It is the last week of the school year! This week is packed with end of the year (and 55th anniversary) events and wrapping up classes. (See attached for a list of the events this week.) The end of the year is always bittersweet: sad because some students will be leaving for good and most of the rest for the summer and exciting because we get to celebrate the faithfulness of those who completed a program (12 students will receive a degree or certificate this year). It is also sweet because we finally get some rest! After a lot of 50-60-70 hour weeks the summer is a nice respite, with reduced office hours, vacation, and a slower pace.
The last three weeks has been very painful as three students have left the school because of unrepentant sin issues. We usually lose one to two students in the Spring semester this way but we’ve never lost three students right before the end of the year (when we are supposed to be celebrating the success of the faithful). Please pray for IBC over the next few days that we can move on from the loss of these three beloved students and truly rejoice at the faithfulness of so many. Pray also for these three students that have currently abandoned their pursuit of godliness.
On Easter Sunday we had 28 people at our home as we dedicated our new church plant! Since August have been hosting a group of students that want to plant a cell church (the church model that is the closest approximation to the early/first century church model). The cell church model is built on relationships (not events) and is far more efficient in an impoverished environment than a building-centered model. Cell churches are thriving in other parts of the world (Africa, Asia–the largest church in the world is a cell church) but not in the United States. My opinion is that it is the model that the missionaries SHOULD have brought to Native peoples; this opinion is shared by an increasing number of Native IBC students. Every Sunday night we gather from 5 until after 10PM for food, fellowship, teaching, and prayer (Acts 2:42). Email me if you would like more info on the cell church planting; I have an overview document I would be glad to send you. Please pray that the Lord would bless this fledgling little church and for Wilford Bilagody, our Bachelor of Biblical Studies graduate, who intends to plant a cell on the Navajo reservation this summer.
Thank you for your faithful prayers and financial support! We only serve here because of the people who stand with us!
Jason and family