VOB News February 2018 “…competing according to the rules”

As often happens when it’s time for the Olympic Games to roll around, inspiration and lessons from the Lord, follow. In particular, this time around, I’ve been learning the value of ‘just keep going’. Some of my absolute favorite winter Olympic sports, are biathlon and cross-country skiing. I suppose because they require so much dedication and commitment, which I find to be inspiring. But another sport I’ve grown fond of, is something called ‘Snowboard-Cross’. It’s an event where 6 snowboarders at a time, all race down a hilly and winding course, to see who will get to the finish line first. The race has been described as ‘NASCAR on ski’s’. Snowboard-cross is a wild and woolly race, and lots of things can happen. One person can be at the front, with a huge lead, while others have fallen down in the back, and are seemingly out of the race. Suddenly, the leader might wipe out, taking others with him/her, and the person in the back, who was super far behind, comes to the forefront, and wins the gold medal. Over the years I’ve watched this sport, I’ve seen this happen several times. It’s kind of amazing. I’ve seen the same thing happen with Biathlon, or Cross-Country skiing. I watched a race the other day, where a guy got tangled up with some other skiers at the start of the race, almost completely out of it. But he persevered, and with amazement, everyone watched as he ended up slowly chipping away, and finally winning the whole race!

You can probably guess where I’m going with this, right? But to bring it into our day to day lives, we are often struggling, big-time, with a wide variety of obstacles. In our case, there have been a myriad of things in the last couple of months, that

have been difficult. Family stuff, ministry stuff, physical stuff, friends in need, all have meant a great deal of digging in and trying to stand firm. When I watch these feats of human endurance, I am encouraged to just “KEEP GOING”. These sporting events, are only a metaphor for life, in general. Winning a gold medal is only a temporal thing. But the day to day life we endure, and the way we manage our faith in the Lord, is what truly matters. When I read verses such as II Timothy 2:5 “And also, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not win the prize unless he competes according to the rules”, I am reminded to keep plugging away. Our ‘competing according to the rules’, is to remain faithful. Verse 13: “If we are faithless, He remains faithful; for He cannot deny Himself.” 

These words bring me great comfort, in a time of upheaval. We pray that they will comfort you, as well. If you’re going through the fire, just keep going..…  Ephesians 6:13
“…and having done everything, to stand firm…..” 

We love and value YOU!!! May the Lord bless you and keep you, both now and always,

Love Wayne & Carol

Prayer points:
Wow, where do we start this month.

  • pray for our family, as we still need to see healing come, including Franki June.
  • pray for Carol’s re injured/sprained ankle.
  • pray for VOB, as we make some recent needed adjustments among food collection efforts.
  • pray for worship gathering on Muckleshoot reservation (Wash.State) 1st weekend in March.
  • pray for ongoing Mexico work, and continued favor with border crossings.
  • prayer need for some added admin & other responsibilities on Wayne’s plate.
  • Pray for additional finances needed for ongoing worship event travels to Native American reservations.


VOB News April 2014 “…the race set before us”

Some of our partners on Facebook participated in “Profile pic wearing your VOB hat” day this past month.
Some of our partners on Facebook participated in “Profile pic wearing your VOB hat” day this past month.

“…and everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things.They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.”….

I Cor. 9:25

I was recently reading in 1st Corinthians, when the above verse caught my eye. It just so happened to be during the Winter Olympics, & I was reminded anew, as I was reading chapter 9, the reference Paul was giving to the Olympic games, which were held during that time.  Sporting competitions held great meaning for the people who lived in Corinth, a key city in ancient Greece.  The Isthmian games, were held every 2 years in Corinth.  They were similar to, but did not quite have the stature of, the Olympic games.  In writing the Corinthian people, Paul knew they would understand the analogy he was giving them.

If you’ve ever watched the Olympics on TV, you will know the absolutely incredible, unfathomable, extreme dedication it takes to compete in the games.  For me (Carol), this has always held a mysterious appeal. When we were growing up, my family avidly watched the Olympics, every 4 years.  It had such an impact on me, I even came to the conclusion that I wanted to compete in the equestrian events in the Olympics. I was working towards this, when I came to know Jesus, and my life changed, entirely.

And so, as I was reading 1st Cor. 9, I was struck with the incredible comparison Paul was making between an Olympic athlete, and the follower of Christ.  He reminds the reader about the supreme dedication it takes. He tells them that they should be following Jesus, just like an Olympic athlete competes to win the gold medal.  He says that the athlete ‘exercises self-control in all things’, meaning they sacrifice, train, work toward and choose things that will propel them toward their goal of ‘winning’.  He, himself, says he ‘runs’ in such a way, as to have a goal (he isn’t aimless), he ‘boxes’ in such a way, so that he isn’t just hitting at nothing (he has a target).   He says, in 2nd Tim. 2:5, if anyone competes as an athlete, they have to compete according to the rules, or they get disqualified.  In Hebrews 12:1, he exhorts the reader to ‘run with endurance, the race that is set before us,’ just like Jesus did.  Throughout the letters in the New Testament that Paul wrote, he laces in sporting references for people who could grasp the high level of commitment it takes for an Olympic athlete to win.  He compares it to how important ‘our’ race is, in that we don’t just receive a crown of leaves (or a gold medal, as the case may be).  We receive an eternal reward, and one that doesn’t fade!

Sometimes I have moments when I ask myself, ‘what am I doing?’.  Maybe you’ve asked yourself the same question.

I forget how important this ‘race’ is.  Our lives in Christ are of such significance, and the race we run for HIM, is of such value, that it must be attended to with great care & effort, just like an Olympic athlete.   Dedication, commitment, follow-thru.

As we, VOB, run our race, we appreciate how you are a part of our team, in serving the poor and in worship and prayer.   Even as an Olympic athlete could not do what he/she does, without the trainers, nutritionists, sports therapy personnel, coaches, administrators, financial supporters, etc, etc, neither could we do what we do without YOU.  An Olympian does not work in a vacuum.  Thank you.   May the Lord show you, how to run the race He has given, and give you grace and  wisdom, in running it.

Love,  Wayne & Carol


-favor with the customs agents in Tijuana.  SO thankful!

-abundance of food for those in need.

-donation of a car for our ministry partner, Vicente. (thank you K & S, and also, M & H).

-a very successful fund raiser last month, which came at a very critical moment for VOB.

Prayers please:

-please press in for prayer for our health.

-monthly supporters for VOB.  It’s a bit tight at the moment.

-wisdom for expanding P.lace o.f W.orship, our monthly worship/prayer gathering.  

-more volunteer support with strong physical help for collecting food donations.