May 2017 MAP Update
| P.O. Box 128 | 575 US Highway 250 | Savannah OH 44874 | Office: (419) 962-1515|
|Personal Greetings and Updates, By Joe Keim|
It is a continual joy and honor to serve the Lord and people with you. This update serves as accountability on our part, encouragement for your soul, and the fruit of all our labor. Read, be blessed and join us in giving God all the glory!
Book: My People, the Amish
Before we get too deep into other things, I have to tell you about my brand new book that is now available at MAP, Amazon and in various other bookstores.
Here are the top five reasons you'll want a copy of My People, the Amish:
The Amish are not a monolithic people. Some groups are harder to break free from than others. My own journey from the culture was difficult enough. At least I thought so, until I read Joe Keim's story.
Joe and Esther Keim emerged from a dark, harsh place, where hard choices had to be made about family, faith, and what was truly important to them. It was a tough road to travel, with a heavy price. Joe Keim recounts the faith and courage that carried them through in their darkest hours. But freedom for themselves was not enough. Joe and Esther Keim turned and reached out to others who were traveling the same path they had walked. Today, they minister to hundreds of young Amish people who are desperate to break free from their own dark, hard places.
This is a unique story of one man's astonishing journey from an Amish world unlike any I have ever known.
—Ira Wagler, author of Growing Up Amish
Buy My People, the Amish today:
New Beginnings Update
You’ll remember that in our March newsletter we focused strictly on the New Beginnings building campaign. The response has been absolutely phenomenal! Over forty individuals and churches pulled together and covered an additional $40,000 worth of building materials. As of May 24, MAP is at 67 percent of reaching the final goal of $350,000. Thank you Jesus!
What one feels in his heart, after so much outpouring and generosity, is simply indescribable. We are so thankful, so humbled, and so encouraged to serve by your side.
Participate in the campaign, click on: New Beginnings
The digital Legacy Wall shows all those who have participated in the New Beginnings Campaign and will one day hang on the walls of New Beginnings Homestead.
These names will be a continual reminder of all the men, women, children and churches that paved the way for young Amish girls to start right and stay on track.
Beyond Measure Market Update
As of today, a team of 18 investors have pledged $582,500 toward the bulk food store. This takes us right up to 77 percent of our final goal. If you are interested in joining these 18 investors, give us a call at (419) 962-1515, or email Joe Keim directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On April 28, the board selected PKJ Construction, one of three builders who submitted a quote for Beyond Measure Market.
Lord willing, Perry Keim, owner of PKJ Construction, will begin the excavating and building by the end of May or early June.
Since New Beginnings and Beyond Measure are located right next to each other, the board decided to excavate the land for both buildings at the same time. Pray with us that everything will go smoothly!
|Prison Ministry, By Jonas Yoder|
Good Friday is a great day to pause and reflect on the love our Heavenly Father has toward us.
I remember as a young Amish boy that Good Friday was a day that I dreaded every year. Good Friday is the traditional fast and prayer day when we were to reflect on the past six months to see whether there were any wrongs we needed to make right in order to be prepared for the upcoming communion service. It was a very serious and somber time, and I was always glad when it was over, as I was never quite sure that I had all my sins confessed in order to be properly prepared for the service. Now, because of the gospel, I do not have to fear anymore, but I rejoice in the love of God.
I am currently serving at Job Corps two or three days a week. I preach there two Sunday mornings a month to anywhere from ten to thirty students. Tuesday night I lead a Bible study in the chapel, which is usually a smaller group of about five students. It is a good time to get more personal with them and discuss their Bible questions. On Wednesdays, I usually take several volunteers around to meet the 20-30 new students who arrive each week. We get to introduce ourselves, invite them to our services, and give some words of welcome and encouragement. Immediately after that, we get to speak to the class that has been there for three weeks and is getting ready to transition to their trade class. During this time, we get to share the gospel with them through personal testimonies. Through this time of sharing, we generally have 4-8 students a week come to faith in Christ.
The addition to our house, which was framed up and closed in last summer, is slowly progressing. Most of the wiring has been completed and will soon be ready for insulation, sheetrock, and finishing. We are expecting a couple mission teams this summer to help us complete it, which will be a huge blessing to us. We are getting anxious to be able to utilize all the extra space!
Thank you for your continued prayer and financial support for our family.
— Jonas and Mary Yoder
|Speaking Engagements and Hutterite Colonies, By Samuel Girod|
God has truly blessed my family and the ministry in so many ways. I have been receiving an influx of calls from pastors, who have asked that I visit and share my burden for the Amish. This positive response has really been uplifting to Polly and me.
We are also grateful for your support and prayers, which play a large part in the success of our ministry. If it weren’t for your role, we would not be able to travel and speak at churches with the purpose of raising awareness about the Amish.
In addition to speaking in churches, I was also given the opportunity in April to speak in two different libraries on behalf of Amish tourism. The tourism bureau put on the two events and invited a few speakers from different religious backgrounds; I was there to share about the Amish culture and beliefs. In the process, I also had the opportunity to share my salvation testimony.
Recently, I received a call from a young eighteen-year-old Hutterite girl from Minnesota. She and her two brothers went into town one evening; while there, they received gospel tracts and got saved. Now they want to leave their Hutterite colony and begin a new life, but they are struggling to leave because of the community’s bondage and control.
Here is a little bit of background about the Hutterites. In the 1500’s, Jakob Hutter and a group of followers broke off from the established church as Anabaptists, much like the Amish and Mennonites. Today, this group has grown into approximately 462 colonies. The number of Hutterites hovers around 45,000 members; approximately 75% reside in Canada, with the remaining 25% living in America. The Hutterites are a very close group of people, much like the Amish; they have strict rules, which makes it hard for those seeking to leave and receive help.
When I was Amish, I used to sneak away to watch the show called Amish Out of Order, which is how I found out about Mission to Amish People. Immediately following Amish Out of Order was another show called Meet the Hutterites. Even though I had heard about the Hutterites during my childhood, I did not know that they still existed. The show taught me that they do indeed still exist, and I could relate to a lot of what they experienced in the realm of rebellion and bondage.
I believe that God used my past experience and opened my eyes about the Hutterites so I could help out this searching family of Hutterites today. I had been receiving calls from the eighteen-year-old sister once a week for about three weeks. The three siblings recently got caught trying to leave, though, and as a result, have been punished. For this reason, I haven’t heard from them in over a month. I’d ask that you pray for the family now; they certainly need strength and courage from God, so they may do his will!
In closing, I want to thank you once again for your involvement in our life and ministry! We are grateful for your partnership and prayers.
— Samuel and Polly Girod
|God Loves Me, By Joe Keim|
When Noah arrived at our home earlier this year, he was on eight different prescription drugs. His mind was numb and parts of his body shook all over as he continued his journey of breaking free from addiction to alcohol and spiritual abuse.
Three days after landing here, Noah got radically saved at our kitchen table. As of today, he has been drug free for 90 days and alcohol free for 340 days!
A month ago, Noah felt God was leading him to start tithing to the church. I said, Noah, you will never out-give the Lord. It is impossible! About two weeks went by, and Dale, from southern OH, contacted us, asking if he and his wife could donate their Buick LeSabre to someone at MAP. Imagine the immense boost it gave Noah when he found out the Lord provided him a car.
Since then, family and ministers from his home community have been calling and stopping by to remind Noah he will for sure end up in hell if he does not return home to his Amish church. Instead of weakening Noah’s faith, it consistently strengthen his faith in God. He never misses a Bible study or church service.
You might consider sending Noah a card through MAP, letting him know you are praying for him.
|How God Changed Me, By Eli Miller|
God put me behind four walls of a prison to change me. At first, it was difficult for me to admit my wrongs, but once I began to realize I was nothing and placed my full trust in God, He changed my life. He forgave me for my wrongs long before I forgave myself. I feel much better now, yet remain weak.
The devil still tries his best to get me to think that I am no good. He even uses other people to try to make me look bad or to get me to think that I am not good enough for some people. I have experienced much that most believers never will, but I have learned many lessons during the past five years. I have learned to be more patient and to forgive and love others, even if they have a hard time forgiving me. The best lesson that I learned out of this whole thing was to listen to the Holy Spirit.
When Jesus was asked why He ate with the sinners, He answered, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance (Mark 2:17).
I was sick, but met the Great Physician. I was full of sin, but met the Savior. I am now spending time in God’s word. I am taking Bible courses and am learning to walk more closely with Jesus every day. Jesus changed me, and He can change you, too.
— Eli Miller
Eli has taken advantage of his new life in Christ. Even while in prison, he completed our 24-lesson ABC Bible course. Since he has been out, he has continued studying God’s word, completing many of our video/audio-type courses, covering topics like Bible Survey, Old and New Testaments, Christian Beliefs, Spiritual Formation, Evangelism, and Church History.
— Paul Miller
|Honoring Our Donors, By Joe and Esther Keim|
We would like to honor our friend Tom, who has been a donor of MAP for many years. Recently, when he missed sending a monthly support check, he traveled a good hour to hand deliver the missed check in person. During our face-to-face conversation, tears began to run down his face as he explained his deep love and connection with the ministry. Before Tom left, we bowed our heads before God and thanked Him for letting us serve together.
We would like to honor our friend Zettie, who partnered with the ministry on day one and never missed a month’s donation in 15 years. Now that she is in a nursing home, Zettie is no longer able to support the ministry. Every time Esther and I stop by to visit her, Zettie will begin to cry, and say, “Joe and Esther, ever since I’ve had to stop supporting MAP, it has been so hard on me.” Zettie turns 95 years old in November.
We would like to honor our friend Joyce, who got saved through MAP about eight years ago. From day one, Joyce has adopted several former Amish and has given generously to help pay for postage and printing costs for mailing the Amish Voice out. About nine months ago, Joyce came down with cancer and has gone through more than most people do in a lifetime. In one of our recent visits, Esther and I gathered around her bedside at the hospital and took communion with her.
We love Tom, we love Zettie, we love Joyce, and we love every one of our donors and prayer warriors! Esther and I serve as your missionaries and consider ourselves an extension of you. We are so thankful that you trust us and believe in the MAP ministry.
Someday, in heaven, we will sit in a circle and talk more how the Lord used each one of us to reach our generation with the gospel of Jesus Christ. I’m almost sure the Lord will let us meet every single one that got saved through our faithful giving and going into the highways and byways on earth. What a rewarding day that will be!
— Joe and Esther Keim
|Deadly Accident, By Joe Keim|
On Tuesday, March 14, Henry’s truck hit an icy spot on the road, spun out of control, and spun around a telephone pole. After several days of crying out to God, Henry’s name was called by someone beyond the grave.
We mourn the loss of his earthly presence, but remember the day so well when, in our living room, he called on the name of the Lord and was born of God.
His wife, Katie, and little Michael, their son, will now have to continue their journey on earth without a husband and father.
Amish families and ministers poured in by the van load, hoping to persuade Katie into letting them have Henry’s body—believing if Henry’s body was buried in Amish clothes, God would receive him on judgment day.
Henry’s body was laid to rest at one of his favorite spots on a farm in Ashland County.
|Book: What Do the Amish Believe?|
We are just weeks away from seeing this book, What Do the Amish Believe?, come out in print. A lot of people have pre-ordered the book and have been patiently waiting for it. I do sincerely apologize for taking so long. It was, without a doubt, the most challenging book we have ever been involved with. However, let me quickly add: it will likely be the most valuable resource you will ever buy from MAP. We are planning to sell these books next to cost, with hopes that folks will help us distribute them among their Amish neighbors by the case.
To learn more about this book,
please click on: What Do the Amish Believe?
|Book: The Gospel of John|
The Gospel of John book is being readied for a third printing. To date, believers from all over the United States have ordered and distributed copies of this book to thousands of Amish people.
To learn more about this book,
please click on: The Gospel of John