Atlanta Mission Update (Selph)

Update from April 2017

Neighborhood – a friend of ours here in Atlanta offered to bring full Easter dinners on the Saturday prior and go with us to distribute to needy families with whom we are building relationships in our neighborhood. What a joy to take those 15 rotisserie chickens and all the trimmings (those Costco pies are gigantic!), including disposable utensils, to our neighbors and share our love with them. To stand in these homes where 12+ can live in one house, and share such good things, and pray together, brought great joy to our friends and also to us. Trust is building right along in our neighborhood with efforts like these. And with every effort, our own love for these beautiful people grows. Now we are entering into deeper levels of personal ministry in several family situations right in our own neighborhood. We were also able to take a full meal to a neighbor family who had a 30-yr-old son suddenly die in the night of a seizure, and prayed with them. With many here, complications and brokenness abound. Please pray.

Also, Cathi has begun meeting with several high school girls from down the street just to read the Bible with them. She’ll go get them and bring to our house after school once a week. We have also planned a fire circle on our front lawn for early May when the Maozes are to be with us. We’ll try to get a bunch of our neighbors to come for desserts and discussion, especially to give Baruch a platform to share what the power of Christ has done in his life. Please pray.

City of Refuge Shelter – I taught the Saturday ladies’ Bible study in April (on the arrest, trial, and crucifixion of our Lord), but we did not get riders to come to church with us on the van though we drove to CoR each Lord’s Day. With the temporariness of the residents at CoR, we have gone through several such times of “feast or famine.” The last Lord’s Day of April we had a young mother and her sweet twin girls (1 year old) ride the van, and without a nursery at church (care begins when a child can walk), Cathi and I held the girls the entire service so mom could hear the Word of God. We’ll keep inviting on Fridays and Saturdays until God gives us new folks at COR to come along with us to His worship on the Lord’s Day.

The Lord has kept us encouraged by providing folks from other venues of our outreach when one venue is at a low point. This seems to be part and parcel for us, to only get people for a short time until their circumstances change. Our Lord alone knows what deeper impact the Gospel will have down the road on the many, which we may only hear about one day in heaven.

Good News Kids Clubs – Our two weekly Bible clubs have come to completion for the semester. We taught about 40 children for 11 weeks through the major stories of Jesus’ life and ministry. We are evaluating these locations and considering if there would be other areas (public schools) where Cathi and I should try to start an additional Good News Club in the fall. We can do this on public school grounds as an after-school program! Please pray with us on this. Please pray for us as we try to recruit new members for our team to put on these clubs. We are looking primarily among our church family for this help.

Cornerstone Church – Below, another Sunday lunch group last Lord’s Day. Some are members of Cornerstone, some are not. Some are homeless, some are not. Some are, married, some are not. All are beautiful believers making their way to heaven with joy in Jesus.

Washington Park Gym – we continue to often have Gospel discussions during morning workouts at the gym. Surprisingly, it’s not hard to engage folks there with spiritual things while we try to keep these aging bodies somewhat healthy. What a steep hill to climb!

Discipleship – we continue to meet with two different couples and with several individuals regularly. One of the couples was married this month. So…there we are dancing at the reception with 100 African Americans! I prefer to interpret their smiles that they’re impressed with our smooth moves on the dance floor. They sure seem entertained.

Night Clubs – We are also in process to recruit members for this team to go with us in this work. Again, we are looking primarily within our church family to gather fellow servants. Please pray for us in this.

I was asked to give the devotion one morning last week for Cru Atlanta (Campus Crusade workers), which I did on the subject of prayer. These workers from all over the metro-Atlanta area meet twice a year for fellowship, etc. The emphasis for this meeting was Cru’s worldwide call to prayer for the work of Christ.

Raising Expectations – Below is a picture of a high school girl (right) when she told her mother (striped shirt) that she just learned of her full tuition scholarship to Spelman College here for next year. It’s worth more than $100,000 over four years. The van on the right is ours, having carried a bunch of high schoolers to Spelman College for a panel discussion about the lives of young people who live on Atlanta’s west side. We gladly take up such opportunities to build relationships with them and their families. Who knows what God may do in days to come?!

Thank you again for your loving support of us through prayer. Please pray that our passion for the lost will be unabated as time and age march on, and, of course, for the glory of our great God in the salvation of so many around us blinded and deafened by sin’s curse.

Bob and Cathi Selph
Urban Atlanta