Monday, December 26, 2011

Our New Fishing Pole

In my last post I told you I would share the details of our updated fishing rod--a shiny new tool for evangelism. John and I had the opportunity this year to make several visits to a parenting program in Jacksonville in north Florida. At one point we even thought God might be calling us to move there and work with them in some capacity.  Much to our relief, it has recently become apparent that's not the case.  Instead we plan to start the same type of program here in southern Florida where it's also very much needed.

John spent a week in California this fall learning to teach the very curriculum that spawned the Jacksonville program over ten years ago.  Without modifying any of the pillars that make it the time-tested and effective course that it is, we have molded it to fit our personalities by drawing from experiences with our own children and the work we've done with other parents.  We are almost ready to unveil the finished product--our detailed plans to serve the community by strengthening parenting skills.  In the meantime, we're praying for success.  To our knowledge, there is nothing like it in our area.  For that matter in most states, help for parents of wayward kids is generally limited to those whose children have already committed crimes. We want to intervene before that happens.

So how is this a tool for evangelism?  It usually takes months or even years for people to warm up to us enough to really trust that we're not selling anything.  Then we can invite them into a Bible study, but that's a lot of time invested only to find out that most of them aren't at all interested in spiritual matters.  John discovered that the parents at the meetings in Jacksonville were much more open to the  discussion of God's existence and involvement in this world.  They know they're in need and are open to help on any level.  That's why medical missions are so successful.  Those missionary/doctors meet a perceived need before they introduce Jesus who is what's really needed.  We're not doctors, but we can offer healing to broken families.

John has been talking to the schools and law enforcement agencies while I have been putting together a Web site for information and registration purposes.  I'll share that address with you after a few final touches, then I would love your feedback.

We're going to need your prayers and support, because, while we see our new approach like the fishing rod at the top of this post, we understand that in reality it's probably more like this:

When we give God our best effort, isn't it a bit like a six year old making a drawing for his dad?  It's not valuable in and of itself but to that dad, it's priceless.  Should he decide to, he could frame it with pure gold.


  1. What a great service and outreach for your community! Love yall and looking forward to hearing news from the "florida fishing hole"as you begin this new adventure with our God!

  2. Very nice! Can't wait to see what the Lord does with you guys. Saw some old pics of "squeakers" the other day. Remember those shoes he used to wear?

    Keeping you in our thoughts and prayers!

  3. I really enjoy reading the 'Brazilian Jewells' posts. Keep up the good work, my prayers are with you daily.

  4. Esse novo trabalho de vcs é muito interessante e necessário, pois sabemos muitas familias são desestruturadas e precisam de ajuda para que seus filhos não cresçam desustruturados também.Que Deus abençoe o trabalho de vcs.