Wow, it has been a long time since we wrote an update blog.
As we crawl through the last days of winter and enter Spring (it doesn’t feel like it here in Michigan) we are all ready to spend time outside. Annie is about to sell the kids on eBay as they’re driving her nuts being cooped up indoors most days. She has found good community in a great group of girls from church and that has been an absolute blessing to her. She is still loving the new house (how long does a house stay new?) and we are very slowly getting it set up. Craigslist and local Thrift Stores have become our best places to find treasures. Cheap, wonderful treasures. It’s amazing how many ridiculous deals God has brought our way! I (allan) have been working at catching up with the admin and refocusing AR for the future. Yes, unfortunately the elusive hunt for a ministry administrator continues. It feels like it would be easier to find a black and white stripped unicorn than an administrator. I had the opportunity to attend the Verge13 – Discipleship Making Conference in Austin TX, thanks to all those Delta Miles to Africa and back. It was great to be at the conference with old friends Dave Clark and Pete Blodgget. I got to crash at the Dagani Family “Hotel” (5Star service fyi). We talked and imagined what Missional Discipleship can look like for our folks in Africa. The conference has been a catalyst for some of the new direction we as a Board are seeing God take AR in for the years ahead. More on that in the ministry update below.
Since our last update, I (Allan) have been to Africa and back and our 2012 team have all returned home envisioned and ready to take on the world. We had a fantastic debrief in Kariba, Zambia (read about it here) with them and I was able to travel on a vision trip with them through Botswana, to Zambia and Zimbabwe (Epic trip) to investigate what it will look like for AR to send staff and a team to set up in Lusaka, Zambia in 2014 (See the collection of pics above from the team). So 2012 ended strong and we feel thrilled at what God has for us there.
2013 is a year of shaping and developing for all of us. Staffers are preparing to go to Zambia, Clever is going through a program in Cape Town. We are thrilled at the clarity and focus God is bringing to our ministry. So much of the year will be developing and honing the changes to AR. A few changes that we believe God is leading us towards are;
a. AR intentionally being an African URBAN focused ministry. According to a UN report; “The number of people living in African cities will triple over the next 40 years and by 2050, 60% of Africans will be city dwellers.” We strategically see that what happens in the cities shape the nations. So it makes sense to us, to disciple and develop servant leaders in URBAN contexts and equip nationals to care for orphans and widows in these tough contexts.
b. AR is going to be a discipleship ministry at its core. Meaning we will look and do many compassion driven things but the heart of it all will be discipleship, relational discipleship. I am thrilled about what this means and how it looks.
I could go on and on about that for a long time but I must keep this short. I love sharing about this and if you are interested in knowing more let me know and we can talk further.
1. Pray for us as we continue with some support raising; for us personally and the ministry. For AR to be a bridge between the West and Africa, we need to be a solid, anchored base. Practically speaking this means we need to “up” our support.
2. Pray for our staff as the Kaisers new baby comes into the world pretty soon. Pray for Clever as he participates in the All Nations program in Cape Town and then goes off to Madagascar for his missions outreach practical. (Read more about it here on his blog)
3. Pray for that illusive Administration Unicorn we know the Lord has out there somewhere. Having a person join our team Stateside will make us far more effective in fulfilling the work in Africa.
Thank you, thank you to all of you who pray for us, support us and care about Africa. It always amazes me how busy and full, people’s lives are yet they are compelled to care about people on the other side of the ocean. That is remarkable every time I think about it.
Love you guys so much.
Follow close, follow hard
The Greigs- Allan, Annie, Judah and Skylah
“The whole church is called and sent by God. Everybody is an agent of the King. We are all Ambassadors.” – Verge Conference 2013