Wednesday, December 24, 2008

2008 Year in Review

We are so very grateful for the opportunities God has given us to serve Him. We spent a year working as a CARES team for Apartment Life Ministries in Northwest Phoenix. Our responsibility was to provide community and resident services at Renaissance Apartments. That consisted of welcome visits, teen activities, cookouts, pool parties, visiting the sick and even a Super Bowl party all in the name of building community. Personally we had the opportunity to build numerous relationships, have hundreds of spiritual conversations with residents and experience one single mother commit her life to Jesus Christ. The spiritual adventure of being a CARES Team helped Jay develop a servant's heart. A'Lisa is already gifted in that area.

This year brought with it Jay's desire to return to Christian radio. After a nationwide search, God opened the door for him at Great Plains Christian Radio in Meade, Kansas. They actually have two radio stations, He's on KJIL from noon to 3pm (Contemporary Christian) and KHYM from 3 - 7pm (Inspirational format). The stations cover SW Kansas and portions of Texas, Colorado and Oklahoma. Working at the radio station enabled Jay to preach all over SW Kansas, whenever churches needed pulpit supply. So many times the Lord has confirmed that this is where He wants us to be, through His provision and the many ministry opportunities.

A'Lisa dreamed of opening a local coffee house that would become a social haven. The Lord allowed her to meet another local woman who owned a historic hotel (The Palace) and she had everything needed to open a coffee house. Thus the Palace coffee house was born. In addition to providing coffee and other homemade goodies to the community A'Lisa has used the Palace for fun events like jewelry classes, Bunco game nights, live music, ice cream eating contests, trunk or treat and now it's decorated for the annual Christmas tour. This became more than a job for A'Lisa, as she uses the opportunity to minister to just about everyone who darkens the doors. She has had many spiritual conversations, provided a listening ear, prayed for people, invited them to church, shared her faith in Christ, laughed and cried with them or just gave them a hug when necessary.

We miss being able to visit Jessy and Andy. Living in Phoenix we were just 30 minutes away from each other and could get together easily. Our daughter Jessica from Chattanooga spent a week with us back in March. We made all the Arizona tourist stops like the Grand Canyon and Sedona. She really enjoyed her visit. James and Jeshua are doing well. God provided the money for A'Lisa to spend a week with Alex recently. It was good for her to see Alex and be assured that he's taking care of himself.

We attend Plains Christian Church, a non-denominational ministry which is about 15 miles West of Meade. A'Lisa helps teach the children's Sunday School class and Jay helps our Pastor teach the adults. Recently Jay was installed as the Associate Pastor (part time), since our Pastor really needs additional staff. Soon we will move to the parsonage in Plains and begin this new chapter of our lives. We are so excited about working together with Pastor Rich and his wife to reach out to the surrounding community.

Remember our Lord Jesus' command, "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."

May you and your family have a wonderfully blessed Christ centered Christmas!

To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy, to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.

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