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Treasure of Truth in Earthen Vessels

adam demark

~a testimonial by Julia Comer

"But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves." 2 Corinthians 4:7

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As the day rapidly approached to leave for our Women's Ministry 2018 trip to Liberia, I felt tired, ill-prepared, and quite honestly uninspired.  Sounds super spiritual, right?  But I was going anyway because, at the end of the day, I knew this was exactly what God had called me to and exactly where I was supposed to be.

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Throughout the days of travel, I spent a lot of time in prayer, asking God for a timely WORD from HIM that would encourage me and be the overarching theme of the trip. That WORD came the day after we arrived in the area where we would be teaching. I was reading in Colossians when the following words caught me eye and sank deep into my heart:

This same Good News that came to you is going all over the world. It is bearing fruit everywhere by changing lives, just as it changed your lives from the day you first heard and understood the truth about God’s wonderful grace.
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Yes! Lives changed by the Word of God! Well now, there's some inspiration! And as we spent time with the ladies, that's exactly what we saw happening in their lives.

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While sitting with them and their families during our house visits and within the formal teaching sessions that occurred on George and Lucy's front porch, we heard statements over and over again. They attested to how TRUTH was impacting and changing their lives. Statements like, "I am happy because now I understand that I am free. There is no more need for sacrifice because Jesus was the perfect sacrifice to pay the penalty for my sin."  "Even though it is according to our culture to call our children 'bad, bad names' (insulting names) when they are "being frisky" (acting up), I know now that it is not right for me to do this because the Bible teaches that I am to be kind and encouraging with my words."  She clearly heard the message from Ephesians 4:17-31

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And a few more... "If we really understand what all Christ has done for us, why would we want to keep on sinning?" "I am in Christ and nothing can change that. I know now that I have eternal life because I am believing in what Christ did for me.

We sang a song most every day called, "Complete in Him" one of the lines in the song says, "There's nothing more that I can do for Jesus paid it all."  The ladies rejoiced greatly in this TRUTH!

As our time in Liberia wrapped up and we headed home, I found myself thanking God over and over that He is willing to use weak vessels like me to accomplish His kingdom work. Being a part of what He is doing around the world is a great adventure!   I don't want to miss out!  So, as God gives me opportunity, I will continue to go; and as a team, our prayer will continue to be that these ladies who are wives, mothers, and grandmothers within their own homes and sister, neighbours and friends within their communities will continue to apply and live out the truth they have heard.  Impacting the people around them with the glorious TRUTH of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

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Porch Talks and Rain Drops

adam demark

They say one of the most relaxing sounds is water falling. They also say that one of the most relaxing places is just right out on your own front porch. Put these two together...well, that's just the BEST scenario!

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Unless you're trying to teach a Bible study...and you're pupils can't make it and the ones who did make it can't hear you!

You see in Liberia when it rains, it POURS! And this June it poured for DAYS! There was water everywhere...not just running down the road but in the house! This might have kept us on our toes (and on our knees).  Teaching to 15 ladies over the sound of pouring rain can be interesting. Actually, it's not possible. The rains are too loud. That's ok.  That scenario only happened a few times. Once it rained for 14 hours straight.  That time we just had 3 ladies show up. It doesn't mean we couldn't dig into God's Word...we did! And you know what?  It was God's perfect scenario. It's what those three ladies needed on that rainy afternoon.

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It's in the those moments when you realize life is sometimes a whole lot of both pouring rain and quiet porch talks. 

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Much of our time is made up of planning life out. Finding the perfect scenario.  Then it never turns out how we hoped it would!  But maybe that's a good thing.  God shows up in all HIS PERFECT ways.  He has it planned out. It looks different then our little scenario did.  Bible classes in the pouring rain might be one of those scenarios.

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Then you have the one on one porch visits. Discussing what God is saying in HIS WORD. And how that applies to your life today. Because we say the most beneficial word is straight from God's Word!

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And the house visits. Those are special. There's something about seeing where a person calls home. And their special people. Culturally, a visit is a show of respect. It begins to chip away at the concept of us being superior and begins to establish more of a friendship which definitely benefits our discipleship goal. It gave us a chance to meet the family members that will be impacted by a mom knowing, receiving, and living out Truth within her home. One on one discussions allow for questions that don’t always get asked in the group teaching sessions. Even husbands got in on the discussions at several houses.

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And the walks into the village. Visiting locals and loving on all the children. And their pet monkeys.

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Kindness runs far and deep. And its this outpouring that draws people to Christ. They want to know more and experience more.

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 Teaching important TRUTHS from GOD'S WORD is what brings these ladies together on a rainy day. Subjects like Who am I? My acceptance and security are firmly IN CHRIST.  Believing in Christ's finished work on the cross changes how these women live each day.

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The best scenario is to GLORIFY GOD.

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Home Sweet Home

Lesley Doerksen

A house is made of walls and beams; a home is built with love and dreams.
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Welcome to home sweet home for 28 Liberians!  Equip2serve was so blessed to be a part of this housing project.  Pictured above is the before and after photo. Can you see why we were so excited?  What a transformation! Five units complete with a separate bathroom & shower facility & front porch. Not to mention the new shiny roof, that will not leak water when it downpours!

We're excited to walk you through with photos of the project from start to finish. Thank you to all our Equip2serve members, Thorsten Weinss, and Liberian workers for all that YOU did to see this project to completion. Thanks to Pastor Daniel who took many of these pictures.

 Supply buying in Monrovia with Hank Demark & Ken Welch

Supply buying in Monrovia with Hank Demark & Ken Welch

 The old building is torn down. Construction crew ready to start!

The old building is torn down. Construction crew ready to start!

 Precise measuring for the foundation and footers

Precise measuring for the foundation and footers

 Foundation is in! Let's get the walls up!

Foundation is in! Let's get the walls up!

 Hot days getting those big cement bricks laid. So grateful for all the guys who worked along side the Equip2serve team!

Hot days getting those big cement bricks laid. So grateful for all the guys who worked along side the Equip2serve team!

 Cement brick walls

Cement brick walls

 We couldn't have done the project without the help of these men!

We couldn't have done the project without the help of these men!

 The sacrifice of the these ladies as they cooked, and did dishes in their makeshift kitchen outside.

The sacrifice of the these ladies as they cooked, and did dishes in their makeshift kitchen outside.

 The crew still enjoyed the rice and greens for lunch.

The crew still enjoyed the rice and greens for lunch.

 Home Hardware Durham donated hats and building supplies for the team.

Home Hardware Durham donated hats and building supplies for the team.

 Ken Welch & crew working on the windows.

Ken Welch & crew working on the windows.

 All the wood was mahogany!

All the wood was mahogany!

 Pre-roof. Windows are in and the doorframes. Top plate is put in place.

Pre-roof. Windows are in and the doorframes. Top plate is put in place.

 All the rafters were made inside the church with a big crew!

All the rafters were made inside the church with a big crew!

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The rafters are up!

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 These guys worked so hard in the hot, Liberian sun!

These guys worked so hard in the hot, Liberian sun!

 Perfect zinc roof!

Perfect zinc roof!

 Cement mixed by hand for floors and porch outside

Cement mixed by hand for floors and porch outside

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Adam Demark working on inside floor.

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Inside walls & doorframes placed in each unit. Thorsten Weinss getting them level.

 Pete Doerksen & Hope nailing up the ceiling.

Pete Doerksen & Hope nailing up the ceiling.

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Front porches will make a nice place for the families to sit outside out of the sun.

 Shower stall (one of four)

Shower stall (one of four)

 Laying brick on the gable ends, closing it off.

Laying brick on the gable ends, closing it off.

 Finish project. There was a bit of inside work to do before the families moved in.

Finish project. There was a bit of inside work to do before the families moved in.

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The group who will be moving into the new unit pictured here with Pastor Daniel and his wife Alice.  We are happy to have been able to bless these people and look forward to seeing how God will use this in their lives for his glory.

Thanks to all who gave financially. Thanks to all of you who prayed.

We give GOD ALL THE GLORY!

Go and Make Disciples

Lesley Doerksen

Remember Daniel?  He rode his bike approximately 14 miles every day to attend the Bible teaching!

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In this video, Daniel doesn't include his personal journey of what happened before he came to Christ.  His life hasn't been easy. 

Abandoned as a child by his parents, he was left to survive with his grandmother.  Pretty much on his own,  he was able to attend elementary school and finish high school.  Determined to continue on despite his poverty and life situation, he managed to farm to support himself and his grandmother. Daniel now has a small church plant in Northern Ghana. He seeks to grow in his walk with God. He became a diligent student, and often was the first to class even though he had a long bike ride to get there!

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Daniel gives all the glory to God.  He comes to Christ knowing that there nothing he has to offer.

Our team impressed by his perseverance, gave him a bike pump for his bike. It didn't seem like a huge gift but to Daniel it was. Pure gold.  His thanks was said in tears as he accepted the pump. After lunch he confessed that no one had ever given him a gift like this one. Nor had they ever taken him out for lunch!

Grateful for the simple blessings in life.

"I am Free!"  Daniel shares when he comes to Christ. 

Freedom in Christ. 

Freedom to proclaim the Good News!

Daniel has a heart to follow God. 

And to MAKE DISCIPLES! 

Equip2serve Bible Program~"like a second eye" shares Pastor Peter

Lesley Doerksen

When you listen to Peter's testimony, you can't help but sit at the edge of your seat, wondering what he will say next.

Metaphors like, "a second eye" . It makes you think about how deep God's Word has affected them. 

We are "very much excited!"  How excited?  VERY MUCH!

We are "live witnesses" to the program!  It has impacted many people.

It's a "powerful program".  A practical way of teaching.

"My hands and my legs are strong"  "I'm confident in spreading the Word."

"Please keep sending them to teach us." 

"Thank you for coming!"

"May it go way wide"  

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Pastor Peter accepts his certificate of completion of the second course, "Your standing in Christ."