Thank you to all our prayer warriors!  After a 90 minute weather delay we finally made it to St Louis about 7:30pm.

The team is really grateful to all who prayed and kept up with the team.  We did a final tally and discovered that we had shared a gospel story with 152 people in 3 villages and had 34 people pray to receive Christ.  What a great result!  We now need to lift up our Gambian partner church as they follow up and disciple these decisions.

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We have made it to DC.  All our bags were here so they have made it this far.  Still raining in DC.  Seems like that was the case a week ago.

Pray weather clears and that our 4:54 flight is not delayed.  If all goes to scheduled we are due to land in STL at 6:10.

We have made it to our first stop on the way home.  We got into Brussels 32 minutes early and have all our boarding passes for DC & STL.

We had a great trip all the way to the end.  Here are some photos to enjoy.

Pray that we take off on time in Brussels and all goes well in DC and that we make our connection to our final flight to STL.

Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. In a loud voice they sang: Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, the receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!”

-Revelation 5:11-12

 

How beautiful it will be when one day we will be all together in heaven singing praises to our Heavenly Father! We may never see some of these people again, but we know, that one day in heaven we will meet again! How cool is that!

 

Toabob! Toabob! Toabob!

 

White! White! White!

 

Anywhere we go, anytime of day we always here Toabob! We are white. And boy do we stand out. Today was a looonnnnggg day.

Wednesday morning we had a training time with the church leaders, but like normal African time kicked in and we did it at 4pm but you know…that’s okay. Wanna know why? Because God is awesome! A few years ago the team met a man named Moses and have kept that relationship with him over time. Moses had expressed to Brother Dave during a visit a couple of years ago that he had some property that he wanted to give to have a church built on it. Well in conversation with Pastor Victor during our “training time” he said that they were looking to expand their missions to a few different villages and one just so happened to be the village where Moses is from! OH HEY GOD, THAT’S COOL! So we took Pastor Victor, loaded up our cars, and headed for Moses’ village. Something beautiful happened that morning! God is just so awesome! He knew that when the team met Moses that a few years later that Pastor Victor would need his land. It’s so cool the way God had all of this already orchestrated!

 

We welcomed some more brothers and sisters into God’s kingdom in our last village! Praise God for all of the new believers this week! It has been such a blessing to be able to watch God’s hand at work in the lives of the Gambians.

 

Well we are leaving today. And well, I’m not ready to leave…surprised? I’m not. I love the people and the culture and everything about it! I love being on African time, I love the way people care about each other. It’s a beautiful love!

 

I mentioned in a previous blog about an “ode to Dave”…expect that later today. I’ll be working on it after we get back from lunch with the Pastor.

 

It has been a pleasure taking you on our journey these past few days. I hope you have been able to imagine and capture just a little of what life is like here in The Gambia. I have truly enjoyed taking you on this journey!

 

Until next time,

Kinta Jumamma Mendy

(Emiley)

“But my grace is sufficient for you for my power is made perfect in your weakness.”

2 Corinthians 12:9

 

This came from our morning devotion and it just sat with me all day long as we were interacting with different people. I pray that they would not see me, but they would see Christ in all that I do.

 

Today we were given a picture of bible times fishing. We went to the beach this morning to visit a friend of the team’s and while we were there we saw many boats that had gone out earlier in the day to cast their nets, and they were patiently waiting for them to be filled. It’s hard for me to describe to you all that we saw, but just understand it was almost a picture perfect biblical representation as to how people caught the fish back in those times.

 

This evening brought great joy, yet again. We have new brothers and sisters in our kingdom! One particularly stuck out to me, his name is Dominic. Dominic came into our group a few minutes after we had started, but that doesn’t mean a thing. He tracked right along with us; he made eye contact with us the entire time. He asked questions, and intently listened to what we had to say. And by the end of our time with them he decided he wanted to leave his old ways of life and follow the one true God. He was so excited about this decision he had just made, it brought tears of joy to him! It was a beautiful thing being able to see my new brother walk into the family of God. As we went to the next village he followed with us, and during our time there I peeked over at him and caught him reading his new bible. At the end of our time there I asked him what he was reading, and he said he was trying to find “that Moses story” because he wanted to know more about God and his love for us. It was so cool to see him so excited!

I plead with you to keep Dominic in your prayers. From the few minutes I had with him tonight he shared with me some difficult things about his life, none that I know Jesus can’t overcome. I believe he is going to use Dominic in big and mighty ways, but I also know that this path of following Jesus is not easy. So please, keep him in your prayers.

 

Well I’m exhausted. So I’m not going to make this post quite as long. As you might have seen on Sunday, some pictures appeared…they were not from me. They were from Dave. So I with the help of a few others have been working on putting together a blog dedication to one of our fearless leaders, Dave. So be looking for that in the next day or so.

 

Prayer requests-

1-      Dominic and all of the new believers from tonight’s evangelism outreach

2-      A good night of rest

3-      Tomorrow we are training the church in our evangelism outreach and discipleship programs

4-      We are going to our last village tomorrow night – please be praying for the hearts of the people we will come into contact with

 

Sleep tight and good night.

Sunday and Monday…

 

I’m sorry I haven’t posted, I had this big long description of our Sunday experience and then the computer did an automatic update and lost all I had typed, and it was so late I just quit and went to bed. But I shall recap…

 

Church was lively worship at its best! You know that saying… joy comes in the morning ? Well I can’t begin to tell you just how much joy I truly felt, and I think we all felt at church. We may not have understood all that was said, but I promise God was still glorified. It was said well by Dave, “it was a little piece of heaven at church this morning.” All tribes, tongues, and nations gathered together worshiping our Heavenly Father. We danced, we sang, we listened all as one accord. It was a glorious day of worship.

 

A few years ago the team met a man named Salou. Salou is a Muslim, yet he is completely enthralled with our team. So we went to his village yesterday to meet and visit with him and his family. We didn’t really have a plan when we set out to go, but God did. It first started out with the common bowl; Andy and I were the new ones at that experience, and booyyyyyy was it an experience. The food was delicious, BUT, so messy. Jan C. was the only brave one to eat with her hand; Salou was gracious enough to give us spoons. But ya know, that wasn’t the most fun part of being there. We went out and sat under a mango tree to talk, but I believe God used our time there for bigger things, some things we may never be able to see. The children there were just so full of joy! Playing toss and Frisbee with them will probably be something I walk away from this trip with as a highlight. If you could see where these people lived you would understand just how little they actually have; but the thing is you would never know it. They are so full of love and joy that overflows in everything. They are taught to take up so much responsibility at such a young age. So to be able to see those kids, be kids, to let loose and have fun chasing after a ball…it was an awesome sight! After visiting some more with Salou, Dave ended up sharing a story through the translation of Salou to the children. Yes, a Muslim man translated a story about Jesus…and oh man, it was awkward!! Haha BUT the really beautiful part of it all, was not only the truth coming out of a Muslim man’s mouth, those kids where hearing the truth about Jesus probably for the very first time. They may never know anything more than what they heard yesterday, but I know and trust Jesus can use that to change their life!

 

So that was Sunday, now onto Monday.

 

Do you know that feeling of true confirmation of we are exactly where God wants us to be? Well we got that AGAIN this morning. Pastor Victor came over to be with us during our devotion time. God was totally in those moments with him, the spirit moved in each of our lives and gave us a renewed sensation of why we are here and about the work we are doing.

 

We have realized all the prep work we did before we left for the trip, was just a mere idea of a simple man. God already had a plan for us and our time spent doing evangelism, but I think he knew it would take us being totally abandon here to get us to do it. We have each taken a step outside of our comfort levels, taken a step of faith, to do this type of evangelism. I’m going to refrain from telling you what kind of evangelism we are doing, because I want to challenge you to challenge us. We were talking tonight about how to take this home…and well quite honestly YOU are going to be best to talk too about what we did. So next time you see one of us, ask us, what kind of evangelism we did on our trip and ask for a story…because I promise, we all have one.

 

Tonight we went into our first village to specifically work on evangelism. Tonight we met and saw new brothers and sisters come to Christ. They turned away from the old, and accepted the new everlasting life put before them. It was a joyous occasion!

 

We are going to two villages tomorrow, so please be in prayer for us, the church, and the people of the villages as we go.

 

The past two days have been so great! So full of joy! The days have been reminders that all of the hard work and preparation we have made, all the stress leading up to the trip, all of the long flights, and all of the changes that were made as soon as we got here…are absolutely without a doubt COMPLETELY worth everything!

 

Well this blog has gotten particularly long; I commend all of those who have come to this point in it. Thank you for caring enough to keep reading! I have enjoyed the past couple of days being able to write out my heart, to express the team’s thoughts, and to try to convey to you all God is doing here in The Gambia.

 

Prayer requests-

1-     The new believers from tonight – as they start their life journey with Christ

2-     A good night sleep for the team

3-     Our day tomorrow (as mentioned above^^)

 

Until tomorrow,

 

Jumamma

(my new African name)

“Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few…” Matthew 9:37

 

Take a minute to think about this… I sure didn’t ever have this perspective before…

We always ask for God to bless us, yet we never think about the idea that God has set a blessing in place before us and it is our choice to go and be apart and receive that blessing or not. God is the blessing, His WORK is the blessing, His PEOPLE are the blessing so it is our decision to go be a part of those blessings or to continue to sit back and ask God to bless us where we are.

God has brought every single person on this team here for a very specific reason, we have chosen to come be a part of His blessing He has already been giving to the people of Gambia. We are in a new phase of the game, we have abandoned everything we have prepared for and we are now choosing to follow Gods preparation and blessing.

Is this not scary to anyone else but me? This morning we were going through the story of the gospel and the persecution that comes with it; I was reminded yet again that being a Christian does not mean an easy road. In fact, it means a very difficult one. God never promised this life would be an easy one; He just promised that it would be worth it. I know and believe in my heart that one day when Christ returns and we are all taken into heaven with him we will see the fruits of our labor and we will be able to see that this was worth everything and more. I look forward to the day when Jesus calls me home and we stand around the throne of God singing praises to Him with every tribe, tongue, & nation together as one. It will be beautiful!

 

This morning we finished our training with Dave and Cheryl Johnson (full time missionaries here in West Africa with IMB). It was absolutely wonderful! They were able to shed some light on some teaching concepts and ideas on how to reach the people of the Mandjako tribe more effectively. They were great! By the way, please keep them in your prayers they are moving next week to a new location in Africa and David is to have surgery in June.

 

Today we ventured out to the artisan market. If you know me, you know I love shopping of any kind. And if you know my dad, you know I was taught from an early age on how to barter with the people. So I was absolutely in my element today, it was so fun! We all ended up getting some fun new trinkets.

At the market today I met a man, Muhammad; he had a little tiny store in the back corner of the market. I got the impression; he didn’t really get a lot of business being back there. But nonetheless I went in his shop to look around. He had some very beautiful carvings, but only one really stuck out to me, it was a hand carved outline of Africa. In the outline there were four objects carefully carved into the piece of wood. There was a hut, a woman cooking, a man working the field, and a man beating a drum. As Muhammad stood there and told me why he picked each different symbol to put on this plaque of Africa, I couldn’t help but sense the pride and joy he had for his country. He told me how everyone here works together to help each other get through life; that without the help of the woman cooking the food, the man in the field would not have the strength to harvest it, which would not allow him to have a home (the hut), and the man beating the drum was the rhythm of everyone working together. It was a very beautiful picture to me of the African culture, they care so much about each other and have such a deep respect and understanding of everyone around them, that they are willing to go out of their way to help someone in need no matter what may be going on in their life right then.

 

Tonight we went to the Church of Pentecost; this is the church we have partnered with for this trip. We got to meet all of the church leadership which included several of their church planters, and spend some time in good fellowship with them. Please keep Bro Dave in your prayers, as he is preaching at their church tomorrow morning.

 

Prayer Requests-

1-     Dave and Cheryl Johnson – their move

2-     Bro Dave as he preaches Sunday morning

3-     For the team and the leaders of the church as we prepare and come together to go to the villages

 

 

Until next time,

Emiley

Well after the longest 36 hours ever, we have made it to Banjul safe and sound! We have settled into ABWE (our mission house) and we are ready and excited to see what God has in store for the people of Gambia.

 

So I’m going to take a bit to introduce myself, I am, your communication specialist for you over the next couple of days. I will be taking everything that happens and transcribing it into first world understanding. I am, Emiley. I want to start off each post with a verse that has encouraged me or has stuck out in our day in some way or another.

 

Psalm 118:

“This is the day and I will rejoice and be glad in it.”

 

In the chapter it talks about the good and the bad that may come our way, yet we should still rejoice in the Lord because the He created yet another day for us to serve Him.

 

Today, started off in a couple of different varieties. First it started off with sleeping in. I’m not exactly sure how to describe to you how incredibly tired and stiff we all were when we got here last night; we had reached the point of exhaustion! So while some of us were sleeping and catching up on the beauty rest we so desperately needed, the rest of the team met with Pastor Victor. Pastor Victor is who we will be working with all week. From what Jim and Dave have said this morning’s meeting was very encouraging! We have been praying for months, no years that God would bring the right church to us to partner alongside with to reach the Mandjako people; and after the meeting this morning they have just been confirmed that Pastor Victor is the right man for us! He has a great heart for the people and the mission!

 

After a slow start and an encouraging morning we loaded up in our land rover and headed for the bank and grocery store. I was so excited to be able to go out beyond the walls of our compound, in the bright light of the sun and see this beautiful country! Nothing to exciting happened; we got our American money exchanged to dalasi and went to the grocery store to get our food for the week. I guess the only thing that really happened on our outing is we saw a mouse in the grocery store. Yeah, you read that correctly, there was a MOUSE in the grocery store. It was no big deal, it was just hanging out and no one really cared it was there.

 

Well I’m not going to ramble on any longer; I know as the days proceed there will be more exciting things that happen. I want to leave you with each post things to pray for as we are serving over here in Africa.

 

1-      The people of the Mandjako tribe would have soft hearts when we go into the villages

2-      The team

  1. That we would stay healthy and adjust quickly to the time zone
  2. Our continued growth as a team