Praying in the Wilderness

The Tates have served the Lord in Kitale, Kenya since January 2008. Their main ministry is church planting.

Greetings in the name of Jesus Christ,

What should you do when things are not going right? When you are struggling over a great many things? When you have a ministry in Kenya, but the ministry is not going where you want it to? When you are striving to make the gospel relevant in people’s lives, but no change is taking place? When you don’t know what to do next? Well, I don’t have the answers to these questions. But I do know one thing you can do – head out into the wilderness and pray. So, that’s exactly what a number of my missionary buddies and I did this past month.

Our closest wilderness is Mt. Elgon, so 6 of us piled into a couple of Land Rover’s and headed to the top. We were all needing time to reflect, to get out of civilization, to seek God, to find guidance and direction for our respective ministries, and to contemplate on where God is right now. A number of men in the Bible did this (to a much greater extent than we did), and I found it to be helpful. And so while I can’t speak of all the great things that are happening in Kenya, or the great progress that is being made in the ministry, or the great growth of the Chapel (things I wish I could write about), I can at least write that God is making progress in my own heart.

About a three-hour drive from Kitale, the peak of Mt. Elgon sits at approximately 14,000 feet. To get there you have to drive on roads and paths that don’t look much like roads and paths.  It is adventurous, and I am not the most adventurous person in the world. We had to dig, push, pull, chop through fallen trees, work together, think, strategize, and trust. But in the end, we got there even though we had to drive through the forest at night to get back to our cabin. In the morning, before heading back to civilization, I got up before the sunrise and took my coffee out into a small field near where we had slept. I spent time with God and prayed – mostly by watching the sunrise, listening to the birds sing, and watching the zebras, water bucks, and impalas graze (my life is rarely this adventurous or exciting, really). I returned with renewed strength and determination to seek and serve God, and to love and serve His people.

Things I am learning that God kind of reiterated to me while I was on the mountain and that I can try and help the people that are around me learn too:

  • Let God be God – Roger, don’t place your own expectations of what YOU THINK God should or shouldn’t do upon God. Don’t force God into your own image and get disappointed when He doesn’t do what you thought He should have.
  • Trust God, and when you don’t know how or when you don’t understand God, trust Him anyway – Roger, it is very presumptuous of you to think that you can understand God or to figure out all His ways. And when He doesn’t seem to make sense, trust Him anyway.
  • In quietness and rest shall be your strength (See Isaiah 30:15) – Roger, don’t always question, question, question but instead sometimes just be quiet. Don’t always run, run, run but sometimes just rest. Learn how to trust and rest in God in quietness and peace and joy.
  • When God feels distant in your heart and when the love of God feels cold in your soul, God will oftentimes shower you in His love through the love of other people – Roger, remember those many people in Kenya and in the United States that stand with you, pray for you, challenge you, support you, cry with you, encourage you, lift you up, teach you, and carry you to Jesus when you can’t walk (See Luke 5:17-20). Remember, that this is God loving you.

Is God doing nothing? It sometimes seems like it. But, really, He is just doing HIS thing in HIS own time.  Roger, can you rest in that?

Blessings to you all,
Roger, Julie & Chloe

CONTACT INFO

Roger & Julie Tate
P.O. Box 96
Kitale, Kenya 30200
rojuta@gmail.com

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Provision for a Real Need

Jud and Raquel Hatcher are third generation missionaries serving the Lord in São Paulo, Brazil. They are part of the “SeedFactory” church planting initiative, which is a movement to plant churches in all 26 Brazilian capitals. Since 2006, 43 churches have been started in 5 states.

October 21, 2020

Dear friends,

It was 2:00 pm on Monday when I heard the doorbell ring. I was not expecting anyone. Our four kids were studying at their desks. Raquel had gone out to take care of some things. Before I could get a glimpse of who was outside, Melissa said, “Who is it, Dad?” “I don’t know. Going to find out,” I responded. “Stay in your room while I check.” I looked through the window but did not recognize the person. I opened the door to speak to him, as he stood behind the main gate of our house (almost all houses in Sao Paulo are walled, gated, have barbed wire or an electric fence around the property perimeter wall, and often have multiple security cameras). He greeted me with a hopeful smile, “Good afternoon, sir. I am trying to find a way to feed my family. Do you have any yard work I could do for you? Any debris, or trash I can remove? Any aluminum cans or other recyclables? If you want me to, I can sweep your sidewalk and street. I can make it look really nice.” He was wearing a t-shirt, a pair of jeans, and flip-flops. He was pushing a shopping cart. Inside the cart were a broken tube TV, two bags of rice, and a bag of pinto beans.

My heart breaks every time I see someone in this situation at our door. (What if this was me in such extreme poverty? And how would Jesus respond?) It is a tough call to give food out of our home door because word gets around quickly and people from all over come asking for assistance. A few months ago, a man rang the doorbell at 10:00 pm asking for a bus pass, or a subway ticket with the explanation of a recently deceased aunt and that he needed to identify the body at the hospital morgue. (I assisted the first time, but the following week he came by again at 10 pm, with the same story). I still have mixed feelings when I am laying in bed, it is midnight, and I hear someone rummaging through our trash bags outside looking for food, or recyclables. Unfortunately, this happens all too often, and it has intensified since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. My prayer is always, “Lord, what can we do? Give me wisdom, to provide for a real need, not be scammed, protect my family, and still give people the opportunity to drink of the Living Water and eat of Your Bread so they may know You personally, and find fulfillment in Your sovereign provision for this life and for eternity.

I looked at the man as he held on to his cart and said, “I don’t have any money on me.” (We never keep money at home, or on us, for security reasons.) Before I could continue he replied, “Could you give me rice or milk if I pull out the weeds from this sidewalk gutter? I said, “Sure, go ahead.” I responded, ” I will be right back with something for your family.” I returned with a 2.2lb of canned black beans and meat stew we often serve at our table. “This is from my family to yours. I have something else… Would you mind listening to something important my family can share with you?” I proceeded to share the Gospel. He listened. When I finished talking about the resurrection, he glared through me and said, “Thank you,” and walked away with the items in his cart.

I pray the message will take hold in his heart.

Pray for us serve better, love more generously, for abundant provision, and wisdom from above.

Grateful always,
Judson and Raquel

Contact Info:
Jud & Raquel Hatcher
São Paulo, Brazil
judsonhatcher@gmail.com

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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The Lord Shall Fight for You

Nathan and Carrie Radford serve the Lord in Kitale, Kenya. Their main ministries include indigenous church planting, a prison ministry, and a hospital ministry for mothers with premature babies.

November 5, 2019

Dear praying friends,

Another month has come and passed quickly, and we are now near the holiday season. We wish each of you a happy holiday season and upcoming time with your families. We are blessed this year to have my wife’s sister visit with us later this month, so this will help us during this time on the mission field. Please pray for her and her safety while she travels, as well as her return to America, Lord willing.

Please pray for me as I (Nathan) am continuing to disciple younger Kenyan men in the Word of God. I have been in the village of Wiyeta for a few months now and am thankful for the men that God has provided. They desire to learn the Word, and Lord willing, to go out and reach others. Today I began a lesson on prayer in which we looked at the importance of prayer, why should I pray, an example of a Biblical prayer (Colossians 1:3-13), and how to pray. This was just a basic overview on prayer and I plan to go deeper in the next couple of weeks. We studied Luke 18:1 which says, “And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;” The idea is to persist in prayer – don’t give up. Trust God to answer in His way and His time. We also looked at the example of Jesus. Mark 1:35 says, “And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.” Jesus prayed early in the morning, went to a place with no distractions, and gave us a good example to follow. Please continue to pray for the men and their spiritual growth.

I recently taught at the Annex prison on Moses and the Red Sea, as well as the manna that God provided while the Israelites were in the desert. Although Pharaoh was trying to recapture the Israelites, God protected them and made a way when there was no way. Even when being pursued relentlessly, Moses trusted in God and told the Israelites to also believe God. Moses was encouraging the people to have courage and believe God in an impossible situation. Exodus 14:14 says “The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.” Do we have the same faith today to trust Him to fight for us? He will fight for us as we trust and follow Him. Please pray for the men that are coming and that even others would attend in the future.

The school will be closing for several weeks during the holiday season, so please be praying for our daughters at this time. They sometimes get bored and miss school, so please pray for them to have some activities during this break period. There is also another young girl their age here now in Kitale, so this helps as well. We trust in God’s provisions each day.

We wish each of you a wonderful Thanksgiving and upcoming Christmas. As I think of Thanksgiving, I am reminded of 1 Thessalonians 5:18, which says “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” God bless and we will keep you updated.

In Kenya,
Nathan & Carrie Radford

Nathan and Carrie Radford
P.O. Box 4150
Kitale, Kenya
East Africa 30200

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280
Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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