Dundalk
We have also had the privilege of doing vision casting and training/outreach in Japan and Uruguay this year as well as establishing our Second Saturday outreach at our church here in Houston. God has opened doors and homes for us at an apartment complex where 3 bible studies are now taking place each week. More believers are being trained in the NPL vision and many have become trainers themselves.
Tony sharing with a young employee in a shop in Uruguay
Lisa sharing in Tokyo at Shibuya Square. Shibuya Crossing is the world's busiest pedestrian crossing. It is estimated that 2,500 people cross at one time. It's pretty mind-blowing!
In January, we begin our 14th year serving with e3. Time really does fly.
At the close of yet another year, we want to thank you, our partners, for all of your love, support and prayers. We look forward to the new decade and what God is going to do here in the US, in Ireland and in every other corner of the globe. It is an exciting time to be proclaiming Jesus!
We serve an absolutely amazing God. May He richly bless you and your families this holiday season. MERRY CHRISTMAS!