Did you Know?
- Training of African church leaders is one of the most fruitful
types of short term missions in the world!
- Have you ever thought about how many great leaders in the Bible
traveled as part of their mission? Jesus, Paul, Amos, Jonah, and
Peter to name a few!
- Some of the African churches with the most syncretism are ones
started by western missionaries!
- There are entire congregations which do not have Bibles.
- There are virtually little or no discipleship materials written
or available to a large majority of indigenous pastors.
- Many pastors we work with have never attended a formal seminary.
Some of them do not own Bibles.
- Jehovah Witnesses are more active in passing out their version
of the Bible than Protestants are in giving out Bibles.
- The Great Commission is more than just telling the Good News of
Salvation to those who have never heard! It is "discipleship, and
teaching everything that the Lord has commanded us." Matt. 28:19-22!
Thank you to our board members at Equip Disciples for their counsel,
support, and encouragement throughout the years! Joe
Friberg- Pres. and Treasurer; Jennifer Carson- Vice Pres.; Tammie
Friberg- Sec.; and members: Brad Scott; Mark Carson; Cheryl Allovio;
Jeff Caffey; and Phyllis Hardy.|
Visit our Website
New resources under
- HIV/AIDS booklet has been posted
in English and Swahili
- Theological Discipleship manual in English
has been updated
*** Benefiting Mission Arlington and Equip
This Sunday, May 2, 2010 !
Location: River Legacy Park, Elm Grove Pavilion
703 NW Green Oaks Boulevard, Arlington, TX,
Walk Up Registration:
*Bring one new or gently used Bible for Mission
*and a $15 fee for individuals and $25 for a family.
T-Shirts first come, first serve.
Thank You to Our Sponsors!
2224-H W. Park Row
Arlington, TX 76013
607 W. Park Row
Arlington, TX 76010
Register on-line at:
../Bike4Bibles or, we have walk
up registration. You may purchase a Bible to give to Mission Arlington
at the park. Sponsor sheets available to raise funds for more Bibles.
We will be selling some original Chinese paintings by artist, Mimi
and homemade organic soap by Simple Pleasures.
All proceeds go toward purchasing Bibles to distribute in Equip
Disciples summer discipleship conferences in Rwanda, DR Congo, and Kenya
this year. Our goal is 700 Bibles, or $7,000.
- Pray for the 5 conferences we will be leading this June and July in
Rwanda, DR Congo, and Kenya.
- Pray for our team members.
- Pray for God to equip us, guide us, and prepare us for the many
hours of teaching we will do.
- Pray for God's spiritual and physical protection as we travel and
work. And for our families back home.
- Pray for God to give us insight into the spiritual needs of those
who come, and how to answer cultural and doctrinal questions.
- Pray for God to prepare those who are going to attend:
- Pray for the strengthening of the church so that it can stand
against false teachings, persecution, discouragement, and false
- Pray for the movement of God's people in Africa into the work of
missions and church planting.
- Pray for our partners: Alfred, Amos, Martin, Dieudonne, Kenneth,
Charles, Timothy, and Alan.
- Pray for the former youth soldiers with whom we will be teaching in
Congo this summer.
- Pray for our plans to start a self-sustaining business for the youth
- Pray for our collegue, Nathan, who is right now teaching our
discipleship materials in India to indigenous pastors at a Bible
- Pray for Lauren and Ben as they are translating our materials into
- Pray for Mimi as she is working on drawings for a Chinese version of
our teaching materials.
Thank you for your support and on-going prayers for us. We are truly
grateful. This year's trips will be a challenge to us as we are doing five 3
day intensive conferences in a row, in 3 different countries. Pray for
our strength, our voices, our health, our team members, and for the absolute
guidance and wisdom of the Spirit in all things. There is not a day that
passes that we are not aware of the prayers you all offer on our behalf. We
literally feel the undergirding and the incredible work of the Spirit. He
gives us what we need for each day and for each moment. May God bless
BikeRunWalk4Bibles event is to be held this Sunday, May 2 to raise funds for Bibles
to be distributed in Africa. It is going to be a pleasant evening- looks
like the rain is coming beforehand to cool it all off for us! We will
have some painting for sale by our friend, Mimi Cheung. And also some
homemade organic soaps. All proceeds will go to support our missions this
summer. We want to thank our sponsors: David's Barbeque, Don Wang, and Max
We are still in need of a good PR person to help us with registration for
our conferences in Africa and general ministry helper. Please contact
you are interested.
Equip Disciples started a youth Bible study for grades 8-12 on Friday
nights focusing on in-depth study of the book of Philippians and basic
theology. Youth are welcome. Contact
Mimi Cheung is working on Illustrations for an upcoming Chinese version
of Theological Discipleship.
Lauren and Ben Escoto are working on a Spanish translation of Theological
Consider giving a one-time gift, or sign up to give automatically each
*We have a special gift of
appreciation for donations of $100
or more--see details below!
Equip Disciples Printshop / Bookstore in Nairobi,
To provide printing and distribution of materials in East Africa.
Café for Former Child Soldiers in DR Congo
To provide self-sustaining support for ex-child soldiers' training and
school fees and daily needs. $1350 needed.
Thank You for your Support!
Supplies Last, we will send everyone who donates $100 or more to Equip
Disciples, a bar of homemade organic hand soap made from goats milk and
essential oils. This soap was
donated by a friend who makes it, and is very good for your skin.
Equip Disciples is a 501(c)(3) non-profit ministry.
All donations are tax-deductable.
Appearing to FAIL
by Tammie Friberg
Failure...not a very positive word in a high achievement
and materialistic world. But it is something we all face at some time in
our lives...whether it be due to neglect, sin, wrong methods, or just
This article is not about the failures that come from
moral impurity, sins, or neglect. And it is not even about using the
wrong methods or ideas....as I have heard youth say to one another's
attempts at building or repairing something ("fail" or "That was an epic
Feelings of failure may also occur when we are
absolutely working hard and doing our very best for God, and in the
world's eyes or in our own perception, we may appear to fail.
Maybe we are really failing...or maybe what we determine as failure is
really something else that can somehow be used for the building of the
body of Christ and the glory of God.
Think about it for a moment...so many of God's great
leaders experienced failure in the eyes of the world. Now, you may be
saying, "Yes, I know. But...(fill in the blank)" So let's take a
moment and look at what the Bible says about success and failure.
Hebrews 11:36-40 describes believers who experienced mockings,
scourgings, bonds, and imprisonment. They were stoned, sawed in two,
died by the sword, wandered about in sheepskins, goatskins, destitute,
afflicted, and mistreated. They wandered in deserts, mountains, caves,
and holes in the ground. Talk about failure! My son would
probably say epic failure.
Paul reminds us that we are
pressured, crushed, perplexed, persecuted, struck down...always carrying
the death of Jesus in our body. He does not say we will go about
in the successes of numbers, popularity, status, or importance. All of
these things are so that as we carry the death of Jesus in our body, the
life of Jesus may also be revealed in us! We are always to be given over
to death to bring others to light. Paul used terms like labor, hardship,
trials, all in relation to his ministry. It is about God's glory and
building the Kingdom, not about us. And it has more to do with us not
changing the message and calling we have received from God just because
we seem to fail in the world's eyes. We must be careful not to look at
the wrong clues to determine God's will for us!
Consider what Paul said in 1 Cor. 4:9-13. "For I
think God has displayed us, the apostles, in last place, like men
condemned to die: we have become a spectacle to the world and to angels
and to men. We are fools for Christ, but you are wise in Christ! We are
weak, but you are strong! You are distinguished, but we are dishonored!
Up to the present hour we are both hungry and thirsty; we are poorly
clothed, roughly treated, homeless; we labor, working with our own
hands. When we are reviled, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure
it; when we are slandered, we entreat. We are, even now, like the
world's garbage, like the filth of all things." What if Paul had the
worldly pressure to appear successful, and yet all of these things
happened to him! It seems he might be tempted to water down the message
or just please people. But note that he was always concerned about
the maturity of the flock, even when he himself appeared to fail the
test- 2 Cor. 13:9. In fact, he seemed to say that appearing to fail was
just part of building up the body to maturity. After all, how can we
pour our lives into true discipleship and appear to be successful in a
world that looks for numbers, wealth, and popularity? Paul said, "We
rejoice when we are weak and you are strong" (2 Cor. 13:9).
Maybe it says something about our perception of things.
I guess what I am saying is that just because we seem to fail, we may be
doing the right things. We need to evaluate what we are doing and
where God is leading, and also evaluate our methods. But, we must
not give up what God has placed on our hearts just because it seems to
fail in the world's eyes. The key is to be steadfast, always abounding
in the work of the Lord.
I have thought often in my own life, how I have spent so
much time studying the Word of God to be a good teacher. I went to
seminary, taking classes for 5 years and soaking up all I could. I
taught in many Bible studies. But sometimes only a few people would show
up for a Bible study. I labored for years like this, and sometimes being
so discouraged. And I would see others who did very little study, but
had huge numbers of people.
I even had very discouraging things said to me. On
one occasion, I was with a group of women and one of them said "Tammie,
your Bibles studies are really good. But, this other study over
here is absolutely the best." It was the start of a new Bible study
year. I can say all the women in that group were not encouraged to come
to my study! I also had someone say to me, "You are not a leader,
look at the few numbers in your study." This person would quote
John Maxwell's statement in his book on leadership, "If no one is
following you, you are only taking a walk." While I think this
saying is very cleaver, it is not Biblical. Paul spoke of places where
all of the disciples abandoned him. Consider too, the prophets most
always stood alone. I would say, that crowds are fickle. Jesus said,
"Where the carcass lies, the vultures gather." He was speaking of the
popularity of false prophets! So it is not always true or credible to
gauge God's will and call for us by numbers, or the success of our
ventures. Noah and his family were the only ones saved through the
flood! And Lot and his family were unable to influence people in Sodom
and Gomorrah. And remember, Paul himself said he seemed to fail! But, he
was all the while teaching depth and maturity into believers across the
I always thought, "Why God?" But eventually, and through
many trials, God brought us to begin this discipleship ministry. He used
all those years to make us stronger, more enduring, and preparing us for
something greater. It would have been easy to listen to others, rather
than God. It would have been easy to melt away in the pit of
discouragement. But, what I have learned is that when we are weak, we
have to rely on God. And when we rely on God, He is strong through
us. As we prove ourselves faithful even in the smallest things, God will
give us more responsibility. Now we are teaching hundreds of people each
year. But it was years of faithfulness that "proved" us and refined us.
If you are going through discouragement in ministry,
evaluate- but don't give up! It is God who calls you and burdens your
heart with what He wants you to do for Him. Our human nature
desires to stand before the numbers. But perhaps we should be more like
Jesus, concentrating on the few. I think Jesus saw the few as those who
were more serious about knowing Him. With a few, He was able to go
into more depth of teaching. And with a few, He reached the world!
We will be rewarded for the quality of our work, not the quantity. What
is required of a good steward is that he be found faithful. Don't be
Blessings and peace as you press on.
He has given us the privilege,
since we have been rescued from our enemies' clutches,
to serve Him without fear
in holiness and righteousness
in His presence all our days.
And child, you will be called a prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord to prepare His ways,
to give His people knowledge of salvation through the
forgiveness of their sins.
(Luke 1:73-77, Zechariah's Prophecy
concerning his son, John, HCSB)
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