On December 18 (not December 25 as we put out in our last prayer letter; our apologies!), four men flew to Grayling, Alaska, for a ministry visit. Excerpts from John Trammâ€™s report are included below*, but here are several points from the trip that emphasized to us the need for the ministry to which God has led us.
6-8 Christians that have not been meeting regularly (i.e., no regular instruction in the Word, no regular corporate worship, no regular mutual edification that only comes by gathering together as a body of believers)
True sheep with no shepherd. Sometimes it is easy to think, â€œIf they are truly believers, canâ€™t the Holy Spirit and the Word of God instruct them? Why donâ€™t they meet regularly?â€ There is a reason that God gave â€œthe shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ" (see Eph. 4:11-14). Sheep need a shepherd. We want to share what we know of Christ â€œto faithful men who will be able to teach others also. (II Tim. 2:2)
A Christian man who could benefit from one-on-one discipleship and encouragement to be the spiritual leader in his home and community
A three-day trip turned into a six-day trip due to weather. The flexibility of being fully funded and fully devoted to ministry is absolutely essential in an aviation ministry.
Here I am, Lord. Send me.
James and Shannon Miller
In addition to our current partnerships, If each person receiving this email partnered with us for $5 per month, we'd be at 100% support and on our way back to Alaska!
Pray for continued contacts as we search for the partners God has for the ministry
Praise the Lord for the refreshment of family (alone!) time over Christmas
Pray for wisdom in considering the timing of needed training
Praise the Lord for encouragement through new friends
Praise the Lord for a solid start to the airplane fund
CALENDAR? <<Under construction>>
We are currently in Virginia and making contacts (individuals as well as churches) all up and down the Eastern seaboard. Who do you know that we can tell about what God is doing in Alaska?Please introduce us!
*I want to say â€œthank youâ€ to all of you who upheld us in prayer regarding the recent trip to Grayling. This village is located on the Yukon River about 400 nautical miles southwest of Fairbanks. The plan was to fly out on the 18th and fly home on the 20th.
Well, apparently Godâ€™s timing was not in alignment with our timing! Freezing rain and heavy snowfall prevented our return until the 23rd. I am grateful for the delay, though, as it permitted us to get to know people we otherwise would not have had the opportunity to spend time with. The generosity and love shown to us by the families who hosted us was so encouraging. They truly shared with us their best in food and hospitality â€“ we were treated as family (or perhaps better!). Here are a number of the highlights of the trip:
Pastors Harry Hafford and David Joseph led two church services. More than thirty people (25% of the village) attended the first service. Our Christian friends in the village were amazed and said it was the most people they had ever seen attend a service there. People seemed hungry for the gospel and fellowship. Twenty-nine songs were sung that evening!
Several elders in the village had a true burden for reaching their village for Christ, particularly the youth. Mary, one of the elders, led us in a time of prayer at our hostâ€™s home that was powerful. We were truly encouraged by seeing the faith of these believers and it left us with much hope for the village.
The additional time offered by the weather delay provided opportunities to fellowship with other people in their homes, share meals together and spend additional time in prayer for the village. In addition, it provided a chance to hold a second service. Eight people from the village attended, several of whom had just arrived in town and were not at the first service.
One of the Christian men drove us to the airstrip with our gear. He led prayer for us as we departed. We were encouraged by his initiative and hopeful that he will once again be able to lead his people to regularly fellowship together. Another elder whom we got to know drove to the airplane and said goodbye prior to our departure. What a blessing to experience their appreciation and friendship.
Both the outgoing and incoming flights went smoothly. Our pilot (Adam White) is a friend of mine who is a missionary based in Nenana. We were very thankful for his skills as a bush pilot and his strong Christian witness. ~John Tramm