Wednesday, March 31, 2010

At Olive Branch Baptist Church, we found our names on the marqee sign to let us know that we had found the right place. Pastor Kemp's hospitality was greatly appreciated. The meals, lodging at his house, and the fellowship was an encouragement to our family.
We were able to find lodging at Jon's high school principal's house in IL. This brought back many fond memories with the pictures and conversations. We're thankful for Mrs. Adams willingness to take our family to Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry. This provided a chance for our children to take an educational field trip.
Our children thank all those who gave them time to play with their pet dogs. Cody in Florida, Monica in Indiana, and Lucie in Illinois each provided entertainment for our family.
We ended our travels in March by presenting in two smaller churches in IL but with big hearts in many ways. It's the small community churches that many times provide a family atmosphere with unity and love for God. Phelan Acres Bible Church encouraged us by the acceptance of our ministry and the showing of their compassion.
We are taking the week of Easter to celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord back in Michigan with our family and home church. We are looking to be able to regain our strength and overcome sickness before traveling to our next group of churches out east.
We thank all of those who take the time to read our post and pray for us. We hope that as you get acquainted with us you will see how good our God has been to us and share our joys.

Visiting with Family in Memphis, TN

Jon's sister Renee and family recently moved to Memphis, TN and were able to provide lodging for us before our next meeting up north. Our children get excited when they have time to spend with their cousins, especially when taken to the Incredible Pizza Inc., a pizza buffet and arcade extravaganza. The night ended with a soccer game at the Christian School where Jon's brother-in-law teaches.

Alabama meetings and March Madness Basketball

We found ourselves in Dixon Mills, AL where we were allowed to present our ministry and worship. We are grateful for the lodging made available to us between meetings. Although the mission house didn't have a TV or an internet signal for our family to keep up with the March Madness Basketball Tournament, the pastor made it available at the church fellowship hall for us to connect to the church's wireless and watch some basketball by the use of our computer and projector on the big screen. It was interesting to find out that the Pastor and Jon grew up in Michigan together and played sports against each others Christian Schools.
We traveled over to Community Baptist in Brady, AL. to be a part of the mission conference where we discovered that the special speaker was another Harris Family. It was encouraging for us to be able to build new friendships and connect with those in the church in such a short amount of time. The pastor gave us the option of staying in a hotel, or staying in a trailer across the street and keeping the money meant for the hotel. The decision was a no-brainer when Nisha discovered a dead mouse in the mouse trap in the trailer. We ended up traveling to our next destination for a bit and staying in a hotel, even though Jon was looking to have another one of those adventures of camping out in the trailer.

Signs that you are in Florida and not in Michigan in March

We left Michigan at the beginning of March with its snow plowing, shoveling, playing, and thrills. We arrived in Florida to present our ministry in churches, but found the weather and atmosphere different from Michigan. There were palm trees, pelicans, coats packed away, air conditioning needed, and opportunities to walk on the beach and even cool off in the water.

From Illinois to Florida in March

We began our travels in March by attending the mission conference in Danvers Baptist IL. We enjoyed the opportunity to be around other missionaries like the Herrell Family going to Lima, Peru. The MK's enjoyed sharing their Peru stories with each other. It was a delight to have four people get saved during the conference.We found lodging and fellowship at Hardison Baptist in Georgia before making it to our next mission conference at Lighthouse Baptist in Port Charlotte, FL.
We had the tremendous blessing of staying with our host Curtis Gidden's during the conference. He tried his best to get us northern people to adjust to southern living by cooking his famous "grits". Jon found himself using the Magic Bullet to make fruit smoothies throughout the week. Brother Curtis was such a blessing to us and a tenderhearted man of God. Jon enjoyed time in prayer at the church each morning. Our children were given special treatment during the week with karate lessons, mini-golf, and shark teeth hunting at the beach.We ended one conference only to enter another at Central Baptist in Panama City, FL. We soon found out that this mission conference was during spring break time in Panama City. Our hotel was just a few miles from the beach. Jon saw many opportunities to invite others to church throughout the week. One lady, who was staying at our hotel with her three daughters, came to the service. It was a delight to see her walk forward during the invitation as a sign of God working in her heart. This conference reminded us of the number of souls who die each day without the Saviour as a calculator counted up two souls for each second. It was started at the beginning of the conference on Sunday and reached over 600,000 by Wednesday night. Our daughter, Katie, became burdened to win souls to Christ and began praying for God to allow her to win one soul by herself.