May 22, 2004
Today We Loved a Few Kids into the Kingdom
There are no words for what happened to our team or the small community that we visited on Friday...so here are a few snapshots of what happened.
Deb & Betty - Just Outside Downtown
Posted by Paul Chenoweth at 08:18 AM
May 21, 2004
Update on Sharon's Mom
The quick trip to Houston ran into snags. Sharon had to spend much of yesterday, nearly a full day of delay, in the Sao Paulo airport waiting for another plane due to engine problems with the regularly scheduled flight. The last word that we have here is that Sharon's mom has taken a turn for the worse. Sharon arrived in Houston Thursday night and Ray should be there sometime today. There are decisions to be made regarding the treatment for her mom. Please continue praying for Ray and Sharon. These are strong and wonderful missionaries and they will need our prayers and encouragement over the next several days and weeks.
Posted by Paul Chenoweth at 08:40 AM
We had played exhibition basketball in combined teams of men and women with Brasilians and Americans on each side for much of the morning. It was time for lunch and all of us were beginning to feel a little hungry and were ready to get a bite to eat. Our Brasilian host asked if we would play a little longer and the team agreed, inspite of the twinges of hunger. It was during this time that Brandon Owen, speaking through an interpreter, encountered 15 year old Yasmine and a small group of her friends. Yasmine began asking questions about why the team was here and was trying to understand the message the she had heard from the team's personal testimonies from earlier in the morning. Brandon sensed that Yasmine wanted more, but was not sure that perhaps she had just become intrigued by an energetic group of American boys, so, Brandon sent Yasmine to speak with me. On the bleachers in a noisy gymanasium, with the assistance of my translator, Ednan ('the edge'), I shared the simple message and invitation with Yasmine to accept Jesus as her personal Lord and Saviour. Yasmine understood the message and was ready to make her decision right there in the gym.
The smile that came to her face when I asked her if she knew what she just did and the resounding 'yes' that she replied made me know that this was real. I asked her about her parents. Jasmine explained that her father is Catholic and that her mother professes no particular faith. I asked, 'How will your parents respond to what you have done today?" She said, "I don't know, but I don't think they will be angry with me." I encouraged her to tell them that something wonderful had happened in her life today...if you have the same smile on your face and the joy that I see in you right now when you tell them, God will take care of the rest. I took my Bible and opened it to John's gospel and recommended that Yasmine begin reading there (she has her own Bible). I am confident that this was the real thing. This was not about me. This was about an entire team who had demonstrated through their actions, their play, and their words that this was about the love of Christ. This was about Andrew Preston giving his testimony in front of 400 students.. about Brandon being sensitive to this girl's spiritual journey and his response to the leadership of the Holy Spirit... about Brandon's setting the stage and passing the ball to me for the perfect score.
Pray for Yasmine.
Posted by Paul Chenoweth at 08:37 AM
May 17, 2004
A Journey of Prayer...Remember the Brown's
Sitting next to Betty Wiseman on the flight from Nashville to Houston was a man from Paducah, Kentucky who explained that he and his wife are headed for the M.D. Anderson Center for treatment of lung cancer. Betty and Mr. Brown chatted for much of the flight and Betty asked if it would be OK if the Belmont group could gather for a few minutes of prayer once in Houston. Pictured to the left are the Brown?s, their two daughters and the members of the team. Circled closely around the Brown's, Betty lead the group in a quiet prayer for strength and healing for the journey that the Brown family faces.
Mission trips certainly involve a destination, but ministry is a continuous part of the journey. Please pray for the Brown?s.
2 Corinthians 9
Posted by Paul Chenoweth at 05:44 PM