April 21, 2017

The Power House

The 2017 SEND Interns (Paige, Josh, Janelle, Sarah, Jenny, Amy, Cameron) on their way to serve at The Power House in New Haven, Indiana.

By Paige Chupp, SEND Ministries Intern

When I look back on my past it amazes me to see how God has redeemed me in areas that I once thought completely hopeless. The song “Great Are You Lord,” by All Sons and Daughters, speaks so much truth and power about this kind of restoration, and how God longs to restore his people (if you are not familiar with this song, have a listen below). The lyrics fill me with hope and remind me of the countless verses in scripture, especially in the Old Testament, where God’s people were in rebellion against him. All they had to do was turn from their wicked ways and trust him again, and he would redeem them! That’s what God wants from us today too. He wants us to repent of our evil, fleshly ways and trust solely in him. He wants to redeem us; this truth is written all throughout the Bible. Often it’s hard to see and believe those truths and promises, especially if they aren’t right there in front of us, but that doesn’t change the truth about who God is. God IS moving, he IS restoring, and he IS redeeming. Even through everyday life in a small Indiana town.

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April 18, 2017

In The Way of Jesus: A Book Review

By Ashley West, RMM Logistics Coordinator

Missions and discipleship go hand in hand. We see the simplicity of this partnership in Jesus’ final mandate before leaving Earth—“go and make disciples.” Our workers are aiming to do just that, and we love sharing stories of the ways that God is at work through their labors. It’s incredible and humbling to watch God expand his Kingdom around the world, and to play a small part in it.

Sometimes, though, these stories can also be a little discouraging. God is raising up churches in Asia, in Africa, in the Middle East, and people are coming to faith in him in record numbers. But what about here? Sometimes it’s hard to recognize discipleship and growth in the North American church, and it raises the nagging question “where have we gone wrong—and how can we make it right again?”

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April 14, 2017

The Lamb We Slaughtered: A REACH Update

By Daniel, Team Eurasia

Sitting down and eating a meal for the last time with beloved friends.

Showing servanthood by “the washing of feet.”

Witnessing the slaughter of a lamb.

Sounds like something taken straight out of the gospels, right? But this is something that our team witnessed this Easter week… and yes, we literally slaughtered a lamb.

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April 11, 2017

Reservations: A REACH Update

By Christian, Team Montana, U.S.A.

Our team works primarily among the people of the Flathead Reservation in northwestern Montana, but this week we had the privilege of taking a prayer trip to all seven reservations in the state. This was probably the highlight of my outreach so far. God showed himself in new ways to all of us.

The place where I saw God move the most was in a small town in the middle of nowhere called Busby. When we first got there, I got this feeling of depression and felt really down and out of it. We found out a little later that there had been a lot of deaths recently in the community; this was common on the other reservations too. After we had gotten settled in and talked with the pastor, we had a time of worship and prayer.

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April 07, 2017

Locally Grown: The Bus Ride

By Shirley Nisly

RMM is excited about the ways God is using his church to touch people with his love. In this story Shirley describes a recent encounter she had while volunteering at a children’s ministry sponsored by her congregation, Plainview Mennonite Church in Hutchinson, Kansas.

Her eyes were cold and had dark circles under them. Her shoulders hunched, her hair was matted and unkempt. She was only fourteen and had experienced life well past her years, yet she came to JAM. JAM, which stands for Jesus and Me, is our church’s outreach program in Partridge, Kansas, where children come and hear about God, spend time in worship, go to class, and get a snack. I’ve been teaching there for fifteen years and had never met a young girl like Sarah* before. The first evening she came, around the middle of August, she told me that she was an atheist. We conversed about her beliefs and she told me she was worshiping Satan. My first thought was that she was too young to even know what she really believed.

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April 04, 2017

One Step at a Time

By Lydia Gingerich

In December 2016, Elmer and Eileen Lehman, long-time Rosedale Mennonite Missions (RMM) supporters and missionaries, published the inspiring story of their lives in a book entitled: One Step at a Time. The Lehmans traveled to Costa Rica as RMM missionaries in 1961 hoping to start the second evangelical church in a city of 17,500 people. Their autobiography begins on two separate farms in upstate New York and recounts their journey through a plethora of communities and events, following God all the way.

The following excerpt from the book, details one of the pivotal events in their early ministry:

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March 28, 2017

God’s Not Done Yet: A REACH Update

By Gabbie, Team Spain

Up until last week, our schedules have been pretty routine. Language classes, teaching, babysitting, etc. This last week, however, we went to Antequera, a town about 90 minutes west of Granada, to do some manual labor for the camp Manantiales de Vida (Springs of Life).

We were greeted by our gracious and hospitable hosts and owners of the camp, Glenn and Sue. We got to spend every lunch and dinner with these two around their dining table talking and laughing. Sue prepared every meal and Glenn did the dishes. We offered to help (trust me, we did), but they wouldn’t accept it. Every meal was followed with tea or coffee and dessert. Not only that, we arrived to a giant jar of peanut butter, a rare commodity in Spain, and bags of popcorn. (Confession: We had the peanut butter nearly finished by day three.) They spoiled us so much, and we loved every second of it. Glenn and Sue, thank you for having servant hearts and for being so kind and generous to us four crazy girls.

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Hotline to Heaven

By a worker in Spain

As we interact with friends who know of our faith, we are often asked to pray for different aspects of their lives. This can be a great opportunity to show them we care and to provide a simple picture of dependence on God – whether he answers the way we want or not. This story, from workers in Spain, shows the importance of praying for our friends through the ups and downs of life.

Brian,* an American, was the director of the English academy where I teach. Since his sudden death a year and a half ago, his young Spanish wife, Begonia* has assumed that responsibility, along with being a pediatrician and now a single mom with two young boys. We've maintained an ongoing relationship with her, including having them over for the boys' favorite meals: pancakes or tacos. She occasionally asks us to pray for things beyond her power to change, saying we have a hotline to heaven! We are happy to pray, but tell her that she can talk to God as well. She jokingly says that when calling up there, the line is either busy or she is put on hold!

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March 22, 2017

Riding for a Cause

By Lydia Gingerich, RMM staff writer

Roy and Karen Schlabach take some time to share their thoughts on Ride for Missions Florida, which recently covered over 150 miles of trail and road along the west coast of central Florida. They discuss this ride as well as the summer ride (July 22-26, 2017).

While levels of biking enthusiasm vary among riders, Roy trends towards the higher end of that spectrum. He has participated in the Ride for Missions (RFM) summer ride nine times, and in just the last year, he rode his bike over 10,000 miles. He rides with numerous groups but considers RFM one of his favorites “for a few reasons.” One of these reasons is the comradery he feels while interacting with other riders both on the road and during the evening meetings. “The other thing is that we are doing it for a good cause. We love what RMM is doing and we love being a part of it with this trip.”

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Planting Seeds: A REACH Update

By Amy, Team Montana, USA

This past week I had some really cool experiences with taking steps in trusting God and what he’s telling me. One story goes like this…

Kelly and I were driving home one afternoon and I decided I wanted to be dropped off at my favorite coffee shop. We drove past the coffee shop and for some reason it was closed, so Kelly suggested taking me to one we hadn’t tried, but where our friend was working. So she dropped me off there and I talked to my friend and got some coffee. I was just hanging out there, waiting for her to close up when a girl walked in and ordered. Obviously, that’s normal, as this is a café, that’s what people do. She took a seat at the table next to mine and after getting her food, she just sat there staring at it, looking pretty despondent.

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March 16, 2017

“I planted, Apollos watered, and God gave the increase...”

By Jill Wagner*

During the years our family served on an RMM team in the Middle East (1982-89) a young engineering student, Abdullah,* came to living faith in Christ. He was a member of our house fellowship, baptized in our bathtub.

After we had to leave the country in 1987, Abdullah became the local leader of the house fellowship until he was arrested for his faith, imprisoned and interrogated for a month, and as a result, expelled from the university.

Korean brothers and sisters working in the same Middle Eastern country took Abdullah under their wing, paying for him to finish his education and to receive advanced theological studies in Korea. He married a Korean woman.

Fifteen years ago Abdullah and his wife Fatima* moved back to the Middle East with their two children, called to raise up a church there. A third child was born. Many members of Abdullah’s extended family came to faith through their witness. As they lived in a totally unchurched region of the country's largest city, prayer walking its crowded streets and meeting their neighbors, a thriving house fellowship was born in their living room.

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March 14, 2017

We Are Vessels: A REACH Update

By Daniel, Team Eurasia

“We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.” 2 Corinthians 4:7

During our day off last week, we had the opportunity to hike to the ancient Roman aqueducts in the town of Moria. Two thousand years ago these towers and vessels were created for one purpose, to carry potable water from the center of the Island to the cities along the coast. This is one of the reasons the Roman Empire flourished. They knew the importance of transporting large amounts of water from miles away to bring life to their citizens. The aqueducts were not life, but they carried life. Today these aqueducts serve no purpose other than being a tourist attraction. Large sections have already broken off and fallen to the ground showing that this structure is unable to carry water from point A to point B. No one took the time to repair them as they deteriorated. Today they are not carriers of life.

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