March 2004

II Timothy 4:5 says, "But as for you, keep a clear head about everything, endure hardships, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry."

Monday, March 1 -- The Zerma team has three requests for short-term missionaries, one request for a career missionary, and several volunteer requests. Pray that these would be filled as God sends laborers into the harvest.

Tuesday, March 2
-- But go and learn what this means, ‘It is mercy that I desire, not sacrifice’; for I did not come to appeal to the righteous, but to sinners.” (Matt 9:13) Tobaski is coming up in a few days. This is a Muslim holiday in which they kill sheep in order for their sins from the previous year to be forgiven. Pray they will learn that animal sacrifice has no power to save, but only the redeeming sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

Wed, March 3 -- In February, you prayed for the Niger pepper project. The day you prayed, Don Bolls visited a village where it was thought that there were no seeds, plants or interest to grow them -- for miles around. To our surprise about 200 plants were found ready to be transplanted and a new gas engine powered water pump had just been bought by the chief for his gardening. The pump and plants are very rare items in this part of the country. PTL

Thurs, March 4 -- And the prayer of faith will restore the sick man, and the Lord will raise him up to health..." (Jms 5:15). Please join us in prayer for Ray Babcock, who has recently been diagnosed with severe lung cancer. He is the grandfather of one of the journeymen here. This is a very hard time for him and his family. Eric, working with the Taureg here in Niger, will be trying to deal with this news and the stress of the field all in one. Please pray for the glory of the Lord to come and rest upon him and his family. Pray for peace and guidance as they seek what next steps they need to take.

Fri, March 5 -- Today, many babies were born across Niger. Today, many Zerma will die, having lived 50, 60, maybe 80 years and yet never placing their faith in Christ. Pray that all who are alive today would have an opportunity to hear and respond to the gospel before they pass from this world.

Sat, March 6 -- Please pray for Albass, the 8 year old child that Zongo has been caring for since his mother died when he was 3 weeks old. Zongo can no longer see so she can not care for him as she could - now Albass is trying to learn how to cook, sweep, carry water etc to care for Zongo. Please pray for them as Zongo is feeling she should move out - and this leaves an unsure future for Albass.

Sun, March 7
-- Pray for The Way of Righteousness radio program as it is being translated and produced for radio. Pray that the translating of this material could be finished in the next few months!

Mon, March 8
-- Praise the Lord for a new believer in the village of Kanda. Two volunteers from Tennessee, along with Phil and Don were in Kanda to visit and encourage the believers there. They had been visiting different villages during the week, doing some mentoring and working with believers. In the afternoon they asked if anyone had any questions they'd like to ask and a man who'd just walked in asked how he could become a Christian! Phil was glad to begin explaining it but even more pleased when one of the believers jumped in and ended up leading him to the Lord. Pray for this man and the other believers in Kanda, that God would strengthen them and that they would be bold and courageous in following Him.

Tues, March 9
-- (From Faith) many of you know of my friend tombokoy. he has challenged my faith and amazed me in his wisdom since the first day i met him. this night was no different. i had a group of volunteers from kentucky come to prayer walk around torodi with me, but the night before was designated to hear from a Christian in Torodi, whom you know as Tombokoy. As we sat there under the stars, listening to the story of how he gave his life to Christ, I was amazed, as always, to his humility and strength. He talked of the persecution he faced with no pride of sacrifice, and he talked of the hardships of the Christian walk with confidence in his Lord. but one thing he said struck out at me... He said, "I do not face true persecution. Yes, i am cursed and made fun of, and it is hard to find work, but there are many people in this world who die for their faith. no, i am not persecuted. nothing beyond what Christ said we will be if we love the Father. We are to take up our Cross and follow Him. If we do that, the world will hate us. In this, my heart rejoices." How many times have I talked about the hard times i go through here, the struggles and trials that seems so grand and "self-sacrificing". Oh, may the day come when i say, "No, i am not persecuted, but with this my heart rejoices!!!!" So for the rest of this month, I have tried to focus on this and take to heart the lesson God taught me that night. "Rejoice! And again I say, Rejoice!"

Wed, March 10 -- Thank you so much for praying for the safe delivery of Salamatou's baby. She gave birth to a beautiful baby girl Thursday, Sept. 19, 2002 8pm. Mother and Baby are doing fine. Please continue to pray for this family that Salamatou would soon be able to continue her work in the church and that some day Bachir would become a Christian.

Thursday, March 11 -- There are approximately two million Zerma across West Africa. About half the population is under the age of 15 due to increasing birthrates and decreasing infant mortality rates. The Zerma language is called Zarma, and is closely related to the Songhai dialect. Only about 10% of the Zerma are literate, most of their communication takes place orally. The children are educated in schools modeled after the French system but most communication between Zerma people, even those who are educated in French, is done in the Zarma language

Friday, March 12 -- "You know the persecutions I endured, and how the Lord delivered me out of them all. 12 And indeed every one who is determined to live a godly life as a follower of Christ Jesus will be persecuted. 13 But bad men and impostors will go on from bad to worse, misleading and being misled. 14 But you must cling to the things which you have learnt and have been taught to believe, knowing who your teachers were, 15 and that from infancy you have known the sacred writings which are able to make you wise to obtain salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. " (2 Tim. 11-15) Also pray for the Christians during this time. Much like the time of Ramadan, there will be great persecution for Christians. Pray that the Lord will keep them strong and give them perserverence to endure the scorn they will receive for their faith during this time.

Sat, March 13-- Pray for us, that we would walk in a manner worthy of our calling--being salt and light to the world around us. Pray that our light would so shine that people see Jesus clearly in us.

Sun, March 14 --Today, claim with us the promise that God's word shall not return to Him empty without accomplishing what He desires, and without succeeding in the manner for which He sent it. (Is. 55:11) Pray that as His word goes forth among the Zerma, that they would hear, understand, and obey it.

Mon, March 15 -- Have you ever checked out the website? Learn more about our entire mission team, the Zerma people, and the country of Niger, by going to the Zerma Team Web Site: www.byhisgrace.com/zerma Pray for those in the United States who assist the Zerma team by volunteering to maintain the website and handle correspondence.

Tuesday, March 16 -- Please pray for Charity as she spends this week in Waru. She will continue building relationships with the women there. Pray during the next few days that there will be lots of opportunities for her to share about God with the women through stories. Pray for open hearts and attentive ears and for understanding among those who hear. Pray that many stories can be told just during this one week

Wed, March 17
-- Pray for Stephanie Ledlow today. She has been sick and her family is still settling in to the new house.

Thurs, March 18 -- *Please pray for Ramatou. Charity has started doing Bible stories with her and it seems that she is open to hearing more about God. Pray that God would continue to open her heart and that there would be many opportunities to share with her with little distractions.

Fri, March 19 -- Pray for Jeremy Ledlow. He is a junior in high school and praying to find God's will for his future: college, where, what kind? -- all those things. He, too, has been ill and lost a lot of weight. Pray that all of our missionaries will be strengthened for the task and their health protected.

Sat, March 20 -- We serve a faithful God with whom all things are possible, and who will not allow His word to return to him void. Pray that our missionaries will be led to people today who have hearts and spirits which have been prepared to hear the Good News today.

Sun, March 21 -- *Pray for Al-Hasanne, a Zerma Christian in the heart of Zerma land. He is a wonderful and strong Christian guy, but is alone in his beliefs. He often travels to other villages though by foot to share the Good News with others. Pray for encouragement from the Lord to stay strong, growing and joyful and that the Lord would bless him with fruit from his labor--that other people will become his brothers and sisters in Christ

Mon, March 22 -- Pray that we would recognize opportunities to share our faith daily, and that we would be bold in doing so.

Tues, March 23 -- Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is abundant, but the reapers are few; therefore entreat the Owner of the Harvest to send out reapers into His fields.” (Matt. 9:37) I recently asked for prayer for more people to come and work in Niger. Please pray for Mandy, the newest addition to the Zarma team. she has just arrived here, and will be doing work here for 3 months. pray her time here with be effective, but more importantly, that she will grow in the Lord throught this experience. Pray for her transition into the African culture.

Wed, March 24 -- Mark and Deanna Ledlow continue to have computer problems. They have lost their email addresses, so if you don't hear from them, they say don't worry. They are settling in to the new house and are doing well, trying to get ready for the hot part of the year which is coming soon.

Thurs, March 25 -- Continue to pray that God would raise up leaders among the Zerma. Pray that even now He would prepare the hearts of men and women to serve Him as shepherds among the believers.

Fri, March 26 -- *Pray for Ali and his family. Though not Christians, his family is being persecuted for having "white, Christian friends." Pray that through this, God would turn their strong Muslim beliefs into strong Christian beliefs and that one day they will find their strength in Christ alone.

Sat, March 27 -- Pray for the village of Sisan Tondi--believers in Zontondi have felt led to share Christ there and have asked Phil to go with them to begin storying and sharing the gospel. Pray that God would open their hearts and minds to receive the truth and pray that the believers from Zontondi and other villages would be bold in sharing their faith.

Sun, March 28 -- Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity! (Ps. 133:1) Pray for unity among the missionaries. One of Satan's key attacks is to cause dissension among the body of Christ.

Mon, March 29 -- Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name be the glory." (Ps. 115:1). Like always, I pray that the Lord gets glory in the work I do here in Niger. He alone deserves all praise, and He alone will take the glory. May we see his glory revealed to us today and everyday until he comes.

Tues, March 30 -- *Please pray for volunteers to come to Niger to help minister to the Zerma people. Pray that even as early as this summer, God would raise up people to come help, pray, and love the Zerma people in their very own country!

Wed, March 31 -- "Pray with unceasing prayer and entreaty on every fitting occasion in the Spirit, and be always on the alert to seize opportunities for doing so, with unwearied persistence and entreaty on behalf of all God's people, 19 and ask on my behalf that words may be given to me so that, outspoken and fearless, I may make known the truths (hitherto kept secret) of the Good News." (Eph. 6 :18-20) Pray for Tombokoy and me as we continue to share the gospel to the surrounding villages. pray their hearts and ears would be open to the great news of freedom
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