Sharing God’s Gift

Minda Kleman is a missionary serving in church ministries in Honduras. She wrote in her latest prayer letter about how the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus is a great gift that we get to share as a family of Christ. She talks about this wonderful gift and how it has had a positive influence on two of her former Sunday School students.

“Just recently, God let me hear about His gift at work in the lives of a couple of my former Sunday School girls.

“A few years back Fatima and Gaby were in the middle of those trying pre-adolescent years. Neither of them came from Christian homes, but they were blessed to have a Christian neighbor who brought them to Sunday School. Actually, they came with a whole gang of kids from a very poor neighborhood. Their behavior was a problem. Fatima was the ringleader. They acted out in class and bothered the kids from the church families. To put it mildly, they tried the patience of the whole Sunday School staff.

“Normal class discipline and correction just didn’t seem to help. After times of praying and fasting, the Lord showed us that we needed to change our strategy. So with a couple of other teachers, we began to heap extra love and attention on Fatima and her best friend, Gaby. We got permission during the week to take them out for ice cream and to invite them into our homes. After a few months, we saw some progress. The girls were still naughty with some of the teachers and kids, but at least they were open to getting together and talking about their lives. As they grew up, they settled down a bit. For a while, they visited other churches as they didn’t like their Sunday School teacher, but eventually they returned to our church.

“Just this week Fatima asked if we could get together and chat. She shared with me how both she and Gaby had accepted Jesus as their Savior and how God is changing their lives. They no longer hang out with the gangs in the streets. They have opted to participate in youth activities at church. Even more exciting, was what Fatima shared about how God is giving them the courage to stand up for their faith at their high school. Not long ago they were asked to participate in a very ungodly dance group as part of a school activity. They went and talked with their teacher. They told her about their faith in Jesus and explained that they couldn’t do those kinds of things. The teacher replied, “But no one from your church will know.” That was when Gaby pointed upward and said, “But there is someone else who sees everything we do.” Such a simple yet powerful witness! Their teacher gave in and said she would find another way that they could participate.

“As you partner with me, I trust this blesses your heart as it has mine. There is nothing better than to see others receive God’s gift and grow in Him. Please pray that both of these girls will continue to grow in their faith. As you celebrate Christmas, I pray that you will be filled anew with the peace and joy of knowing Jesus, the very best gift of all!”

WGM can help you learn more about Honduras and find ways to get involved in Minda Kleman‘s ministry by clicking on the links.

Born into a Dark and Broken World

Jeff and Christine Stanfield serve in mentoring/discipleship and training/empowerment ministries in Uganda, Africa. In their recent Christmas letter, they retell the story of Jesus being born into this broken world. This is quite fitting for WGM to highlight, considering our theme for December is “Christmas around the World.” Read on to learn how Jesus’ story relates to Karen’s story in Africa and how we can bring Jesus’ light into the darkness of our world.

jeff-and-christine-stanfield

“Jesus was born into a broken, dark and messy world. He brought Light into the darkness. He came as Truth but he experienced deceit and betrayal. Jesus understands our world. He knows the biases, brokenness, darkness and mess of this world. He understands, and yet, He stays with us. He remains Emmanuel, God with us. It is our privilege to share this Good News!

“Karen (not her real name) lives in a broken, dark and messy world. One Tuesday afternoon shechristmas-in-africa
heard God’s Word as Christine shared in a women’s group. Karen asked for prayer, then prayed to repent and accept Jesus as her Savior. A couple of weeks later, Karen asked Christine to pray with her that she might not backslide into ‘dark living.’ Christine and Karen prayed for God’s Spirit to give Karen strength to live God’s way in His kingdom. They asked God to help Karen find a job that would keep her busy doing right things and not wrong things. The next week Karen could hardly wait until the close of the women’s meeting to tell Christine she had just completed her first day at work, in a job Karen called ‘good.’ Christine and Karen praised the Lord together, thanking Him for giving her life and a job to help her. Karen is still in a broken, dark and messy world, but she is living in Light.

“Mary (not her real name) came to Kampala as a university student. Her parents are divorced, at least two of her siblings are addicted to more than one substance and Mary carries the weight of it all within her heart. In a small group offered by University Discipleship Movement (UDM), Mary shared her story. The others in the group offered her compassion and understanding, then joined Mary in lifting her family in prayer. Mary continues to find courage and hope as she learns more of Jesus and His redeeming love. Now she is able to share the Light of Christ with her family and others. Mary still interacts in a broken, dark and messy world, but she is living with Hope.

“Several Africa Gospel Church leaders participated in a training conference in August. The material shared correlates with the Community Health Empowerment (CHE) training WGM provides. Following the training in August, several leaders have shared with us the impact of living out God’s Word in their communities. AGC Pastor Gideon and church members went to visit a widow in their community. They shared with her and then gave her a kilo of sugar and a loaf of bread, saying they were sharing to show God’s love. The widow was so thrilled at this unexpected generosity that she ran out of her house, shouting. She told everyone who could hear what the Christians had done for her. This woman still lives in broken, messy circumstances but she has experienced Love.

“Pastor Hillary shared that members of his congregation worked together to clean up the local christmas-in-africa-2health center. The staff were very encouraged through the community participation and thanked the people. In addition, the staff promised additional clean-up to benefit the community. The people of this community still live where there is brokenness and darkness but they have renewed hope.

“Christine meets with the women’s group most Tuesday afternoons, partnering with others in sharing Jesus in a local community. We both participate in university ministries, sharing with students and leaders. CHE trainings and follow-up are scheduled throughout the coming year.

Bringing Light into a Broken World
“We are grateful for the opportunities we have to bring the Light of Jesus to the people in Uganda. Will you partner with us in prayer as we serve? Each of the ministries we serve in have needs for additional regular financial support as well as cash gifts. As you feel led, you can either send your contribution to WGM [P.O. Box 948, Marion, IN 46952-0948] or you can give online by going to the internet link associated with each account:

“We have the responsibility, the tremendous privilege of sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ in a broken, dark and messy world. Jesus, God with us, continues to bring transformation in hearts and lives. He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. Those who experience Him find new life, light and hope for all of eternity. Thank you for participating with us in bringing Jesus into the brokenness all around us.”

Regional Youth Retreat

A regional youth retreat—the first of its kind—was held in Honduras on November 26. Tim and Aleyda Spetnagel, missionaries serving in community development in Honduras, provided lots of pictures and an amazing praise! Read on to learn what God has done and to see how He is blessing youth ministry in Honduras.

“We are having a regional Youth retreat! This is our first one! God is Awesome! We have 110 youth, praise the Lord!” Tim Spetnagel

Photo credit: Tim and Aleyda Spetnagel

15109385_10210915493501240_7224432240805810674_n15134773_10210915220214408_2877216821193075125_n15168666_10210915220694420_7626368433108541111_o15170969_10211319688127657_5972876051062384741_n15178053_10211319688767673_4103771050151252773_n15241977_10210915220174407_9011313710671523056_n15232276_10211319688207659_4533577321346952902_n15241851_10211319689967703_5392638530089565057_n

WGM can help you support missions in Honduras. Visit our site to find out how to get involved and make an impact in someone’s life today.

Last Turn

Justin and Debby Williams are missionaries serving in pastoral training and education in Uganda, Africa. Justin recently posted an update on their Williams’ ministry blog that examined how God is helping them run the race of ministry during their final turn before the end of their first term on the field. Read on to learn how God is making a difference through the Williams family, giving them the energy and stamina to finish the race strong.

37753817 - running race line in modern city road with cityscape as background,modern business competition concept.

“I remember (WAY BACK IN THE DAY) when I was in high school and I used to run a lot. I actually ran the 800 meter race. It was perhaps the most grueling race that I can remember because you couldn’t exactly jog and you certainly couldn’t sprint full out for half a mile. Lately I have been reminded of the feeling that encompassed me as I came around that last turn or also affectionately known as dead man’s turn because that is how you felt when you got there. At that turn I remember feeling the full body drain both physically and mentally. It was absolute exhaustion…and yet my legs continued to carry me. I still saw forward progress even though that last 100 meters seemed like a mile. Against every fiber of my being, I would sprint the last 100 meters and finish strong. For me it came down to excellent resistance training, perseverance through pain and an eye fixed on finishing well.

“In the past few months, we have been rounding the final corner and we are just beginning to see the end of our first term. Right now, the wind is blowing hard into our faces and the track seems longer and longer. We are certain of this; the enemy hates us and what God has, is and will continue to accomplish through us here. We have been through things over the past few months that have stretched our faith and caused both great joy and great pain. There are days when we laugh together out of sheer excitement and elation at what God is doing. There are days that we sit, shell shocked wondering where the next flaming arrow will come from. Yet in all of this, we see God’s hand around us and we watch His victories continue to mount even in areas where that would seem to be almost completely defeated. On days where we are predicting an outcome, He chuckles to Himself and thinks, ‘you dream too small.’

“As we begin to round this last corner, it is gratitude towards Him that allows my lungs to fill and my body to press forward. Below is just a sampling of how God is moving in such an amazing way.”

WGM can help you connect with the Williams family. Visit their bio page to learn more about them and their ministries. You can also see photos and get updates, prayer requests, and more by going to their blog.