For probably the first time since we have been here we really don’t have that much to share about what has happened in the last month. We have spent much of our time on the road, Dar es Salaam to Mwanza to Tarime to Nairobi to Tarime to Musoma to Mwanza to…I think you get the idea. The time that hasn’t been spent on the road has been spent on Christmas. However we, like many of you, are busy preparing for 2013. We are smelling, not the roses that are already blooming, but the ones that have been planted in rich dirt and are waiting to grow.
I wanted to share some of what we are looking forward to in 2013:
1.Starting a publishing group that will help create resources for the pastors and Christians in the Tanzanian Conference to grow in their faith.
2. New churches in communities that really have a need for a community based church.
3. Marriage classes in communities that still follow traditional marriage practices leading to unhappy and sometimes dangerous home situations.
4. A new development committee for the district that will be equipped to visit individual churches and help them see the needs and strengths of their churches and communities.
5. A young leaders mentoring group to bring together young leaders in the church who will have an impact now and for a long time to come.
6. The Emmanuel Center for Women and Children in Gamasara. It will see a slow, but hopefully steady start to address the issues of women’s and children’s rights and education in Gamasara.
7. Volunteer teams that will come and help with some of these projects.
Now that is a lot going on and we know how plans actually work out after we make them, however, the real roses we see starting to grow are the people we work with. We have agreed as a family and ministry that 2013 will be a time to invest in people. We want to grow our love for the people we are in relationships with now as well as the new people we will meet this year. We want to not shy away from the hard work of loving others that God has for us, but to be able to change our lives so that they help us have the time and energy to love the people God puts into our lives in the coming year.
Wherever you are we hope you can join us in that commitment this year. If you want to join us in other commitments this year please feel free to contact us and ask how you can help, support us, or be in prayer for the ministries that will fill our hearts and minds in 2013.