The land of Israel is recently enjoying the rains that are now falling after a long, hot summer. My thoughts go to the story of Elijah who prayed, waited and expected God to send rain. He sent his servant to look for rain time after time. Finally, the servant reported to Elijah that he saw a small cloud as small as a man's hand rising from the sea. They knew that this small cloud would bring great rains. Just like the prophet who walked this area thousands of years ago, we too are praying, expecting and waiting for a spiritual rain to come and bring life-giving water to hearts, people and a land that is dry and thirsty. Just as the rains are surely coming now in their season, we believe God will rain down His spirit on us... Because He Is Faithful.
"A cloud as small as a man's hand is rising from the sea." 1 Kings 18.44
The youth ministry is flourishing at NCC. It is vital that we reach and care for the booming youth population of our world; they are the future of our society and the church. At NCC we have two youth outreach teams, one for the younger set, led by Venise Mk'abal, and one for the "fifteens" and above, led by Christine Dakwar.
Recently each youth team enjoyed an overnight event at the church building. It was an amazing spiritual encounter for the youth, not to mention a lot of fun. There were times of talking, eating together, movies, etc. And, there was a great move of the Spirit on our youth as they prayed, cried out to God, and worshipped. Many made serious commitments of faith to the Lord, many renewed their commitments and were filled with the Spirit. The only thing that was missing from the event seems to have been sleep!
Last month, the NCC body, packed on to two huge busses, went on a mini-tour of Jerusalem and environs. Besides the simple purpose of building up relationships and "togetherness" the goal was to expose our people to the heritage of the Land. So often the local believers miss out on the richness of the biblical history and geography that surrounds us, a heritage that is ours both as residents of Israel and the people of Messiah. Our travels took us to locations such as Jerusalem, the Mt. of Olives, the Garden Tomb, and the Dead Sea region.
One Year Anniversary:
On October 11, 2009 NCC celebrated one year in our new premises! Looking back on the dedication service of Fall 2008, we are humbled by God's gracious presence with us and we look ahead with great expectation to the future. The joy of our celebration service was greatly enhanced by the participation of international friends from the U.S., Canada, Singapore, and Finland who all (through no strategy of our own) happened to visit us precisely on this anniversary service! Pastor Yousef challenged us that in view of all God has given us in the year past, we must look to the year ahead asking what we can give back to Him.