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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Precept Ministries Spring Conference

I was so blessed to be able to go to the Spring Women`s Conference held at Precept Ministries in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It was founded by Kay Arthur and her husband Jack Arthur in 1970 with a vision to establish people in Gods word. Precept teaches the inductive Bible study method (more on this in my next post!) where you study the word in depth, discovering Bible Truth in context as you focus on individual words that will help with the meaning and interpretation of scripture. Precept Ministries are in 167 countries and the studies are in 70 languages. Follow this link to connect to your country!  www.precept.org/international_overview

If you are wanting a deeper relationship with God, and have a desire to really know Him, then take a look at the above website. The inductive study method will help you to Dig Deep into Gods word, studying the Bible word for word, verse by verse, chapter by chapter, book by book.

The word of God is what saves and heals. Psalm 107:20 "He sent forth his word and healed them, he rescued them from the grave." Psalm 119:102 "I have not departed from your laws; for you yourself have taught me."

God is our teacher. He is the one who teaches us. We can receive instruction straight from his word, through the Holy Spirit. So why do we look to other people to interpret the word for us? When we discover Truth Through Him, through the Holy Spirit, for ourselves as we study the Bible inductively, then He will teach us because he says that He himself has taught us. Wow, think about that for a minute?!

Kay Arthur is an international Bible teacher, award winning author of more than 100 books and Bible studies. Kay was recently honoured with the National Religious Broadcasters' prestigious Hall of Fame award for her invaluable contribution to the field of Christian communications and evidence of faithfulness in Christ. She has a daily T.V, radio and internet programs.

This is the driveway entrance to Precept Ministries.
This is the main building where the book shop, offices, kitchen and dining rooms are. This is their head office as well as a venue for all their main conferences.
A view from afar. The car park is just in front of the building on the left.
This is the accommodation but space is limited so some ladies stayed in hotels nearby.
Another view of the accommodation.

This was my favorite place! You guessed it - the Bookshop! I took some photos before everyone arrived and before the crowds. I arrived at 11am and the conference only started at 2pm so I had some time to look at books. I was in my element! Terri (who I stayed with) was very kind and took me to lunch around 12 so we got to chat and get to know one another better.
There are many Bible studies available. These books help you to study each book of the Bible inductively. They consist of something to do each day, so Day 1 -Day7 and then on Day 7 there are discussion questions and a weekly wrap up. These are great and show you how to study the book of the Bible step by step, chapter by chapter. The things to do each day are manageable and it is a wonderful way to get into a daily quite time.
The Photo above: These are 40 minute Topical Bible studies and do not require any homework. They are great to use in a small group or on your own. You can use them for children from about 10 years old and they are also perfect for teens .


On the right: These are the studies for smaller kids but they can also be used for older children, depending on the child. These offer a really fun and inspiring way to study the Bible.
The courtyard just outside the auditorium. The trees were blooming and the weather was so warm.
Inside the passage just outside the auditorium which was just to the left.
A little lounge where you could relax waiting to go into the auditorium. It appears that not all my photos have come out so I will post these and then add the missing photos next time.
Inside the auditorium during worship with Alicia Williamson Garcia. She is a song writer and worship artist. Her and her husband Richard founded IN worship, a non-profit ministry of worship events, concerts, Bible studies, seminars and workshops dedicated to bringing true worship to God`s people worldwide. I LOVED her music and what made it so special to me were the words of the worship songs! They were truly inspiring.
Inside the auditorium. Precepts were only allowed to seat 390 people due to fire proof laws so the remainder of the ladies were in the simulcast room, so there were a total of 412 ladies at the conference all together.
Note the video guy who was filming for the ladies in the simulcast room.

Kay Arthur speaking. There were also other speakers, Diane Vereen and Tommye Hammel. They were all very inspiring!
Alicia singing a solo from one of her worship songs.
Kay Arthur was so natural and down to earth. She must have spoken to everyone on the conference as she went around the dining room and in the auditorium meeting people. She is 78 years old and one would never know that by the way she looks and with all the energy that she has.
We met in our groups for two one hour sessions to discuss our material that we were given on 1and 2Corinthians. The topic of the conference was stress and anxiety.
Kay Arthur even made herself available for book signing so of course there was a very long line and by the end of that I`m sure Kay was really tired. She always made herself available to us which we all really appreciated.
I finally managed to get a photo of Kay and myself. I was delighted and really appreciated the time Kay gave to all of us to do that. Can you imagine your photo being taken 400 times in 2 days?! Everyone wanted a photograph.
My new friends that I made. Bonnie and Sharon. They were so sweet.
Some more wonderful people whom I met - Lea and Dianne. We had some wonderful chats and really felt a connection. They have both been to Ghana before and are keen to visit other places in Africa so maybe I will meet up with them again!?
I stayed with Brian and Terri. Terrie works at Precept Ministries and she kindly offered to have me stay so I was very blessed. They were missionaries in S.A, Zambia and Mozambique for 9 years and returned to the States just less than 2 years ago. It was great to talk about things that are happening in Africa and general news that we could all relate to.
The little ladies of the house - Rosie and Abby. They were so sweet and knew exactly when I was awake in the morning. I would hear their little "pitter patter" of little paws coming up the stairs in the mornings.
Terri`s office at Precept Ministries.
Serving meals. Terri was everywhere helping with just about everything. She looks after these kinds of events and is the "Organization" behind it all. She has such a servant heart - Wow what a gem she is!
The dining room.
We had the most amazing food! This is fish with wholegrain rice, salad and delicious cheesecake.
This was for lunch - chicken salad, quiche, croissant, fruit and...........................cup cakes below!
I sat somewhere different every time, as to try and find the people I had met was impossible as there were so many ladies. I really enjoyed sitting in different places and just meeting different people and re-telling my story all over again and seeing the different reactions when they heard I was from Zimbabwe and hearing the questions from different people. I was asked if I was a missionary in Africa, have I always lived there, are there lots of wild animals in the street, how come I speak English so well.................. it was very interesting!
I had an amazing time at the conference. It was life changing. I learnt so much about other people, the Bible, studies and just generally encouraged to continue with studying the Bible and having a desire for Gods word.

I will post another post about the conference explaining more about how an inductive Bible study works and more about the material we studied and what I learnt. This post may take me awhile but you can check again in about 5 days time. I hope to have it completed by then.   

Just a reminder about that link I sent: You can either go to www.precept.org or www.precept.org/international_overview
to see what Precept offers in your country and where you can buy the material from.

Good Bye and God Bless until next time!
Love Mandi




Friday, March 23, 2012

Canada

We drove from Vermont to Erin in Canada, which is about an hour from Toronto city. It was a very long trip and it took us about 9hours. So far, this has been our longest stretch but the journey went really well and it didn`t seem like we had been travelling all day. We spent 4 nights with Johno and Trish Robart Morgan and it was SO GOOD to see them again after all these years! They left Zimbabwe in 2002 so we were able to connect again and share all our news over the last 10 years!
 On the way to Canada from Vermont.
 We came across many semi-frozen lakes. The weather has been so warm for this time of year and there is little chance of more snow for now.



 We had crossed the border by now so we were close to Toronto. The border was a breeze. We could stay in our car while our passports were checked and we were just asked a few questions and then allowed through. This took about 10 minutes in total. Wow, what a pleasure compared to the Zim or S.A borders!
 Phil was really tierd so I had to drive part of the way. I told him that I was not going to drive (my stubborn nature!) as I was not confident driving on the right side of the road with the steering on the left! Anyway, after a short while, it was fine as long as I went slowly and didn`t have to turn off anywhere. I think that`s why he gave me a long stretch of straight road! Note, my concentration! I told Murray to sit in the front so he could keep an eye on my driving and if I went onto the left side of the road, he could quickly shout at me.....! Phil had a few of those when he started driving here...........


 Johno, Trish, Phil and myself. We went for a lovely walk close to their farm. The weather was so hot, about 25degress celsius. They have never had summer start so early before. Normally, there is still lots of snow at this time.
 Trish and Megan who is alomost 11.
 A lovely walk and view from the bridge we walked over.

 All the kids - the boys with James and Megan.
 The Three muscateers! Duncan and James are the same age.
 Phil helping Johno load hay for a delivery. He has sheep, cattle and grows and sells alfalfa bails.
 A little help from the boys to load the pick-up!
 Luke working hard!
 The boys really enjoyed all the hard labour. It was a challenge to see how quickly they could load!
 Megan doing her thing! She was so efficient and was chuffed to have some help too!
Sheep, sheep and more sheep. Johno has about 100 ewes.
 We went to the Toronto Science Center. Murray having a look at all the balls going around.

 Duncan driving a space walker. He had to aim for the targets on the side and it was really quite a challenge. It worked with suction and air pressure.
Duncan standing next to the sound wave stand. The sound changed the sound wave and made the water move and the water would dance or jump up.
 A tornado. The boys were able to go right inside.
 A model of the Great Lakes.
 How much water do we have in our bodies? Murray has about 60 liters in his body according to this experiment.
 Coming out of Toronto. We didn`t actually go right into the city as we ran out of time. You can see the tall C.N Tower where you can view the city from the top and walk on the glass floor, doing the sky walk - maybe next time?
 Toronto is just one big city, not really for me. I prefer the large open spaces and country side!

This building below says Canada bread - Quite spectacular!
  James bought us all dounuts. They were delicious!

Our time with Johno and Trisha was short but we so enjoyed catching up again. We also spent some time with Johno`s folks, Pete and Rose and it was good to see them too. Sadly, I forgot to take a photo of them. They asked all about Zim and how people were doing and who was still there, so we had some good chats.

I am off to Chattanooga in Tennesee tomorrow and Phil will be with the boys at the Millers house this weekend. I will post again after the weekend and let you know all about Kay Athur`s Womens conference which I am very excited to be able to go - what a treat!
If you want to know more about precepts ministry, you can go to www.precept.org

Take care!