21 March 2014
Two days ago, we arrived in Baton Rouge at my in-laws' house to begin our furlough in expectation of our 5th child. God has given us some wonderful opportunities while in the U.S.: I will have the privilege of preaching in four missions conferences during our first seven weeks home. Please pray for safe travels and a successful delivery.
A "house thanksgiving" after a morning service in January started off our year in a unique way. Sabrina, the kids, and I invited our church members, former neighbors, and other friends to celebrate God's provisions toward our house and his guidance through recent trials. This occasion gave us the chance to especially thank our current neighbors who helped tremendously in July during our house fire. That day we fed over 300 people [pictured] with the help of several ladies and singles from our church! The next week we welcomed Evangelist Chris Stansell for his second visit along with a student from West Coast Baptist College. Bro. Stansell treated our whole family with extra suitcases full of gifts, surprises, and items we requested; he also blessed our church by preaching a special ministry day, building program dedication, revival meeting [flyer pictured], and teaching a series at our seminary [attendees pictured].
Our remaining weeks in Nigeria were filled with meetings to strategize several major works that will be ongoing during my family's time in the U.S. We now have a planning committee of twelve church members who are working to get a Christian elementary school started on our church property by September. A national missionary, who has extensive experience in starting A.C.E. schools, is leading the committee. Seven families that have a great burden for having a church inside Abuja (Truth Baptist is in a satellite town of the capital) have been exchanging ideas on the best way to begin. We are endeavoring to plant the church with our friend, Pastor Israel Thompsons, who is already teaching with me in the college and institute. Truth Baptist Church will be in good hands during my furlough with our five deacons, a youth pastor, and a trustee forming a leadership council, and a total of sixteen men scheduled to be "behind the pulpit." This council will be guiding our building project on the new auditorium and also transitioning our assistant pastor back into ministry service as he continues to recuperate from his accident. We need your prayers for the all these activities and also for our auditorium plans to be approved so that we can begin work.