|Posted by realhopemissions on October 21, 2010 at 5:38 PM|
These are some photos and reports shared by our team that traveled to a Canadian reserve to minister to hurting first nations people. A special thank you to Lynn Long for taking the time to send these reports back to our support team so they could share in what God was doing through their prayers and support!
Canadian Mission Report #1
He looked weary and tired. With nothing but the coat on his back, he was prepared to walk 6.5 hours to reach his destination when we were approaching the Reserve. We had just left our final gas station and were weary after 21 hours of driving but we felt so very compelled to pick him up. We learned that his name was Cornelius and he had lost his 21 year old son, and now his grandson, was fighting for his life from fetal alcohol syndrome in a hospital nearby. We believed that this was our divine appointment. After taking him to cash his last check, we gave him our opened bags of snacks and prayed with him before he walked into the dark of the night. Our hearts were heavy but we were glad a job was waiting for him and the reality of the purpose of this trip was now in full force. We were now where we were called to be this week.
So I, and the Team from the Crystal Lake Ev Free Church that I've been invited to participate with have now arrived after 21 hours of driving and have now begun preparing for a Canadian Thanksgiving Feast at the Tribal School in Pickle Lake, Ontario, Canada.
Upon canvassing many homes for this outreach event yesterday however, we came across Jordan who was entrenched in science and creationism; two very real strongholds on Reserves and Reservations across the US and Canada. Traditionalism had a stronghold on him and after we talked and offered to pray with him, he quickly declined and asked to leave. Nevertheless, we prayed with Jordan that he would open himself up to Jesus. Marcus, our next Native youth on the other hand, was caught up in traditionalism himself. As we stood on those porches surrounded by garbage and broken windows, we knew that the only source of breaking these chains of strongholds would be our great God himself and so we pressed on. The stories were similar though, and our hearts broke with the poverty we witnessed.
Last evening, we also sat in the living room at the Radio Station where we are staying and listened to the Tribal Chief. We are amazed that such a Spirit led Godly leader has been raised up to lead this dark Reserve. She spoke of this poverty stricken First Nations area and the knowledge that the only hope is in Jesus Christ alone. We could hear a pin drop when she stated that while there is plenty of funds, five million alone, has already been spent on alcohol within the walls of this Reserve. We could not fathom the statistics but could only end this meeting in corporate worship.
So at such a time as this, we can only press forward and are excited about being the hands and feet of Jesus today. We look forward to hosting a Thanksgiving dinner for the community here. We could hardly contain the excitement of putting the generous donations of toys and winter coats out on the tables yesterday and know that each one was provided so generously sacrificially. We find peace knowing that those who have so generously given have done it in Jesus name. We are so very very grateful.
I look forward to spending time with the youth today inbetween helping cook 6 Turkeys and
attempting wild rice and fry bread. May I learn learn learn!!!
Looking forward to our next report and miss you all!
Canadian Mission Report #2
Chief Connie's story spoke of the wounds; the incest, murder, drunkenness and false religions that so permeate this Reserve. We prayed until the wee hours of the morning for the souls of the Ojibwa people and we could hardly contain in our thought processes, all that Satan has such a foothold in such a dark place here in Ontario. Yet, we have come as those full of hope for the Tribe here. The stories of the Natives that have been riding in our van on the dusty country roads are all the same. Brokenness, And so we are all the more intent on sharing the gospel with them as we prepare for our final day of outreach.
To date;...5 have prayed the prayer within the church van and we are amazed at how many have never heard the name JESUS.. How we are so thankful that we have come to bring hope in a community so filled with hopelessness. And...yet..our God is so much greater!
We have just completed the first day of a full day seminar with God's word on Healthy Families Healthy Nation Seminar. We picked up many on the side of the road and brought them in van loads. To see them drop everything was incredible. How we wish you all could have witnessed it. Liquor bottles laying in puddles of rain everywhere in the back yards, and yet they still were willing to listen and come....
We are preparing for a concert at the Tribal school this evening and look forward to sharing the gospel in the school gym. We are weary but looking forward to the Indian Tacos' in a small home where there's little comfort for our combined teams to fit, yet God is restoring our strength to get through our final day of ministry here. We are in awe of what is yet to come!
You have helped contribute to the clothes, tracts, food and we know that to the least of these, you have made an incredible impact. It was difficult to watch the excitement of warm winter coats being dispersed and the expressions of joy on so many. It puts it all in perspective and we are so thankful that we were able to do it for HIM. Today we were the hands and feet of our Savior, and the only thing we knew to do, and that was to feed and clothe the hungry.
Pray for Cornelius, Joyce, Christine, Rebecca, and Johanna. They are now experiencing new life and eternal life on a Northern Canadian Reserve so far away from home.
Canadian Mission Report #3
Others were preparing for the seminar, but a couple of us drove around the Reserve to pick up more Natives willing to come and share more of the food, clothing and toys that we had brought. One by one, they piled into the van. We were celebrating the many that came forward the day before in the van and were still rejoicing over it, but now,the stories continued to pour out, revealing the pain and violence on their faces through bruises and the alcoholic stench. We raced against time in sharing the gospel message to each one but could only pray they would grasp that hope they saw within us. We woke up a young mom and promised her food and clothes as we helped her 2 children and newborn baby into our vehicle but felt disbelief when we found a Native Elder walking on a lonely highway and picked her up. We were unable to communicate as she spoke in her Native tongue but we knew she was hungry and that spoke a a thousand languages in itself.
Evening came and we were preparing for a concert when a disheveled woman named Peggy came to our door. Our Teams were jovial and had just finished eating our Taco meal when she stumbled in. She attempted to share her story to us, but with slurring words, shared her addiction of sniffing gas. She explained the broken relationships that so entrapped her and she was locked out so we fed and prayed for her. The vivid memory of her condition revealed so much heartache. We later rejoiced when we learned that so many had come forward at the Tribal gym. He knew we needed this to lift our spirits and what joy we felt afterwards!
The next day we experienced the enemies attack, when one vehicle broke down forcing our Minneapolis team to leave it behind for repair. The blessing was being able to corporately help meet each others needs and bring our teams closer together after a week filled with ministry. It was a cold rainy morning but there was no doubt in our minds we had become family now and were in this together.
So in a Tribal gym on a cool moonlit Northern Canadian night; on a dusty road in a van and in a broken vehicle on the side of a remote Reserve with no telephone communication access, God used those remote roads to change us. He helped us when we presented the gospel in so many venues. Through every Native’s quiet feeble prayer, He was right there. Together, we fed the hungry. Together we clothed the Natives and corporately, through your prayers and support, the gospel was presented. Our trip was the HIGHWAY TO HEAVEN through which so many came to receive healing and freedom under the grace of God. Our great God used your prayers and support through you and we are so very thankful. 26 broken lives have now found hope and the spiritual food they so desperately needed just in time.
We are home now safe in the comforts of our home. And we are now forever changed.