08 Nov

Ghana: One Person’s First Trip

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Sometimes in my ignorance I think, well of course they’ll believe in God, they have nothing else…The Lord has opened my eyes however to the reality that these people need a savior, not because they live in filth and dress in rags, but because they are sinful beings just like you and I.”

 

Two years ago in May, Brittany took her first trip to Ghana. She is now back and calls this West-African country home. While living in country, Brittany’s team is receiving American college teams this summer through Campus Crusade.  The American students will be working with Ghanaian students as they go to villages to show Jesus films and work with the people there. The Ghanaian students will serve as translators for the Americans.

 

When I was on project, the village ministry was one of my favorite parts and as we entered the village of Jacobu (Jacob City) last week I remembered why. Going to the villages is an opportunity to bring people out of darkness into the light of the gospel, to break them free from the chains that bind them and give them freedom through Christ…The people of Jacobu might not have big houses or a car to call their own, they might not even have paying jobs or the opportunity for education, but they have their own temptations and their own idols that steal them away from God…The people are in desperate need of a clear gospel message.”

 

We’re blessed to be a part of God’s work in Ghana using Brittany and many American and Ghanaian students to clearly communicate the gospel. Pray that these people become aware of their need for a Savior. Pray that their hearts would be softened, and the Lord will reveal himself to them.  Pray ultimately that God will be glorified in these villages.

08 Aug

Field Report: Ioannina, Greece

Mission Trip Experiences

The Lord is at work among the people of Greece, using this team to accomplish his purpose. Check out their stories below, and read how you can be praying for them as they go on campus to meet and minister to students.

 

Forrest: Greece is absolutely awesome. It has already been one of the best experiences I have ever had. Present prayer requests are just for my team and me to find strength in the Lord and step out in confidence in the work that He has planned for us these next few weeks in Ioannina.

 

Diana: I still can’t believe we’re all in Greece. Everything is so beautiful here, the food is amazing, and our team dynamics are incredible. Prayer requests are: continually growing our team together, relying on God to help us find opportunities to bring up spiritual conversation instead of on ourselves, and for health and energy to continue the work God meant for us to do here.

 

Micah: It has been so fun getting to meet all of the Greek friends my friend Kallie has told me about! Celebrate the fact that there is a Spirit-filled evangelical church here and that the team that is serving here is seeing so much fruit. Prayer requests: this is the first week we are meeting Greek students so pray that we would quickly learn how to relate to them, that we would have the eyes to see what God is already doing and the wisdom to know how to participate!

 

Keri: It has still not hit me that we are in Greece. Not only that we are here, but we are traveling where Paul has walked to share the same Gospel he shared way back then. I am so excited to get to know each and every person on my team and CANNOT wait to meet and get to know the Greek students I have been praying about for months now. Prayer Requests: That The Lord will take complete control of my heart and mind and demand my full attention and passion. That I will learn to lay myself aside and have complete faith in The Lord-serving as a vessel for Him. That God will give me the strength to approach the Greek students and boldly and proudly proclaim His name and His gift of salvation. That when conversations or situations get awkward, The Lord will take control and guide us. That our team will see some of the fruit of our mission.

 

Katie: Greece is so beautiful and wonderful! I am so blessed to be here now and with these people. The food, culture and people so far are incredible. We have only been here for about a week and it feels like we have been here for much longer. Prayer Requests: Please pray that as we begin to meet students we would have God speak through us and that we would say our words in a way that they would understand and truly know the character and personality of Jesus. Also pray that in moments of doubt, confusion, awkwardness and/or sadness that we would be reminded that God specifically chose us for this ministry and His hand is always in what we do, that He is in control and has a plan that is always better than what we know or expect.

 

Blake: Yassas from Greece! Our time in Athens and Ioannina so far has been so wonderful. We enjoyed seeing the Parthenon and Mars Hill last week, but we are all very excited to be in the city where our ministry will take place! We will be starting our first day of ministry tomorrow, and we are all excited and nervous to start initiating conversations with students. Please pray that we will walk boldly in the Spirit of God, and that we will be fully aware and confident as we trust Him. Also, pray that we won’t let anxiousness get the best of us, and that we would simply be ourselves and be faithful to our calling. Thank you all again for your support, this would not be possible without your support in prayer. I’m excited to update you soon with news about the friends we meet!

 

Ben & Suzete:  Howdy everyone!  Greece is amazing! The most beautiful country that we have ever seen, in pictures or otherwise.  Our team has been growing closely with each other and are becoming more and more unified together in Christ, praise God for answering our prayers!  Please continue to pray for our other requests such as for the Greeks’ hearts to be opened by God and that He will open doors for us to follow through.  Continue to pray for us to grow in Christ and to continually be running after him and that we will be transformed by our efforts and time here.  Thank you all for the many blessings that you have either given or been in our lives.  We love you and praise God for you being in our lives.

 

Rachel: Hi Mom and Dad!! Ioannina has been wonderful. The food is delicious and the people are incredibly hospitable. Today, I went on campus for the first time with the intention of meeting friends. I got to meet three young ladies who are studying biology. Please be praying for boldness, that I would be willing to be confident in my faith and in the Lord’s ability to speak powerful words through me. Please be praying for the future friends that I am going to make, that their hearts would be open to God and willing to talk about him. Lastly, please pray that I would be consistently reminded of the Lord’s provision in bringing me to Ioannina and his future provision in carrying me through these next few weeks. Thank you for praying for me! I miss you both very much!!

 

Mikayla: Why hello friends & family! My time in Greece has already exceeded my hopes and expectations and we still have four weeks. Yesterday was the first day we went on campus with the stinters. It was so amazing to see how the Lord is working here. I can see The Lord though out the people and the town of Ioannina; it’s amazing. I can’t wait to see how God works through us to give the people here an intimate relationship with Him. Please be praying for my team and I and of course the people of Ioannina, that their hearts become more and more receptive of the His word.

 

Mark: I’ve so far convinced at least two Greeks that I’m a professional hip-hop dancer, so the trip has been an absolute success! Remember Acie Law? He bounced around the NBA for a few years but he ended up on a Greek team, so I’ve met a few Acie Law fans here in Greece, which is hilarious. I think I was born Greek: they stay up late, sleep in and eat awesome food. I’ve had the best burrito, ice cream, pork and pizza of my life. And in all seriousness, thank you for your prayers and your support. The Gospel is needed here and it’s an honor to be a part of God’s plan of victory for this town and this country, regardless of what step in the process we are. God’s beauty is on full display in the lake, the castle (seriously, there’s a castle), the food, the culture, the language, the people. On another note, please pray for my friend Amanda Hoffman. She was in a car accident the week after she graduated from A&M (she’s one of the smartest people I’ve ever met) and she’s been in a coma since. The brain damage is more severe than they initially expected, and I don’t know what her chances of recovery are. Pray for her, pray for her doctors, pray for her loved ones, pray for us, and pray for Greece.

 

Graeme: Yassas! Greece has been completely and utterly fantastic! If you think you’ve seen beautiful countryside, you probably haven’t been to Ioannina. Seriously y’all this place is gorgeous. We had our first day on campus today and getting to talk to student was so cool. I am doing so well, and I cant wait to tell you all about it!!

 

Keaton: Howdy Friends and Family! Thanks for all of your support and prayers thus far. Everything is going great here. Greece has been such a humbling /exciting experience for us all, everyone we’ve met has been so hospitable and kind. We landed here in Ioannina last Friday, and started our on-campus evangelism today (Tuesday)! Please be praying for our team’s unity, health (we’ve had a few sick), and boldness to share the gospel. Please also pray for me, that I could love and pursue the guys in our group well, as well as meet with Greek students on campus. Please pray specifically for balance in that area. I will update y’all soon, thanks for everything! -Keats

 

Sarah: Hello friends! Thank you for your prayers–it has been wonderful to be in Greece. The Lord has blessed our team with great cohesion and unity. It is so exciting to be here and I can’t wait to begin making Greek friends. Please be in prayer for our team’s health–we’ve had a couple people sick/fighting sickness.

04 Jul

South Asia: Spreading the Gospel and Caring for Orphans

Mission Trip Experiences

Kaitlin is serving in South Asia for the summer. We’ve had the privilege to support the work she will be doing there of spreading the Gospel and caring for orphans. Kaitlin and her team of three other girls have just recently arrived on the field and have been going through orientation under their supervisors. Below we’ve shared an excerpt from her blog.

 

The past 8 days have been filled with seminars, lessons, and scavenger hunts throughout the city, experiencing the culture and visiting mosques and temples. Experiencing first hand the culture here has been eye-opening and heart softening. How do I begin to describe this intense darkness and oppression that looms heavier than the smog in the air?

 

Crowds rush to vendors selling ornate food and flowers, eager to sacrifice everything they have to gain favor in the gods’ eyes. These gods are filthy, made of colorful plaster, smothered in remains of sacrificed, sugared food, attracting swarms of flies and prayers pleading for a peace offering. As we walked around, children as young as two years old bowed to the floor, chanting their pleas for mercy. Their eyes are empty, faces sullen. They have found no joy in their 36 million gods, but constantly strive for the approval of a man-made god as some even sacrifice their own children in that very temple.


The only thing I can do right now for these children is hand them a piece of candy, say a prayer out loud, and touch them – for these children are never touched, they are the Dalits, the untouchables of the society. If a person of a higher caste comes in contact, they are required to bathe in holy water, to cleanse them of the child’s unholiness. To reach out with my hand, to touch their skin, speaks volumes to these children who’ve never been lovingly touched. I know this is only the beginning of the Lord absolutely breaking my heart for the people here.

 

God is already at work using Kaitlin and her team to be a blessing to others through their actions. We’re blessed to be a part of this process. Please pray that God’s love would be shown through this team to these children and in turn, he would be glorified through it.

05 May

Who is The Vessel Foundation?

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“We believe individuals are created as vessels…able to be filled, restored and with the ability to also fill others” – Lori L. Lovelace, President of The Vessel

 

For God, who said, “Light shall shine out of darkness,” is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves. 2 Corinthians 4:6-7

In New Testament days, earthen vessels, or jars of clay, were “a dime a dozen”. They broke, cracked, shattered or crumbled quickly. In today’s world, they would be something you stop by the dollar store to pick up once you run out. You wouldn’t think twice about losing one. WE are those vessels – cheap, worthless, easily broken, crumble under the slightest amount of pressure. Despite all of this, God chooses to place his treasure within these vessels. Why? To display the surpassing greatness of the power of God.

The Vessel exists to well steward our resources in order to invest in these vessels and push them to growth and development as they carry this treasure throughout the world. Motivated by and grounded in the teachings of Jesus, we support anyone who desires to do one or more of the following: feed the hungry, quench the thirsty, invite the stranger, clothe the naked, heal the sick, help those who are oppressed, comfort those who mourn, visit those in prison, bind up the brokenhearted and proclaim the Good News. (Matthew 24: 31-36, Isaiah 61:1-3)

God has chosen his vessels. The Vessel is dedicated to the growth, education and service of these individuals – to make them the best possible vessels they can be in order to carry the treasure they’ve been given.

"DUE TO AN OVERWHELMING NUMBER OF REQUESTS, THE VESSEL IS CURRENTLY NOT ACCEPTING NEW APPLICATIONS"