“hold to our gift of faith”

The apostle Paul reminds us that we do not war against flesh and blood but against principalities and spiritual forces of evil in this world. However, I am becoming more and more convinced that we DO war against brick and mortar! It seems living in a building that is over 100 years old is like fighting a never ending battle. Our home’s latest attack is in the form of a leaky roof. The living room pours forth a waterfall, the bathroom downstairs and most bedrooms have water stains and the attic has consequently commenced to growing mold!

While waiting for the resolution as to how we will fix this huge problem, the Lord has pressed upon my heart to hold to our gift of faith. We have begun the process of getting roofing estimates. It seems the estimate is around 10,000 dollars. We believe we must get a new roof then begin to repair the damage from the water. The mold issue faces challenges all on its own. We would like to get an expert in to determine if it is safe to continue living here while we fix the problems.

Would you please pray for us in our time of determining what can and needs to be done? We love our home. Its location is right in the heart of what the Lord has called us here to do. The avenue is where those in need wander. Many stop by here for food, fellowship and prayer. It is not a “beautiful” place to live but it has remained our blessing ground. Living in the atmosphere of Kensington where there is a lot of warring against the evil forces of this world is challenging enough. We would love to not question if our home is making our family sick. We exist here day to day because of your financial gifts but even more so because of your prayers.

Please pray for us to stand firm in our gift of faith that our Father will help us. We completely depend on His provision. Many of you faithfully give to us each month so we can continue to do what we truly feel blessed and called to do here. A significant part of our ministry is just being here. We have opportunities each time we come and go to reach out and love our neighbors. I never thought how much I would come to choose my home and be so thankful to live here18650_11.

We believe the circumstances we face that are impossible for us to fix are an opportunity for God to write another chapter of our story. Our story is filled with his miraculous provision. Once Jim was proclaiming that his heavenly Father owned the cattle on a thousand hills and the next week a dairy farmer from church gave him a check for 1,000 dollars and said he sold a cow and wanted to give Jim an offering! We do not want to slip into unbelief, fear and worry. We recognize something has to be done. We are asking you to pray with us for the answer.

We appreciate you so very much!
Thank You,
Jenifer Snider
August 2013

His Benefits

Recently a visiting Pastor from Cuba shared with our church a timeless message from Psalm 103. It blessed my soul to hear a man who came in faith to encourage an American congregation to count the benefits of the Lord. We all know how blessed we are to live in a land of plenty, but it doesn’t hurt to shake our finger at our soul and remind ourselves just how blessed we are by the Lord. His simple yet profound word to remember all the Lord has done and will do inspired me greatly. So much so that it has been several weeks and I still hear his voice commanding my soul to rejoice and take courage.

A David Psalm 103
O my soul, bless God.
From head to toe, I’ll bless his holy name!
O my soul, bless God,
don’t forget a single blessing!
He forgives your sins—every one.
He heals your diseases—every one.
He redeems you from hell—saves your life! He crowns you with love and mercy—a paradise crown.
He wraps you in goodness—beauty eternal.
He renews your youth—you’re always young in his presence.

When Jesus hung on the cross he pictured each of our faces as he forgave all our sin. Not until all of his creation was accounted for did he say, “It is finished”. He walks each of us through our diseases and heals our bodies of their infirmities. (As I type this Abigail has a temperature of 101 and Aaron had a biopsy yesterday for a suspicious mole, please pray in their healing!) In our eternal lives he redeems us from hell, what a benefit the Lord generously gives. Not only does he take the blame for our sin but he crowns us with love and mercy. They follow us all our days. When he looks at our faces or hears our names he sees goodness and beauty. In the Lord’s eyes we are always young.

Since the message came to me I speak back to fear and doubt with the word of the Lord. We needed braces for Abigail and the cost was too exorbitant for us to pay. We prayed to the Lord and he led us to an orthodontist in our church! The fee to get Abby’s braces from beginning to end was several thousand dollars, but we only had to pay 10% of that fee. Thank you, Grace and Mercy for following us and she was provided for!

I shake my finger at my worry and exchange it with meditation on his faithfulness, answers to prayers, miracles, abundant provision, love, eternal life, and health. Just to name a few; he provides for all of our financial needs every month, our pediatrician is a wonderful Christian man, our dentist recently has done several crowns for Jim and I and has not charged us for this extremely expensive procedure, and we have been safe for all these years living in a very dangerous place. We don’t want to take any of these benefits for granted. We are in constant appreciation for all of your gifts, also!

As we face today’s battles we arm ourselves with the powerful evidence of what God has done and build our faith to pray in the miracles we haven’t seen yet. In the words of Pastor Jose, “Shake your finger at your soul, and do not forget all his benefits!”

Jenifer Snider
June 2013

Shard Removal

When the weather turns warm we spend as much time out of doors as possible. It is quite contrary to living in Florida most of my life where I spent time trying to avoid the heat. We are fortunate to have a beautiful side lot and spring marks the season where most city dwellers come out of their brick dens to officially end hibernation. Last year while dining in the side lot I dropped a glass sending it shattering all over the rock gravel lot. I hurried to clean up all of the shards before anyone got hurt and headed inside.

A couple of days later I went to the lot to do some early morning reading. The sun was shining so bright directly over my path and I stopped in my tracks as I saw more glass shards. I sensed the Holy Spirit speaking to me about all the shards that reflected in the clear light of day. I couldn’t believe how many I missed! He spoke how in our most painful moments we tend to pick up the large shards and call ourselves healed briskly move on with life. Only when we are capable of deeper healing does God reveal more shards that need to be gently removed.shards of glass

As you can imagine I needed a word from God at that moment in my life. I thought I was past a hurt and was bothered by this gentle reminder there was even more healing I needed. Until that moment I hadn’t realized festering shards were still in my heart that without God’s gentle hand removing them I could never be completely whole. I was well enough to do my day to day but God always wants more for us than to just get by.

Tender mercy and grace are His way. Our ministry to the hurting souls in Kensington is full of “shard removal”. I thought moving here we would preach the good news and all would be healed. Instead I have learned we are in fact healed bit by bit through a process that is just as important as the final healing! We have been enduring many processes just as you have and continue to see God’s hand in them all. The construction renovation moves nicely along. Faithfully each week men sacrifice their day off to build God’s kingdom here on Kensington Ave. as it is in heaven. The food cupboard remains open and full of food for more than 80 families each week. Jim’s time spent on the street continues to prove fruitful.  The outreaches are full each Saturday uniting Christ’s bride (the church) spending time with Christ (the least of these). And remains one of the most beautiful things our human eyes can behold.

Thank you for your sustaining support of our shard removal here in Philadelphia. I have a great peace knowing you agree with us to continue the work begun here entrusted to our family and volunteers.

Jenifer