May 2005

"Look at the nations and watch and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told.” Habakkuk 1:5 (NIV)

Sunday, May 1 2005 – Salou and Aissa, the Cain's former neighbors in Ouallam just had a baby girl. Pray that their new daughter would grow strong and healthy. This family has heard the gospel from Phil and Kimberly but has not yet chosen to follow Christ. Pray they would yield their hearts to the Savior.

Monday, May 2, 2005 – ANSWER: In February we asked you to pray that Aissa would have a burning desire to assist with a neighborhood Bible Storying Group and begin to get into the habit of sharing her knowledge of the scriptures with her neighbors. God has answered this prayer in that Aissa is now regularly participating in the weekly Storying group and helping out with translation as needed. Please ask God to reveal Himself to her in such a way that she will embrace Christ fully.

Tuesday, May 3, 2005 – Please pray for The Pepper Project to be successful among the Zerma and other people groups here in West Africa.

Wednesday, May 4, 2005 – ANSWER: In February we asked you to pray for the Sustars as they learn Zerma. In March they had their first language evaluation. On a scale of 1-5, 5 being fluent – Ben scored a 3 and Cindy scored a 2.5. Thank for your prayers. They continue to be learners of the Zerma language and culture.

Thursday, May 5, 2005 – ANSWER: Rick Leavitt is preparing to return to Niger to serve on the Zerma team, and as mission volunteer coordinator and financial facilitator. Pray for him as he prepares spiritually to come to Niger and logistically as he packs and says good bye to family and friends.

Friday, May 6, 2005 – ANSWER: Thank you for praying for the trustees visit to this region in February. They had a successful trip with only a few minor illnesses and were able to meet with several teams. They left with a better understanding of the spiritual climate in this area and how volunteers can partner with us to see new churches started and existing churches grow and multiply. Your prayers are vital to all that is done here. Zechariah 4:6 says “…’Not by might nor by power, but by My spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty.”

Saturday, May 7, 2005 – Ben is meeting with “O” a local believer. “O” was a church leader in his community. The church has since died due to character issues among the leadership. Pray for “O” as he and Ben study the Word of God, asking God to transform “O’s” character to be more like God’s. Pray that God will wipe away the destructive witness of the past and for this community to be transformed in God’s image.

Sunday, May 8, 2005 – ANSWER: In February we asked you to pray for a teacher to come and teach Caroline and Caleb Cain for the 2005-2006 school year so that Kimberly would be freed up to be more involved in ministry. This request is not being pursued at this time and Kimberly will be home schooling next year. Thank you for praying. Sometimes God answers our prayers differently from what we envision the answer to be.

Monday, May 9, 2005 – Pray that the missionaries will be able to communicate clearly in Zerma. Pray that they would have insight and understanding into the culture and language of the Zerma in order to share the gospel, disciple believers, and train leaders effectively.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005 – ANSWER: In March we asked you to pray for volunteers to join us in the harvest here. Because of your prayers we have two volunteers coming this summer, one in May and another in June. There is another volunteer couple praying about coming in 2006. Thank you for joining us around the throne to seek laborers for the harvest.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005 – The rainy season won't start for another month, but even now farmers are clearing their fields in preparation for this year's planting. Pray that this year will bring adequate rainfall and abundant crops. Pray that God would prepare their hearts to hear His word. Pray that the Zerma would repent and place their faith in Christ.

Thursday, May 12, 2005 – Pray for Kimberly as she continues to develop her relationship a Zerma woman in her neighborhood. Pray that Kimberly would continue to build relationships with the women in her neighborhood.

Friday, May 13, 2005 – While talking with two village leaders named “D” and “M” on the outskirts of Niamey, one of them said, “I believe that the Jews have the book of the Law, the black man has the writings of the Prophets but the Gospel is for the white man.” Please pray that the words in Acts 16:24-25 will become clear to these village leaders. This passage says “…he (God) gives all men life and breath and everything else.”

Saturday, May 14, 2005 – Continuing our conversation with these same village leaders one said, “They had been taught that the white man has been given knowledge and wealth but the black has been destined to live in poverty and this will never change.” Ask God to reveal Psalm 107:4-9 to them which states that those who wandered in the desert wasteland cried out to the Lord. He lead them to a city where they could settle. “Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.”

Sunday, May 15, 2005 – One of these village leaders asked us to pray that he would meet God. Ben and a local pastor responded to this request by praying for and with him and telling him that he needed to ask God personally to reveal Himself to him. The local Pastor told him that he needs to talk to God himself and accept what God gives him as the truth. So much of what is taught here is that individuals can’t seek God personally. Pray Acts 17:26-27 “From one man He made every nation of men that they should inhabit the whole earth; and He determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out to him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.”

Monday, May 16, 2005 – Today is Caleb Cain's 6th birthday. Pray that he would "continue to grow in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man."

Tuesday, May 17, 2005 – Jason Dunn, a college student is coming to work with the Sustars for a month. He arrives this afternoon. Pray for safe travel, good health and for God to use him in mighty ways while here. Also, ask God to give him a smooth adjustment to the culture, food and the heat of Niger.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005 – Today is Sarah’s 5th birthday. She is the daughter of a local Zerma pastor. Ask God to give her wisdom and a desire to seek Him with her whole heart.

Thursday, May 19, 2005 – Today is Christin Sustar’s 5th birthday. Thank God for her sweet spirit - she is a peace maker at heart. Thank God that she delights in participating in Bible Storying Groups with her mom. Pray that she will continue to develop a love for God and that her heart’s desire will be to know God intimately.

Friday, May 20, 2005 – Pray for patience and endurance for Kimberly, Caroline, and Caleb as they are completing this home schooling year. Pray that they would finish well.

Saturday, May 21, 2005 – Jason should be settling into routine and busy identifying barriers that hinder the Zerma people from hearing the gospel and bridges that help accelerate their understanding of the gospel. Ask God to give him energy, perseverance and patience in learning so many new things. Ask God to direct him to the right people that will serve as culture informants and for him to bond with the Zerma People and the team.

Sunday, May 22, 2005 – ANSWER: In March we asked you to pray for safe travel for Kimberly, Caroline and Caleb as they traveled to Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, for a 3 week home schooling session. They had a wonderful time of learning and fellowship and they had safe travel with one exception being a slight fender bender in Ouagadougou. Thank you for covering them with your prayers.

Monday, May 23, 2005 – Pray that God would rise up spiritual leaders among the Zerma, men and women who live lives of integrity and who will teach, train, and exhort others to know God's Word and do what it says.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005 – Jason and the Sustars are prayer walking neighborhoods throughout Niamey. Ask God to lead them to “Persons of Influence” and at least one open home where Bible Study can begin.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005 – Pray for the translation of the Zerma Bible Stories for the Radio Broadcast to be completed soon and without further complications or delays. Currently 5 stories out of 100 have been completed.

Thursday, May 26, 2005 – ANSWER: Thank you for praying for the Wildwood Volunteer team from Wildwood Baptist Church in Clinton, MS. They arrived safely with all of their luggage. This is a big praise. They were able to participate in church services in the villages of Ouallam and Tiloa. They went to the villages of Kaoura and Tiloa and conducted health/nutrition classes, told Bible stories and assisted about 110 people in cleaning minor wounds, passing out vitamins and other health concerns. The team prayed with and for people in each area. God used each of the volunteers to impact the Zerma in several villages and God impacted them in numerous ways as their eyes were opened to those struggling to survive in darkness.

Friday, May 27, 2005 – ANSWER: The Wildwood Volunteer team went to village Bougar and assisted with the final session of a Storying group the Bolls had been leading. That evening they showed the Jesus Film. The Bolls did follow up to the film the next week. Those that saw it enjoyed it -please pray that as the Bolls continue to visit this village that God’s word would draw them into a relationship with Him and that this entire village will accept Christ.

Saturday, May 28. 2005 – The Wildwood Volunteers, Bobby and Kevin, and Don, Ben, and Phil, lead a leadership study for believers in several villages. Several local believers were able to come and participate. Pray for these local believers to be strong in their faith, to share with those around them and to have a contagious joy that makes people want what they have -- a relationship with Christ.

Sunday, May 29, 2005 – ANSWER: In March we asked you pray for our spiritual sensitivity to be increased, that we may be aware of where God is at work among the Zerma. Thank you for prayers. We have begun to spiritually map Niamey (marking the areas that have the strongest concentration of ungodly activity and objects) and become familiar with the pulse of the city. Pray that God will reveal to us areas that need to be covered in prayer so that the people can be freed to hear the gospel.

Monday, May 30, 2005 – Pray for Kim Rhoades as she prays about coming to join us in the harvest field here among the Zerma for a couple of weeks. Pray that she will understand God’s leading and that all the logistical things would fall into place, opening the way for her to come. Pray for spiritual health, safety and for God to speak to her and through her.

Tuesday, May 31, 2005 – The Bible Storying Group that Kimberly and Cindy are leading is going well. Pray that key truths from scripture will be internalized by those that hear them and that they will begin to see God at work in their lives.

Thank you for partnering with us in prayer! You are treasured!
The Zerma Team

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