God’s blessings to you all today! I done the traditional snow walk around the church this morning a little before 7am and snow is coming down and not expected to stop until tonight.
It is 28 degrees according to the thermometer in the alcove outside the church offices, with about two inches of fluffy snow covering sidewalks, steps, grounds, and parking lots. Some weather forecasters say we could get as much at 8 to 12 inches, so we will wait and see.
So we are cancelling all services for today. Our beautiful choir Cantata will be postponed until next Sunday, and our Joy Gift presentation by the youth will be combined with it.
Stay in, keep warm, enjoy the snow, and worship at home today.
Blessings and peace to all,
Our Thursday women’s Bible study will be starting back up on Thursday, September 20th at 10:30 a.m. We will be studying The Invisible War by Chip Ingram. “The Bible clearly teaches us that Satan is on a mission to destroy God’s people. And the problem is, Satan doesn’t telegraph his temptations and schemes. Instead, he’s very secretive as he attempts to lead Christians down a delicate, subtle, gradual path of deception.” In this eight part series, we will see what God has to say about Satan’s goals and tactics, the spiritual armor God offers us, and the confidence we can have about our sure victory over the enemy.” Please plan to join us and invite others.
The last weeks in Cameroon were filled with sorting, packing and preparing to transition back to the United States. We enjoyed special moments with friends. Our days and lives in Cameroon have been full of sweet friendships and are full of God’s love. We certainly are different people as we leave than we were when we arrived; we have grown in our love for God, and others.
Special Bible Dedication – Matthew had the opportunity over the past years to work with a project that has helped so many. Translating the bible from Latin script to a modified version of Arabic, has been a blessing, as the native speaking people can pick up a reader and go right into reading the Bible, understanding each and every word.
We saw joy as people received and read the scriptures for the first time. Teresa had just a joy in teaching the children for these past years. Friendships were formed, they grew academically, and hungered for more knowledge. While here in the US, the children and their creativity, hugs, high-fives, and laughter, will certainly be missed.
Working with other teachers and staff, over the past three years, I am grateful for the advice, conversations, laughter and times of prayer that I had with these ladies. I will miss them greatly! I am glad technology will allow us to continue to pray for the students and teachers. ~ Teresa
As I prepared to leave for Home Assignment, I had to release some of my extra responsibilities the last couple months. I am excited to see how things will progress under the direction of these various new leaders. ~ Matthew
Arriving back in Virginia, we will be here until the beginning of January! During our time here Teresa would love to visit and observe kindergarten classrooms, as well as share opportunities with teachers about teaching overseas. If you have any connections with classrooms of Kindergarten or university levels where Teresa could share her talents and observe, please let us know.
We’d love to hear from you! You can contact us by phone or email.
Matthew Phone: 434-471-2317 / Matthew_Lee@wycliffe.org
Teresa Phone: 434-471-2728 / Teresa_Lee@wycliffe.org
Skype Username: Erros84
We are also on Facebook and Twitter. You can also check out our blog. ~ Matthew and Teresa
This year’s team consisted of Kim Albert, Kelly and Lance Chappell, Wayne Davis, James Edmunds, Mike, Michaela, and Maelyn Freshour, Robert Guthrie, Russell and Marilyn Lee, Matthew and Teresa Lee, and Larry McPeters. As always, we saw each person’s special gifts revealed as God worked through us in this mission.
The first job we knew about before we left. In the summer of 2017 we helped Jim remove the last few items from his family home before it was demolished. Our construction supervisor, Buck, told me that he was really looking forward to our group coming because he knew we had a plumber and he needed to get the plumbing finished in Jim’s new house. Robert was not totally excited about spending all week doing the same work he does every day, but God had this plan for him, and he, along with the help of Wayne and Teresa, completed the job. They also did some electrical work to install lights in the basement – their special skills were in Richwood exactly when they were needed.
On a side note, Marilyn and Kim were shopping for groceries on Monday, and Kim was wearing the “Richwood Strong” t-shirt given to her by the team last year. It caught the eye of an older couple, and after striking up a conversation it turned out that she was the sister of Jim, and our group was working on her family home site, the house she grew up in. Kim showed her pictures taken last year, just before the house was demolished, and she exclaimed, “That was my Mama’s house!”
The second job was rebuilding a garage just up the street from Jim’s house. Robin, the homeowner, was so grateful for our presence. She helped when she could, provided the team with refreshments and cold water, and shared photos and stories of her experience with the disaster. The biggest focus here was getting the roof on, and Larry directed this operation with Lance as his #1 helper. God created this opportunity for Larry to share skills with the younger folks, as he taught Lance the fine points of putting on a tin roof, and gave Michaela and Maelyn their first taste of operating power tools! Mike was at work on this job, watching his girls grow in service, and Russell was a part of this crew, too.
The third job was another God-send. We were already slated to continue installing vinyl siding on Harold’s house, but the week before we arrived Harold fell and broke his hip. So now he also needed a ramp to access his home. James and Kelly eagerly took on this job, even though neither of them had ever built a ramp before. They were completely blessed by the idea of doing this service for this man, even though we never met him. We heard marvelous testaments to Harold’s Christian character from many sources. One of our mealtime devotions was about building character through adversity; we don’t think for one minute that Harold needed any characterbuilding, but God used Harold’s adversity as an opportunity to build character in some of our group.
Matthew and Kim chipped away at the siding on Harold’s house and pump house all week. There was a group of inexperienced young people from Lumberton, NC, who needed work, and Buck asked if we could help him by leading them. So Matthew spent several days teaching the finer points of installing siding and providing a meaningful work experience to these folks. His gift of teaching was certainly put into use!
The final project was Harold’s greenhouse. It may not seem like a greenhouse is such an important thing to rebuild, but Harold’s was washed away in the flood and his garden is extremely important to him, as he grows vegetables to give away to the needy. James, Mike, and Russell worked on the greenhouse, with help from Michaela and Maelyn, and they succeeded in putting on the roof and installing some siding.
Marilyn was challenged with the task of playing house-mom to our group without a designated helper. Cooking and cleaning up after this bunch is no easy task! She planned breakfast, put out fixings for us to prepare bag lunches, got our water coolers ready, had dinner going when we got back from working, and sometimes even had appetizers or desserts planned! God provided pleasant spirits for each of our team members and there was always someone helping with the preparation and clean up of each meal.
Throughout the week we were also treated to opportunities to enjoy God’s beautiful creation. We appreciated the cool evening temps and clear skies with a corn hole tournament outside the church where we were staying. Case manager, Grace, brought each team donuts Thursday morning. Buck invited us down to the banks of the North Fork of the Cherry River for an evening complete with a bonfire and s’mores. The team at Harold’s house spent Friday afternoon break in the river.
The bottom line is that we returned home with an amazing sense of awe at what God can do when He calls His people to service. He showed older folks that they’ve “still got it!” He showed younger folks the possibilities. He spoke through each of us as we shared devotions. He used us as examples, and helped us each learn new things.
And, “May Jesus Christ be praised!”
The session, on recommendation of Christian Education committee, approved purchase of new playground equipment for a north property playground near the new picnic shelter. The cost will be about $7500. This may be the lasting legacy you want to give to the church, so if you would like to contribute towards that project, mark your gifts appropriately or ask a session member about it.
If we need to cancel or adjust worship or ministry events due to weather,
we will send a church email and post news in this section of our page about
whether we will proceed or adjust due to or because of weather.
May God bless us all and keep us safe
as we continue to be the church in all kinds of weather!
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