As my American friends and I abide in our little neighborhood here, we are quick to rejoice over the little things that make us smile, and then to jump in amazement at the seemingly impossible tasks He accomplishes!  Last week we got excited upon discovery that we now can get fresh cherries in the market!  To add to this, one of us had the fun privilege of actually going out to the market!  (Considering that usually an local friend does our grocery shopping for us, so we foreigners do not have an noticeable routine, a trip to the market is a rare occasion to be celebrated!)  On a bigger scale, I was shocked and amazed to have recently been granted a one year residency, something for which others have applied and been waiting for over a year to no avail.  This is a huge feat attributed to the favor of God upon our sports work here!  These big and small celebrations are some highlights in our daily life in the dusty capital the past couple months! As the spring season of dust storms is passing, we find ourselves diving full-on into summer, where these current 100°F days will steadily rise another 20+°F before reaching a peak in July-August.  Thankfully it's all a dry heat, though!  No humidity does make a difference!  With summer also comes an increase in sports activities, although this year we've tapered things off quite a bit, only doing a couple of camps on a smaller scale than we have done in the past.

One cool new development is our relationship with the Baseball/Softball Federation!  Yes, they have one, and have approached us to help them develop!  God continues to not only open doors of opportunity for us, but also to provide the right coaches and the funding to make it possible.  A month from now, I'll have four qualified softball coaches visiting to conduct a week long coaching clinic and girls camp.  We're all pretty excited at this new opportunity, as are our softball friends!

* Please remember our visiting coaches, especially as they will be dealing with some pretty intense heat while conducting the clinic/camp.  (Two of them were here last summer.  Two of them are new recruits.)

* Ask for His hand of protection to be upon us as we prepare here and then as we carry out the camp.

* Ask that we will have and seize opportunities to share not only softball but Life.

* PTL that the Paralympic leadership is supportive of this new idea to allow young people in their 20s to lead a camp!  It is very rewarding to see national sports leaders embracing new methods of sports and leadership development!

* Ask that we would receive approval for the funding we have requested through the US State Dept.

Over the past four+ years in this country, I never cease to be amazed as God continues to bless our sports work, expanding our network and opportunities for engagement.  We have many new avenues opening and others continuing to grow.  At times I feel inadequate and overwhelmed.  Ask that He would grant us wisdom and discernment to know which avenues to pursue, where to invest our energies, and especially how to do it in this unstable environment where security continues to be an issue.

Thank you!

- Rep in the Middle East