Monday, April 30, 2012

When the sun comes back.

New Galena Bible Church Members!
On Sunday April 22nd nine individuals officially joined Galena Bible Church. These families have been a part of the Bible Church for a long time, but have committed to become members of the church. On the 15th of the month we held a membership class in which we taught through the acronym B.O.D.Y. Beliefs - What we believe as a church. Organization - How we govern ourselves. Discipline/Discipleship - Our heart for growth as a familiy. You - What is your part  in the body and how can you serve the Lord and others. I preached that Sunday on Matthew 18 which is the most loving passage on church membership that I believe exists in Scripture. It speaks of a people who have each others backs, and who are in each others lives to the point that failure is not met with judgment, but with unrelenting love.

On Good Friday, the Child Evangelism Fellowship's Kids Club hosted an Easter Egg hunt at the Bible Church. I had the privilege of sharing with the kids the resurrection story using Resurrection Eggs.
Sharing the resurrection story for Kid's Club
 The kids were so excited to open and egg and show everyone the contents! One young girl, who's parents are strong believers, has a set of the Resurrection eggs. When we were getting to the last egg she was about to burst! The excitement of heart and her love for the Lord was explosive! When I asked the group, "So what do you think is in this last egg?" She said, "It's EMPTY because Jesus is alive!" No more joyous words have ever been spoken! He's alive! There's hope! The Son has come back from the grave, and now death does not hold us down.
Easter eggs are easy to spot in snow. You also find some when it all melts.
 The great thaw is in full swing. When the sun is out it will reach into the low 50s. What a dramatic difference from -70! End of the school year events are in full swing as well. The Bible Church hosted the prom formal wear fitting again this year. This year myself and 3 other men helped the dorm boys get fitted with suit coats and ties. It is quite a comical seen to see bush men trying to match tie patterns and colors with slacks and suit coats. Ministry out of the norm for sure. However these young men beamed with the encouragement from older men. It's a great tragedy in our nation that more older men do not spend time calling out the manness in younger men. We pray that God gives more opportunities to do this in the lives of these young men.

Things you can be praying for:
  • There have been several suicides in rural Alaskan villages. Many of these villages have students who attend our boarding school. Pray for protection and encouragement for these students and especially the young men in rural Alaska.
  • The school job vacancy's are being posted. Pray that the Lord would raise up the right people to fill those positions.
  • Every Yukon breakup has the threat of flooding. This year has already seen some low lying villages up river see some flooding. Pray for the Lord's protection for Galena and the other villages down river that the breakup would happen uneventfully.

Monday, April 9, 2012

SPRING!!...or some semblence of it.

Galena Spring Carnival Ice Picking Competition.

Most of the rest of the United States is picking out summer flowers to plant, planning for early Summer vacations, and wearing shorts. In Galena...we're having snowshoe races!! Spring in Galena means longer daylight, and generally warmer days. But not always. Two weeks ago the average temperature was about -10 with wind. Lots of wind.

Tis the season for wood hauling (getting next years firewood), beaver trapping, Ptarmigan hunting, and being outside as much as possible after a winter of being inside.

Last week we were blessed to have a bunch of servant hearted missionaries from Gathering Place Church in Pineville LA come and serve in Galena for 8 days. 
The Louisiana Crew

They cut and hauled firewood for 5 families, built shelves at the church, cleaned and served in native elders homes, hosted two teen events for about 20 boarding school girls, cooked for several community events, and just generally loved on and blessed the believers at Galena Bible Church. It was such a blessing to have them here. This was 4 of the guys second trip to Galena. We are so blessed by their consistency and love for our body, and can't wait to see what the Lord will do as a result of their faithfulness.

Things you can be praying for:
  • The Annual Galena Bible Church meeting is on April 29th. Pray that God gives us leadership as a church to know his will for this coming year as we seek to set a budget, and plan a calendar for next year.
  • Pray for the SEND missionaries as we seek to make stronger connections to the surrounding villages.
  • Pray for dorm staff and teachers as the school year winds to a close. Pray that they would be intentional to live their faith in the lives of students.
  • They are predicting a larger than normal snow melt this year which has an increased risk of flooding as the river breaks up. Pray for God's protection through that processes. 
  • We had close to 75 people at church for Easter morning. The Gospel was clearly presented, and I am praying that many who were there would become followers of Christ. I would ask that you pray for that with me.