Dear Family and Friends,
It’s spring! It seemed like it was a long time coming this year, or maybe I’m the one who is just recognizing it. I planted zinnias the other day and then we had rain—very helpful when God decides to water the plants. I check them every morning and the plants look like they are smiling the way they stand up straight and put forth their flowers. Isn’t that the way God is? He plants us in the place He wants us, provides for us and enjoys the flowers and fruit we produce. Unlike my zinnias that cannot move from where they are planted, we sometimes “unplant” ourselves and move; sometimes we reject the people and things God puts in our path to nurture us; sometimes we refuse to do the things that will produce fruit. Wouldn’t it be great if we would bloom where we are planted instead of so often thinking that we have a better way to do things? May we “be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither: and in whatever he does, he prospers.” Psalm 1:3
God keeps stretching us. Bob is now the morning receptionist. He brings work to the front desk. Hopefully the phones will let him get things done for the upcoming Boot Camp. My office is close by so he has a space where he can leave things he’s working on so he doesn’t have to carry them back and forth all the time. One of the things he has collated at the front desk are the decision cards and salvation helps that are used when kids go forward for counseling at the evening rallies at Boot Camp. As counselors, the forms are handy to use and as leaders, we like to see the things our kids are concerned about. Another favorite job is stringing pig and piglet signs. Each day the staff designated as Miss Piggy inspects eating sites, Big Top seating areas and tent sites as well as individual tents. The team with the messiest tent site (the lowest score) gets to wear an “I live like a pig” sign and clean the bathrooms during their free time. The team with the cleanest tent site gets to swim in the pool during their free time. Bob also has things to get ready for our overseas bases and Boot Camps. Some things he can easily transport to the front desk and others need to be done in the literature warehouse where there are several tables set up that make collating easier. While the work he does is not visible to most, we would be unhappy if we did not have the fruit of his labors to use with our summer teams.
As usual, Bob continues to sing. The most recent concert was Mozart’s Requiem, held at our local church. With 52 singers and an orchestra, over 480 people enjoyed the concert. Singers from all over Brevard County came together for rehearsals and the performance. I thought I was there just to listen, but got volunteered to help pass out programs. It’s always fun to greet people who come to the concerts, many of whom I know or recognize from going to concerts over the years.
I continue to try to keep caught up in my part of the Finance Department. One of my responsibilities is to keep track of the mortgages. Teen Missions, through Third World Missions, has loaned funds to churches and uses the interest paid on those loans to help cover the costs of our overseas bases and Boot Camps. Tom, our resident computer genius, is writing a program to help with the processing of payments and the reports that are necessary. So far we have a “Beta” version that I am playing with—mostly inputting information at this point so all the previous records can be transferred into the new program. It’s a lot of work, but the new program will be good to have as the old program we were using cannot handle the volume that we now have.
One of my spring activities for the last eight years has been working at Spring Praise Fest, a music celebration at Riverfront Park in Cocoa Village. The event is sponsored (and was started) by our local church and showcases praise bands from a number of churches in Brevard County. We guesstimate that more than 6,000 people come over the course of the day. I’ve been helping to set up for years—if you get there early, you can find a parking place nearby! This year, I folded dozens of T-shirts, set up the church table and was responsible for the Prayer Tent with another friend. God directed people with many different needs to the Prayer Tent. It was a privilege to pray for them. And then there was cleanup to do—a long and tiring day, but very satisfying.
And now to the summer news—Bob and I are taking a group of Preteens to Malawi, “the warm heart of Africa.” We have been hearing about Malawi and our staff there for years and now we get to see it firsthand and meet people who, up to this point, have simply been names but will now be people we know. Our project will be to plant fruit trees at some of our AIDS Orphans Rescue Units. We may also get to help hand out clothes that were shipped over in a container. While we didn’t actually pack clothes in the container, we saw that being done and prayed over it before it began its long journey from Florida to Malawi. Our kids will have the opportunity to play with the orphans we will be helping and share God’s love with them. We covet your prayers as we work with our other leaders and the kids God has given us to minister to this summer. Please pray for team unity, safety in travel, health (no malaria) and effectiveness in our witness. We’ll have lots to share in our next letter!
We are thankful for all of you who have supported us over the years with your prayers and friendship and financial contributions. We couldn’t be here serving the Lord with Teen Missions without you backing us up.Thank you.
Servants in Christ,
Bob and Paula Yost
955 Butia St.
Merritt Island, FL 32953