“…but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever.”
~ Psalm 73:26
Three years ago, when I accepted Lee’s invitation to serve as president of BrookLink, I knew my story would end with his return. As I anticipate turning my last page, looking back, I couldn’t have predicted how the chapters would unfold. Like a nail-biting thriller stuck in slow motion, the pandemic changed everything. But God continued to build His church as He promised. My first newsletter spoke of God building His church, and my last newsletter as president still speaks of God building His church! Your faithfulness, generosity and prayers continue to write the story of how God is building His church. “But God” always has the last word, and what tremendous assurance that heavenly honesty brings as my chapter ends, and as a new chapter for BrookLink begins.
Lee and Terry are relishing their extended vacation to rest, reflect and recalibrate after finishing at Elmbrook Church last month. They are enjoying time with family and friends around the States. Before heading out, Elmbrook gave them a sweet send off, and Lee offered his last sermon as Lead Pastor.
This August, Lee will reunite with our global partner, Pastor Esayas Ersabo, in Uganda. Lee and Terry visited together in 2014, driving from the capital city of Kampala to the more remote site for the “International Needs” Pastor’s Conference. They passed through some tea plantations and alongside Lake Victoria. Terry describes, “It was a joy to see the landscapes, the source of the Nile, but more importantly to meet the dear sisters and brothers who are ministering in churches there. The pastors were eager to hear the Word, learn more, ask questions and continue the hard work of ministry in their home country.” She continues, “It is a great opportunity to do a conference this August and hear how our friends are continuing in the grace of God.”
Thank you so much for praying for our trainer, Dr. Dan Green, who recently returned from his whirlwind trip in the Czech Republic. Reunited with his former student and now friend and colleague, Dali, teaching at the seminary (Evangelical Theological Seminary of Prague – ETS) seemed natural and comfortable (see picture below). They facilitated deeply meaningful discussion on Forgiveness. For the first time in 23 years, Dan‘s class was offered in English without translation, leading to robust discussions and expressions of appreciation including this student’s note: “I am very grateful for this time we were talking about forgiveness. It was really helpful for me. Every time I can see someone to forgive, I can see the miracle of love, which is completely beyond my comprehension and reminds me of the power of God’s love.” Dan explained, “Czech culture tends to be perfectionistic and many struggle with self-contempt and hard self-judgments. Many of the students reported that the discussion on self-forgiveness was of great importance to them.” They were also blessed to worship with a small church in Mladkov, which is in the mountains on the Polish border. With just 25 members, this church sponsors 5 Ukrainian families. Julia, one of the refugees living in this church whose husband remains in Kyiv, told Dan, “Please keep praying for us, please don’t forget us.”
With dialogue already happening regarding teaching in 2023, Dan is so grateful that they were invited into this ministry many years ago and have been able to continue in this Kingdom work. Dan and his wife, Lynne, enjoyed time with dear friends and colleagues, Pavel and Julka. “Sharing space together in person is so much more rewarding than the video chats and emails we’ve had since 2019.”
Your support and generosity are deeply appreciated. Many thanks for your kind gifts this past month during our mid-year campaign. While I close this chapter of service as president, I look forward to my return to training in the global church this fall, Lord willing.
In Christ’s Service,
You may recall our global partner, Pastor Tariq, preached at Meadowbrook Church last summer. He is in the States this summer and was kind enough to include the BrookLink office during his one of his stops. Lee and I plan to revisit Tariq and his Full Gospel seminarians to teach again at their pastors conference this fall.