earthen vessels, East Africa, and the gospel
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Posts from — December 2014

December 2014 Ministry Update

Thanksgiving week was extra blessed with thanksgiving for us this year. As normal, we celebrate Laura’s birthday on the 26th. But this year, two days before Laura’s, we celebrated the birth of our baby girl, Kyla Marie.

Kyla Marie Gass

Kyla, 2-weeks-old

A Thanksgiving Season

I am excited to report that God has been graciously heeding our petitions on the ministry front as well as on the home front. Before the Thanksgiving Holiday is completely overtaken by this month’s celebrations, let me pass along a list of the top reasons for our thanksgiving this season:

  1. God granted Laura a healthy pregnancy and preserved us through the exciting final hour of it in the midst of Nairobi’s evening rush hour traffic. We are so very grateful for God’s strength, a beautiful healthy baby girl, the provision of excellent health care, and all of you who have prayed us through the new experiences.
  2. The paperwork gauntlet which follows birth abroad has been fairly smooth; more importantly, it is nearly complete (after nearly 4 days of errands). I am certain that extra reserves of patience were tapped only by God’s grace.
  3. Our trip to Nairobi has provided a timely opportunity for spiritual refreshment and restrengthening. As we have prayed, God has renewed our strength and prepared us to finish our final weeks of this term in Tanzania. (This stuff is also worth thanksgiving!)
  4. Dan Eads has reported that meetings for reading and discussing God’s word with Tanzanian church members have been blessed by God in the ways we have asked. Some believers are renewing their commitments to Bible reading and prayer regarding the challenges their churches are facing.
  5. Also, progress has been made in reducing the land taxes for our property in Shadi. The matter isn’t over, but the Mwanza City Government has responded positively to the initial petition.
  6. The Shadi neighborhood hyenas haven’t been seen for several weeks now.
  7. We are so very grateful for our friends who have helped us in this season. God has used fellow missionary friends here to make Nairobi feel more like home. New friends we have met through Emmanuel Baptist Church have encouraged us with words and extra hands. And, of course, God continues to remind us of all the prayer support coming from our friends in States.

We celebrated this Thanksgiving in Nairobi. God willing, we will be back in Tanzania before Christmas. Kyla’s passport is on its way. Once it arrives, we should be only a day or two away from returning to regular family and ministry routines back in Mwanza.

Prayer Update

The work we are endeavoring to do here is simply impossible apart from God’s grace flowing through the power of prayer. I trust that by sharing our prayer requests in a manner that resembles a shopping list doesn’t keep us from missing the wonder and necessity of laboring together in prayer. Here are a few ways you can continue praying with us:

  1. Please consider the preceding list of answers to prayer in thanksgiving to God.
  2. Continue praying for us as we lead church-wide and small group discussion meetings in the Tanzanian churches. May God open up His word to His people, granting them wisdom to honor Him and faith to trust Him (consider e.g., Col 1:9—14).
  3. The upcoming months will involve more traveling and readjustment as we return to Tanzania and continue preparing for furlough (which begins in early February). Please pray with us for safety in travel and God’s blessing as we endeavor to strengthen our gospel partnerships.
  4. Please pray for us as we learn to be a God-honoring family of four living in Tanzania. May God grant us strength to endure the new challenges and grace to honor Him in our home.

December 11, 2014   1 Comment