Ready or Not Here He Comes!

“Therefore be very careful how you live, not as unwise but as wise, taking advantage of every opportunity, because the days are evil. For this reason do not be foolish, but be wise by understanding what the Lord’s will is. And do not get drunk with wine, which is debauchery, but be filled by the Spirit...” 

Ephesians 5:15-18

      Are you ready? I want to be ready - whether it is sooner or later, near or far. I saw a bumper sticker several years ago while waiting for a red light to turn. The cynicism was clearly obvious. It stated, “Look busy. Jesus is coming.” Hmm... I wondered who would be compelled to advertise such a mockery.

      Perhaps a burnt out Martha? Maybe a cynical pastor who couldn't get the flock to be engaged in meaningful ministry opportunities? Or maybe an unbelieving spouse who felt neglected? Whatever the season or hour, I want to be ready. I don't want to just look busy. I want to be busy doing His work. That means I need to lean in and listen! I don't want to be intoxicated with this world system but rather filled with His Spirit, understanding what His will is for this hour.
 
 
Bee Busy!  
      This is clearly my favorite time of year. The spring feasts of Passover, Unleavened Bread, and First Fruits are amazing reminders of our sacrificial lamb, Yeshua, who died and rose so that we could enter a new life of fruitfulness for His kingdom. Not just busy - but fruitful. The buzzing bees on my grapefruit blossoms remind me that production is clearly underway. I love how the colonies work together.
      Unfortunately, in the body, we sometimes have too many queen bees. We are very grateful that the Lord has raised up so many busy bees at Jesus Cares Ministries who are working for the benefit of the Master!
      We would like to share with our supporters some past events and upcoming opportunities that are buzzing our way:
 
Busy Bee” Linda

Free Store The winter holiday time brought a fabulous opportunity to join with other ministries and provide clothing and essentials to women and families in need. It was a great way to close out 2018. Many who were invited received blessings that invoked tears of gratitude as they realized how much the Lord cares for specific details of their lives. Our amazing supporters were responsible for an abundance of donations. (I felt like Moses and the collection of building materials for the tabernacle – no more!) Jackie Chamberlain was overseeing this outreach and she, along with her assistant, Linda Abell took the reins of this operation with great skill and expertise. The displays were beautiful and it touched many hearts in ways we do not have time to recount here! Many thanks to the many and varied busy bees who volunteered time and provided specific services for these families. Opportunities for individual ministry arose quite frequently during this event. The Lord yielded more than just beautiful dressed women, teens and children; some of them were also adorned with a greater measure of His love and grace.

Tom and a generous volunteer - Sarah

Full house – We had some temporary visitors grace our home at the beginning of the year and it was such a joy to hear the “buzzing” of voices and life that comes along with showing hospitality. One such visitor was Loredana from Romania. She was connected with us through Isabella from Elpis ministry. (This is a ministry that Jesus Cares Ministries helped launch in 2017.) We invited her to stay on after she and Isabella came to connect for a brief respite right after the first of the year. Loredana enjoyed the opportunity to grow in strength as she soaked up like a sponge all the learning experiences that surrounded her at Jesus Cares Ministries. She assisted us in practical and spiritual ways as she came alongside of a temporary resident we were housing. It was so hard to say goodbye as March was approaching. Along with productive times of prayer and Bible study, we also enjoyed moments of refreshment in the presence of the Lord through praise and worship. Loredana enjoyed playing the guitar and singing. We spoke about the empty nest in our last newsletter. It was as if my children were back in the home again! Two of my children loved to sing and play guitar and it was so fun to have that sweet enjoyment again. She is back in Romania now and praying about where the Lord would have her to be at this time in her life. The relationships developed here and the families with whom she connected while here, including our own brood, greatly encouraged her heart.
 
E.Q.U.I.P. - This is an acronym for excel, qualify, understand, instruct, and prepare. We have been working on a training opportunity that would equip the body to work and serve together to bring maturity. Our hope is to keep individuals from being tossed to and fro in this hour. Again, we can refer to the bees for this project! They work so well together and each one knows what part they have to contribute to keep things in order. Many pastors and leaders are exhausted. There must be a better way to do ministry. After over 35 years of ministry, we have seen the devastation of too many ministry leaders who experienced burn out or disappointments, and the effect that it had on their children's lives. We are not meant to just survive but to thrive. We held a conference in March for the women who are on our training team and invited others who are interested in ministry as well. It was an amazing time of connecting, not just with each other, but with God's heart for the broken. We need to reach the broken and wounded and we don't always know how to do that well. The weekend left us a little more equipped and a little more confident in our callings. The foundation text for the weekend was II Peter 1:1-11. Take some time to consider your calling.
 
Therefore, brothers and sisters, make every effort to be sure of your calling and election. For by doing this you will never stumble into sin.” - II Peter 1:10

Mother's Day LuncheonAs many of you know, we love to come alongside those who are reaching out into the community. The Lord has called us to honor others in their work and offer support and encouragement to the many-membered body. Ministry is not for sissies! We need each other. May Dobbins is the founder of Single Moms That Rock. She was with us many years ago as a 15 year old unwed mother. She knows firsthand the difficulties of navigating single motherhood and her ministry is reaching out to those that need a hand up! She is married and serving in a local fellowship with her husband and pastor, Preston. We are delighted to join with her as she presents a Mother's Day Luncheon for single moms in the community. Saturday, May 11th from 11:30am – 2pm. Lunch and childcare will be provided. They will be encouraging hearts with an uplifting message. If you or someone you know is a single mom who would like to attend, please registerat:
singlemomsthatrock.com/events  (Space is limited.)
 
 
Freedom House
Hope for Addiction, founded by Liz Beck, is a beautiful, bustling ministry sharing a message of freedom along with practical and spiritual mentoring to those formerly bound in addiction. After years of crying out to God for a home for their women clients, they have finally seen that vision come to fruition. Jesus Cares Ministries is partnering with them to provide Children: Our Heritage. Three members of our team will be offering our parenting course along with some extended services to the women housed at Freedom House. We began our training in April.
 
 
The Property in Cherry, Arizona

Work day at Cherry, Arizona Betty and Bud Miller are seasoned ministers of the gospel that co-founded Christ Unlimited Ministries (bibleresources.org). Their heart is to finish well and reach this generation through podcast teachings that cover topics such as suicide, fornication, prayer, how to study the bible, and more.

      Many individuals have come to their website and found freedom from completing suicide because of the information they gleaned. They have property in Cherry, Arizona with a chapel and some small cabins. Bud and Betty have used this facility to bring restoration into the lives of those that they have served over the years. Their vision for seeing lives renewed and refreshed is similar to the vision of Jesus Cares. We would love to see this place renovated and up and running for His kingdom again! It is a beautiful place to hold small group retreats but it needs some TLC. Betty will be organizing a work day and if you have a heart to see this ministry blessed and useful for His glory, come and get your hands dirty. The work day is Memorial Day, May 27th. We will culminate the day in worship and prayer! Call if you are interested in offering services or materials of any kind. Painting, flooring, cleaning, and yard work are just some of what is needed to help this beautiful resource become available to the body of Christ on a continual basis. Any busy bees willing to do some hard work? Contact Doreen @ 480 831 1737

 
 
Duane & Adrienne Wilson and Family

Weekly Rehab Outreaches - As individuals go through rehab, they need some encouragement and strength for the journey. Duane Wilson is pastoring the flock at The Center at Val Vista every Sunday at 10 am. Jackie and Jeff Chamberlain are pastoring at Wellspring Therapy Center right down the street at 10:30am along with our assistant, Linda.
 
 
Jeff  Jackie and Linda at Wellsprings 
What a joy to see what God is doing spiritually to rejuvenate and provide spiritual therapy for the weary through these amazing servants each week. If you are interested in helping please contact us @ 480 831 1737. There is plenty of ministry opportunities to go around.

In Closing: Please remember, as we see all the beauty and new life of spring time, that His death and resurrection provided a way for us to be useful and fruitful for Him! Like the wise virgins, get ready for His return. Don't just look busy. Find out where He is working around you and join Him! Pray for us as we enter into this busy springtime season. We are anticipating new life and fruit that will remain for His glory!

               Thank you for all you do to partner with us as we fulfill His call to rebuild, repair, and restore (Isaiah 58:12). Because of your faithfulness we can be busy for the King and let the community around us know that...