April 23, 2017

Happy Monday morning to you all! Or afternoon or evening- whenever you are reading this! Greetings from Malta!

Praises and Prayer Requests:
1.) We have once again had a full but lovely week. We had some good family time with another trip to St. Peter’s pool where the boys jumped in with Earl. A video of a man and his dog diving in this pool went viral a few years ago… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UT4X_2zKIyk and he was actually there so we got to see it in person. Fun! We also had some meetings with different folks who are believers and hopefully were an encouragement and help to them. A large group was here having a Missions conference this week and on Saturday they very kindly came and helped out our church in practical ways. Thousands of homes received fliers advertising our church and they also helped us clean out some old boxes of materials and things that needed to be cleared up. Many hands really do help!

2.) This week the Coplands will move to Marsascala to another temporary flat and also we hope to get their visa paperwork ready and submitted. Appreciate prayers for that. Evi turned one and had a super nice birthday party where many of their new friends such as the real estate agent and their new landlord came and spiritual conversations were had so we pray that these folks will see Jesus and desire to know Him personally. I had an Epilepsy association meeting, we had a terrific walking group morning, we had several people over, and lunch out with a friend too.

3.) Today I (Robin) go back to the dentist for that work I was supposed to do a few weeks ago and it was worse than they thought… Yep. That’s fun. I’m choosing to see it as a blessing that I have good dentists and insurance. I will go back Friday to get the rest of it done. There’s a spiritual retreat for the evangelical churches on Saturday and on Sunday we will be holding a puppet workshop for a sister evangelical church and workers. Also we have a school luncheon for parents and an outing for Earth Day where I hope to get to know other moms better and speak to them about Jesus. We also have a few appointments by Skype with folks this week too. I was reminded in My Utmost for His Highest that “the only concern of Christian workers should be there concentration on God” so pray with us that we will keep our eyes fixed on Him! You can read it on the April 23rd devotion at https://utmost.org/.

Kids Korner: Earl saw the doctor who reads Nathan’s EEGs while going to renew paperwork and get his medications. He said that his seizures had lessened in intensity so that was great to hear! For now we will continue with the same dosage but it’s wonderful that there’s improvement. Kathryn’s O levels begin this Saturday with a two part exam of Physics. She’ll do paper A in the morning and then a second paper in the afternoon. Pray for her and the many other students her age as they begin a really challenging few weeks. Thomas is doing well- he has been helping me teach the preschool class at church lately. He’s super with kids!

By Kirk and Melanie Lewis

[This continuing series of Marriages that Minister is currently exploring our marital identity.]

Paul continuously speaks of the mystery of Christ and His plan for His bride. Ephesians 5:32 reminds us that the mystery of Christ is directly related to the mystery of marriage. Like Paul, a messenger of the mystery of Christ, we should also consider how to be ambassadors of the mystery of Christ as evidenced in our marriage. God reveals His mystery through marriage to the watching world and even to the “rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.”

To me—less than the least of all the saints—this grace was given, to proclaim to the Gentiles the unfathomable riches of Christ and to enlighten everyone about God’s secret plan—a secret that has been hidden for ages in God who has created all things. The purpose of this enlightenment is that through the church the multifaceted wisdom of God should now be disclosed to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly realms. This was according to the eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and confident access to God because of Christ’s faithfulness. (Eph. 3:8–12 NET)

Can you fathom that we have a responsibility to evidence the wisdom of God to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly realms? When the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms see your marriage, how do they identify with it? What characteristics do you display?

This salvation was something even the prophets wanted to know more about when they prophesied about this gracious salvation prepared for you. They wondered what time or situation the Spirit of Christ within them was talking about when he told them in advance about Christ’s suffering and his great glory afterward.

They were told that their messages were not for themselves, but for you. And now this Good News has been announced to you by those who preached in the power of the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. It is all so wonderful that even the angels are eagerly watching these things happen. (1 Pet. 1:10–12 NLT)

Because of our identification with Christ, we bear His image, conveying His love. A vibrant relationship with our spouse enhances the visualization of fulfilling unity.

Certainly, the Father answered the prayer of His Son, “Make them holy by your truth; teach them your word, which is truth” (John 17:17 NLT). Filled with the empowerment of His Word, we are divinely enabled to live in unity. As a result, His Word should direct our words.

Unfortunately, our communication habits often reveal the disunity in our marriage. Because talking is essential to unity, how can we bridge the gap? As Christ communicated with His Father through prayer, we too possess the privilege to talk with God in prayer.

“Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16 NASB).

The benefits of His grace supply the help necessary to unite with our spouse. Therefore, as we talk with God in prayer, we may experience enlightened fellowship with our mate. The tri-union with Christ and our spouse reveals our identity as those who are privileged to be united with Christ.

Insight Journal

❏ I think my prayer life compares to my communication with my mate in these ways:

(excerpts from Marriages that Minister by J. Kirk & Melanie D. Lewis)

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Dear Friends,
Have you ever planned a peaceful time of solitude and focus… only to be surrounded by chaos?

This is basically the story behind the writing of Engaged in Love and War. We had a desire to write the book in 2014, and we started to write, but life accelerated and the volume increased. While directing, speaking, and traveling for our mission organization, we adopted a child from China and were raising other littles.

We simply tried to write on the side.

Once Phoebe joined our family, our three kids combined for a total of 7 surgeries in 16 months – including a spinal fusion of 4+ vertebra and growth rod, a reconstruction of palate, lip and nasal floor, tonsils/adenoids, and other things.

But we kept picking up the book because God kept burning the message in our hearts. We had to write.

Listen to a fun authors’ interview and hear some behind-the-scenes info of writing with the chaos of life surrounding. It’s a miracle the book is finally coming!

Remember, May 16 the book releases.

Next week we will tell you of awesome giveaways if you pre-order the book before midnight on May 16.

What Others Are Saying:
“Join Chad and Leslie as they take you on journey around the world! Through Scripture and stories, they weave a beautiful tapestry of God’s global work and how all Christian families can take part in His redemptive plan. You will be challenged and inspired through reading their narrative to see how God invites ordinary people to participate in extraordinary Kingdom life.”
– Brian Pitts, minister to students in Spiritual Formation, Samford University
– Renee Pitts, minister to students in Global Missions, Samford University

Dear Friends,
Hope you are doing well!

Live It Out! Podcast
Thanks to those who filled out the previous survey! Your comments and perspectives were so helpful. The first podcast will be released April 14, which happens to be Good Friday. You can see the landing page and logo here! When we love people with the right amount of salt, we will flavor our world and make them thirsty for Jesus!

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Dear Friends,
We are getting things ready for the Engaged in Love and War launch. It releases on May 16! We are excited to see the book finally hit the market.

Already, there has been some strange spiritual war issues that have surrounded it. Our agent recently told us that she sees this kind of attack pre-launch when there’s significant impact the book could have. That excites us, but causes us to realize how vital a prayer team is to surround the whole situation.

Currently, we are contacting bloggers, authors, influencers, organizations, and our email list. We are writing, blogging, and finding interviews. We are coordinating a street team (launch team – many of you!). We are contacting partnering churches.

But ALL of that is useless if God is not moving, anointing, blessing and guiding the book into the right hands.

Our goal is NOT to simply sell a book. Our book is to see God transform hearts, and for believers to recognize this amazing journey of love we can have with Christ and the significant impact we can have on earth if we join him in his war to push back darkness and redeem and restore His creation.

Due to the contents of this book as well as our upcoming move to Thailand, we know our family lives in the line of fire from the Enemy. We need strong prayer warriors to also surround our family – for our marriage, our kids, our extended families, and our move.

We are asking God to release this book into 10,000 hands (10,000 souls) within a ONE-year period of time.

Considering most books sell 250 books or less, this reveals ONLY God can help us accomplish such a goal. When a book sells 10,000 books it often begins to take on a life of its own and lasts longer than the typical 3 months.

At our 10/40 dinner in November, you signed up to be notified about prayer items related to the book. So unless you notify us, we are going to include you on the email list for prayer requests up through the book launch time. We are so glad that you are part of the Circle of Prayer around the book and around our family during the release. This team will:
· Pray consistently.

· Pray boldly.

· Pray Spirit-led prayers.

If you have any questions, or if you want not to be included on this prayer list, you can write to candles@1040connections.org.
Thank you all!

Malta Mondays 11
March 13, 2017

Why couldn’t the bicycle make it up the hill? Because it was two tire-d. 😀

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Malta Mondays 10
March 6, 2017

Greetings from Malta!

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Hello everyone!

We are continuing to see and experience the goodness and grace of God in abundance as a church and as a family, and we are so thankful for your effectual, faith-filled prayers for us.

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Malta Mondays 4
January 23, 2017

1.) I gave Nathan the opportunity to watch the Inauguration this week (as in I made him…) to try and explain some about America’s government. The others were out at the time. We will pray for America in this new season. Today Malta’s President is visiting Nathan’s school and his class is singing the Maltese National Anthem and one other song for her so he is very excited. This year Malta also has the Presidency of the European Union https://www.eu2017.mt/en/Pages/home.aspx so that’s a pretty important role. Let’s remember to pray for all of our government leaders worldwide.

2.) Earl had a good meeting and also a great time with family and friends and is back home safely. Do pray for the Access team to come together with just the right folks and lift up the planning for this summer. Also this week a team from TN is beginning to meet to plan so again ask that as the Holy Spirit prompts, people will take that step of obedience and say yes!

3.) Pray for the Bugibba Bible Study, the Bormla Bible Study, the church in Mosta and it’s Bible Studies on Wed nights in Floriana and Mosta. Also this Thursday evening at our flat we will begin the six week Entrusted Beth Moore study and on Saturday mornings at church Rebecca will be leading it as well to try and get as many folks as possible involved. Please pray for ladies to come and be committed to stick it out for all of the six weeks and really learn and grow! Also pray for several young ladies who are interested in a mission trip this summer and ask that we would follow God’s leading on this. I’d also like to ask prayer for wisdom and discernment for us- can’t share details but appreciate the prayer.

Kids Korner: This time last year Nathan was in the hospital with his stress seizures. We are SO GRATEFUL that he’s doing so much better now! Thomas is feeling a bit draggy today so I’m hoping it’s just a cold and he’ll feel better soon. He has mid-term exams coming up in two weeks. We are picking Kathryn up early today as she must be present to pick up our residency permits since she is over 14. Yes, rejoice with us that they were granted and very quickly! 😀

January 1-7

10/40’s Nepal Maternity Home – This “dry month” in Nepal will give the chance to pour concrete on the second floor. Pray for all the needed finances to come in quickly (about 23k), so the women waiting for help can be sheltered sooner than later. See a video of the construction here.
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