July was full of great memories! Good friends from grad school visited me opening some great exploration in Stockholm. Friends from Luleå came down for a week for some rest and fellowship. Janelle moved in! My Swedish improved during a two week intensive course. And a team arrived!
Jack, Joan and Paul from Ohio came for a full week to join us in prayer and engagement; as well as simply caring for us. Having teams with us always helps us meet more people! After ordering some food from the food truck, Jack got into a conversation with one of the workers. M continued to hang out with us after work the following days. He shared that after talking Jack, he woke up and desired to read the bible. Hanging out in the park, we started shooting baskets with a family from Bangladesh whom we got to spend time with for a few days and exchanged phone numbers. Please join in praying for friendships to deepen and opportunities to share truth about Jesus.
Another team arrives next week. A couple from Riverbend and a group serving with another mission, called OM, will get to spend another week here praying and engaging people. Please pray for favor and opportunity.
This week is an important time for Muslims. Many are gathering in Mecca for the Hajj. Take a few minutes to watch this video and pray that Jesus would show up and do something new.
Financial update. With the increase of ministry work, I am looking to decrease the hours for the teaching job. Still wanting to contribute to support myself, but needing to free up time so that we can continue moving forward with our vision – to see new churches growing among unreached people groups and more workers being trained to serve cross-culturally. I need another few hundred dollars a month to cover what is needed. Would you consider joining the team at either $25 or $35 a month? Just click here to get started. Thank you!
Relationships with those in our neighborhood continue to develop. Studies has increased and the pressure they face in desiring to get to university exists. We have gotten to host workshops learning how to create PowerPoint presentations and developing digital competence. It was a great gift when Elena asked if we could host her birthday party. We do stop and have fun!
During Ramadan, we were able to meet new families and had the opportunity to break fast with them and their families. It was a gift to receive their generosity and be welcomed in to their homes. Thankful for the friendships that have started. Please pray for opportunities to sow seeks of truth and grace with every conversation.
We had the opportunity to visit the team in Cologne, Germany doing a similar work. It was a wonderful time deepening friendships, learning their neighborhood as well as engaging people. I was thankful for the opportunities to explore questions such as ‘what is the meaning of life?’, ‘how do you define good?’, and ‘how do we deal with the brokenness that surrounds us?’. There were a handful of ladies that I got to engage and see their hearts hungry to be comforted with the reality that they don’t have the answer.
Janelle is coming!!! We have a young lady from Ohio who has been preparing to join our team for the past 18 months and the day of arrival is finally approaching. She has an incredible heart for the refugee and broken-hearted. Her experiences, education, and simply her being her, is bringing a huge addition to our team. Please pray for her in this season of transition as well as for favor as she looks for a part-time work to help cover costs and provide a visa for long-term.
Yesterday started with rain with a hint of ice, then the sun came up to remind us that it was in fact still spring. But because we live in Sweden, the evening came with a quick snow shower! My favorite part of this season is the sun is now raising around 4:45 am and not setting until 8:45 pm!
Team Development. Last weekend we had the opportunity as a team to be out of Stockholm together. The families I work with are part of a mission organization called OM Sweden. OM hosted, covering all costs, so that these new church planting teams could have a common training. We are one of five teams stepping out to see new churches start and mature among the least reached people groups. It was a wonderful weekend to strengthen our communication, create space to process and think through where we are and what steps we need.
Muslims. This next week starts Ramadan. The 30 day fasting season for Muslims. Pray for us as we look to connect with others. Next weekend, I will have the chance to break fast with a couple N & H. There is a team here for a few days praying and willing to engage. Pray for favor. Pray for dreams. Pray for divine appointments with prepared hearts. With lots of sunshine, this is the season for sowing seeds of truth broadly.
Current relationships. Pray for A who is waiting for the decision if she will be allowed to stay in Sweden. Pray for M, A, E and S to open their hearts to Jesus. Pray for N who is seeking to take the step of faith. Pray for El who is looking for love in all the wrong places.
Small beginnings. Sundays we have church in my living room creating space for people locally to encounter Jesus. We are doing everything in Swedish and invite others to join us. Yes the hope is to start groups, but we are just starting 🙂
Teaching job. It has been a great gift to have a job that I enjoy that has helped with the finances as well as many other details as this chapter began. Starting in August, I will get to go down to 50% so that I can give more attention to the work as it increases. Please pray for a few more monthly gifts to keep the finances stable 🙂
Appreciating you continuing to journey with me. Please reply and let me know how I can be praying for you! Blessings!