The Lord has blessed our family and the ministry here in Tabora, Tanzania, in so many different ways over the past several weeks. His amazing grace is almost overwhelming at times. Prayers are being answered!
First of all, we were finally able to completely move into our own house. Praise the Lord! It is an absolute miracle, literally our “GRACE PLACE”!! We have been blessed to be able to tailor the house to our desires in almost every way. Our landlord has agreed to all of the changes, updates, etc. and has even agreed to pay for all of them. Unbelievably, they have also agreed together as a family to the same rent that we have paid since moving to Tanzania back in 1995. Last night we slept in our own bed in our own bedroom for the first time in years. We are so thankful for all of the places that God has taken us and for all of the people He has used to provide accommodations for our family, but as you can imagine, we have been thanking the Lord for His grace over and over in providing us such a pleasant place to live. Sarah’s room is about 95% complete. Tim’s room, however, needs quite a bit of work still, and he is not moved in at all. You can pray with us about the finishing of his room. We just celebrated Tim’s 14th birthday this past April 9. He is anxious to get into his own room. Thank you so much for your prayers on our behalf concerning this major project. Please continue to pray with us as we do the work needed to completely set up house. A pleasant atmosphere in the house is so important, especially on the mission field.
The Lord is also miraculously working in the hearts of the people of Faith Baptist Church–Ipuli (the main city work) and Faith Baptist Church–Ndevelwa (the village work). We are still preaching in both works every week but are so thankful that God has placed in the church seasoned men who are able to preach when we are out of town and a young man who is able to teach the children when Sarah is gone. The attendance has nearly quadrupled this year alone in the city work. We are teaching on the subject of baptism there in preparation for the first baptismal service on the church property and on the subject of the church out at Ndevelwa (the village work). Please pray with us that we will be able to get a well dug during our dry season so we can have water at the church.
While out visiting a few weeks ago, we had planned to talk to a few neighbors of a very precious couple in the city church. Upon arriving at the first house, we met a husband and his wife together with two neighbor children. All four trusted Christ as their own personal Saviour. To our surprise, at the next house, many neighbors were gathered; and it actually turned into an open-air meeting, as more gathered after we began sharing the Gospel. Several trusted Christ, and many have been coming to church from the area every week. Nearly every week people continue to trust Christ at church as well. We are also tremendously encouraged at the number of people going through the discipleship lessons. We have two families with four or more members going through them and thirteen in all who are actively turning the lessons in on a regular basis. Please pray with us for those who have trusted Christ to begin going through the lessons and for those who have already begun the lessons to grow and spiritually mature. We hope to start a church Bible institute later this year with those who finish their lessons.
We have now had the opportunity to teach the Bible at Isevya Secondary School for a few months. We had to be given a new classroom in order to accommodate all of the students who were cramming into the room. We have seen many trust Christ as their personal Saviour already. This is such an awesome opportunity. Please pray as we share the truths of the Word of God with these students. Also, please pray that they will even begin to attend Faith Baptist Church.
We have already made three trips to Morogoro to help lead the Bible institute, but not without severe trials to our family. It is actually reminiscent of the fiery trials we went through just before and during the taping of salvation messages to be broadcast in Swahili-speaking countries back in 2014. The first class was an evangelism class. Right after the class, most of the students went with Pastor Kinyonga to conduct a funeral. They were able to witness and pass out tracts to all of those present right away. We just finished teaching a discipleship class, and all 13 students will be choosing someone whom they will begin to disciple on an ongoing basis, using the Bible lessons. Please continue to pray for us as we travel so many miles and for the students as we establish them in the faith.
“Life is simply our faith in HIS grace!”