Jim & Bev VanMersbergen
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THANK YOU for your prayerful support of the Awana Ministry in this region. The financial support of ministry partners like you are a tremendous blessing. We give the Lord of life thanks for you; He knows what you have given and continue to give in His name for us and He blesses you. While speaking at one of our Awana churches on a Sunday morning just recently, between services someone slipped an envelope into Jim’s Bible. On the outside of the envelope it said, “God loves a cheerful giver.” The surprise envelope contained a cash gift from an anonymous giver. So to this giver (we hope you are reading this) we say “thank you” for your thoughtfulness and generosity. What a wonderful vision, calling, and ministry we are allowed to walk in because of each one’s prayers and financial support.
RECHARGE - Summer Connection
In these last few weeks we have connected with many Awana ministry commanders and directors, as well as leaders and pastors. We had a good time of laughter while sharing some crazy and unusual things that happened at our clubs this last year. We also had an encouraging time of sharing what God has done and the many blessings we’ve experienced. Here are a couple of examples:
- Three kids were saved in one night. Just the previous week the leaders had expressed some discouragement. The very next week, one of the boys told the director that he wasn’t sure he was a Christian. After hearing the Gospel explained once again, He trusted Christ as his Savior. He was so excited that he went to tell everyone which resulted in two more boys, who on their own, approached and talked with different leaders and received Christ that same night.
- Last year a boy attending Awana tore up his book; he didn’t want anything to do with God, church, Awana. So the leaders worked with him one-on-one and part way through the year one night (on his own) said, “I think God wants me to stop watching bad movies!” He came back to Awana this year and was now able to be in a small group and was learning verses. The leaders did not give up on him and watched God at work. They also came to find out that he sings beautifully (he participated in their talent event one evening.
Our goal is to help our club leadership in such a way that they will not just survive but thrive in their clubs. This involves teamwork and is critical for real effectiveness. We like to demonstrate what teamwork looks like in a fun way.
Fourth of JULY: As flags fly high and fireworks light the sky, let’s not forget to stop and thank God for the United States of America. Be mindful of the freedom we still have today and the abundance we enjoy. God has truly blessed us. But more importantly, take time to reflect and thank God for the spiritual freedom and abundant life we have in Christ. In John 10:10, Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life and that they may have it more abundantly.” God gives us abundant mercy, abundant kindness, abundant provision, abundant pardon, and abundant peace. In response, may we serve the LORD our God with joy and gladness of heart.
- Thankful for God’s protection, provision and faithfulness.
- Thankful for the hospitality of the churches who let us use their facility for ReCharge.
- Thankful for safety as we’ve traveled hundreds of miles in June.
- Pray for planning and preparation for the Awana Ministry Conferences in October.
- Pray for Camp just for Awana kids coming in August.
- Pray for new clubs considering starting Awana in the fall.
- Pray that the followers of Jesus will continue to serve the Lord and teach the next generation of kids and teens the Gospel and truths of the Bible.