Dear Friends of the Mordecai Project:
This morning I was reading in Acts 20 when Paul shared his famous last words with the leaders of the Ephesian church. During his message he quotes Jesus saying: “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (verse 35). Theologians call this quote an “agrapha,” a saying of Jesus that does not appear in the canonical gospels. Jesus probably said these words often, so that even though the quote never appears in Matthew, Mark, Luke or John, Jesus’ disciples fondly remembered it. That one special quote became legendary. Generosity is at the heart of Jesus!
These words of Jesus mean a lot to me this month, because my wife and I have spent a lot of time sending wire transfers to our ministry partners overseas. There is nothing more fulfilling than sending a message that says, “The money is on the way!” Our ministry directors in Latin America, Africa and Asia are rejoicing that funds have been designated to help them improve the lives of disadvantaged women and girls in their communities. And we could not be channels of these funds if you were not generous with your giving. Thank you!
Below you can see a couple of the women in Uganda who received food aid from us this month. Because of a deadly second wave of COVID-19, Uganda was locked down again—and people were unable to work, and food was scarce. We provided rice, sugar, corn flour, soap, salt and other staples so that many families could survive in this critical time. Thank you for your love and care.
Many years ago I met a young man named Antione Ashley in Deland, Florida. At the time he was teaching at a Christian school, but I could see the call of God on his life. I invested time in Antione and got to know his wife, Andrea (see photo below). He eventually went on staff with Lighthouse Church in Deland, and he participated in many of my Bold Venture events. He also led worship and spoke at those men’s retreats. Then three years ago he stepped into the role of senior pastor of that congregation, which was renamed Arise Church.
Antione recently invited me to be a part of the third anniversary of his church, and I was honored to attend that meeting on July 18. I had no idea that Antione would be announcing that Arise Church wanted to give a special offering to The Mordecai Project. Because the church had sold a property, Antione wanted to bless five ministries that had impacted his life. Arise Church gave The Mordecai Project $25,000 for our overseas outreach! I was overwhelmed by this show of generosity. Already we have dispersed these funds to our ongoing work in Kenya, El Salvador, two cities in Uganda and two cities in Malawi. Please join me in thanking Arise Church for this amazing gift.
In late June I flew to Chicago to preach at Christian Worship Center, a growing Spirit-filled church pastored by a Ukrainian named Peter Kucher. You can see me with him and his wife, Alla, below. This church began as a Ukrainian congregation, but the Lord directed Peter to begin reaching people from other backgrounds. Today the church has grown to several hundred people, and I can see this church expanding and planting other congregations. I ministered to the staff of the church, spoke to the men of the church at an evening cookout, spoke on Sunday, and did a special spiritual renewal service—during which many people were baptized in the Holy Spirit.
It was amazing to see how the Lord has added people from diverse backgrounds to the Christian Worship Center congregation. Below you can see my friend Gary Malone (who traveled with me) with two men from Ghana, Michael Okleme and Franklin Ankomah. Both of these men serve on the leadership team of the church, and Franklin was ordained in the ministry on the Sunday morning I was there. In fact, I participated in ordaining him. It is a joy to see how God is bringing such gifted people from other nations to help us reach America!
I was especially overjoyed that this man below, George, gave his heart to Jesus on the night of our men’s event in Chicago. I shared a message about how the Father longs for us to return to Him, and how He is so loving and slow to anger. George was so ready to receive forgiveness. He walked with me to the back of the church property and prayed a prayer of repentance and faith. My greatest joy is to see someone discover the love of Jesus for the first time!
While I was in Chicago I was invited to speak at Iglesia Rios de Agua Viva, the church that is pastored by my dear friends Omar and Maritza Rivera. I have been in their church twice before. Even though Chicago has been in lockdown mode, many people come to this church to pray on Monday nights and they have been seeing a move of the Holy Spirit. Many people received special prayer and prophetic ministry that night.
Also while I was in Chicago I got to visit with my friends Joseph and Carolina Chaparro and their new baby, Ezekiel. When Ezekiel was in the womb, Carolina started bleeding and the doctors were concerned she might lose the baby. I was speaking at their church that weekend in 2020, and I prayed for Carolina. Joseph called me later that day and said that her bleeding had stopped, and Carolina did not bleed anymore. Ezekiel was born with no complications a few months later. And as you can see, he is smiling today! What a blessing to see this boy healthy and whole. We praise God for His healing miracles.
When I was in Florida in July I gathered a group of men who I have invested in over the years while living in Orlando. We had 14 guys from seven different nationalities including Colombia, Peru, Brazil, Mexico, Nigeria and Ecuador. My friend Cameron McMillan allowed me to have this meeting at his church. We shared a meal together and then spent two hours encouraging each other. It is a blessing to be able to pour my life into these men.
At the end of July I went to Seattle to help perform the wedding of this couple below, Mehari and Selam. They are immigrants from Eritrea, and they love Jesus with all their hearts. I met them last year when I was doing a Zoom Bible study with a group of Eritreans. They eventually got engaged, and Mehari reached out to me for mentoring. I ended up doing their premarital counseling, and then had the joy of attending their wedding celebration. Eritrean weddings are actually two-day affairs, with two ceremonies, colorful costumes, drums, lots of dancing and two big feasts. The happy couple will reside in Santa Rosa, California.
In July I also went to Mobile, Alabama, to help prepare for our big Bold Venture men’s event coming up in September. Below you can see some of the men who serve on the planning committee. We are very excited to have our first Bold Venture in the Mobile area. In the photo below, front row, you can see my friend Hao Xu, a Chinese-American professor who will be sharing his testimony at the Mobile event. He went from atheist to Christian after coming to the United States to study, and today he sees many people healed through prayer.
You can see from the photo below that our Bold Venture T-shirts are here! We are very excited that Bold Venture will be hosted in two locations—Sioux Falls, South Dakota from August 19-21, and Mobile, Alabama from Sept. 30-October 2. Please register now if you plan to come. Just go to boldventure.org to reserve your space (cost is about $80). And please pray that the men who attend these retreats will be transformed into disciple-makers!
Here are some specific prayer requests from us:
** Please pray for a miracle for Beatriz Lopez, the mother of my ministry assistant, Abdiel. Beatriz is in the hospital in Florida with Covid, and her condition is very serious. Pray that her oxygen levels will return to normal and that the virus will leave her body. She is very weak.
** In August I will be preaching in Fayetteville, North Carolina; Lucedale, Mississippi; and Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Please pray for a strong anointing on these services.
** Please continue to pray for healing for my right eye. It has now been determined that I have the beginnings of a torn retina; it is not a cataract. But because clinics are backed up I have not been able to get an appointment for the procedure. I need a healing miracle.
** Thank you for praying for the funds for our overseas projects. The Lord has sent several significant gifts this past month, but we are standing in faith for at least $460,000 more. The need is great!
We love you and thank God for your financial support. We could not do this without your partners. To give to our overseas work, just hit the “Donate” button below and follow the prompts. To give by check, mail it to The Mordecai Project, P.O. Box 2781, LaGrange, GA 30241.
Lee and Deborah Grady
The Mordecai Project
P.O. Box 2781
LaGrange, GA 30241
The Mordecai Project is a Christian ministry devoted to empowering women, confronting abuse and transforming nations through the power of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
All gifts are tax-deductible. Secure online donations can be made at our website themordecaiproject.org/donate
Checks can be made out to The Mordecai Project and mailed to:
The Mordecai Project / Bold Venture Ministries
P.O. Box 2781
LaGrange, GA 30241:
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Rev. Matt Judd
Good News Church
Pickens, South Carolina
Rev. Luis Roig
Casa del Padre
Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico
Rev. Eddie Taylor
Rev. Beth Taylor
Taylor Ministry Group
Re. James Graham
International Gospel Outreach
Rev. Dee Mueller
The Hearth Ministries