Breaking through the Spiritual Darkness!

Europe, once the custodian of the gospel of Jesus Christ, has been actively rejecting the truth of God’s Word for centuries.  The continent is now essentially beyond unbelief and now Christophobic.  Only 21% of the population considers faith in Christ to be relevant with less even less attending worship weekly.  To make matters worst, clergy across the continent generally do not believe in the Resurrection nor the virgin birth of Christ.  Europe’s rise and fall has been clearly tied to the health of the church, but more importantly to the faith of its people in Jesus Christ’s love and sacrifice for them.

Into this darkness, AIA’s Global Sports will be sending four projects that will be sharing the love and relevance of God’s message of salvation in:

The key is meeting people at their point of need and showing them uncommon love and compassion.  The mission is clear, and millions of lives are a stake for eternity, as are countless generations to come.  How can we as individuals make a difference?

Ask the Lord if you know anyone who would have an interest in being a part of these projects through prayer, finances, or volunteering with the project.  If so, forward this posting.  Thank you so much for your partnership with us and AIA’s Global Sports.

A Life Changing Decision!

Obviously we go to fulfill the Great Commission because God wants everyone to know Him and because we want to share God’s love, and for many more reasons.  So we are serving God to change lives, but did you ever consider how a mission trip would change the lives of those who go?  Take a look at some examples.

An athlete:  “After a summer of AIA Baseball, I came back to my campus and started AIA here.  Every week I lead a Bible study for all the athletes in my department.  During the week I meet with other athletes for one-on-one discipleship”

A parent:  “I help coach my sons’ soccer teams and work to be a Christ-like influence to the kids and parents of the team.”

In a community:  “I am involved in AIA, and also go around speaking at different high school huddle groups to share my testimony and encourage them.”

God uses these projects to change everyone’s lives!  Have you ever asked the Lord how you could be a part of a short-term project like AIA’s?  Take a look.

How has God changed your life through a mission project?  Share your experience!

God’s Not-so-secret Weapon in Sports

Four years ago a Muslim basketball player became a Christian during an AIA  tournament held in Africa.  In 2009, by God’s grace, he attended AIA’s first International Basketball Coaches’ Academy held at our WTRC in Xenia, OH.  This month he will attend his third academy!  Today, he is the national coach for his West African country, which is predominately Muslim.  Through this academy and other AIA training, he has developed his skills as a basketball coach and life coach.  As a part of his national program, he leads a Bible study attended by several players.  Praise God for all He is accomplishing through young men just like him all over the world.

As of this posting, approximately 40 coaches are attending this year’s academy which will focus on developing their coaching skills and their spiritual life for two weeks.  Some are Muslim, and they are fully aware of what the academy is about; however, they have seen coaches who have attended the academy realize a certain level of success when they return to their respective homelands.

Please pray for openness to the truth of Jesus, for those who do not know Him to personally surrender their lives to Him, and for the impact they will have on universities around the world.

Learn more at the Annual International Coaches Academy

The Love of God at Work!

One of the greatest parts of AIA’s global projects is how many ways God’s love can be shown.  During our East Africa 2011 project, His love was demonstrated in both words and actions.  You might say God’s love materialized in a “concrete” form with the construction of a basketball court.

Now community, ministry, and sports activities that emphasize Christ will be available year round at this facility.  Everyone in the area sees this as a gift that will greatly help in the development of their youth.

AIA also shared God’s love by sharing His word using the I’ve Got the Whole Bible in My Heart curriculum at the Soweto Academy.  A week-long Bible overview was given to over 400 children.  Each student was given his or her own copy of an NIV Bible.  It was exciting that some of the children prayed to receive Christ as their Savior in the middle of a class period.

We give God the credit for all this project accomplished.  It was a very challenging project, but became a huge answer to prayer for all those involved with the Global Team and Soweto Academy.

Please continue to pray for everyone involved in this ministry in Kenya and Rwanda.  Karen and I are looking forward to being involved in helping put together projects like this one in 2012.

Two Days in September

On September 28th and 29th the AIA US Global Team met to come before the Lord and trust Him to reveal our role in fulfilling His Great Commission next year.  These two days were the genesis of what the Lord will accomplish in 2012 through our ministry.  Our team’s major goals in fielding projects around the world are to:

  • pioneer in countries where little or no ministry exists
  • aid international staff with established ministries

One example from last year’s planning was the East Africa project in Kenya and Rwanda.  By God’s grace, 1,200 people were exposed to the Gospel, 80 people committed their lives to Christ and 33 AIA volunteers committed to disciple others with help from AIA staff.

As AIA staff, we will help with project planning, development, and fulfillment; however, God works primarily through our volunteers, who become the face of Jesus Christ in this life-changing ministry.  Your partnership with us will help to provide these volunteers with unprecedented opportunities to be ambassadors for Christ. We, together with you, will help facilitate this ministry.   Thank you for being partners with us in sharing the gospel around the world!

Please pray for:

  • the Lord’s lead in developing our 2012 projects
  • our volunteers as the Lord prepares them
  • project resources
  • AIA staff as they develop each project
  • Rick and Karen to complete our support team (our status)