Saturday, May 9, 2015

Laughter, Tears and an Evening of Worship

It's midnight of our fourth day at JV spring conference and with one more day to go, I should be in bed so I've still got some energy for tomorrow! But oh how I want to capture the goodness of this day before it's done.

Truly, I just don't know how I could feel any more full in my heart and spirit after such a precious time with our JV family today. I don't have time to write about it all (and words fail me anyway right now), but hopefully a look through the photos, with minimal explanation, will give you a glimpse into the experiences and emotions of our day.

Chris and Kelli Lillpop from Poland, receiving an award for "Hearts for the Lost"

Bill and Bobbie Trenckmann serving in Romania, receiving the "Discipleship" Award

Honoring those who have served with JV for five years

Congratulating Brad and Lucie Kaspar on ten years with JV

Susan Ellis, celebrating TWENTY YEARS serving with Josiah Venture in Poland!

Congratulating Leah Cox on fifteen years of serving in the Czech Republic

Zuzi Vyvialova, serving on our international Fusion team for five years

Amidst the celebration, there were also goodbyes...with some of the same dear ones that we just celebrated.

Bill thanking Brian and Katie for their years of service in Romania

Saying goodbyes to our dear Leah...

And goodbye to my friend of many years, Susan.

Our nephew, Blake, is heading off to college after 14 years in Slovenia with his family so it was time to say goodbye to him too

Whew! Many tears were shed as our JV team gave the gift of words throughout those heartfelt goodbyes. All of those people mean the world to us, and while we know God is the one directing their path and moving them on, we will miss them like crazy.

The rest of the morning we spent hearing our annual "State of the Venture", the look back to what God has done through our JV team over the past year, and towards the future of what is ahead.

So thankful for Dave's vision and leadership of JV!

And thankful for these dear friends who stand with him and serve alongside us.

This evening we gathered back together in the tent for an all family worship time. I don't know what else to say except it was a little taste of what I envision we'll get to experience in heaven one day, with believers of all ages gathered together to praise Him!

After a short teaching time for the kids, they were given the opportunity to place stones of remembrance up front as a symbol of something they wanted to thank God for.

My dear niece, Kendra, giving testimony to what God has shown and done for her

Even the little ones gave testimonies

How precious to hear our next generation giving praise to God!

After a time of prayer together as families, we ended with more worship, singing our hearts out to the Lord.

As we stood shoulder to shoulder, adults and children, worshipping and praising God together, my heart felt like it would burst with joy. So powerful and meaningful, declaring again our faith in Him with this family of believers.

I am so thankful for our JV family, their love for each other and their passion for God!

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