Praise the Lord!

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Many thanks to those of you who intercede for us, give us encouragement and support! Carol, in our last newsletter, laid bare our hearts. Thank you to all who wrote back with encouragement. We are blessed to have so many loving friends! The separation from loved ones and all that accompanies “home” has been somewhat easier for me than Carol. I tend to bury myself (rightly or wrongly) in the work. I, too, need prayer that I will drink from the “fountain of life” and not from murky, leaky cisterns. Frontier gospel work has many challenges and blessings. We do covet your continual intercession.

Here are some of our recent “Praise the Lord’s“. Please join us in thanking the Lord!

  • We have had a total 7 different meetings  with Aringa Muslim leaders,Sheikhs and Imams, where I have had opportunity to preach the gospel. They have received us warmly and were very hospitable. The Sheikhs and Imams have all received Bibles (Aringa NT’s, Arabic, and ESV Global Study Bibles) and Christian-Muslim apologetic reading materials as well as medicines and reading glasses. The Aringa Tribe is classified by the Joshua Project as a unreached people group with less than 2% of them claiming to be Christian. This has been confirmed by our Aringa co-workers and my experience traveling and preaching throughout Yumbe District. Pray! Intercede fervently!
  • We just received our 5-year renewal of Ugandan NGO status. We are now working on extending our work permits. Any time we have success in such things it brings much praise to my heart and lips!
  • A second bore hole is currently being drilled in a remote Metu mountain area where we have been doing gospel preaching and church planting. Access to clean water is a big need in the area. Praise God for the donor and East African Ministries who are doing the drilling work.
  • All of RAU’s 17 acres now have fruit trees and vegetables planted on them. Lord willing, this will help bring income into the ministry and help make it more self-sustaining.  RAU now has around 750 grafted mangoes, over 1500 banana plants, and many vegetables/grains of various sorts. The land is all fenced in well with barbed wire and t-posts  so that the goats and other animals cannot wreck havoc.
  • Our tukalus are being worked on to better facilitate pastor /church leader training here at RAU. After completion, we will have a total of 36 beds for guests attending training. Since our move we have had 19 four-day leadership retreats. Pray for the continuation of this 2 Timothy 2:2 vision
  • Work on expanding our bedroom will be finished soon. Living in our place of ministry gives only our bedroom as a place of privacy. With this expansion into the veranda we will no longer have to use the bed as a desk. We will have a small kitchenette, working areas for both Carol and me, a shower (still no hot water though), place for the bed , a small table and sitting area. It will go a long way in helping us stay healthy here  long term.
  • Our agricultural outreach in the area has really blossomed and given a wide open door for ministry in the local community. We have a weekly 2-hour Agricultural call-in program with our RAU Ag. extension officer, Emma, who is a “man of the soil” and has been trained well. It is fashioned after the garden showed I used to listen to on San Antonio’s WOAI AM 1200 on Saturday mornings. Our 17 acres is also serving as demonstration plot on how one can make money with the fertile, God-given land in area. We also dedicate one whole day to Ag training in our leaders’ retreats to equip them, as most all have to make money off their gardens while being church leaders. The positive feedback from the community has been overwhelmingly positive.
  • I continue to have an open door to preach on the local and powerful, private (non-christian) radio station.

There are many other things but the list would get too long. Without a doubt, both Carol and I believe God has been preparing us all our lives for what we are doing now. While we often face challenges and trials, they are not near the level of joys!

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The Grace of God

Without the grace of God and the prayers and support of God’s people we could do nothing. Any ongoing support for the above things is always appreciated. As many of you know, there are a lot of behind-the-scene  operational expenses. For instance, we just bought a very large pressure cooker (36 liter) to assist cooking for our large groups and had to do more maintenance work on the Land Cruiser which gets us into very difficult places (geographically speaking) to preach and teach. There is the expense of printing materials for the Imams and Sheikhs, and the list could go on. Many thanks to those who support RAU financially.
My burden for establishing a Bible school grows stronger and stronger. With regard to the facilities, with each project being completed, we get closer. The next construction project I would like to move forward on is the building of a large classroom with an attached kitchenette and study area. Once that is completed we could move forward with the Bible school operation and getting accredited.
Well that is all for now.  May God bless you and keep you and make His face shine upon you and grant you His peace!
With love and prayers,
Jacob  (Carol) Lee
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Facebook: www.facebook.com/ReachingAfricasUnreached

For those who have asked, small packages and letters may safely be sent to:

Jacob & Carol Lee, PO. 55, Moyo Uganda, East Africa

The greatest evil is having the gospel and not doing everything within our power to get it to those who do not have it. (Jacob Lee)

Tax deductible  charitable donations may  be made via PayPal.  PayPal also has a way to make reoccurring monthly gifts. To do so  please click their link below. PayPal deducts  a small amount from each gift as a processing fee. All gifts given through PayPal are now tax deductible as Reaching Africa’s Unreached has 501 c3 tax exempt status as a charitable organization.  If you wish to write a check you may write it out to R.A.U. and mail it to Lifegate Missions, 395 Lifegate Ln., Seguin Texas 78155.

Refreshed By Living Waters

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Just recently, Jacob and I both downloaded a free e-book onto our Kindles called, Missionaries Are Real People: Surviving transitions, navigating relationships, overcoming burnout and depression and finding joy in God, by Ellen Rosenberger. (Almost a Puritan-length title there!)
The title itself elbowed me. I read a little just to get the flavor of the author’s ideas. This is what I found: “The stereotype that “missionaries are perfect” is debilitating to missionaries who are living in the reality of their own brokenness and imperfection…We have to start talking about the real issues going on in missionaries’ lives…What is hard, needs attention, needs help and needs redemption?” Ouch!
We can’t blame this stereotyping completely on others! We missionaries contribute to it by not talking about our brokenness, our struggles and what needs redemption.  We tend to write grand narratives of the wonderful things which God is doing (and He is!) or the big list of things we have accomplished (which we have!).  However, many times the people who are receiving these narratives have nothing else on which to build any assumption other than “missionaries are ________ (whatever grandiose adjective you might have for missionaries.)”
So, here is the under belly of missionary life [which, by the way, can become the means of strength and grace.]
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Typically, we are out of our comfort zones – Jacob and I miss our family more than words can say. It is just “plum” painful.  We miss conveniences and foods, but, mostly, we miss our family profoundly. We are missing out…there is no doubt about that!  And they are missing out on us, too!
We are isolated from other graces, such as our local church, which is also our family.  We miss opportunities to be fed and nurtured by our under shepherds.  We miss the corporate gathering of the church and worshiping in a language and culture which is meaningful to us and helpful in keeping our eyes fixed on Christ. We miss out on our small group interactions where accountability and encouragement take place.  This has been painful for both Jacob and me.
We are separated from friendships which have been built over a lifetime.  It’s hardly possible to regain that in a few years, especially when a new language and culture must be navigated.  It’s easy to feel like outsiders, especially in large crowds where everyone is laughing and talking in a language you don’t understand. Participating in it is impossible.
As I have struggled through these issues I have had numerous bouts of depression and lots of tears.
I know this struggle is temporary. I counted the cost coming into this experience. I know there is a way through it.  And, as I said above, this vulnerability of isolation can become the means of strength and grace if I do the right thing in the middle of it.  I am not there yet!  However, I am seeing some light.  As I have mulled over the reasons why I could have gone from feeling “at the top of the world”, spiritually speaking, to feeling at “the bottom of the heap” with little hope in sight, I remembered a verse I studied in depth years back.
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I have done exactly the same thing for which the Lord rebuked the Israelites.  Jeremiah 2:13 says that they did two things – forsook the Lord, the fountain of living water  AND they created their own faulty (leaky) means of storing water.  Though what the Lord had to offer was so much purer and more refreshing they preferred what their own efforts could produce. They did not want to be dependent on the Lord.  God is the fountain! God is life! If I am hanging my happiness and fulfillment on anything else – person, food, activity or thing, I am sure to be disappointed and, worse, to die! Nothing and no one but God was meant to carry that weight! All other sources of supply are faulty…leaky…unreliable…liable to stagnation and disappointment.
Which one of us would rather drink from a stagnant pond instead of a fresh, flowing fountain?  Ridiculous question, right?!!  But, oh! We do it all the time! I have been doing it! Instead of “flying to the fountain of Life” when I am thirsty, I have been sipping on murky water (trying to be happy in things and people).  In my times of depression I have forgotten that the only One who can fully satisfy is Jesus.  In my neediness I have looked to earthly sources of fulfillment and found them wanting because no thing and no earthly institution and no person can satisfy the longings of my heart but the Lord. I was created for happiness that is not of this world! I was meant for living water!
I am learning, once again, to cry out and run to the “fountain of living water.”  If, in my darkest times, I run to Jesus instead of wallowing, my dark times will become to me the sweetest times because I will find that Jesus fulfills the desires of my heart in a way that earthly things were never meant to.
This is the real me…weak, unsteady and faltering, yet hopeful, not abandoned and not defeated. Please pray for us “real people!”  We really need the Lord and the grace which He alone can supply, though He uses many means, including other people. We need your prayers to be informed by our real needs. Pray that we will never get so wrapped up in our activities that we forsake the fountain of living water and pray that we don’t rely on things that cannot satisfy. Pray that, in our weakness and vulnerability, we would be pleased to find our strength in Christ alone!
 
“I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus’ Name.
On Christ, the Solid Rock I stand. All other ground is sinking sand.”
 
Carol (Jacob) Lee
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Facebook: www.facebook.com/ReachingAfricasUnreached

For those who have asked, small packages and letters may safely be sent to:

Jacob & Carol Lee, PO. 55, Moyo Uganda, East Africa

The greatest evil is having the gospel and not doing everything within our power to get it to those who do not have it. (Jacob Lee)

Tax deductible  charitable donations may  be made via PayPal.  PayPal also has a way to make reoccurring monthly gifts. To do so  please click their link below. PayPal deducts  a small amount from each gift as a processing fee. All gifts given through PayPal are now tax deductible as Reaching Africa’s Unreached has 501 c3 tax exempt status as a charitable organization.  If you wish to write a check you may write it out to R.A.U. and mail it to Lifegate Missions, 395 Lifegate Ln., Seguin Texas 78155.

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