Sharing the good news on the beaches and in the cities

Prayer Letter

April 2020

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Deuteronomy 4:7-8
"What great nation is there that has a god so near to it as the Lord our God is to us, whenever we call upon Him? And what great nation is there, that has statutes and rules
 so righteous as all this law that I set before you today?”
Deuteronomy is Moses addressing the new generation of Israelites before they enter Canaan. He restates God’s commands that were originally given to the Israelites forty years earlier in Exodus and Leviticus. The challenge was to “choose life” (30v19) by living a life of “loving the Lord your God, obeying His voice and holding fast to Him” (30v20). In chapter 4vv7,8 the people are reminded that one difference between God’s people and others is that He is both powerful and personal, infinite and intimate, almighty and available.
In these strange times, it is good to know that we have a God who is so near to us, especially as “we call upon Him.”  So let us do just that – call upon Him, love Him, obey His voice and hold fast to Him. And as we do so, we can pray that others will see that we are indeed very blessed to have a God so near to us.
The Gospel
Our ‘tagline’ is “sharing the good news of Jesus.” But we need to spend time considering the Gospel ourselves. Paul instructed Timothy: “Remember Jesus Christ ... as preached in my gospel” (2 Tim 2v8) and then further told him to remind his congregation of the gospel (v14). That’s a good thing for us to do at all times and especially at these unusual times.
Please pray with us that:

1) The Gospel would continually warm our hearts.
2) We would be encouraged in the steadfast hope that the Gospel gives us.
3)We would realise that the Gospel is unstoppable and is not bound by physical circumstances.
 
Missions 2020 - Coronavirus
These are challenging days for both individuals and organisations and UBM is not 
exempt! The Executive Committee has met and, after much prayer and consideration
would like to share the following key points.

1) We are cancelling all our missions for this year, but
2) We’ll be ready and flexible to run missions at short notice if and only if it becomes appropriate to do so.
3) We plan to explore some creative options that could support our key ministries of 1) sharing the good news with holidaymakers and tourists 2) training and discipling UBM team members.
Please pray for:
1) The communication of this message, especially to local authorities.
2) Peace and assurance to all who made this huge decision and are impacted by it. 
3) Gospel opportunity created from the actual decision we have made. 
 
Ongoing Wisdom
The Executive Committee (the trustees) will be meeting
again to discuss the implications of the above decision.
There are many things to work through. Please pray for:

1) The Executive Committee of Steve Taylor (chairman), Steve Wright, Dave Ainscough, Jason Duffin, Dave Norbury, Dave Johnson, Alan Mitchell.
2) Wisdom in knowing how to reinstate missions if (and only if) it becomes appropriate to do so (our expectation at this stage is that it seems unlikely).
3) Wisdom in knowing what the focus of our work should be in the coming months.
4) Wisdom in knowing what to do with other key events (e.g. the reunion weekends in September).
5) Wisdom in knowing how to prepare well (even better!) for 2021. 
 
Postal Bible Club
One aspect of our work that will continue is the Postal Bible Club. In fact, we have had a few more applications in the last couple of weeks. Also, now they are at home more, some children have restarted doing the activity sheets. How we administer PBC will require a few changes while we are in the current lockdown. Please pray for:
1) Paula as she makes the changes to the administration of PBC.
2) The extra children who have requested to join PBC.
3) The children who have restarted doing the activity sheets.
 
Other Possibilities
This is still to be discussed by the Executive Committee but a small sub-group will be
meeting to think through ideas for Exec to consider. These will need to be low-cost, consistent with our core ministry, achievable etc. Please pray for:
1) Wisdom in knowing what to pursue and what not to pursue in terms of creating other opportunities.
2) The ongoing impact of our evangelistic websites anyway (thebeachteam.org and thechristiananswer.org).
3) Opportunities for team members to connect with those they have met in previous years.
 
Our Friends
These times are challenging for many Christian ministries. We are officially associated with Young  Life (NYLC) - an interdenominational network of  Christian youth groups - but we have informal links with others. They pray for us and we would encourage you to pray for them. Sincerest apologies that we can’t list them all, but here are some to pray for:
1) Young Life: their regular weekly work is happening virtually; their summer camps are under review.
2) 10ofthose: we are their chosen charity for this year and they generously provide literature for our Gospel work and help us in printing our Key to Life leaflets in other languages. Why not visit their website?
3) Christian Camps: e.g. EMW Camps, Yorkshire Camps, CCIW, Pine Lake Camps (Foundation Matters).
4) Missionary Organisations (and their summer teams): e.g. UFM Worldwide, GBM, EMF.
UBMers are involved in all of the above. Why not take some time to pray for organisations you know well?
 

Miscellaneous
As mentioned in the Tuesday prayer points, we will be working through what UBM staff will be doing over the next few months. However, there are still many assorted items for which we would value prayer
Here are some:-

1) The production of Welsh and Urdu versions of the Key to life leaflet (and reprinting of the Italian and German versions).
2) The setting up of the UBM RofI trust.
3) The ongoing work in creating a UBM version of the Sunscool app.
4) The planning of the UBM reunions (dependent on whether they go ahead or not!).
5) Some planned  changes to UBM’s online  administration system.