Lockdown Day 154
Does the recurring subject of our updates seem little repetitive? I agree! But that’s the life we’re living right now – honestly feels like groundhog day without all the chances to go out and do things. Recently, because of a rising number of cases, our area was switched back to stricter lockdown again (remember last time I wrote it had loosened up a little?). We are hoping to go back to the “looser” version on the 19th…but aren’t holding our breath. Right now, adults can go out for strictly-regulated grocery runs, with face mask, face shield, and quarantine pass. Appreciate prayers as this has been a loooong haul for us, and there is no end in sight. Especially hard right now on Ben as he hasn’t been allowed out of the house (under 21 yrs old) for over 5 months now, and his school will be online for at least the first semester.
I try to keep these updates short and to-the-point, but our blog is a great source for more details on our daily lives & ministry (bonus: includes pictures!). https://sjhagen.blogspot.com/
If you haven’t caught up recently, there were 22 (!!!) new posts in April and another 7 posts in May and June. The most recent additions are 4 posts from July and August about our current situation for both our family and ministry – including one about new Bible studies for our tribal partners in Bicol.
Rejoice with us:
- Zach traveled safely back to the States, has been transitioning well and already got his driver’s license (wasn’t allowed to get it here). Mikayla completed her summer ministering to troubled youth and absolutely loved it. She’s already moved back in to college and is adjusting to college life again, including her new leadership responsibilities (she’s helping the resident director this year so is responsible for a building of RA’s and the discipleship program for their building).
- Steve’s health has improved dramatically in our new location. We are still waiting to move into our own place (subletting right now until it’s available), but we are so thankful for how his asthma is doing in this new house and are hopeful that he will continue to improve. Thank you for praying so persistently with us in this!
- God has provided ways to stay in touch with our tribal partners and keep busy with strategic ministry opportunities in the midst of lockdown. Steve has been able to teach (completed or in process) 7 different groups of approximately 200 people through a 6-week online course on God’s heart for the nations. He also joined our local partners for an online training on community development. We are thankful for ways to be used for Him in the midst of all this.
- Our tribal partners have been able to start several new Bible study outreaches since things opened up for them to move around their local areas after the lockdown. They have been excited by the spiritual hunger they have found, and God is at work in their areas.
Intercede with us:
· This lockdown thing has been HARD. While things had previously loosened up a little, we have recently been put back in a stricter lockdown again. Additionally, we faced a recent situation that those who follow the FB group were praying for (not able to share details). While that has been resolved (thank you for praying!), it put our stress level past the breaking point, and we are honestly still recovering. Please pray with us for patience and endurance to lean in to Him and press on during these difficult days.
- We would appreciate prayer for all three of our kids. Mikayla has started back to college, and she has significant leadership responsibilities on campus this year (it’s her senior year). There are many new covid restrictions that make connecting with others and living in community very challenging (and she has to enforce all the new rules). Seeing all your friends but not being allowed to get any hugs…it is a huge adjustment. Zach will move to Mississippi to start college next week (my parents will bring him down). Their freshman orientation will be online in their dorm rooms, and they don’t have roommates because of covid. Pray for him as he makes this massive adjustment to life in the States (especially after such a difficult last couple months) and that he finds ways to connect and find community there in spite of the many restrictions. Ben starts junior year on Aug 24, online for at least the 1st semester. He has not been allowed to leave the house for more than 5 months…this is crazy hard on our poor extrovert.
- For our tribal partners as they continue with their new chronologic Bible studies. Pray that they are able to safely make it in and out of the places where they teach the Word, and that access would stay open in spite of travel restrictions. Pray that they would be able to communicate the Truth clearly, and that God would prepare the hearts of the people to hear and accept it. Also pray that their team would be unified (they have been dealing with a lot of stress with all the lockdowns and restrictions) and that they would have wisdom for how to proceed in areas where they have lost access during this time.
- The last couple months, we have seen real traction gained in our partnership with One Sending Body as they look at sending Filipinos internationally to serve in the harvest fields. We now have several active requests on their website with strategic opportunities for Filipinos to serve, and several have already answered the call and said they want to GO. Pray with us that God would continue to call out those who will go and for the OSB leaders as they seek ways to equip and mobilize the Philippine church for this task and for individual churches to catch the vision.
We praise God for you, our faithful partners in the work. We found out that there is an unexpected opportunity/need for additional partners to stand behind us and our ministry in 2020. If you have always wanted to have a more “hands on” role in what God is doing with tribals reaching tribals, this is your chance! All gifts go directly to our ministry expenses. To partner with us to mobilize tribals to reach tribals, click this link.
Until ALL have heard,
Steve and Jen Hagen
Mikayla, Zach & Ben
Mobilizing & Training
Tribals to Reach Tribals
In the Philippines