Somebody’s Child – John Robinson – Place of Grace

The church is doing amazing things all over the world. Let’s celebrate all the good God’s beautiful people are doing EVERYWHERE!

One of our partners, Place of Grace is an amazing ministry that you could  chose to do your internship!  51WViKk5tnL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX342_SY445_CR,0,0,342,445_SH20_OU02_

John Robinson and his wife Gillian are the directors of Place of Grace.  John has written several books about his life journey.  “Nobody’s Child” described John Robinson’s journey from brutal foster homes, through borstal, prison and life on the streets, to his discovery of the transforming love of Christ.  His second book is Somebody’s Child. In 2004 he received the Unsung Heroes Award. “Somebody’s Child” continues John’s story.   It can be found at:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Somebodys-Child-Story-Hope-And-Streets/dp/0825461499/ref=pd_sim_b_1/279-6693175-2783620?ie=UTF8&refRID=0Y9VTQ92RM11MY213YB0

John told me this week after he wrote Noboby’s Child God whispered to him, “you are Somebody’s child.”  He and his wife seek to help disadvantaged families living in the slums in BKK know they are loved deeply by God. To intern at Place of Grace please apply at www.ismsea.com

 

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Meet Sabrina Shaheen coming to ISM September 2013 and interning at Abundant Love.

Hi!  My name is Sabrina Sheehan.  I’m coming to ISM September 2013 and interning at Abundant Love in Chiang Mai Thailand.

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Sabrina Sheehan

I am a recent graduate from the University of Toronto, where I majored in English with a double minor in history and writing/rhetoric.

I can’t even begin to express the excitement that comes over me when I think about the kids I will get to spend time with at Abundant Love.

As a kid, I was very lonely and depressed, often wondering what my purpose in life was.  I have grown up in a loving home with parents who have constantly shown me the love of God, but I knew from an early age that something was missing.  I knew about God, but I didn’t really know that He loved me or wanted anything to do with me.  When someone had told me that God wanted to be my friend and had a plan for my life, I was eager to listen.  I accepted Christ as my personal Lord and Saviour when I was eleven years old, and it has been an incredible, wild adventure since.

God’s heart definitely beats for children.  In Luke 18:15, the disciples rebuke people for bringing their children to Jesus, but verse 16 really reveals the heart of God: “But Jesus called the children to him and said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these’.”

I have worked with kids in a number of different capacities, and what I love most about being with kids is seeing their sense of wonder and imagination.  I love how something so simple can give them such great joy.  I love their ability to dream big and believe in the impossible.  I believe that there is much to learn by spending time with children, and I desire to have that simple, uncomplicated faith they carry.

I know not every child has grown up in a home where they are deeply cared for.  It breaks my heart to hear and see this reality.  Our God is the God of the fatherless, and my prayer is that I will be His hands and feet, and have His heart for the people He cares so deeply for.

I have been on several different mission trips where I have worked with kids, and what I’ve learned is that children in North America are no different from children around the world.  It is cliché, but all kids really desire is to love, be loved, laugh, and dream.

So why Thailand?

I have grown up in a home where different languages, food, and culture are very important.  Although I was born and raised in Canada, I have had a heart for the nations for as long as I can remember.  I felt unsettled in Canada, as though I was made for somewhere else.  I love my nation, and know God is doing amazing things here, but I also know that God has given me a heart for the nations and has wired me in such a way that I can easily adapt to wherever He calls me.  I’m so thankful that I get to participate in what God is doing throughout the world.

Meet Sarah Waldrop coming to ISM January 2014 – internship – NightLight

Hi! My name is Sarah Waldrop and I’m a sophomore nursing major at Cedarville University in Ohio. 

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Sarah Waldrop

I’m going to be interning at Nightlight in 2014 and I’ve never been more excited to see what Christ is going to do! I’ve moved around my whole life, so although I was born in America, I can’t say that I feel most comfortable there.  My family has moved around to Panama, Papua New Guinea, Mexico, and South Korea, and now my parents have just moved back to Mexico. 

I am definitely blessed to have been born into a loving, Christian home, going to church my entire life.  I accepted Christ as my savior at a very early age, but looking back, I realize that I didn’t truly have a personal relationship with Christ then.  But by His grace He continued to pursue me, and grabbed ahold of my heart when I was in 8th grade.  I moved to Seoul, South Korea, my sophomore year of high school, and junior year is when God really moved in my life.  I had to go back to America because of a serious illness, and being away from my friends and family for almost a three month period was agony.  But it was through that experience that Christ opened my heart and mind to His will, reminding me that He is always by my side, even through difficult times.  He reminded me that His plans are always better than my own and through His grace He will carry me through every trial and hardship.  It was during that time that Christ truly changed my life, I believe, and He has been leading me on an incredible path ever since!

In my senior year of high school, I went on a missions trip to Thailand with a small group of girls from my school, and we worked with Nightlight and other ministries that aid in bringing women out of prostitution.  It was a fantastic week, and I learned so much about what Christ is doing in Thailand through these ministries.  Christ placed these ministries on my heart, and last year, while I was at university, He made it so clear to me in so many ways that He wanted me to go back and work with Nightlight.  I almost thought it was crazy, I thought that I had my life planned out all the way through college.  I was going to get a nursing degree and then go into ministry, but God’s plans are always different than I expect and are always infinitely much better.  Through so many amazing ways He opened doors and now I’m really excited to see what He has planned in 2014.  I hope and pray that He will use me for His glory, to heal broken hearts and build relationships that point to Him alone!  

 

Since Christ has called me to Nightlight, He has really laid this passage on my heart:

 

“The Spirit of the LORD God is upon me, because the LORD has appointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;”

 – Isaiah 61:1         

 

 

Meet Kylie Hobern – coming to ISM September 2013 – Internship – The Well

Hi my name is Kylie Hobern and I am from Ruakaka, New Zealand. 

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I have however spent the past 15 years living in London, UK.  I have two brothers, two gorgeous nieces and two amazing parents who are all here in the UK with me.

I grew up in a Christian family with my Mum and Dad both having missionary parents.  My Mum was born in Egypt and my Dad in the Solomon Islands.  Growing up my Grandfather used to always tell me stories about his time in the Middle East and God’s amazing supernatural provision for him and his family.  I therefore grew up with both a desire to travel the world and to serve others.

My desire to serve others lead me into a career as a nurse and I have been blessed for many years to work as a nurse in the field of sexual health.  This experience has given me the opportunity to work with victims of sexual assault and also work alongside commercial sex workers both in the clinic setting and in the community in the brothels of London.  As a part of Hillsong Church we support the A21 campaign against human trafficking which has really educated me on the sex industry in a global context.

Six months ago a friend of mine told me that I needed to watch a documentary called ‘Furious Love’.  When watching the section on the Nightlight I felt so touched and challenged by what I saw I jumped straight on the internet to research the programme.

To serve those in the sex industry has been a desire in my heart for a long time and I am honoured to be able to intern with The Well whilst in Thailand.    I pray that this experience will stretch me and grow me but above all else I pray that this is just the beginning of the journey.  I thank God for this amazing opportunity and look forward to sharing it with you all!

God Bless

Kylie

Meet Emily Snow coming to ISM September 2013 – internship The Well, Bangkok

Hi I am Emily Snow.

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I am 20 years old, and am currently finishing my junior year of classes at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, studying Human Development and Family Studies.

I have a great family made up of a loving mother and father, two sisters, one brother, and four dogs. I grew up attending church, Sunday school and confirmation classes. Upon coming to college, I became immediately plugged into a campus ministry that has encouraged and emphasized a personal relationship with Jesus. My walk has been transformed since then, and I am incredibly thankful for the community of believers that He led me to on campus.

Over a year ago I attended Passion 2012, a Christian conference in Atlanta, Georgia. “Rooted in the confession of Isaiah 26:8, Passion exists to glorify God by uniting students in worship, prayer andjustice for spiritual awakening in this generation.” Their mission succeeded in my heart over those four days as my eyes were opened to the reality and extremity of modern day slavery. My heart aches at the thought of these women who are often desperate for work, who are enticed by the promise of a better future from a seemingly generous businessman or woman. At this interaction, they unknowingly enter into an industry of degradation and abuse-the sex trade.  These women are either being trafficked under the hand of a pimp, or have willingly entered the industry out of financial need and do not see a way out. Through this continual exploitation they begin to believe that they are worth nothing more than sex. This is the reality that I cannot bare to leave alone.

After my four days in Atlanta, I knew that I would eventually serve in a ministry for these women. God laid it on my heart to wait for a while, and so I did-until this past winter when I came across an opportunity to do ministry for 9 days in Bangkok. However, God had a different plan for me. After many conversations with my parents, it was clear to me that if I were to go, I needed to spend a significant amount of time there. I began researching other opportunities, and stumbled upon Impact School of Missions and their many internship opportunities. I read the curriculum, the blog, looked up all of the recommended books’ descriptions and all of the different ministries. I was hooked. About two weeks later, I excitedly (and a bit fearfully) applied.

Around this time, I had just been accepted to my major. I had an advising session the same week, and was ecstatic to find out that I have a required internship, and that any of the internships I ranked in my ISM application would be accepted! I am happy to announce that following my 4 weeks at ISM this fall, I have the opportunity to join my formal education, missions training, and God-given passion into a 2.5 month internship with The Well-Bangkok! My prayer is that God will work through me to show these women the joy of following Jesus Christ, and the worth we have in Him. I look forward to having my life changed by this incredible opportunity, whether it is slight or radical. “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”

Romans 8:28 NIV

Put Feet to your Heartbeat

Have you ever met someone who says they LOVE missions, or are passionate about human trafficking and alleviating poverty but don’t really know anything or do anything about it?  We all can be inspired by a movie or a story or a sermon, we can even be moved to  tears,  but the evidence of true passion will involve action.  Students preparing to come to do an internship in SEA have made the first huge jump toward putting feet to their heartbeat!  Way to GO!

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If you are preparing for an internship or a short term missions trip there are number of things you can do to get ready!  Passion drives us to do something – so there are many things you can do to be informed and be as ready as possible.  So what can you do?

1.  Read as much as you can about the nation where you are going to serve.  There are many books and blogs giving interesting insight into the nation you are going to serve.

2.  Watch movies – anything you can find related to the nation you are serving.

3.  Read missionary biographies – VERY inspiring.

4.  Eat the food – amazing restaurants with Thai, Indian and Filipino cuisine are in most major cities.12669916-collage-from-photographs-of-thai-food
5.  Go out for coffee with missionaries and take notes.  They love it when someone wants to hear their story. Buy their coffee 😉

6. Throw a themed party about the nation – invite all your friends, dress up, eat curried dishes, play the music from the nation, pray about the nation and raise funds.

7.  Take a language class – and have fun with it!

8. Befriend someone from the nation and discover the beauty of their culture.

9. Read about the dos & don’ts and take them to heart.

10.  Start eating with your hands (India) or with a spoon and use your fork to guide the food to the spoon, (most other SEA nations).

As you prepare if someone asks, “so what do Thai people eat?” you don’t want to answer “I have no idea.”  Get ready!  This will help you put FEET to your HEARTBEAT.

 

 

 

In your Face! – 7 reflections of witnessing sex trafficking and exploitation.

7 Reflections From 7 Months of Witnessing Sex Trafficking & Exploitation in Bangkok, Thailand (while interning for NightLight International). 

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1. GOD, WHERE IS YOUR GOODNESS? What is ‘humanity’ and at what point do people lose it? Why can’t I stop my soul from this painful grieving and sorrow?… These are the thoughts that I’ve often had to process through with God over the past seven months. Humanitarian workers across the world go through some tough, faith-testing stuff (second-hand trauma). They see some of the hardest realities of our world week after week and as these experiences compound, their deepest beliefs about life and the world are tested. Throughout my time here, God has been faithful, and loving, and true. I have seen women freed from the trap of prostitution and exploitation. I have seen God’s power and love pour over dark and disturbing areas of our world and bring freedom and hope. But that didn’t stop me from asking God, sometimes in anger or tears, why these things are happening and why it’s hurting so bad to be in the midst of it. It turns out His “refining fire” the Bible talks about HURTS really REALLY badly (but in reflection is so worth it). Please pray for those who are still enduring day after day to be a messenger of hope to exploited and broken peoples everywhere.

2. THE BLAME GAME. Yes the world’s a mess. Yes there are many hard, exhausting and painful parts in each of our lives. Yes there are things to grieve over and get angry about all around us. Yes… yes. But still, we choose how we respond to these things; how we behave and even think. We have a lot of power to choose. We can choose be angry or we can be determined to forgive. We can offer our love unconditionally, or we can withdraw that love… or we can manipulate it. We develop priorities for our time, energy and money. We choose what to say, and whether our actions match up to our words. We choose what we value most, and whether or not our financial spending actually matches what we claim to value (Is your budget spent on your kids, your education, helping a cause your “passionate” about?). We also choose what we believe in, and the degree to which our faith becomes the motivation for each and EVERY action, EVERY day. WE CHOOSE. We have the capacity to change or we can choose to stay the same. But as adults we have to admit that WE must take responsibility for the way our internal decisions affect various internal and external consequences. As for me, it’s never quite that simple or easy to change, so I turn to One who is greater: a Savior who is quick to help us and a God with endless wisdom and strength.

3. HUMILITY! OUCH. It’s awesome that so many people are so passionate about the issue of human trafficking and sexual exploitation. But the first thing I learned from NightLight is that what we read and see on TV is not always accurate, and sometimes it’s quite sensationalized. After shadowing the field workers – those who are hitting the streets week after week, walking into the hotels where trafficking happens in plain sight, sitting next to pole dancers on their breaks and listening to their stories, and offering a safe friendship to these women where few exist – I have begun to understand how sexual exploitation is as “normal” in some places as a drug dealer on the corner of an inner city street. The best way I can explain it: like the difference between watching a movie about war and actually talking to a soldier who’s just returned from combat. The work they do through this outreach is faith-testing stuff: it can be traumatizing (because it’s REAL and in front of you), there’s not nearly enough resources given to help the thousands in need around you so you sometimes battle feelings of inadequacy, frustration and stress, and the issues surrounding the sex industry are so inexplicably complicated that it tempts you to throw your hands up in the air and want to give up! These individuals have been pathing the way before us. They deserve our utmost respect and our emotional, FINANCIAL and spiritual (PRAYER) support. Ask and pray how you can SERVE them and learn from them. And DON’T THINK COMBATING THESE ISSUES WILL BE EASY, GIVE YOU SATISFACTION OR FIX ANY SELF ESTEEM PROBLEMS. IT WON’T. But together, if we endure through whatever comes, we get to watch God at work – we get to see people walk out of slavery and into freedom – and that is totally worth it.

4. I’M NOT BRAVE, I’M IN LOVE, AND THERE’S A BIG DIFFERENCE. Many people have recently told me I am brave. But I’m not that brave. I’d still ask someone to walk me home at night in the middle of South Carolina if there’s no one going with me. Why? Because I’m AFRAID. I didn’t go to intern with NightLight so I could explore Thailand (I already knew I hate being a foreigner. It’s hard!). I didn’t go to save the world (At 22, what do I truly know about the world and about all the challenges of life?). The only reason I came, the only reason I entered this journey of learning to outreach to and care for women who are being sexually exploited and trafficked, is because I am ridiculously in love with God and my Savior Jesus Christ. I have full faith in His power and desire to save all people. He’s dramatically healed, renewed and transformed me at profound levels and I am so grateful. So I went in obedience to God’s direction. And He carried me through most of it, because it was much too exhausting and heart breaking for me to handle anyways.

5. IF WE’RE NOT CAREFUL, WE ALL PLAY A ROLE IN THE CYCLE OF HURT AND ABUSE THAT FEEDS THE HORRORS FOUND IN THE SEX INDUSTRY. I remember sitting in a park before work one day when the man next to me started chatting. He started sharing about his life, as tends to happen when you hang out near Bangkok’s red-light district. He talked about how he often comes to the bars to build friendships with the women. Later in the conversation he shared that he had also participated in prostitution. He expressed frustration that the women see him as an ATM and not an opportunity for a relationship, and that they exploit him for food and other purchases. He mentioned that many men commit suicide after the connection they thought they had with one of these women turns out to be founded in fantasy… I remember on my first day interning at NightLight I walked in and saw one of my favorite women, glowing with joy and beauty. I tell her, “You look beautiful today!” She points up to the sky and says “That’s because my Father is beautiful!” Later that week, she excitedly shared her testimony with me: Just two years before, a few blocks from where we stood, she had worked as a street prostitute. She said it was a really bad time for her: men would beat her, some customers wouldn’t pay her and she thought about committing suicide. She wanted a way out. Then someone told her about NightLight…. I remember every time “N”, an African woman who’d been trafficked to Thailand, gave me a hug. So sweet, so sincere, so gentle. She had been working the streets as a prostitute when NightLight outreach workers met her and asked her if she wanted help going home. I only met her in casual settings, when we were celebrating or hanging out like friends. A few weeks ago she finally returned home. While she was in Thailand she had been raped so violently that the physical trauma never fully healed. These injuries have now turned into cervical cancer and she also tests HIV positive… People in all walks of life are holding in layers and layers of abuse, brokenness and/or humiliation. Anger and bitterness, abuse of all types and various attacks to individuals’ identities are all major contributors to the mindset shifts that fuel the sex industry. Perhaps men feel unappreciated, disrespected and taken advantage of by women. They battle feelings of loneliness, insecurity, failure, fear of rejection and unmanliness and take it out on others verbally, emotionally, physically and/or sexually. Maybe they were sexually molested or abused as a child. Maybe they confuse sex with love and are left empty when they find out the woman secretly had always seen him as just a loaf of bread. Women perhaps continue/respond with passive aggression, anger, bitterness, blame and their own forms of abusive behavior towards men. These women also experience rejection, fear, insecurity, sadness, loss of identity and abuse of all kinds. Both hold on to un-forgiveness, both blame the opposite sex, and attempt to justify their actions within themselves. Both are convinced that they are in the right; the cycle continues and perhaps even deepens. We may not feel like we should relate to issues of sexual exploitation, but we can all admit to doing at least one of these things can’t we? Not forgiving? Blaming? Generalizing? Projecting hurt? Deepening in insecurity? Holding on to self-condemnation? The stories can get a lot more horrific and complex but you get the picture, right?

6. GOD IS NOT TO BLAME. No matter what kind of insanity or pain exists in the world, God has always been in the midst of it pouring out His love, and He will continue to be there, even if we all give up. In the moments when I questioned why God wasn’t doing anything to stop the exploitation I was seeing, I was hit with the memory that HE IS THE ONE WHO SENT ME HERE IN THE FIRST PLACE. It’s definitely not the path I would have chosen for my life and the same is obviously true about most of the other outreach workers here. We’re only here because God gives us the strength to be here and because when we get disheartened He reminds us of His infinite power to do the seemingly impossible and that God has never and WILL NEVER give up on the world. He will keep fighting for all things good. The question is: will we? Do we trust Him?

7. FINALLY. I HAVE LEARNED THAT IF YOU WANT TO BE AN INSPIRATIONAL PERSON, YOU MUST SURROUND YOURSELF WITH INSPIRATIONAL PEOPLE – people who make you feel very small (in the best of ways), people who make you jump leaps and sprint miles in your level of maturity, character and faith just to catch up. Surround yourself with people who celebrate you and desire to watch you reach your highest potential, people who live for the little things as much as the big things in life and who match their actions with their words, people of integrity, passionate people motivated by love and compassion. When you reflect on these people, you have to laugh because no matter how much or how fast you grow, you never quite seem to catch up, and thus, you always stay inspired. And yet somehow, they believe that their ceiling can be your starting point and it excites and motivates you to choose the path that won’t disappoint!

Maria Gambone de Jesus

Look what Jesus is doing in the lives of ISM students!

This terms internships are almost at an end…. But God’s work is just beginning!

The month of April sees all of our ISM interns returning home to their families, jobs, and dreams, but they are returning home changed. Here are some of their final reflections…

Maria Gambone de Jesus

The last seven months were beyond description challenging. But looking back, I am so thankful for the time ISM took to prepare me before my internship began. The things I learned there and the mentorship I received were absolutely key to my success in my position at NightLight. ISM multiplied my growth in maturity of faith and character during that time. The growth in knowledge, character and faith I gained from my time at ISM has impacted my actions and thoughts in daily life, and the way I look at my life and purpose. I find myself applying the one month of ISM classes into my daily life more than I do even my four years of classes at university.

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Tim Wharton

Attending Impact School of Missions was a great experience where I learned more than I ever expected to. I went in with the mindset that it would prepare me for my up coming internship which it did but in a more impact full way it opened me up to the world of missions as a whole. I learned a lot about what missions means, what opportunities and type of missions work are out there and what some of the needs are. I was challenged to think about if the missions life was for me and how missions fit into God’s plan for my life. This is definitely a great place if you think missions is for you or might be for you. I was also challenged to look closer at what my faith meant to me and saw growth in myself as the month progressed. For two and a half months I interned at Abundant Love in Ban Mai Sawan, Thailand. Working at the children’s home was a great opportunity, spending time with the children was great, along with building great relationships with the staff. The language barrier has been an interesting challenge but has also made for great fun. Even with the language barrier you can still be a great help and blessing to those around you; it just might not be how you expect it. My experiences at ISM and Ban Mai Sawan are something I will never forget and have changed my life forever.

chrisChris Lowe

I came to ISM in hope of getting a better understanding of what missions will look like in my future. I came knowing fully that I am going to be entering long term missions work at some point in my future. I came to ISM as part of education at Vanguard College. That hope that I had to better identify my role in missions was met with an answer. The teaching and relationship model that I worked with at The Centre in Chiang Mai, Thailand, matches with my missionolgy in every way. Also I have learned a lot about my self and my passion for this lost world has grown a great amount. I will leave Thailand with my questions answered and a better understanding of myself, mission, and of God.

kellyKelly Braun

I never could’ve imagined that God would do so much in my life through one step of faith. ISM has turned my world upside down. I am so grateful for everything this program is. Every challenge, every new experience, every adventure, has caused me to grow into a very different person than I was when I first stepped on that plane. I am thankful to have had an a experience that is more authentic to missionary life, and I praise God for every difficult and stretching situation He put me into. His kindness is HUGE- He is shown me how He loves the unlovable, wants to give us the smallest desires of our hearts, and more than ever, how HE is the answer to every hurt in this world. ISM provided me with such valuable training for the missions world and for entering a different culture. My internship placement was so perfect for me, and is now a place I can call a second home. Praise God for all that He has done in me, and through me. He is amazing. “I bless the holy name of God with all my heart. Yes, I will bless the Lord and not forget the glorious things He does for me.” Psalm 103:1-2
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Bethany Nickel

My experience at ISM has been nothing short of phenomenal. It’s brought me a whole new perspective on missions; long and short term. The classes provided me with so much great information that has not only been so helpful throughout my internship, but is also something that I can take home with me and apply to my every day life. These few months have stretched me in the craziest ways and has forced me to grow immensely in my relationship with our creator. Go ISM! Whoo-hoo

tanyaTanya Land

I wish the English language had words to describe the greatness of Impact School of Missions. It is so obvious that Sandra McIntosh and the ISM staff are continuously listening to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. The staff at ISM are empowering, inspirational, and full of wisdom. Everything I learnt in class at ISM helped me excel in my internship and thereby equipping me for a life of ministry and faithfulness to Christ. The 4-weeks went by so fast, during which I made lasting Christ-centred friendships. Impact School of Missions is life-changing and I STRONGLY encourage students to ‘GO’!

Excited for January 2013! – Jessica Pellowe

Well, here we are! The beginning of December… This month will see most of our September students returning home, our January students completing the final stages of preparation to come, and ISM staff thoroughly enjoying the whole process!

It’s hard to believe the first class is already finishing up their internship. I remember the weekend they all arrived, standing at Meeting Point at the airport, hoping I would recognise our students in real life from the photos we’d received, and wondering what the following month would have in store… We had everything planned out nicely on paper, but once you start adding ‘little’ things to plans like, say, people or real life, anything can happen!

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In reflecting on this first term, both the in-class training and the internship time, one thing that really stands out is how incredibly open and embracing our students have been. They each truly have a desire to grow and learn and stretch themselves. They have thrown themselves into this experience wholeheartedly, and it has been an honour to see them grow in understanding and confidence as a result.

It is my prayer that as these students return home to their families, friends, and “normal” life situations, they will not return to who they were before they came, but will cling to what God has done and wants to continue doing in them. I pray that regardless of where they end up living and working, their relationship with God and their posture of humble service will be not only maintained, but continually fostered and nurtured.

Looking forward to January, we have another great group of young people getting ready to come, learn, and serve. I am excited to not only see the growth and changes in their lives, but to see how their personalities, thoughts and experiences contribute to making this term at ISM unique and meaningful. I know God planned for this group of students to come together at this time for a reason, and can’t wait to see what He has in store for us in 2013!

 Jessica Pellowe

Taylor Collado’s Great India Adventure

Well, I’m in India and I’ve pretty much settled into my schedule. It’s a busy one, but I love the ministry opportunities I’ll have. I’m helping out with the Kid’s Ministry, Youth Ministry and Sports Ministry. Most of the ministries they have set up are in the evening, so I’m able to take my days to prepare everything I need.

I’m preparing a drama to go along with the Bible story, and an English worship song for Kid’s Church on Sundays; and I’m preparing some games for Kid’s Club on Saturdays. I’m also going around to some of the “Life Centres” Living God Church has set up in the slums for the kids during the week.

I’m playing football (soccer in North America) with some young teens in the schools. I’ll be giving them the few tips I can (some of them are already better than me) and then sharing a little devotional with them afterwards. This ministry is an awesome way to reach the schools.

I’m getting an awesome taste of Youth ministry here also. I’m doing a few devotionals with the teens during the week at some cell groups (on rooftops, no less!). It was incredible to hear some of the salvation stories from the teens at the cell groups. Most of their families are Hindu, but they’ve been Christians for 1-2 years and have already been baptised and are living the faith. So encouraging! God is moving in Chennai!
My biggest exposure to youth ministry, however, is that I’ll be preaching in the Youth Service every Sunday. Pastor Christo has trusted me with his youth, so please pray that I’m able to say what’s on God’s heart and that I’ll be open to teaching and correction from the leaders.

Thank you so much for your continuous prayer support! Please also pray for the church leaders here. There’s still so much work to do, but everyone has so much passion to change India for God. I’m so excited to work with these guys. They’re making history in Chennai, one soul at a time.

Taylor