Nepal Trip / Sponsor Children Update

By Dan Pourbaix,
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Below is an update from Emily, one of the Nepal trip members. She helps with our Nepal Child Sponsorship Program and has been able to spend time with the children during the trip to Nepal. The letter below was sent to our current child sponsors and a couple pictures of the team with the children. Be praying for the team as they travel home in the coming days! Click here to find out more about our partnership in Nepal and the Child Sponsorship Program.

Hi Sponsors!!

I cannot stop thinking about the amazing things God is doing here. The churches are doing amazing, the sponsorship is helping entire villages, and God seems to be bringing people to faith at a warp speed! 

I’ve been able to hangout with some sponsor kids and the most valuable thing I’ve taken from it is that they are so thankful. Some of these kids have lost parents and are being raised by grandparents who won’t be alive much longer. Because of YOU they don’t have to be scared that they will have to wonder on the streets. God is taking care of their needs because of you and it makes me cry to watch it happen here.

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I met a new family at the church here last week (2 girls and 1 boy) whose mom committed suicide 2 months ago and whose Dad went to Iraq and is not returning. It seems like so many of our sponsor kids have hard stories like this, but God has a plan and I know that he has definitely given us resources in America to help the poor and needy. Thank YOU so much for using your resources to help children not only survive, but thrive and be able to use their God given abilities! He is using it in more ways than you can believe.

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We have quite a few more kids that we could help so if you know a family who might be interested in sponsoring would you let me know? 

Thank you doesn’t really seem to do justice, but thank you. I look forward to sharing pictures soon.

Nepal Team Trip Recap!

By Dan Pourbaix,

On December 30, our team embarked on an adventure to visit our sister church in Pokhara, Nepal. It was an amazing experience, but it was not life changing. Our lives will never be the same after going to Nepal, but it was not the trip itself that changed us – it was God. 

We left for Nepal with a lot of questions. What will it be like? What exactly will we be doing there? Why does God have me on this trip? What does God have in store for this trip? We all knew God wanted us on the trip but we didn’t have many specific expectations. 

Short-term mission trips are tricky. How can we go into a place for two weeks and make a lasting impact that is more good than harmful? Our goal was to build up and encourage the church leaders and members in Nepal, and inspire them to keep sharing Jesus with the people around them. We wanted to make sure that anyone we connected with while we were there also got connected with a church leader, someone who could continue investing in their life when we returned to the U.S.

And now that we are back in the U.S. we face a lot of questions. How was Nepal? Was the trip a success? Did it change us? 

Nepal was (and still is) beautiful. The people are beautiful, the mountains are beautiful, what God is doing there is beautiful. 

Our sister church in Pokhara is part of a network of churches in Nepal which largely grew from a small village near the city of Gorkha, which is near the epicenter of the earthquake. Many of the church leaders grew up in the same village and have now devoted their lives to spreading the Gospel throughout Nepal and its neighboring countries. This village rests in a valley, surrounded by crops of mustard and rice paddies. In the morning, the air in the valley is thick, covered in a cloud. Then the sun peeks through and breaks apart the cloud. When the sun first breaks through, there is a ray of light, like a spotlight beaming down on the valley, as if God Himself is looking on the valley with pleasure.

After meeting the people of this village, and seeing their faithfulness and how they delight in Jesus, it seems right to say that the way the sun looks upon the valley in which they live is a representation of how God puts His hand of blessing on these people. These people, and their faith, are beautiful. They live humbly, working in fields their whole lives to grow food, their children walking miles to go to school each day. And yet, despite their hardships, they are joyful. They laugh and play and joke around, often about the same things we laugh about in our daily lives. And they are so generous. They give out of their poverty with open hands.

They don’t just give their possessions, though. They give their stories, their identities, their faith and love in Jesus. They are so willing and eager to share who they are, to get to know you in return. They have a genuine interest in sharing the art of being human with those around them. And they are reaching the nation. The leaders of the church keep finding new places to plant churches, new ways to reach people, new programs to help more people in hard places. And it is beautiful.

So were we successful? We laughed together, we played together, and we prayed together. We shared life stories, dreams for our futures, fears, struggles, encouragements, games and stories. Stories of how God has led us where we are and stories of what we have seen Him do. In the end, we realized we came to Nepal with more expectations than we realized. We expected to see God work, and we expected to help the Nepali people we encountered. God did show up, and what we didn’t expect was to leave feeling so full, like we have been encouraged, challenged and inspired to follow Jesus harder, to pursue people the way Jesus pursues us: relentlessly, lovingly, and by diving in with them right where they are. We made connections and shared moments that cannot be put into words. But most importantly, we got to see more of Jesus. If that’s not success I don’t know what is.

So yes, pray for Nepal. Pray for the hearts of the people, that they be ready and open to meeting Jesus. Pray for the church there, that they be encouraged and empowered to keep doing what they’re doing. Pray for more workers, to continue spreading the Gospel to the most remote parts of the country. And keep your eyes up, because God is doing big things in the hearts of His people, and He wants you to be a part of it.

-Amber Johnson

Join us Monday: February 8th from 7:00-8:30pm @ the church (in the basement) as the Nepal Team shares their stories and experiences!

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Nepal Team Update - January 11th

By Dan Pourbaix,

We have been so blessed on this trip! We had an amazing time in Gorkha. The school was so welcoming and we all taught several different grades of students. We developed relationships and many of us were asked to teach full time by the school! They were so grateful for us coming. We had Young Life club and we were able to invite several students to club. So great to see Hindu students hear Amber’s story and to be able to share the Gospel to them. We had one young man that Eric connected with that is very interested in becoming a christian.

We were able to go to Binay church in Gorhka. So many amazing stories of God's faithfulness to the believers there. We met the first believer in the area and prayed with him. We met and prayed with several pastors and leaders from the area. Amazing everyone we saw in the whole valley would say Jamashe (the Christian greeting) to us. We heard stories of healing and powerful stories of sacrifice and dedication in their lives. Such a blessing to worship with them and help update the church. 

Today we visited the slums where Paul and several others are tutoring students who are not able to go to school. We played with the children in the slums and then got to have tea with Paul, Shanti, Hom and Manu, such a great time! We also spent time with Chitra and saw more pictures and stories from the Chepang Village. 

There is so much to be done here in Nepal. So many opportunities to serve and love people. I don’t think anyone on our team wants to go home. We have been so encouraged and blessed. We have a closing time with the elders tomorrow and some of the Binay youth. We will see a missionary friend of mine in Kathmandu on Wednesday

We would love prayer for our final days and for travel mercies as we head home. We are all pretty tired and some of us are starting to get a little sick. I wish I could share more of what God is doing here - but I hope this update give you a taste of it. Things have been busy and internet has been very limited between shortage of electricity and shortage of gas to run the generators. 

-Matt