A Norton Family Newsletter—March 2014 “Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you” (Matt. 28:19-20).
It is our privilege to make disciples among the Navajo. Pictured below is one of the disciples of Jesus, who has been worshiping with us since before Christmas. His name is Timothy (good name!) Yazzie, and like many who live on the reservation, he has had his share of struggles in life, including being ridiculed for his faith. But not only is he holding on to Christ as his Savior, he is growing in the knowledge of who Jesus is and what He has done. Timothy wants to respond to all of that with acts of service and love toward his community. One of his desires is to start a softball league for young boys.
God has placed men as leaders of the family in the created order, but so often this ideal is far from realized on the reservation. Not only do the fathers abdicate their roles as the spiritual head and provider, many of the mothers are also not present in their children’s lives, and the de facto parents are the grandparents. What a great need there is to turn “the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers” (Mal. 4:6). Although Timothy himself is not a father, he has a very vital part to play as a positive male role model for children, especially as one who brings the Good News of the Gospel!
Since our last letter to you, we were greatly encouraged by our Lutheran Indian Ministries staff meeting outside of Milwaukee, Wis. David Lee, a member of our church, attended the meeting along with Heidi and me. All of us were greatly blessed by the fellowship and the Bible study led by Rev. Dan Bohlken from Forest Grove, Ore.
During the gathering, Lutheran Indian Ministries’ staff prayed for David and three other Native leaders (another of whom is Navajo) as they consider serving the Lord in their communities. David is pictured seated in the front with the blue shirt and glasses.
We have applied for a grant to serve in Minto, Alaska. The Navajo are an Athabascan people group, and their relatives live in the Yukon and Northwest Territories of Canada and Alaska (those people self-identify as Athabascan or, alternatively, Athapascan). We are very hopeful for the opportunity to serve among the “cousins” and further strengthen bonds of faith. The community of Minto experienced a flood and we will be going in to do some flood relief work.
Thank you again for praying for us and supporting God’s Mission here. May His Sacrifice, which we observe this season, fill your hearts with reverence and joy!
In Christ’s Service, Tim, Heidi, Philip & Leslie Norton
Special Prayer Requests
Please thank God with us for:
- The great staff meeting in Wisconsin and the interest David Lee has in serving His people.
- Brother Timothy Yazzie and his interest in serving his community.
Please intercede with us for:
- That our grant request to serve in Alaska would be funded.
- Those who are sporadic in their faith walk in Navajo.
- Continued growth for Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church.
Gifts to support this ministry can be sent to: Lutheran Indian Ministries 3525 North 124th Street, Suite 1 Brookfield, WI 53005 Memo line: “Navajo”
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