The Coomers

Mission to Bethlehem

CLICK HERE TO DONATE

February 10, 2014
by The Coomers
0 comments

FOOD & WATER

Howdy Y’all,

Today, I am so truly humbled and blessed by our AWESOME GOD and RISEN SAVIOR! We are missionaries sent here to the Arab world to “bear witness to the True Light.” As such, my award winning smile and stellar good looks do very little to result in income for my family. This is one of the hardest weights to carry, being a man and more specifically, my father’s son. When I turned 14, my father took me to the Department of Labor to get a work permit. Within a week I had three jobs: washing dishes at an all-you-can-eat buffet, mucking out stalls at a high- end farm, and working the drive through at Dairy Queen. I’ve had a job ever since, always had my own income, and never worried about where money would come from. That history has made this transition to the mission field so very difficult. Asking for money, and requesting offerings have never been my cup of tea. However, once we arrived and realized the great financial need that the school is in, we agreed to buy the water for the school whenever it runs out. If you’ve read my previous posts you’ll understand that the water runs out much more often than I had initially realized. As a result, water has become our second largest expense of the year through February 1; food being the largest.

With the backdrop of an inadequate water supply, expecting a baby in April, and working every day in the school that God called us to be a part of we, received our most devistating financial report. The good folks at People for Care and Learning are kind enough to handle all of our donation money, deposit it into our account and send us a report on the first of every month at no charge to us. On February 1st the report was not at all encouraging. In fact Paige and I were legitimately concerned about how we were going to cover our food costs for the month. It was in the midst of this financial discussion that the school ran out of water and our world came to a shocking halt. You know those times when you’re thinking “this is bad; I don’t know how I’m gonna make it…” just then the other shoe drops and suddenly you wish you could get back to “this is bad.” Thankfully, we serve a mighty God who “…Provides food for those who fear Him, He remembers His covenant forever.” Our AWESOME God, our Father and Provider always finds a way to lift us up after we’ve been bedraggled through every kind of hell that satan throws at us. When we find ourselves besieged by the attacks of the devil, our God finds a way to fly in a food drop. That is where we find ourselves today, operation Food & Water has been a success and we are going to make it through another month. We serve a mighty faithful God who will remember His covenant.

I need to say a special thank you to the people of the Adairsville Church of God, our home church and our “bullpen.” Without you, our mission to Bethlehem would not be possible. To all of our other monthly supporters, we are truly grateful and humbled by your continued support and prayers. We pray constantly for the blessing and success of those who have made this mission possible. With unending gratitude and a humble spirit, I thank you all so much for everything you’ve done for my family and I.

Very Respectfully,

Kenneth H. Coomer III

February 1, 2014
by The Coomers
0 comments

“Daddy-To-Be”: changes for You and Me

DSC_0851DSC_0855Hello All!

Welcome back to another exciting episode of coomerconnection.com! We hope you’ve enjoyed the updates thus far, sporadic as they may have been. In a life where so much is evolving around us, Paige and I rarely stop to consider the changes taking place within each of us. This is not a reference to the life of my son Kenneth Coomer IV growing inside Paige’s womb, but a citation of the way we are growing as people and as parents. Paige has already taken on so many characteristics of a caring mother, who is concerned solely with the growth and health of our baby boy. I, on the other hand, have become focused on how to build a Godly man from the day he is born. Fortunately, we both grew up with great examples of how to achieve our common and individual goals. Paige’s mother is truly a blessing, and I thank God everyday that she raised my wife to be the Godly and gracious angel that she is today. Paige’s mom is a woman who is honorable, virtuous, dignified, modest, and above all, understanding. Her seemingly effortless support of Paige and her sisters has been an incredible example for Paige to follow as we anticipate the arrival of our first-born. And my parents? Well, what can be said of the Coomer crew that is not positive? My mother set a very high standard for the woman that my brothers and I should look for. I still remember when my older brother Christian, 9 years my senior, was single. We had a conversation about the type of woman that we should look for to marry. The usual characteristics were mentioned. Of course we wanted a Christian, conservative, modest woman who had an education, but I still remember when he said he wanted to find “a woman who will support me, you know, like Mom does for Dad.” I was 16, and already I knew just what he meant. We had watched our mother be the perfect helpmate to our father through countless trials and tribulations that could easily have created a division in any household. I think everyone would agree that both my brother Christian and I have found women who live up to the standard and example that my mother set for us. Finally we come to my Pops; dear old Dad is a “man’s man” if there ever was one. A man whom, to this day, seeks the face of God with a fervor that would challenge the prophets of old. I tell people regularly that in 30 years of being his son, I have never once heard my father say a curse word. I know that I have seen him mad enough to curse, but he exemplifies many gifts of the Spirit including love, patience, kindness and self-control. He also works for and takes care of my mother with a true servant’s heart. Yes indeed, my father, the old cowboy, is more wise and stately than any great man you’ll ever come into contact with. It is with these great examples to follow that Paige and I are about to cross the threshold into parenthood. As a result, we understand the great treasure that children are and the awesome responsibility that we will have as parents.

I am certain of two things: if we follow the example that our parents have set before us, Paige and I will be a tremendous success as parents. Also, if we stay focused on the sacrifice that God made by sending His Son to die on the cross for our sins, Kenneth Coomer IV will be a great man of God. It is out of this second certainty that we have started a tradition of reading Psalm 91 to our boy every night, and claiming the promises of God for him and our family. It is truly a blessing to watch Paige’s tummy rumble and tumble as our son hears these words and promises of God. Already able to recognize my voice and repeated stories, little Coomer leaps at the sound of Psalm 91.

Living here in the West Bank has its unending challenges and great triumphs. Continually running out of water wears on us heavily, but understanding the joy of a long-lost shower and shave is a feeling every American should come to know. In our world, America has been called “a shining city on a hill”, but our Biblical foundation continues to rot from under us. We should never forget to appreciate the “small” gifts from God.

So many great things have happened since school has started back, and I wish I could share them all now. But my thoughts are invaded by the feeling of appreciation for the great people who love and support us at home. I pray that you will all be blessed and remember, “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty; I will say of the Lord He is my refuge and strength; My God, in Him will I trust…”

January 15, 2014
by The Coomers
0 comments

Happy New Year!

I cannot believe it is already 2014! Where has the time gone? To all of our family, friends, and supporters – I’m sorry for the lack of communication via the blog lately! Our Christmas time was busy, eventful, and wonderful. Finding time to sit down and write about it all has been a challenge! I’ll try to sum up the last 6 weeks the best that I can.

The beginning and middle of December involved a lot of stress for Kenneth and I, as well as all of the staff at the school. We were all under pressure to finish up the semester successfully as well as work on grading. In the midst of this, one week before we were due to go home to the U.S. for Christmas, we experienced a rare and crazy bout of weather! A 3-day blizzard came through Bethlehem and Jersualem! Bethlehem received 14 inches of snow, and Jersualem over 2 feet. With no heat in our building and power frequently shutting off, we Americans gathered together with extra layers of clothes on and prayed to stay warm! This extreme cold lasted almost a week. It was pretty rough. However, Kenneth and I did feel very blessed to have friends to endure the cold with, hot food, and the Lord’s protection over us. We heard of people freezing to death in their cars and even their homes. God was good to us, though, and we made it through! The snow melted just in time to allow us to get to the airport and enjoy Christmas in America!

We had a truly awesome time at home. The first Sunday back at church was so much fun, as my Mom, sister, mother-in-law, and friends from church threw us an incredible baby shower and welcome home party! I am so grateful that so many people love and support us. I got everything that I needed for our baby boy, and then some! I never realized how much you need for a newborn baby. I mean, wow. I am realizing more and more that this “having a baby” business is no walk in the park! Nonetheless, we couldn’t be more excited! As we traveled around the Southeast visiting our families, our baby boy wouldn’t stop growing! I think he was happy to be eating American food! The three of us were spoiled with gifts, homecooked meals, and love by all of our favorite people. God has blessed us SO much. I can’t even begin to express how grateful we are to Him for everything He has done for us in the past year.

Coming back to Bethlehem and having to leave the comforts and conveniences of America, not to mention our families, was difficult for both of us. However, we are so happy to be here, in the place we know God has called us to be! Kenneth and I are both excited about what this second half of the school year will entail. Monday and Tuesday, the school staff members got together and  prayed over each classroom in the school, asking God to do big things in the lives of all of our students this year. We are looking forward to seeing children open their hearts to the Gospel and in turn make an impact on their families and community. Please be in prayer for all of our teachers and students this week, as the new semester has begun. We would also appreciate your prayers for our health, our baby’s continued health, our finances, and wisdom for the challenges that the next few months will bring. We appreciate everyone’s continued support and love, as always. This opportunity wouldn’t be possible without all of you!

December 3, 2013
by The Coomers
0 comments

…IF ONLY IN MY DREAMS

Hello everyone and very Merry Christmas to you all. Life has been, as usual, overwhelming here in the Holy Land. Thanksgiving was such a blessing to our growing family as our Pastor and his caring wife graciously hosted all of the American volunteers for dinner. Everyone contributed a side dish or two, but having to host and clean up afterwards is the thankless and hardest part of any great party. Paige made three large broccoli casseroles that, as with anything she cooks, was sensational and devoured without pause. It felt like we were home again with everyone sitting around talking politics, football and Christmas plans. We all enjoyed sharing about our own family traditions back home during Thanksgiving. Because of our time difference, there was no football, but plenty of speculation about the now recent upset in the college football world. We Georgia fans attempted to warn the Alabama fans that Auburn was packing a powerful golden horseshoe that seemed to magnatize the whole team. Our warnings were, at the time, laughed off with a confidence that only 13 national championships can bring. Well, we all know better now and our hopes of watching an SEC team in the national championship hang on the unworthy shoulders of the Missouri tigers(!)… but enough pontificating about the ups and downs of college football!

We are counting the days until our joyous return to the “Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.” Although, everything I’ve read of late suggests that the rights of the free are being restricted and choked out by an ever aggressive government, bent not only on the theft of its people and their God-given rights, but also on it’s own destruction. All too often I read the news of what our home country is becoming, and it makes the West Bank seem more like the America that I grew up in and want my children to know. Where we live, children are safe in the womb and Christian women are treated with the esteem and respect that a sactified lady should. Those same Christian women carry themselves in a manner befitting the reverance they receive, while operating always with grace towards those who do not share their standards. The mother is the most prized and sought after postition in all of society, as she brings forth the gift of life granted from God alone. The father takes responsibility for all in his house and guards them and their reputation more closely than the balance of his bank account. Men are strong, women are respected, and when things are right children are seen and not heard (though this often is not the case). Children are a gift from God and not thrown away or mistreated. Because everyone guards their children like hawks, predators have little opportunity to invade the societal structure. I am sure there are some aspects of this culture that are less than acceptable, but the Christian community that we live in right now is the picture of the South in the 80’s and 90’s when I was a kid. I will admit that I’ve gone on a bit of a rant about the community here. However, there are downsides to our life here, such as active terror cells in the city where I sleep, a 95% Muslim population, and WATER.

The water situation is difficult. We run out of water about every 8 or 9 days on average, and it costs $100 dollars to refill the tanks. So if you do the math, we are spending a fortune on water this year. If you’d like to make sure I shower tonight, click the link above that says “CLICK HERE TO DONATE.” To refill the tanks, which are on the roof of our 4 story building, somebody (aka, the only man in the building) has to climb on top of the tanks, pump the water in, and move the hose from one tank to another. Given my great love of heights and the recently dropping temperatures, you might imagine my great joy when the water slows to a drip and the truck must be called. The Israeli government controls the water table, and because we live in the West Bank there is little access to “public” water for our community. Therefore I spend plenty of time on the roof. This inconvenience seems small, however, when you compare it the reward we receive everyday in the form of influencing children for Christ.

Teaching has been a new and tough experience, but being at this school has been awesome. The children, both Christian and Muslim, are so eager and hungry to hear from the Bible and discuss the life of Christ and his influence on our world. We are getting ready for Christmas, which is a huge deal here in the “little town of Bethlehem.” The children know the story of Christ’s birth almost from memory. We’ve been analyzing the story’s details and all the prophecy fulfilled by the life of Christ. Today, as we were discussing the ministry of Jesus and his parable of the four soils, one my Muslim students asked, “Mr. Coomer, what is your favorite verse of scripture? Do you have one, or do you just read it because you must?” Well, I hit him with Psalm 133:1, of course, and then explained how God loves for His people to get together, praise His name and have a good time while they are doing it. The questions rained down like a flood, and that was it! Bible class and discussion of our favorite scriptures took up the remainder of the day. You might think I cheated the kids because I skipped my lesson on exponents, but I’d say I invested more in their future, and math can always wait until tomorrow. All in all, we live a charmed life here in Bethlehem and we enjoy every minute of it. I am so thankful that God saw fit to grant us this opportunity.

Please continue to keep us in your prayers as we make our way through the final weeks of the first semester of the school year.

Very Respectfully,

Kenneth

October 7, 2013
by The Coomers
Enter your password to view comments.

Protected: Changes!

This content is password protected. To view it please enter your password below:

August 29, 2013
by The Coomers
Enter your password to view comments.

Protected: BRING IT

This content is password protected. To view it please enter your password below: