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“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” – James 1:2-3

Like many of you, we have been spending a lot of time in our home. This is partly because of personal choices, but also due to restrictions and government warnings that are in place. During these unique times, we are continuing to do our best at staying connected with our friends and contacts here. I have continued meeting weekly to study the Bible with several individuals through video calls. One of these meetings began before quarantine and the other started after. It’s been a neat opportunity to continue speaking into people’s lives. I first met one of these men before he became a follower. As I have continued relating with him, I have been excited to see how the Father is changing his heart. Since he accepted Jesus almost two years ago, I am overjoyed to see his desire to continue to grow and learn. This past week as we studied together, he shared that he used to have the desire to leave this country and start a new life elsewhere; he now sees that God has things for him to do here in his home country. The Father is at work, softening hearts and changing lives.

In the midst of all of this uncertainty, there have been some exciting things happening, but it has also brought on “trials of various kinds” that weigh heavy on our hearts. A friend is struggling with stage 4 cancer, other friends have lost loved ones, and just today a neighbor committed suicide. Our hearts go out to the hurting people around us. We long to be the hands and feet of Jesus. In trying to convey the Father’s comfort, we need him as our source. Our hope and request is that he will be glorified in all of these situations.

In this time, may each of us cling to our “Rock” and find our perfection and completion in him.

Please keep this family of four in your prayers. Ask for creative ideas on how to connect and encourage individuals while still abiding by local pandemic regulations. Pray for opportunities to bring God’s peace to their friends who are sick, hurting, or living in fear.

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