DEVOTION TO THE WORD OF GOD
Ezra 7:10 “For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the Lord, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.”
- 2016 Annual Review
We started the year 2016 with Ezra 7:10. Like Ezra we made a decision to devote ourselves to studying, practicing and teaching the word of God. We continued to study Luke’s Gospel which we had started in 2014. In June, M. Moses & M. Mary attended the World Mission Report in Korea. M. Moses got so much inspired by the Book of Deuteronomy that on his return he decided to study it again with Trenton UBF members from chapter 1 to chapter 34 and he delivered Sunday messages on them. Deuteronomy Bible studies opened our eyes to view the meaning of the Ten Commandments and God’s laws newly. Before his death, Moses gathered all the Israelites and taught the word of God. He commanded parents to teach to their children, Levites to read the Book at the Feast of Tabernacles every seventh year, and kings to make a copy, and read and obey it all the days of their life. We began to sense the importance of teaching the Bible to our and to the next generation. We also began to sense that in the future the most wanted people shall be Bible teachers. Through the Deuteronomy Bible studies, God gave M. Moses a vision to study the whole Bible from Genesis to Revelation and raise Bible teachers who can handle the word of God correctly. In November, we held Genesis Bible academy in three campuses. We studied Genesis chapter 1 through 11. The attendees accepted God, the Creator, throwing away the evolution theory. In December, we decided to have an intensive Bible study conference. We chose the two books, Genesis, the first book, and Revelation, the last one with the title, “I am the Alpha and the Omega.” Through studying the two books, we could see the beginning and the end. All the attendees were quenched with the water of life that flew from the throne of God.
We went to the three campuses each week, prayed and looked for Bible students. Our main campus is The College of New Jersey (TCNJ), but we could not find any Bible student there. However, God worked at Rutgers and Mercer County Community College (MCCC). At Rutgers, Lissette join our Bible study. Then she invited Germane. Both of them attended the Easter Bible conference. Later, Damarys joined the Bible studies. She is a missionary’s kid and was seeking God earnestly. Through Bible studies, she restored her spiritual relationship with God and began to have life direction as a Bible teacher and a missionary in the future. Out of her joy she serves her friends with the word of God.
M. Heesoo and M. Mary had weekly prayer meeting at MCCC with Petra and Cameron. God blessed their prayer and turned it to group Bible studies. Students began to join one by one: Jeff, Diane, Katie, Ashley, Arthur, Rafael, and Brandon. Arthur and Rafael wanted to study more. So another group Bible study was held. They were most faithful and zealous to the end. They attended the Genesis & Revelation Bible study conference at the end of the year.
God was also working among the scattered Bible students. Chris and Randa, the TCNJ graduates continued Bible studies though Skype. Angelo who went to Texas is leading group Bible studies with his students. During the Princeton Reunion, Chris Willis and Steve Frias came to study the Bible. Kwesi and his wife Rebecca visited us before Christmas and studied the Bible. We learned that the scattered seeds are growing and our labor in the Lord is not in vain.
In Trenton UBF, there are 5 second gens. One is working, three are college students and one is in high school. They are all active members. The three college students faithfully join the Friday testimony meeting and share their testimonies. All the 2nd gens make worship environments and serve it with music. M. Samuel leads daily family prayer meeting with his three children. M. Moses also leads daily family Bible reading and prayer meeting at night. Through the daily family meetings, God makes love relationship between parents and children stronger and the children learn faith of prayer. The three college students delivered gracious messages during the Easter Bible conference and Sunday worship services. Little Mary, the Loveliest had many ups and downs due to her puberty period, but by God’s grace, she is getting stable.
This year, it was found that M. Aromi had a stomach cancer. We struggled to view the situation from God’s point of view; God’s goodness and providence. Her family prayed for her with one heart, and the whole church prayed and supported her as well. She held the word of God given to her, “Arise and shine.” Her whole stomach was removed and she got the 2nd round of chemotherapy out of three. It is God’s miracle that she is still alive even without her stomach. We pray that she may be free from the cancer and glorify God through her new life.
At the beginning of the year, M. Mary wanted to go to a theology school because only a few students came to study the Bible though she was a full-time Bible teacher. She felt that she was wasting her time. God’s servants counselled her to study the whole Bible instead. After coming back from the world mission report in Korea, she accepted God’s direction and studied the whole Bible from Genesis to Revelation. She began to know God’s heart and will. She made a Bible teaching note and went to the three campuses. To her surprise, God began to bring students to her one by one. Gradually she was busy with serving God’s flock of sheep with the word of God. She gives thanks to God for leading her to the best direction.
We thank God for giving us words of life from the throne of God: Luke’s Gospel, Deuteronomy, Genesis, and Revelation. We thank God for the work of the Holy Spirit among the Bible students and our 2nd gens. We also thank God for healing M. Aromi, for leading M. Mary to the best way, for answering all our prayers, and for giving us vision to study the whole Bible and to raise Bible teachers who can teach the whole Bible.
- 2017 Vision & Strategy
When we review last year, we studied the Bible with passion, but did not pray as much as we should. It seems that we tried to go ahead of the Holy Spirit and did not depend on Him fully and wholeheartedly. The reason was that we had weak faith in prayer. Through the family prayer meetings, we experienced prayer answers. Though we prayed with doubt, God answered our prayers and made us shameful. We repent of our doubt especially about prayer. We sense that God wants us to hold Acts 6:4 this year, “…and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.” The apostles teach us that our focus as God’s servants should be on prayer and God’s word. So this year, we will pay attention to prayer and the ministry of the word. We will challenge 50 one to one Bible studies again and will hold seasonal intensive Bible academies.
- To pay attention to prayer and the ministry of the word
- 50 OTO and 30 SWSA
- To study the five Books of Moses
- M. Aromi to be fully healed