Hey there! Good day to you… got your coffee in hand? Want to hear about the past week?
Last Sunday was another opportunity to train up to the capital and help out with the church in Paris-Centre.
The congregation is primarily made up of Filipino and Sri Lankan Christians and they rent a local in the south eastern part of the city. It’s a bit away from the “touristy-center” but still very much the capital.
I preached from Joshua chapter 1 as they are a church in transition right now… in between Bro & Sis Brochu (who are on deputation) and Rev. & Mrs Dean & Loreen Byfield (AIMers who will stand in the gap until the Brochu’s return…. Incidentally, Sis. Byfield is also Bro & Sis Nowacki’s daughter). As it turns out, the guest minister who was there the previous Sunday also preached from the same chapter… I’d say that there was something that the Lord wanted the church to hear and be encouraged by. God is good!
On Tuesday I participated in the funeral of M. Henri Leday (brother of Cecile Leday, the first member of the church here). For a number of years, M. Leday resisted the gospel and was tolerant, at best, of his sister’s faith. With time however, the Lord softened his heart. In 2007, Sis. Cecile was admitted to hospital and ended up never coming back out prior to her death, however, the Sunday before she entered the hospital, her brother did join her for service… he never stopped for 3-4 years until his own health would no longer permit him.
He was buried from the church that his daughter attends, in a neighbouring city, but we were asked to participate in the funeral service and then to look after the graveside service as well, which did take place in Châtellerault. What an honour.
I met M. Leday back in 2009 when I was here to teach in the Bible School so he was not unfamiliar to me. I had a chance to visit him again a few weeks ago with Bro. Brochu… but his health had already declined greatly.
*thankful the Lord still softens hearts hardened by any number of things or circumstances.*
Thursday was a very productive day in terms of just plain ol’ hard work.
I started by attempting to mow the church yard (about 1.5 acres). The ride-on mower was out of commission so I figured I could use Bro. Brochu’s electric “yard mower” to just get a 20′ perimeter around the building and at least “take the edge off” … so it would look less like a pasture!
It was a task, to be sure, but here’s the silver lining… at one point, I saw an older gentleman across the street. I waved at him and kept on mowing, but he was back near our fence a few minutes later.
Thinking he might need directions, I stopped the mower, went to greet him and asked if I could help him with something. It turns out that he was wanting to help me. This was the first time I met M. Poirier, the church’s neighbor. He has a large John Deer, dual-blade lawn tractor and he offered to finish up the rest of the lawn.
Incredible! Though not hostile toward the church, he’s not had all that much contact in the past so this was quite something. It’s opened up the possibility of inviting them for a meal at some point as a means of saying thank you… *Lord, let our contact with the Poiriers bring you glory*
After the church yard, I returned home and trimmed the hedge at the Brochus. This is about a 4-hour deal (with Liz and/or the kids coming along behind to load up the trimmings). We’ll likely have to repeat the trim once or twice more during the summer growing season, but it’s sure easier than scraping & painting a fence! Here are the kids helping me transport the trimmings to the church yard where I’ll use them for mulch / compost.
A Few More Highlights:
- We visited with an older couple who are related to someone in church. It was a very warm visit and I’m confident we’ll see them visit church one day.
- Wednesday night was the 3rd night of a series I’m doing on the basics of salvation. We’d already discussed repentance & baptism and this was the first of two lessons on the Holy Ghost. There is a gal there that needs it and is also not quite ready to be baptized… *a matter to keep in prayer*
- Today I am teaching at the Bible School on the books of 1st and 2nd Corinthians then driving 3.5 hours back home.
In a Nutshell
That’s pretty much been our week in a nutshell… Thanks for taking the time to stay on top of our goings-on here… let it inform your prayers for us and for the church in Châtellerault. God DOES have greater things in store for this city… and you’re part of it!
God bless you today!