Imagine


Imagine having never entered the doors of a church, nor sang a worship song, nor heard or seen any church or Christian tradition.  A year and a half ago we entered a village and each of these descriptions was true for them.  Since then we’ve had the privilege of walking them through the Bible.  We’ve been teaching them the foundations of Christianity.  We’re using a process of storying the Bible since so many Antandroy people are oral preference learners.  As we’ve addressed practices such as following in baptism and partaking of the Lord’s supper we’ve been able to study the Scriptures alongside these new converts.  They’ve asked questions about who can baptize and who can take the Lord’s supper.  They’ve asked what type of bread to use and how the believers should drink from the cup.  Things many of us have never had to think about!  Things we’ve been doing as long as we can remember or we were able to start when we became a part of a church family.  It’s tempting to show them how we as “vazaha,” or foreigners, do it.  We’re the mature Christians who know, right?  Wrong.  What’s the right or wrong way to baptize or take the Lord’s supper?  Who decides?  We seek for those answers alongside these new converts in the Word of God.  That is our plumb-line.  That is what we want them to refer back to when others ask them why they do what they do.  It’s a great responsibility to be a part of these foundational times for these villages.  We ask you to pray for us to keep taking them to the Bible.  Pray that they would discern truth and model their Christian practices after the early church and the Word of God alone. 

As I share this story with you I want to encourage you to GIVE.  Due to the generous tithes and offerings of our Southern Baptist Churches and other gifts people send to the IMB and through the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering, we’re able to venture out to extreme places like the village mentioned in my story.  We need you to keep giving!  Remember the nations as we celebrate this Christmas season and the birth of our Lord and Savior.  Go to www.imb.org/give now and minister alongside us as we serve here in Madagascar.

Praises:

*Emma is with us on vac from boarding school for the month of December!

*We had a great Thanksgiving dinner with other expats in Fort Dauphin (peace corp volunteers, friends and teammates from around the world)

*The temperatures have been cooler than normal at this time of year.

Prayer requests:

*Pray for Phoebe and us while we’re apart for the first time this Christmas.

*Pray for our bush trip next week.  Pray our Malagasy partners would be encouraged as we minister alongside them and our teammates would learn a lot about language and culture as they live among them for a few days.  Pray for new believers being baptized from Salohymahasoa on Dec. 5th and in Fort Dauphin on Dec. 10th.

*Keep praying for our Malagasy partners.  The Lord is using many men and women to disciple their families and neighbors.  Pray they would be faithful as they serve him.



SAVE THE DATE:  July 2018 – Feb 2019

We’ll be in the States for our Stateside assignment (STAS)

We’re ready to start scheduling visits to your churches to tell about the work God is doing in Madagascar!!

Please email us at asphailes@aol.com and we can begin discussing possible dates.


Baylee and Suzie teaching the kids to play Hop Scotch in Amby
Leaders from around Androy and Anosy gathered for lunch in Ambovombe

River's Thanksgiving Crafts

Giving Thanks for great food and fellowship

Together again with Emma 

Panorama of a view in Fort Dauphin



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