09 June 2014

UNREACHED=less than 2%

Headlines from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary news on 5 June 2014...

"Only two percent of people profess to be Christians in Scotland and of that, one-half percent are evangelical Christians."

Stephen Eccher


04 December 2013

New Church Plant in Kirkton?!!

Well I believe this is the year we will officially plant a new church in Kirkton. We have taken a year to plant community with the attic volunteers. To plant community in Kirkton through the Attic Lounge. In many ways the Attic is the mercy ministries of the church. We just need the church! We are in a strong position to start, in our view, a real church plant. We have a small group of committed Christians who are ready to break the ground and pour their lives into a needy community. We have a lot of work to do. Discussions and plans to make. For this reason I am asking for your prayers. I am really excited and know this is what God has called me to do! But in order to make this happen we need a strong team! That is what my main role is to be. To train & raise up the team and let them loose. We have support on a number of fronts. Frontline Church, Liverpool are our spiritual covering and constant encouragement. St Peter's Church, Dundee are behind us and now 20schemes ( check website, www.20schemes.com ) are planting churches in Scotland's poorest housing estates and keen to help. God is definitely doing something exciting in Dundee, Central Baptist Church is looking at planting a church in Lochee. St Peter's in Charleston and the Attic in Kirkton. I wouldn't have thought it even 5 yrs ago. So please pray that Jesus will build His church in these needy areas of Dundee. Thank you for your years of support and encouragement.

God bless. Bruce & the attic clan :)

03 December 2013

Danny Goins and myself leave this Friday, 6 Dec for Dundee, and will return Sunday night 15 Dec. It will be a quick, but overdue trip. I do not know what God has planned for the week, but I know we are supposed to "go." He has told us this over and over in His Word. He has told me this, specifically, for Dundee, Scotland. I would deeply appreciate your prayers, for the new church plant in the Kirkton area of Dundee, for the leaders and staff living Jesus daily in their community there 24/7, and for us as we travel. I will do my best to post updates while we are there. Thank you, and with HIS love, ted

a memory that keeps me going! Summer of 09...

Hello Friends and Family,

Just a wee update, to those i personally know and love, on my afternoon here in Dundee today. Today is was my day off to relax and do anything i please basically! lol

After a lazy morning, i went into town about 1:00p to do a little shopping and just 'take it easy.' i always want be a witness for Jesus, but otherwise, today was just going to be a 'me' day. As i rode into town on the bus, i saw a teenage girl (on my bus), Stacy, that i had met on a previous trip. i tried to get her attention on the bus, but did not. Knowing she has totally strayed away, i quickly prayed that God would allow me to speak to her; if it was His will. Her stop was before mine, and she got away before i could speak. i spoke to God again, assuming it had not been His will for me to speak with her. i almost felt as if God were affirming to me, to just relax today! In town, however, and not more than 15 minutes later, i nearly literally bumped into Stacy and her friend. We chatted briefly, but she was in a rush, so we did not have any sort of substantial conversation.

i shopped a wee bit and then grabbed a late lunch. As i sat on a bench in city centre, after eating my chicken baguette, i felt convicted to pray over the people as they walked by. It is very rare that anyone here will make eye contact, which i always try to do, and then smile. Things were busy in town and there was a crowd of people! Those walking by me seemed so lost, and there was such a sense of hopelessness about them. So i prayed for each person that i could single out as i spotted them. Adding to the atmosphere was rain clouds moving in and hiding the sun and it's warmth, and it was already really chilly. After 15 minutes or more of praying for by-passers, i started feeling overwhelmed and just wanted to cry. There are so many people here, about 135,000, and of those, only about 4000 know Jesus. It seemed that no one who walked by, had any sense of hope in their lives; there were no signs of Jesus!

Instead of showing any tears, i decided to do some more shopping, and it was about to rain too. A wee bit later, i was going to stop in on the thrift shops, one of my favorite things to do here. You never know what treasures one will find! The first shop i walked into, stood a man that i met last October while helping the street chaplains of Night Club Outreach (NCO) from Central Baptist Church of Dundee. His name is William, and he was asking two ladies to sponsor him in a bike-a-thon to raise money for a charity. He recognised me and we immediately started a wee chat. He told me that he was very glad to see me and wanted to tell me something. He asked me if i remembered praying with him that night on the street outside the night club? i told him i did remember.

He had told me that night, that he was a Christian, but he had a drinking problem that was really holding him back from a closer relationship with God. He had tried to quit drinking, or at least quit drinking as much; but never had been able too. After sharing with me for a while that night, i asked William if i could pray for him, he said sure! i put my hand on his shoulder and prayed outloud for God to deliver him from the alcohol and set him free. i prayed for God to simply take away the desire and the 'need' to drink. i prayed sincerely, but did not think much about the meeting after that night.

Today, William proceeded to tell me that he had not had a single drink since that night!!! He said God had indeed delivered him from drinking!!! He said that even during the holidays when everyone else was drinking and having wine with their meal, he did not even take a sip!!! He quit smoking too! With tears starting, and nearly speechless, my excitement was building and i said "Thank You Jesus" out loud. William then turns to the two ladies who were still standing close by during our conversation; he takes my arm and tells them that i am a Christian, and he is too, and that i had prayed for him to stop drinking one night in October of last year, and that God had at that moment delivered him from his drinking problem!!! i couldn't hardly contain myself! William had not only quit drinking, he was witnessing to the two ladies!!! We talked for a few more minutes and parted ways once again. i walked out the door feeling as if i were on the peak of Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in the U.K.

On the city bus back to my host home, and in the pouring rain, i was praying and thanking God for such a tremendous blessing through William. As i was praying, the rain stopped and almost instantaneously, the clouds were gone and the sun was shining brightly. Everything was still soaked from the rain, and as the sun light pierced the afternoon, suddenly this city sparkled and glistened like a beautiful jewel before my very eyes! The flickering reflections of the sun was almost blinding! In every direction i looked, this city seemed radiant, as Hope beamed down from Heaven. i could hear the words of the song, "God of this City" in my head the rest of the way home and into the evening...


You're the God of this city, You're the King of these people, You're the Lord of this nation, You Are

You're the light in this darkness, You're the hope to the hopeless, You're the peace to the restless, You are

For there is no one like our God, There is no one like You God

Chorus 1:

For greater things have yet to come

And greater things are still to be done

In this city

Greater things have yet to come

And greater things are still to be done here

You're the Lord of Creation, The Creator of all things, You're the King above all kings, You Are

You're the strength in our weakness, You're the love to the broken, You're the joy in the sadness, You Are

Chorus 2:

For greater things have yet to come

Greater things are still to be done

In this city

When glory shines from hearts alive

With praise for You and love for You

In this city

Greater things have yet to come

Greater things are still to be done

In this city

Greater things have yet to come

And greater things are still to be done here.


with His love, and thank You Lord for a wonderful "day off!" Amen,


09 November 2013

Forgive me!

I have not posted in a long while! I have let earthly life catch up with me and sorely neglected some very important things- like this blog! Hopefully with God's help I will keep this site more up to date. I will be back in Scotland soon! With HIS love, ted

05 February 2013

WoW! Exciting news from Bruce!!!

New Church Plant in Kirkton?!!

Well I believe this is the year we will officially plant a new church in Kirkton. We have taken a year to plant community with the attic volunteers.
To plant community in Kirkton through the Attic Lounge. In many ways the Attic is the mercy ministries of the church. We just need the church!
We are in a strong position to start, in our view, a real church plant. We have a small group of committed Christians who are ready to break the
ground and pour their lives into a needy community. We have a lot of work to do. Discussions and plans to make.
For this reason I am asking for your prayers.
I am really excited and know this is what God has called me to do! But in order to make this happen we need a strong team! That is what my main role is to be. To train & raise up the team and let them loose. We have support on a number of fronts. Frontline Church, Liverpool are our spiritual covering and constant encouragement. St Peter's Church, Dundee are behind us and now 20schemes ( check website, www.20schemes.com ) are planting churches in Scotland's poorest housing estates and keen to help. God is definitely doing something exciting in Dundee, Central Baptist Church is looking at planting a church in Lochee. St Peter's in Charleston and the Attic in Kirkton. I wouldn't have thought it even 5 yrs ago. So please pray that Jesus will build His church in these needy areas of Dundee. Thank you for your years of support and encouragement.

God bless.
Bruce & the attic clan :)

12 November 2010

Fall Trip thoughts and prayer!

This trip was to be my "Yes" trip! Meaning that without a group, i could say "yes" to everyone that i wanted to have some time with. Of course, we all know it does not really work that way; even with it just being Dustin Burnette and myself, sooner or later, you cannot say "yes" anymore! That point happened much quicker than i expected; we arrived on Saturday 30 October in the late afternoon, and by Monday, i was already having to say "no" to potential meetings and engagements to those i love and care for in Dundee! There are only 24 hours in a day, no matter how well it is organized, and no matter how good my intentions! Aside from not seeing everyone i wanted and needed to see, it was a wonderful week. So many people expressed Thankfulness to God and Blessings that Dustin and i were there with them, but they may not realize the Thankfulness and Blessings Dustin and i felt for the privilege and honor to be there in Dundee with them! I am inspired by the perseverance and faith of our brothers and sisters fighting the "good fight" against all odds, humanly speaking, in such "cold" places around the world and here at home. I Thank God for opportunities, big and small, to share and grow in this walk toward the light!
with HIS love and in Jesus Name,

08 June 2010

... and this is why we go.

Saturday morning i looked at the poinsettia i have kept alive for five years and noticed the soil was dry. Giving the plant a much needed drink, a thought ran across my mind. This is why we go. Countless people bombard me with the same question upon my return - how many lives did you save? Posing such an inquiry would lead one to believe there is a score card somewhere in Heaven. Serendipitous event of a dry plant gave me the answer i have been rummage around for since i started traveling to Scotland. With a captivated audience eager for a response, i offered, "None, but we watered many."

i hold in my hand one of many rocks that became an involuntary contribution to my collection. Closer inspection of the treasure reveals crimson spots scattered about its surface and i cannot help but to envision this representation so boldly illustrated - the blood of King Jesus being spilled for these people. How many of these rocks litter the coast of Scotland as a reminder from the Saviour who loves them. No, it is more than a reminder. It is a desperate cry! A desperate, pleading cry from God who gave the ultimate gift and from His Son, who paid the ultimate price. All we have to do is pick it up and accept the gift.

Walking along the beach at Saint Andrews, a battle waged between the footprints i was leaving behind in the sand and the rushing tide. Eventually, the tide won and washed away all remembrances of where my size ten shoe had made its mark. i would go back and reinsert the print, but the outcome was always the same if i did not keep a constant vigil. Margaret Thatcher said, "You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it."

As i put away my passport until another trip on Take-A-Chance airlines, i am forced to ponder how long will our footprints last on the people of Scotland if the sentry’s diligence is wavering?

Eric Mills

02 June 2010

Thoughts from Scotland, Part 3

Today was filled with many sites and sceneries of Scotland. The team went to Edinburgh, I did not go there so I (Joe Grimm) will allow Blake Watson to share his thoughts on the place.
“Today was your traditional Scottish weather. Overcast with drizzles of rain all day long. We got up early and were in a rush to catch the train to Edinburgh. I cant imagine what Edinburgh looks like on a sunny day. It was marvelous. Huge buildings covering the city. We stopped by a little shop to get something since we missed breakfast, (I missed Rose’s cooking). Once we got to the royal mile you could instantly see the beauty and vastness of the Edinburgh castle which is said to be the safest castle in the entire kingdom. The castle stood taller than anything else I the entire city and probably most altitudes for miles. So lets just say the walk up to it was quite the mountain climb. When we reached the castle, we crossed the bridge over the once existing moat, and the first thing I spotted was two statues placed on the walls beside the castle entrance. The two statues were of William Wallace (and no, not Mel Gibson) and Sir Robert the Bruce. I knew then seeing that, I would find something of his inside. After exploring for a while I realized just exactly why it was the safest castle. The altitude gave you sight of everything all around you, along with about 700 cannons defending their fortress. One cool thing they did was turn several of castle rooms into museums. One of these is where I found my Robert the Bruce memorabilia and the amazing display of his kingship. One thing I cant forget is the display of the Scottish soldier who carried a baby on his back sack throughout an entire battle. After leaving the castle we hit two shops on the Royal Mile before eating at a four story McDonald's!”

The rest of the group that did not go, had some time of rest, and some more walking around the city. A couple of the group went with Bruce t the sports center where we played some indoor soccer, or as the Scots call it, football.

Around dinner time, the team met up at the Lochee Church for food and began setting up for the HUB night. The time began for the children to show up. Part of the team stayed in the sanctuary running through their parts in the drama, some went in the back to be praying, while the rest stayed in the game room to play with the children. After game time and having some snacks, the kids proceeded to the sanctuary for some dramas and games. The drama team performed some fantastic dramas, putting on a total of four sketches. Blake Watson then delivered the message for the evening. He spoke on choices and how they effect our lives. During the dramas and the talk, the children didn’t really act out to much and seemed receptive for the most part, which for kids is really good.

After the service was over, the group got together and had some time of sharing and prayer. A couple of members shared about some things they have enjoyed about the trip and how the Lord was working in and around them. It was a pretty good feeling to kneel before Jesus and talk with Him as a group.

01 June 2010

Illuminations of Blake WATson

Illuminations of Blake WATson

The Attic was an absolute BLAST! We went to pick up the kids at several different bus stops on my first lift on a double decker bus. The kids were so excited and we all had a super fun time. The two highlights had to have been young boys beating us in a soccer drill and when Eric Mills downed a can of Irn Bru in three seconds. I was only on my first gulp. After all the chaotic fun we did our silly dramas on Creation that the kids loved and then i spoke on choices. Somehow my shower story ended up in these. They were amused by the stupid American. We took the kids back after it was over and I broke out my £ 3 harmonica and started tootin' around with the kids. The Attics leaders, headed by Bruce, and us met back at Elim for tea and a discussion on how the night went. Positive! Positive! Positive! Yay!


Thoughts from Scotland- Part 2

Cup of Joe Grimm - Part 2

As God's Word said there is a time for everything, today was the time to begin laboring. The team arrived at Elim to help Bruce set up for the Attic. The Attic is a youth ministry that is held on Monday nights and whenever the children have a vacation from school or as they call it a holiday.

Upon setting up the stage, we sat down and had some tea. The team was split in half, one going to help the Attic and the other the Hub. The Hub is a youth ministry with leaders from Central Baptist and a few other churches, which is held also on Monday nights. The teams got together to go over and practice their dramas. Once done, they headed over to city center to have some lunch and had an opportunity to do some shopping in downtown Dundee. The team also had an opportunity to buy some Scotland souvenirs.

After a long day at city center, the Attic team went to Elim for dinner and the Hub team had dinner in Lochee. The Hub and Attic setup for their service is very similar, but unique in their own perspective. The team went to the Lochee church, had dinner and then began setting up for their service. Having the pool table, ping-pong table, and Playstations ready, the children began coming in. Having a bit of play time, that allowed the children to settle down and used up their energy. After words we gave the kids juice and chips to eat for a snack. Some of the drama students had a sketch prepared for the kids. Kelsey, Madison, Mandy, Sam, Steven, and Andrew performed on the creation of the world. The sketch was performed in a humorous way except toward the end when Adam and Eve were banned for the garden. After the drama, they had a question and answer session about the the Genesis account. It was the boys verses the girls, and the winner receiving a piece of Big Red gum. Big Red is quite a treat here in Scotland, since they do not sell it here. Ted then delivered the message on the account of Levi (Luke 5) and Jesus which was delivered extremely well.

After the talk, the group was split between boys and girls to play team games. Teams had a great opportunity to love and be a witness for Jesus to the kids. For some of these kids, it's the only love they will receive. As with so many inner city children, raised in broken homes, single parents, and walking the streets by the time they are seven, it is also the typical story for many of these kids. The Hub is truly a light for the Lochee area. After the service the team headed back to Elim to talk about tomorrow's schedule and then called it quits for the night.

- Joe

Thoughts from Scotland- Part 1

Cup of Joe Grimm – Part 1

A lightly drizzling morning came as the team headed to Elim Pentecostal Church for worship and fellowship. The service started well with some worship songs focusing on the love and majesty of Jesus Christ. The team fitted right in with their Christian brothers and sisters in Scotland, as if they were regular members of Elim. After the time of worship in song, the team had a opportunity to introduce themselves individually in front of the congregation then followed was a small sketch by the drama team and a testimony from Mandy. Blake, Jody, Andrew, and Kelsey portrayed different ways some Christians “try” to pray. The sketch was humorous in ways, but at the same time convicting. Showing us how we as Christians come before the Lord in ways He did not intend us too. Kelsey’s character displayed how one should come before the Lord: real, honest humbled, and focused on God. Following the drama Mandy began sharing with us her testimony, a little about her struggles she has faced in life, and then how God came about in bringing her to salvation. Pastor Graham then gave the sermon. His main focus was on prayer and praise. How the both should be present in a believers life, and you will be “lopsided” in your walk if you only have one, common in your life.

The teams plans to go and have a picnic with some of the church members at the park was altered, due to the rain. But a member of the church named Rosemary offered her home as a place to eat and have fellowship! Her home was a beautiful, traditional home near the farmlands in Scotland. Going from where we were in the city to Rosemary’s house was like going from downtown Knoxville to Gibbs. No big buildings, traffic jams, or crowds, pastures of beautiful, wavy, green grass and traditional stacked stone fences. The food was awesome, having some traditional Scottish sandwiches, bread, crisps, and of course some Irn-Bru. After filling our stomachs we got to know our Scottish friends a little more by sharing stories and hanging out.
After relaxing the team headed back to Elim for a quick overview of the schedule with Bruce and then headed to Central Baptist Church for the evening service. Centrals sanctuary looks like a traditional 17th century sanctuary, with beautiful carpentry work behind the pulpit that reaches over 60ft to the ceiling. The worship was mixed with contemporary and traditional music, but all was glorifying. The associate pastor Angus spoke on the “Rich man and Lazarus”. His attention to the rich man being in hell really spoke to me about what we are doing here in Scotland. Many people are gonna be in hell like the rich man apart from Christ, so our work over here should be more motivating with that in mind. After the service we went downstairs to have some tea, and introduced ourselves individually to the members of central.

We went to the city center to have a late meal before we headed home. Some of the team had a opportunity to purchase food for some of the homeless setting in the streets, and ate with them while showing the love of Christ. It truly was a example of what Christ did when He was on earth, loving the outcasts of society. This Lord’s day has been truly fruitful for the Scotland Mission Team of Fairview Baptist Church. Great time of worship, fellowship, good food, and beautiful scenery. One could not ask for a better day.

- Joe

25 June 2009

Dundee Update #5

Hiya everyone!

Let's see here...my last update was nearly 2 weeks ago...so much for an email every week! lol

I'm going to have to get my calendar out to recollect everything!

Alright, so Dad made it back to the States safely, which most of you will know by now anyways...lol

Generally, the past couple weeks has been a bit more chill...just been helping Bruce and Carolyn out still, whether helping in the house with the boys, or going into the office with Bruce to work on Attic admin stuff. Both is fun!

The Thursday (11 June) after Dad left, I got to go on home visits with Bruce, which was good! We went around to loads of different homes in the Hilltown- he does 52 visits every week normally!! We had a late start tho because of a meeting, so only got to do about half of the visits that afternoon, and it was still loads! It's so cool how Bruce is referred to by the kids as "the Attic Man!" and he is known by loads of kids just everywhere. There was one home that we went into, a little girl named Paige and her mum's name is Silvia...and Silvia is a Christian! That was refreshing! She told me a bit of her story- there is a church in the Hilltown called the Full Gospel Church, and there is a man there named Ewan Gurr who gives food to folks who don't have any, and he just really loves and is on fire for the Lord. So last year, Ewan was on a prayer walk on some of the streets here in Dundee, and he prayed specifically for the building that Silvia lived in (I hope I'm getting this story right...), but apparently Ewan was feeling quite discouraged, and wondered if these prayer walks were doing any good...and considered quitting them. Not 5 minutes after Ewan returned to the church that day, Silvia showed up asking for food, and through that she became a Christian! She and Paige also attend the Full Gospel Church now...and its just a great thing...God thing!

We also had Fiona (blind and deaf friend) for lunch on that Thursday, and she had her wee 8 month old grandson along. We had a good time with Fiona as well, and she is always fun to have around...her guide is also named Fiona, and she comes along to church with blind/deaf Fiona sometimes, so that's a good situation I think!

On Friday night, the 12th of June I went to a wedding with Iain, and it was a BLAST! It had a ceilidh dance after it, so I was totally loving it, and loved that I knew the gist of basically all of dances, meaning I'm basically a local. haha

Saturday we went down to Glasgow for a "family barbecue" at Iain's sister Heather and Woodsy's house. That was a fun day with what I later realized was all couples- Heather and Woodsy, Alison (Iain's other sis) and Jamie, Andy and Julie, Catia and Johnny, me and Iain (the only unmarrieds), and then the one single person- Lucy, Heather and Woodsy's 2 and a half year old little girl. lol It was a fun fun day!

On Sunday I got to sing on worship again at Elim, then after church a few people went around to Sarah McGregor's for lunch which was also good...just fun fellowship with some fellow Jesus-lovers! =)

Monday night was the last Attic of the term before school holidays. The night went really well, but the Attic is really really lacking for leaders- so please pray for that. A few of the leaders have sort of fallen away from God...(or rather, a better way of putting it...they are perhaps chasing after wordly things rather than Kingdom things.) Anyways, please pray for God to supply leaders, and to bring back the others if that's His will.

Wednesday was Clanz, the teen gathering at Elim, and we basically hang out with teenagers for a while, make smoothies or hot chocolate, have a talk, and split up into a few small groups for discussion time. It's totally different sort of small group than to what I'm used to back home- my girls in mine and Misty's small group at Fairview are generally Christians...they've been mostly raised in church, but the majority of these girls that I've talked to at Clanz are lost (or a few are very young Christians, and/or sort of "get it."), and so it's a totally different scene than at home!

Also on Wednesday, I went to Home Fellowship with Iain at the youth pastor's house, and there was some intense discussion- there is a bill being passed that will make it ILLEGAL for any organization (including the CHURCH, which is basically what is being targeted) to discriminate against hiring homosexuals in the church......WHAT?! I think there is also a bill that would make it illegal to speak that homosexuality is wrong- I could be getting my stories mixed up here, but I think that's what it was...meaning it would be illegal to tell someone that being gay is wrong, including preaching it. PLEASE PRAY! The Church of Scotland has also very recently allowed a gay man to remain a pastor in the church......................

Here's what the guy who helps lead the Home Fellowship, sent out in an email, which better explains it than I did...

The Parliamentary bill, which will effectively remove our right to express Biblical truth regarding homosexuality, is in an advanced stage - please pray that this will not go through and sign the petition below - it will only take a moment!

Another Parliamentary matter which is very important to pray about at the moment is the equality bill, which will force churches to offer equal employment opportunities to everyone (except in teaching positions or positions of leading worship services), extending current equality legislation to cover sexuality as well as race/disability. Basically they are trying to force us into following their secular agenda.

Note - these are not just government plans - they have support from all the major parties! So it is even more important that we pray and act if we want to continue to have freedom to live by Biblical standards!

PLEASE PRAY...(...and America is undoubtedly not far behind I would imagine...?)

Moving on... One day last week, perhaps Tuesday or Wednesday (all my days are running together), I went on home visits for the HUB with Sarah B, which also went well...although loads of people weren't home, or just weren't answering the door. One home of a brother and sister named Tre and Morgan was terrible...the house smelled of smoke and some stinch, and I started coughing pretty bad...I've had a cough, but it was getting worse due to their house... Then another house we went to, the house was quite nice and seemed pretty well off, and the lady who was the child's guardian seemed nice enough, but dressed in mostly black, and there was a a witch's hat hanging in the entrance hall...not sure if this was for costume or what, but it seemed a bit alarming...so I prayed for the house when we got into the car. =(

Then on this past Friday night, Iain and myself, Alison and Jamie went to St. Andrews for dinner at a posh restaurant called The Doll's House, and it was really yummy!! =) They wanted to take us to dinner, so that was really nice! Afterwards we walked around the town for a bit, Jamie got an ice cream, then I got a coffee, then we headed back for Dundee and watched a movie at Ali and Jamie's.

Then SATURDAY! Fun day- we took Hub kids to a theme park called M&D's, just outside of Glasgow. So much fun! The theme park wasn't totally amazing, but the kids had such a good time, which was GREAT. Some of the kids have been to some cool places, but some have maybe never left Dundee, so it was such a treat for them! We were split into groups, with 2 leaders to about 8 kids, with a total of 35 kids that went. Iain and I had a group of girls, and they were so great. One of our girls was Morgan, which I mentioned above, who lived in the not-so-nice house. I went on lots of rides with the girls, which of course I totally loved, and one of our girls named Stephanie is 12, but she is really little...looks about 7 or 8, so she nearly always had to have an adult with her on most of the rides that she could actually ride, so me and Iain took turns with her. She took my hand once when we were walking...and she is just a sweet kid...minus saying the F-word a couple of times on the Ferris Wheel....lol (Okay, not actually funny.)

Alright, so Sunday I lead worship for the 1st time ever on a Sunday morning for a church! It was so fun, and I think God was using me! (Ok, I know He was...cause it wasn't me on my own!) I was really nervous, moreso at the thought of it all, but once we practiced for a couple of hours before church, it wasn't so bad. It's more of the speaking stuff that actually makes me nervous, than the singing stuff...I'm fine with the singing part! lol Simon Kennedy played guitar, Steven on bass, and Gary on drums...and Lindsay on vocals. =) We did Revelation Song, Hallelujah (your love makes me sing!), Surrender (I'm giving you my heart, all that is within...), Worthy is the Lamb, and a rocked out version of In Christ Alone! It felt like God was just flowing right out of my mouth...loved it!

So today is Monday, and I had a totally chilled out day today! Bruce, Carolyn, and the boys went on a wee holiday this weekend in a caravan south of Glasgow, so I had the house to myself for the weekend, and today I just hung out in the house. I cleaned up few things in the house a bit this morning, after sleeping til 11, and later went out and sat in the sun and started reading "Irresistible Revolution" by Shane Claborne. (It's gonna be a good book!) The weather was amazing today, and it's still hot in the house just now! (Nobody really has air conditioner in the houses...it's not needed.) But today it was 75 degrees, and it's still about 62 right now...so quite warm for Dundee! I'm loving it tho, and I got some tan lines on my shoulders today, which is always a plus! =) Then tonight was the Hub, and Iain picked me up after work, we ate a frozen pizza at his house, then went to Hub. Last week was supposed to be the last one before summer, but they decided to go ahead with another one tonight, which I was totally happy about! So I'd say there were between 25 and 30 kids there tonight, and they had a bit more laid back night tonight- they showed pics from M&D's, then had a bit of extra game time playing volleyball over chairs in the big room- kids against leaders...I lost the winning point for us at the end! lol

Now I'm back at Bruce and Carolyn's, and they've just gone to bed, and I'm just away to mine in a few minutes...tomorrow I'm either going into the office in the afternoon with Bruce, or helping Carolyn out in the house- it's funny, as they sort of bid over me when decided who "gets me" the next day. haha

Alright, goodnight!
Thanks for reading the ramblings. =)

09 June 2009

Dundee Update #4

Hello all!

WOW. Even when you leave normal life in America and come live "normal" life in Scotland...it's STILL busy. lol So I am just now finding a few minutes to write out this email, and it has taken me two days to do it!

I'm not going to do a day to day summary, but rather a summary of the past 2 weeks- otherwise it would be more like an essay than an email. So I will give the highlights!

The American Team came over until this past Wednesday, besides my Dad who left this morning- and what a week! God is good... Our full team of 16 people was split up into two smaller teams, one working with the Attic Kids Club, and one with the Hub Kids Club. I was with the Hub team...so that is where my highlights come from. =)

The team arrived on the Sunday (24 May), and it was a full day of them almost literally hitting the ground and running (and on fumes I might add!). Monday was also a full day for the Hub team- we had a Fun Day during the day, as the kids were off of school on a bank holiday. I was a bit overwhelmed at first...the kids were not obeying or listening to anything I said, and were running around like a bunch of monkeys. lol It's funny now, but at the time, I was really struggling...however, Monday night through Friday night we had the Hub every evening, which was much much much better than the start on Monday! Every night began with the kids coming in at 7:30pm and hanging out in one big room where they could play games, or they could go into another room to do crafts, which we had a different one for every night. (One night we painted glasses, one night we drew pictures of things in God's Creation, one night we made bookmarks, one night we made salvation bracelets, etc.) Then the kids got a snack before going into the big room where the music was done by me and Adam Whipple, a drama or two was done, some tricks that gave visuals of the gospel by Darren, and then onto a God Spot also by Darren. The kids really enjoyed themselves in all of these things...especially dramas and magic and music with motions!

On the Tuesday night, I actually was not at the Hub as I went to a tribute service to Doug Haley, who most of you knew. =) He came over to Dundee for years and years being used for countless things for the Kingdom here in Dundee...and he's the reason I started coming over.

Wednesday night was a major highlight- long story short, God lead Misty to give her testimony at the Hub...and it was amazing. I was so proud of her, and God really really used her! He spoke right through her and to the kids... This event then lead to another major highlight... One little girl named Chantel who comes to the Hub, went up to Sarah Bertram at the end of Misty's talk, and said that what Misty had said was really sad. Sarah said, "It is sad, but it's okay now, because she has Jesus, and you can too!" (Or something along those lines.) Chantal looked back at Sarah and said, "But I do have him!" So come to find out...last year some of the kids from Hub were going to Teen Ranch, and at the last minute there was an extra space for Chantel to be able to go along as well. Chantel has a very bad home life like SO many of the kids in Lochee where the Hub is, but Sarah said hers is one of the worst she has seen. When Sarah and Catia went to pick up Chantel to take her to Teen Ranch, she had a crumpled up piece of paper in her hand that had John 3:16 on it, which she had received at Hub for the weekly memory verse, and she said that she could say the whole verse! Sarah and Catia knew that God was working in her life, and they prayed all week that God would move in Chantel at Teen Ranch. So on Wednesday, they found out that she HAD become a Christian a Teen Ranch that week!!! It was so great...and Sarah gets all teared up every time she tells the story because of how God moved in Chantel's life. I think she is only 12, so please be praying for her! Sarah and Catia went to visit her and take a her a Bible and Bible study, and her family aren't Christians...so it's going to be tough for this little one.

Another highlight was a girl named Stephanie, who is probably also about 10 or 12. She was asking a lot, of lot, of lot of questions after Misty's talk, and I think is very close to getting what this Jesus stuff is all about. =) (I was not in the conversations with Stephanie, so I don't have a lot of details...but God is at work in her, and that is such a big deal to have any of these kids responding to God!!)

I was amazed at these kids...generally the behavior was not too bad, but there were a few select kids, mostly boys, who were so hard...more like hard-hearted... It's hard to explain how they were, but basically LOST. They just don't know Jesus, and seem to rebel against it in ways.

One of our dramas of the week, we referred to as "The Screaming Girl," which was me...but probably better referred to as "Heaven's Gates." Basically a few people walk up to "Heaven's Gates" where the angel is standing, and it is announced by one of the angels that there has been a car accident, and they will soon be receiving some souls. As each person walks up the gates, the angel looks to see if their name is written in the Book of Life. Everyone's is, until the last girl, me, who then start to go ballistic saying, "WHAT DO YOU MEAN MY NAME IS NOT IN THERE?!?! .....WHY?!" And then as she starts to get violent, two angels carry her off SCREAMING and out two doors to hell. I literally screamed like murder....and at the end was shaking and just had to sit for a while and cry. That drama really gets to me...and just seeing how lost these kids are made it even more real...I think I did well by really trying to get into the part, but at the same time it wrenches the heart...

We also did a few other dramas...a variation of the Good Samaritan, the Everything drama, and a couple more I think.

During the day throughout the week, there were a few bits of free time where we did some sight-seeing, then we also got to go into a couple of primary schools to do assemblies! This was great, and the kids really seemed to enjoy it...even the teachers! Basically we can go in and say what we believe "as Christians" while presenting the gospel through songs, dramas, and a talk!

Also, this past Monday night, those of the Americans who were still here did the Attic, which was great!!

I think that summarizes the week pretty well....there is loads more that I could say...but I need to move on I think. =)

As it turns out, there has been a slight change in the plans of this summer...Attic Camps have been cancelled this year. (Did I already put this in my last update? I don't think I did...) Bruce and Carolyn have had SOOO much going on and they've been so stressed out, that they just need a "God-induced break" as I like to call it. There is also a leader-shortage, which makes it difficult to do camps...but the main thing is that they need a month off to just be a family and with God, and to get over the stresses of lately (for instance...their house has just been renovated, and the builders vanished and left their house in SHAMBLES)...so a break is much needed I think! I was pretty disappointed, but it seems that God is just taking me different directions this summer!

...Sunday at morning at church (Elim) I helped lead worship with Bruce...and it was amazing. It was not our hoarse voices (we were all at a big Christian Music Festival on Saturday called Frenzy, and everyone's voices were shot after screaming and talking so loud! lol) and it was not of our own doing...but it was Spirit-lead worship, and I don't think I've really experienced what I experienced Sunday morning before. I'm used to worship that is organized and we always know what chord changes will lead to the next song, etc, which is not a bad thing I guess, but today was just free worship...we sang unexpected songs, sang unplanned melodies and harmonies that just seemed to flow out of us...and it was just amazing...and it was GOD! That's basically all there is to say about it I guess...but I have been put on worship now for nearly every Sunday while I'm here...mostly singing with whoever is leading worship, but I'm also doing 3 Sundays of me actually leading...oh dear!

Last night was the Hub again, and it was really good! We had "Hub's Got Talent," and split the kids up into 6 teams to come up with a talent, then Dad, Catia, and I were the judges. Good fun! And the talents were funny too! Then after that, Dad did a talk about using our talents for God.

After the Hub last night, Iain and I went up to the Law, which is the highest point in Dundee. I just needed to be outdoors a little, and see the beauty of Scotland, which is all around, and literally up the street from Bruce and Carolyn's. I experienced something strange while I was up there though. As we looked out over God's Creation, from a mosque somewhere below, you could hear an amplified middle eastern sound of music in worship of a false god. It made me so sad, and I started to sing out a bit of worship to my JESUS over the city...however I'm losing my voice, so it was only for second, but it just made me sad. This city is right on the front line of a spiritual battle.

Anyways, so now I'm staying at Bruce and Carolyn's house, and yesterday I spent time with Dad before he left out this morning to head back home, and then today I've been helping Carolyn paint their bedroom. It's been busy, like I said, but so good, and I love living with these boys...Ewan was complaining that I've not been around for him to see...and yet I only moved in on Sunday night. haha He's like a little brother! (Although I do miss my real little brother back home like crazy!)

I think I have rambled enough, and although I've said so much, there is so much more I'm sure that I could have written. Please keep praying as I'm just trying to serve wherever I'm needed- even if its just painting walls. =) Also pray for Dad's safe return home as he is on a plane right now.

Thanks for listening/reading!
Jesus Bless!

03 June 2009

better late than never...

Hello Friends and Family, Brothers and Sisters,

Please forgive me for being so long in posting and update! Our schedule has been full since we arrived, to the point that i was becoming sleep deprived. With two separate teams working with 2 different children's ministries, every moment was precious. i was also able to provide much of our own transportation with church provided 15 passenger mini-buses; of which i am so thankful for!

God is so good! We all have been blessed beyond measure, and many seeds have been sown here. We have also been blessed with many opportunities to encourage and support the leaders and staffs of the childrens' ministries; which is so very important, since they have little and sometimes no support here locally.

We have also been blessed with unbelievably warm weather! This past week there were several days that broke temperature records for highs! In fact, i had never imagined seeing so many sunburnt Dundonians! Our team brought mostly cold weather clothing, and we ended up needing short trousers and t-shirts! It was a wonderful problem to have!!!

i could easily write a book on all that God has done here since our last trip, and all that He has done the past week. Here are a few pictures instead; there will be more...

with HIS love,

i can't post identifiable pictures of the children under British child protection laws...