Mission Partner Update - Johan & Lilli Lukasse, November 2023
’Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?’ Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water gushed out,” (Numbers 20:10-11)
The story then continues with the way that God admonished and chastised Moses for not treating God as holy. As you read this text in context, you will see that Moses and Aaron took the credit for what God had done. As a result, Moses was not allowed to enter the Promised Land. He was only allowed to see it from afar (Deut. 34). Yet in the last chapter of Deuteronomy, Moses is recognized as the greatest prophet who; knew the Lord face to face. How dangerous it is when God blesses us and we use those blessings to draw the credit for ourselves.
Thank you for the many cards, letters, and phone calls that we have received from many of you in recent months. We greatly appreciate it. Some cards included pictures of times when the senders had come to help us with all kinds of activities and mission efforts. We are currently going through a difficult time, and these messages have great value. Thank you very much. Still... as I was reminded during my personal Bible reading of Numbers 20, there is the danger that we can so easily consider ourselves more important than God. We may look back with grateful hearts on a blessed ministry of many years, but our joy and satisfaction is to recognize God’s hand and action again and again. It is God who has given blessings and done it all. The glory is for Him!
HOW ARE WE DOING?
Lilli and I are thankful to grow old together, but being old is not always easy and we often experience limitations. Lilli tires easily, and when she tries to do too much in one day, she has to pay the price the next day. In this fatigue, the pains of previous operations resurface.
Pray for Lilli. As for me (Johan), we recently held a family council, initiated by our children, and decided to get back in touch with the neurologist to find out if improvement for my condition is possible through surgery. She gave us a clear understanding of what my health problem is and how there is indeed a path that could lead to improvement. This comes with a step-by-step plan. There is no guarantee, of course, but in faith, we will move in that direction. I will start with some tests to see if my heart and pacemaker can handle it all, and if the result is positive, I can take the next step. I have no pain, but I do have some difficulties, mainly with a lack of balance. I can’t walk independently without support.
The book, “Divide & Multiply”, which I wrote with Teo Kamp, is a practical guide for planting new churches. It has found its way to one of the evangelical universities in America. Stephanie received the request for it from a professor there who wanted to include it in his seminary course. We are now in the process of publicizing it and offering it for distribution through Faithlife, LLC and Logos Bible software. Through this channel, it will be accessible anywhere in the world, especially for pastors, missionaries, and evangelical universities. A second book, Growth Scenario is also soon to be on the list.
WE RECEIVE A LOT OF HELP
Our children are good at assisting us in all kinds of matters — in administrative and financial tasks, medical matters, and transportation to various appointments with doctors and at the hospital. Domestic help is also provided through social services. Lilli and I are very grateful.
Thank you very much for your intercession, compassion, and support.
Johan and Lilli