“It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.” –Leonardo Da Vinci
How far are we willing to go…physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually…to realize the the things we deem important? The Apostle Paul spurs us on like this: “Not that I have already attained this – that is, I have not already been perfected – but I strive to lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus also laid hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself to have attained this. Instead I am single-minded: forgetting the things that are behind and reaching out for the things that are ahead, with this goal in mind, I strive toward the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 3:12-14, NET)
We were blown away this last week by the lengths some of the retreat attendees went to obtain their goal of being taught and receiving resources. They did not sit back and “let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.“ Three of the men cycled around 20 km – not on paved, level roads, but on hilly, rough and rocky roads, not with fancy ten speeds, but basic cycles – to get to RAU campus and then cycled back!
It is this caliber of person that gives us such joy and satisfaction to host at our Pastors’ retreats. But whether the pastors and lay leaders have come from near or far, their expressions of gratefulness to the Lord for His provision are equally genuine and spur us to continue what we are doing. This last week we hosted a group of Pastors and lay leaders from the Church of Uganda in Moyo, Lefori, and Koboko. We enjoy each group that comes and love to hear their stories, empathize in their struggles, pray for them, equip them and encourage them to press on. At the end of the retreat we set aside time to hear from them. That’s where we get especially encouraged as they give thanks to God for the blessings they have received during the week.
Thanks be to God for all our faithful supporters! As time passes we see so much more clearly that you are like a tree and we are like the branch. You support us; you provide the sap that keeps us alive! Thank you for faithfully giving and praying!
This coming month of July has been set aside for ministry in Yumbe and Yumbe District. We will spend each Sunday in Yumbe where Jacob will have the privilege to preach. During the week we will have other opportunities for ministry – teaching, medical and evangelism. We are expecting a young couple, Preston and Laurel, to join us from Florida in the last two weeks of July. We look forward to including them in the ministry that is planned and pray that it will be a time of mutual blessing! From July 15th through the 18th we will be hosting our third retreat for pastors and leaders from the Yumbe area here at RAU. There are many unreached and unengaged people in Yumbe District, so we feel it particularly crucial to focus on the spiritual care of the Christians in this region.
As we look forward to years of serving pastors and church leaders, it has been on our minds that we need to start working on the next container – this time, perhaps, a smaller one with just Study Bibles, books and tracts. Knowing that it will take some time to reach the goal financially, we feel the urgency to think and talk about it now! Our hope is to get 5000 more ESV Global Study Bibles as well as other literature from The Gospel Coalition International Outreach, as we have in the past. Confining the container strictly to literature will, we hope, keep it from being bogged down at customs in Kampala.
We will keep you updated on the details of this plan, but keep this as a matter of priority in prayer and giving. Without resources our impact will be softened.
Please keep praying for our growing opportunities for medical outreach and care. The Lord continues to place people with special needs before us and it is a particular joy to be able to be involved in changing their lives through surgeries and other treatments. Thank you for always responding so joyfully and promptly when we place these medical needs before you.
The two children who received cleft palate surgery are doing well. The second child still needs the palate reconstruction. (A generous couple has come forward to provide funds to see that it happens.) Mindra’s daughter, Anzo (whose name means “happiness” or “gratitude”) had her cataract surgery and she is healing wonderfully and able to see with greater clarity during the day. We still have plans to ensure surgery for the two young children with orthopedic abnormalities (club foot and knock knees).
Little Mildred, with hydrocephalus, is at the CURE Children’s Hospital in Mbale, Uganda, which specializes in neurological problems. When we found out that the surgery was not free, a wonderful couple stepped up to provide the funds. Understandably, the surgery is not free. It costs the hospital around $2000 USD to perform it, but because it has been subsidized by donors, the cost is $400 or 1 million Ugandan Shillings plus care while in the hospital and transport to and from the hospital. Mildred, we just found out, had her surgery several days ago and is recovering very well in the ICU. She still needs a second surgery. Please pray that the shunts will remain open and functional. Statistically, shunts have a 40% chance of closing off within a short period of time, requiring repeat surgeries.
Last week, we received some photos from our friend, Ben, in Yumbe, of children who have various correctable problems. Four of them have cleft lips/palates, one has hypertrophied adenoids (severely enlarged adenoids – to the point where he is barely able to swallow) and the last child has both male and female genitalia. We will continue to help these children with surgery as the Lord provides.
Please pray about funding a specific surgical need. We don’t want to make any promises to these families without having the certainty of provision. Also, we don’t want to drift from our primary purpose of pastoral training, so any provision of medical care will be from funds raised specifically for each medical need or case, and not from money that is given generally towards RAU’s ministry.
As we press on, please pray about the following needs. As the Lord moves your heart to give financially, please indicate, along with the gift, to which ministry you want the funds allocated.
1. Pastors’ Retreats
2. Literature Resource Container
3. Medical needs of Children: 2 orthopedic surgeries (our next priority), 4 cleft palate surgeries, 1 enlarged adenoids, 1 child with both male/female genitalia
“Now to Him who by the power that is working within us is able to do far beyond all that we ask or think, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.“
With love and gratefulness,
Carol (and Jacob)
Web Site: www.ReachingAfricasUnreached.com
For those who have asked, small packages and letters may safely be sent to:
Jacob & Carol Lee, PO. 55, Moyo Uganda, East Africa
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The greatest evil is having the gospel and not doing everything within our power to get it to those who do not have it. May the Lord grant each of us His followers the wherewithal to be obedient disciples! Jacob W. Lee
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One thought on ““Laying Hold of That For Which Christ Laid Hold of Us” by Carol”
Dear Jacob Lee:
Praise the Lord! Is it necessary some bicycles and small sound Megaphones for the Gospel outreach Programs in villages? Please let me know about it. I am an evangelist from India.
With love and prayers……………Brother Abraham/India.
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