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Moving Forward: ASI Project Update

Seeding, Weeding, and Blooming

Tim Crary

03/31/2008

Agriculture is a wonderful illustration for soul winning. The farmer plants and sees nothing, he hoes and sees nothing, he waters and sees nothing: he cultivates and still sees nothing; all tedious, backbreaking labor that requires perseverance and tenacity. Country Life in Wisconsin has for years been working in sustained, purposeful planting of gospel seeds.
inside_asi_spring_2008_page_29_image_0003Take, for example, the story of Fletcher. The product of a broken home, Fletcher’s early years were spent shuttling from one household to another. His only acquaintance with the truth was through his grandparents (seeds). His years as a young man were filled with drugs and poor decisions. In the mid 1980s, Fletcher came to Country Life, where the staff spent many hours talking and working with him (hoeing, weeding, watering). But still for many years he strayed from the Lord. Two years ago he came back again to Country Life, still unsure of the Father’s love, yet God was making serious inroads into his life.
One day an ad for evangelistic meetings caught Fletcher’s attention. He went, and a short while later he made a total and complete commitment to God. (The green shoot bursts out into full bloom).
Or there’s the story of John and Sherry, who were invited by their neighbors to dine with them at Country Life (seeds). Enjoying the restaurant’s food, they decided to participate in Country Life’s cooking class. After completing the five-week course, John and Sherry were most impressed with the healthy results (weeding, watering).inside_asi_spring_2008_page_29_image_0004
And when their neighbor extended another invitation, this time to the local Adventist church, John and Sherry considered going, based on the positive experience at Country Life. It took some coaxing, however, as negative experiences at other churches in the past were hard to overcome. But God would not let them go, and today they attend the Adventist church (bloom).
Country Life Garden in Portage, Wisconsin received part of the 2006 ASI convention offering. Funds were used to purchase items needed to open the new restaurant, including audio/visual equipment (for hosting cooking classes and other seminars), lighting and fencing for the parking lot, and dinner plates, bowls, and other utensils. The restaurant officially opened in May 2007. The facility has also been used to host seminars and various Adventist church meetings.
Many thanks to those who helped Country Life Portage through the ASI offering. Your generous gifts have greatly helped to improve the facility and allow the ministry of Country Life to continue to reach people like Fletcher, John and Sherry, with the seeds of Christian love and the gospel – seeds that someday sprout into beautiful bloom.