family conference

Stewarding God's Family: October Trip Update

This article originally appeared in our November 2018 newsletter.

Pastor David had made the arrangements for the “Stewarding God’s Family” Conference and sent invitations across the nation to key couples in ministry. Then, the conference hotel where reservations had been made called David to inform him that the agreed upon rate for rooms and food had tripled! David emailed us with the news and we all prayed — with urgency!

Another conference center with more basic accommodations just “happened” to have a cancellation so the facility would be available on just the right days and the cost would be less. 

This meant that even though the venue was not as nice, more couples could attend. Instead of 15 couples in ministry, there were 35!


A goal of Firefall International is “transforming nations through compassionate partnership.” This conference was an example of that.

Nancy and I (Jim) shared the teaching load with Pastor David and his wife, Diim Te, and also the associate pastor, Daniel and his wife, Diim. In addition, worship and morning devotions were led by nationals. We wish we could express to you the joy of seeing our spiritual sons and daughters ministering in the wisdom and power of the Holy Spirit.

When God Stepped In

There is a moment in the conference that stands out to me. I was teaching from Romans 16 where Paul is thanking those who worked with him in the gospel. His list is about equally divided between men and women. Paul was not teaching doctrine or defining ecclesiastical positions, he was just thanking those who did the work. My purpose was to show that, in Paul’s view, women were equally acknowledged and appreciated for their service in the Lord.

As I was talking about Paul thanking those faithful workers, I started to thank those in front of me for their work. As I did, it was if I stopped speaking and God was speaking through me right to their hearts. I felt the compassion and gratitude of the Holy Spirit for these unrecognized giants of faith. I thanked them for boldly going into demonic strongholds, for sowing seeds of the gospel with tears and faith into hard ground, and for persevering in the midst of all kinds of persecution and resistance. I felt these words of gratitude go into their hearts like water into thirsty ground.

Later Nancy and I interviewed one of our Firefall associates who is planting a church in one of the hardest regions of this dark nation. He said that it was the first time someone had said “Thank you” for the sacrifices he and his family were making.

In some ways this conference was like Ezekiel’s vision where he spoke life into dry bones and they became an army. I’m convinced that spiritual victories will be won and the kingdom extended because of your prayer and sponsorship of these couples. Thank you!

Testimonials from Conference Attendees

I had never attended this kind of seminar, emphasis on balance in family and ministry, though I had served in the ministry for twenty years. I learned the importance of family in the ministry. That changed my opinion and lifestyle in the ministry for the future. I firmly believe that my family life and my ministry would be more fruitful and blessed as I would implement what I learned from this seminar. Thanks a lot and may our Lord bless everyone those who participate to conduct this kind of seminar in our nation!
My perspectives on woman role in the ministry was totally changed by attending this seminar. I just considered and assumed woman as a second class or just supported instrument in the ministry because of our Burmese culture and tradition. When I listened about the teachings on Roman 16 and serving husband and wife together in ministry, the Lord changed my perspective and now I submit my life to prioritize the role of women in our ministry and church in the coming days.

Family Life Conferences in October

For nearly 40 years, Jim and I have been involved in ministry in one form or another. We've known its joys and sorrows. There are mountaintop experiences of seeing God impact lives in amazing ways, along with valleys of misunderstanding and fear about the future.

When a couple chooses a life in ministry, their children automatically come along for the ride, like it or not. The stresses of ministry life on spouses and children don't need an explanation to those of us "in the club." Still, it is a privilege to serve God and His people, one we would never change.

As we prayerfully considered offering leadership conferences in both Vietnam and Myanmar this fall, Jim and I were inspired to develop three-day conferences focusing on Family Life and Balance in Ministry. We will call them "God's Family/My Family."

Minh and Pastor David will gather 35 leaders from each nation. We will spend time looking at God's heart for family, plus healthy boundaries and life stewardship within the demands of ministry. Local leaders will share, both men and women. Group size is small to foster authenticity and accountability.

In both Vietnam and Myanmar, the church is young. These are new concepts. Families get fractured and marriages become frayed. We see it here in the west and also in Asia. We pray our lives and influence will make a difference.

Minh and Pastor David share what these conferences will mean in these short videos:


The dates for the Vietnam Conference are October 16-18 and for the Myanmar Conference, October 24-27.

How you can help

  • Prayer: We humbly ask you to pray for these conferences.

  • Support: We also ask you to consider investing in one of these 70 leaders with a sponsorship of $70 to cover their expenses for travel, food, lodging and study materials. Some can sponsor one, others can send 5 or even 10 to the conference. 100% of your gift will be used for this purpose. (Just use the button below to give via PayPal.)

*UPDATE: We have all 70 sponsorships filled!

Our goal: 70 sponsorships of $70. Goal met!

Minh and David are inviting key leaders who will take these truths and multiply them in their spheres of influence throughout both nations.

Thank you for praying and for giving so these families in ministry may be strengthened to go the distance and serve the Lord with joy, security and unity. We'll keep you updated on our progress with this campaign in the coming weeks.

With our love and gratitude,
Nancy & Jim