Well, today we left the wonderful town of Leavenworth and ventured off through the incredible mountains towards Enumclaw, Washington. We arrived mid afternoon and spent some time with the Myers family. We settled down a bit and ate dinner, then headed to a local high school that they rented out for the concert. There was high expectation in regards to how many people would attend this concert, so the standards were high. When the concert rolled around, there were not as many people as we thought were going to attend, but we all felt the presences of the Lord regardless. This was one of the nights where we were able to play as loud as we are able. Afterwards, we got to fellowship with the families that came and it was a true delight to share our ministry with people.
Friday came along pretty quickly. We set off from the Myers lovely home towards Spokane, Washington. This dive was a bit longer then most because we had to travel across Washington, but it sure was worth it!
We got to Berean Church in the late afternoon. We set up and went home to the host homes to eat dinner. We did not have to play until Sunday morning, so we had a free day on Saturday. Many of the team members went downtown and enjoyed the weather in Spokane. In the evening, we all went to Post Falls, Idaho, where we attended the wedding of two alumni of Grace Bible College. That was a lovely time and it was really exciting seeing God work through them as a newly married couple.
All in all, the weekend was a blast and it was a true blessing being able to spend time with friends at the wedding and leading worship at the churches in Leavenworth and Enumclaw.
“Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord. Praise the Lord” Psalm 150:6
Some days, you just feel like there are very few words for so many experiences and emotions that you find trapped within twenty-four hours. My Brother’s Keeper spent all of these memories in Leavenworth today. This morning we had the privilege of worshiping with Upper Valley Christian School, a private K-12 academy. It was pretty awesome to meet all the kids and lead them in worship! After our time with them during the Chapel service, we followed the students and staff to a local park and watched some of the older students shoot off some of the rockets that they had created as a science project. Soon we were back to the school and working on packing up all of our stuff.
Once we were collected again we drove to Cascade Mountain Bible Church (http://www.cmbiblechurch.org/) and began our set up for an evening concert with the congregation there. After an early morning and having to set up and tear down so often, we were quite tired so we drove to the home of Mr. and Mrs. Renberg to have lunch and relax for the afternoon. Our time there was most enjoyable and the entire band eventually succumbed to the weight of mid-afternoon sleepiness. So many naps, so beautiful. Sadly, time caught up with us and we had to head back to work! We finished our set up and then enjoyed a delicious dinner with some of the church members. As we began our evening of worship, our souls were refreshed to match the rest that our bodies had found. It was wonderful to be able to worship together with this wonderful church family!!
This previous Sunday we were blessed to be with the Grace Bible Church of Port Orchard for a morning service. The team was very excited to be able to worship with a congregation and was enthusiastic towards the opportunity. After Pastor Ken Farmen introduced the band, they were released to use their musical gifts to help lead the church family to a place of worship. It was wonderful to again be with a family of believers who were so willing to join in with our gift to them! After the service was ended, we were asked to join the people for a lunch that was prepared for the whole congregation, and were glad to be able to spend some time with the folks there and to get to know them a bit better. Our time at Port Orchard was very lovely and we were slow to leave.
Once we did leave, though, we were quickly on our way to Seattle to set up for a concert that we would be able to share with the Berean Bible Church. It was a little tiring to have to set up twice in one day, but we were soon ready to worship with this beautiful body of believers. Pastor Gary was very helpful and welcoming to our team and the group was excited to present their ministry to them. We had decided to change some songs in our set so we enjoyed being able to have that difference in our routine! The congregation was involved and joyful with us as we praised God and were ministered to. As our concert came to an end, we were united with our host families and sent off to enjoy our evenings. After such a long day for the team, many of us pursued somewhat early bedtimes.
On Monday, we were all about touring Seattle. GBC’s own Kimmy Haney was our tour guide and she showed us all the beautiful spots of her home town. We were able to make a visit to Kingston Island, the Space Needle, and Pike Place. Each of these sites was great fun for the group and we really enjoyed this day of relaxation within such a busy week. Much coffee was bought and drunk. We were reminded so often of God’s glory, majesty, and power as we observed such beautiful sights from all the views that we were given. As evening came to sing her song of twilight, we returned to our host homes and spent our final evenings with them, getting to know them just a bit better before we left the next morning.
Soon, the next morning was here and we returned to Berean Bible Church to pack up all of our equipment and were on our way, headed towards Leavenworth, Washington fairly early in the morning. On our way we stopped by Deception Falls and spent some time exploring the area and enjoying God’s creation. The sights were astounding and our love for such a gracious creator deepened. Once we made it to Leavenworth, we set up for a chapel that we are going to be able to give for a local Christian School. Pastor Todd spent some time with the team and helped us to relax before a day full of concerts and travels.
We look forward to spending our day with the folks here and will keep you posted on our activities!
On Thursday, My Brothers Keeper spent 18 hours on the road between Carter Lake, Iowa and Elko, Nevada. After such a long day on the road, by Friday we were ready to finish up the longest portion of our trip by spending time with the Grace Bible Church of Grants Pass, Oregon. On the way to the church, our team traveled through some very beautiful portions of our country and we were so blessed to be able to take in these glimpses of God’s glory.
Upon arrival, the team was quick to set up and begin their sound checks but were easily persuaded to set aside their duties to partake in some delicious home-made goodness that was prepared by a church member (the soup was phenomenal, by the way). The rest of our time spent with this family of believers was similarly as warm and inviting. Everybody was kind and excited to see us. We were overjoyed to be able to spend this time with this church!
I found out that Pastor Gary Cloud was actually a former Grace Singers and Men of Grace member so I took a moment to ask him what this visit from My Brother’s Keeper meant to him. He said, “It blesses my heart and causes me to praise the Lord to see young people like you who are willing to give up time of your summer vacation to come and minister to us…you all have lifted my spirits in a time of need in my life.” Pastor Gary and the rest of the congregation were very thankful for our time spent with them.
Saturday for the team was short day for travel. We traversed from Grants Pass, Oregon to Port Orchard, Washington; a simple seven hours from one place to the next. We made a stop by Multnomah Falls and feasted upon our sack lunches under the spray of the majestic waters. Those moments there were just another testimony of God’s greatness and His love for us.
We found our way to Grace Bible Church of Port Orchard, Washington (http://www.gbcpo.org/) and began setting up for our Sunday morning service. As we worked, our host families came and carried us off two by two. We have been blessed so much this trip by all the wonderful and willing families who have taken time and effort to house the team members overnight. Each of our hosts have been so very hospitable and gracious and every morning when the team reunites we have grand stories of these wonderful qualities.
I have found that facebook seems to be the most efficient way to share videos and photos and we have a video up for viewing already on the band page (http://www.facebook.com/mybrotherskeeperband). I would encourage you all to go check out what has been created in the band’s free time!
That about sums up our third and fourth day on tour of the Northwest (as recounted by Elizabeth Pedersen: Prayer warrior and PowerPoint button pusher)! We would continue to ask for your prayers as the amount of traveling and the number of concerts we are putting on wears a bit on a body. We shall keep you posted on our coming whereabouts! God bless
The uniqueness of each journey could be defined by its beginning. Our journey began at a bold 6 A.M. on a brisk Michigan after we had every piece of luggage stowed away safely and each student and staff cozily snuggled into the seats which we would call home for the next two weeks.
This first portion of our trip was pretty straightforward with our fearless driver, John Spooner, guiding us swiftly to Carter lake, Iowa for our first engagement of the tour. Though we made good time, our ride was not without a few distractions. We, of course, needed to stop for gas, refreshments, and restrooms and one particularly memorable stop was at the world’s largest truck stop (http://iowa80truckstop.com)! We found many interesting portions of this compound and made good use of the time allotted for our break. Throughout the day, the men of the band made sure to video many of the memorable moments we have had so far and I hope to be able to share them with you soon.
After ten hours together in our humble van, we were freed from our seats to prepare for an evening of worship with Lakeview Bible Church of Carter lake, Iowa (http://lakeviewreflections.org). The team quickly set up the stage with their plethora of equipment and afterwards found our way to the basement where the church family had prepared a lovely potluck style dinner for us. After a day of fast food and deli sandwiches, the home-cooked food was much appreciated!
As seven o’clock came to be, My Brothers Keeper found their way to their instruments and Pastor Dave Holton opened our time together with prayer. The band performed a great set with some beautiful transitions between songs and John Spooner shared some compelling messages with the congregation. It was truly a wonderful start to our tour and a great foundation from which to build the coming performances. Soon we were all packed up and ready to settle down for the night.
Day two began just as early as the previous morning and the team was on time and prepared to depart as planned (way to go guys!). Though today has been filled with may miles and long movies watched on little laptop screens, moral remains high and I find myself blessed by the positive attitudes that surround me. God is going to do some wonderful things with this team and we shall keep you posted as much as possible! We would covet your prayers concerning our travels and the general health of the entire team.
This concludes day one and two of the Northwest tour of My Brother’s Keeper as dictated by Elizabeth Pedersen (band prayer warrior extraordinaire , power point professional, designated blogger, information table assistant, and back seat sleeper)
Wyoming, MI: The praise and worship group Brother’s Keeper will be touring locations in the Midwest and Northwestern United States leaving May 2. “We believe tours such as this are both a ministry to churches as well as giving thanks for the prayer and support these churches have given over the years to Grace Bible College.” Campus Ministry Director John Spooner said. “The tour’s educational value for students is significant on so many levels. We are grateful to host churches and families as we celebrate ministry together. It’s also a great way to bring Grace Bible College to so many of our alumni.”
The tour schedule is:
Wed. May 2- Lakeview Bible Church- Carter Lake, IA- Pastor Dave Holton
Fri. May 4- Grace Bible Church- Grants Pass, OR- Pastor Gary Cloud
Sun. May 6-AM- Grace Bible Church- Port Orchard, WA- Pastor Ken Farmen
Sun. May 6-PM-Berean Bible Church- Shoreline, WA- Pastor Jim Shemaria
Wed. May 9- Cascade Mountain Bible Church- Leavenworth, WA- Pastor Todd James
Thur. May 10- Northwest Bible Church, (hosting at local school)- Enumclaw, WA- Pastor Scott Myers
Sun. May 13-AM- Berean Bible Church- Spokane, WA- Pastor Doug Kessler
Sun. May 13- PM- Mountain View Bible Church- Post Falls, ID- Pastor Dave Rachoy
Wed. May 16- Bethesda Church- Prior Lake, MN- Pastor Mark Matychuk
If you live in any of these areas and want to attend a concert- please call the pastor for times and directions. We would love to see you there.
During the tour, look for postings and updates from the students themselves.