There are several reports this week to read, so I will not labor long over other events from the previous week. However, I do want to mention the powerful weekend at the annual Bear Valley Bible Institute staff retreat. The theme of the weekend was The Hand Of Our God Has Been Favorable To Us based on the text of Nehemiah 2:18. The lessons provided an encouraging foundation of how God has blessed His work through the Bear Valley Bible Institute. Another lesson focused on and challenged us to Rise Up and Build and the weekend concluded with a lesson encouraging a call to action, Put Our Hands To The Good Work.
Over the weekend the staff from the Bible Institute in Denver, along with the various staff within the Extension Program came together for a few days to focus on the past year’s progress within the various schools where Bear Valley is privileged to work with some of the greatest men on earth. The event included the wives of these staff members and just over 50 were able to share in the wonderful experience.
While we enjoyed the various reports and lessons, the weekend also gives us an opportunity to take an afternoon to discuss several areas dealing with how we can improve the overall approach and work of the Bible Institute and Extension Program. The “brain storming” was encouraging as ideas were considered to help improve the structure of the organization and approach to each of the schools and works implemented by graduates.
One final thought about the retreat is worth mentioning. These few days together provide a great forum for each staff member to develop a greater relationship with others who are involved in the overall work. Four new couples were able to attend who are connected in one way or another to the Extension Program. The mutual love for the Lord and His work could not help but be seen in the lives of everyone who attended. We laughed together, cried together, prayed and sang together, all to the glory of our great and awesome God!
We all look forward to this time and next year’s theme already has us anticipating next year.
Now on to the other reports...
Reports from the coordinators are now located on the website, under Staff Reports. The address is http://www.wetrainpreachers.com/extension-schools/
The most recent news from Steven Ashcraft about the work in West Africa can be found by clicking here.
Short Courses Set To Begin In Cameroon: Short course instructors have arrived and are ready to begin their classes. The work began with preaching for the local congregation.
A New Class Begins In Cambodia: Excitement is high as a new class of nine students begin their preparations in the word of God in Siem Reap.
Church Updates Show Progress: With all the challenges in Chimala, various updates from the local congregations continue to show progress.
Committee Planning The School In Paraguay: The diligence of the church in Paraguay is preparing for next year’s first class in the Theological Academy of Paraguay.
Students Preaching Out In Uganda: As the students gain confidence in their training the fruit of their labors among local congregations is being seen.
Two Arrive And One Leaves The Work In Arusha: The powerful nature of the work in Arusha is found in the number of those who love to visit and share in the great work.
A Census and A “Do-Over” In Tanzania: A recent census in Arusha, Tanzania had the Gee family thinking TIA, but there is also incredible news to read.
First, I would like to thank all the men and women who traveled to Denver to share in the retreat. There is no doubt in my mind everyone came away from the retreat uplifted about the ways God has blessed us in this work. Second, I want to thank all of you who read the report and continue praying for the development of training preachers around the world. Third, I want to express appreciation to each individual and congregation who has a vision for Extension Training. Your vision for the work is demonstrated in the sacrifices you make to help the financial needs of the work. So much is being done and there is so much to do, but thanks to everyone who is part of this team effort, God is blessing our work to His glory.