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News and Notes about Brigada, Your Gateway to Missions Networking!
On the WorldWide Web, browse https://brigada.org or http://www.eGroups.com/list/brigada-today
Brigada Today is “the missionary helper newsletter!”
Compiled by Doug Lucas DLucas@teamexpansion.org>, Louisville, KY
[Pass this issue to a friend! To subscribe, see instructions at end.]

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In this issue….

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WANT TO SPONSOR BRIGADA TODAY?

Brigada Logo You can! Those who sponsor are mentioned
  1. for a year thereafter on the web page,
  2. in the welcome letter that goes to all new subscribers, as well as
  3. in Brigada Today itself — and tons of people give thanks for your help!

Sponsorship payments go to operating costs such as Brigada exhibits, brochures, mailings, etc. Sponsorship is totally optional… but it sure helps make ends meet! Those wishing to sponsor Brigada Today may just send a check payable to Team Expansion, c/o 3700 Hopewell Rd., Louisville, KY 40299. Thanks a million! (“That’s all we’ve got to say about that!”)

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GET READY FOR BRIGADAFEST 2000

Brigada Logo These are the kinds of prayers that were being uttered during the first week of July on behalf of BrigadaFest 2000:

“Heavenly Father, today as we celebrate the 4th of July in America, we pray that all the nations of the world will enjoy the freedoms that we have been graced with as a nation. We also humble ourselves before You for the many wrongs we have committed in Your sight. We have failed to be Your witnesses before those who don’t know You. We recommit ourselves to stand in the gap for the many unreached people groups in the world who have yet to hear the Name of Jesus. We pray for an outpouring of your favor upon the leadership planning the Brigadafest and Friends of Bosnia Conferences. We lift up the participants, the logistics, the music ministry, the tape ministry, the finances, etc. Lord, send your best to people to these different areas. Set the participants with the fire of Your Holy Spirit so that they will take what they hear and run with it. You are an awesome God, You are a loving, compassionate God and we give you glory, and honor and praise for Who you are. We worship you and pray that you use us to reach the nations. I pray all of this in the Precious Name of Jesus, Your Son, our Lord!”

(Thanks Terry!)

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NEED A MAP?

Need a map? Need lots of maps? Need statistical information on a country? Check out the Atlapedia at http://www.atlapedia.com/.
(Thanks Tony, for the tip from “Research Buzz #33, with subscribe instructions at http://www.researchbuzz.com/news/
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FAX FOR FREE TO THE USA

fax machine Yes, another FREE fax service. This is a web-based service that allows faxing to anywhere in the USA. (Anywhere else in the world is guaranteed the least cost pricing available–Coming Soon!) To use it, just establish an account and then logon. The fax can be composed in the browser (or pasted in), and Word documents up to 100k can be sent as well–not as attachments, but converted to print format. The FREE service includes some advertisements on the receiving end, so it may not be suitable for certain uses. A “non-advertisement” option is available for a fee. Get FAX4FREE at http://www.fax4free.com, and find other fax and communication links on Ed’s Grabbag, http://www.gateman.com/grabbag.html.
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TEACHING ENGLISH TO SPEAKERS OF OTHER LANGUAGES

A six week TESOL course will be held at the University of the Nations, Kona, Hawaii from January 31, 2000 – March 10, 2000. A certificate will be given upon successful completion of the course. This professional course is designed for the missionary in mind who wants to teach internationally, especially in limited access areas. You will learn how to teach English and build relationships. For more information, contact tesol@uofnkona.edu.
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REENTRY BOOK UPDATE

book Neal Pirolo thanks everyone for the stories he has received to date on reentry (see Brigada Today 6/4/99). He has received some very good stories, but could still use more. Please contact EmmausRoad@eri.org and they will give you further details.

Since the book will help local churches learn more about the re-entry process, a bibliography is being developed to be included as a resource. Neal would like to include every book, article, organization, seminar, church, etc. who has to do with re-entry; including names, address, contact persons, etc. If you would like to contribute to this resource, please email the information to EmmausRoad@eri.org.

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CRANKIN’ FOR 20 YEARS!

Congrats to Gospel Recordings who have been making and providing hand-wind cassette players for 20 years! There have now been real breakthroughs in the pre-production problems of the JoyTalk cassette player in Korea. Keep them in mind as those in Korea get that much needed tool into production. (GR)
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CAMBODIA WORKSHOP

A Workshop on Scriptwriting & Episodic television production will be held in Phnom Penh August 2-5th in conjunction with the Consultation on Media Potentials in Cambodia at the end of the week. This four day training session will cover: Media strengths; Audience research; Media Effects; Scriptwriting and visualization; Structure of episodic TV production and Developing Believable Characters. Students will develop a long term story outline and at least one script outline. Attendance will be limited to 20. If you are interested, send an email to DanHenrich@xc.org with a one paragraph statement of why you wish to attend the workshop and it should not simply be limited to your organizational affiliation. What are your interests in scriptwriting & planning? What do you see as your role? Are you a creative person and have an urge to tell stories? Are you interested in the systematic use of visual media in Cambodia and willing to commit to innovative strategies? Please address these issues. This is not a video production workshop. There will be a small charge for the resource manual.
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GOOD NEWS FOR THOSE EXCHANGING EMAIL ADDRESSES!

pgp logo This week NAI released PGP 6.5 freeware for Mac and Window95/98/NT (US & Canada residents only). PGP 6.5 has the very cool PGPnet built right in for a globally secure VPN (Virtual Private Network). Now it’s just a matter of time before the international version is released for users outside of USA and Canada.
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THE BACKPAGE: TO COMPARE IS TO ERROR

How many times have you told your kids (or your teammates) not to compare themselves with others? Old advice, right? For some reason, it gets a little harder when we have to apply it to our own lives! :-) I recently decided to take in a “C” licensing clinic for soccer coaches. From what I heard, the 9 days of training would really help me improve my coaching… but I’ll have to admit, I was secretly hoping I could also just improve my playing ability! So off I flew to Oklahoma City for 9 days of morning-til- evening kicks… literally. :-)

The bright side was… because I’m a bit of a playing fanatic, I had no trouble with the fitness. While some of the other 30 or so coaches were sweating bullets, or sucking air, or grimacing as they tried to ease themselves into the cafeteria seating — I never felt a single ache or sore muscle the whole time. But the downside was pretty down: I was one of the most “beginner-type” players in the pack. In fact, I was probably the most novice of all. Most of the other coaches were involved coaching college teams, and all but 3 of the rest had played since they were kids… all the way through college level! Yikes. gulp The 3 of us who hadn’t really stuck out.

I was constantly comparing myself to the other players. And when the instructors would want to demonstrate something fast-paced, they’d never pick me. I felt like Charlie Brown, wishing I could get a word in with that “red-headed girl.” I felt like the guy on the playground who always gets chosen last at recess — for the softball game or whatever. In short, I felt like a real loser.

About halfway through the week, I went for a walk all by myself (I was by myself much of the week anyway.. woe is me :-) ) to a little park, where I stood on a bridge, contemplating jumping off into the creek below (which was actually more rocks than creek, but that was okay). I thought about life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness — and how behind I was in that pursuit. :-) I wondered if I’d ever be able to learn that silly game. I thought of the “in” guys… the 22-year-old boy who could stand at the halfway line and kick three consecutive lofted balls to hit both posts and the crossbar respectively, without even so much as a huff or a puff. I thought about the guy from Memphis who could cut the ball on a dime and strike the ball with his left foot so hard that, even if the keeper did catch it, the force would drive him into the back of the net! And then I thought of me… a miserable excuse for a failure.

Then I realized — that’s exactly how so many of our friends feel so often… whether it’s language learning or in middle school/junior high! Sometime in the future, one of our teammates or kids is going to feel like a loser… and what he or she does with that feeling is going to make the difference in contentment or misery.

As for me, I decided I would experiment with the feeling. Whenever I encountered it again, throughout the remainder of the week, I would “examine it,” just like you do a rubix cube when you’re trying to solve a puzzle. I guess I had a strong enough personality to do that… but those with lower self images would have probably been much more affected… and maybe that’s why the most unsettled folks choose the rocks over the side of the bridge.

Lessons I learned:

  1. We dare not compare ourselves to others — but rather, we need to force ourselves to think of our progress only in terms of our own goals. If we only know 100 words in Albanian, that’s actually pretty bad… unless it’s our 2nd week, and our goal so far was to learn 50!
  2. We need teammates. I was able to email my wife and even talk with her briefly by phone each evening. I knew that when I came home, there’d be this blanket of unconditional acceptance. My teammates at the office think I hung the moon (boy do I have them fooled! :-) ). Those teammates and my family meant so much to me in my time of testing.
  3. We need to put things in perspective. Since I was involved in morning-to-evening soccer, it seemed like the most important thing in life for those days. In reality, it was a kind of surreal. The real landscape is the eternal one . . . and in that world, we’re all precious in God’s sight.
  4. Finally, I really saw the importance of leadership. All it would have taken were even a halfdozen words of encouragement from the instructors. Instead, I felt constantly measured and never really reinforced. Let’s take note that we need to constantly be on the lookout for the person who is making progress, even if it’s only step-by-step.

soccer ball So . . . you’re probably wondering… did I make the “C” license? I’d guess there isn’t a snowball’s chance in the Sahara. :-) Another coach there had already failed one “C” clinic and he was far ahead of me, already coaching an elite club in Dallas and playing at a high level. But see… the license won’t mean nearly as much to me as the knowledge. I know I moved a step forward in my understanding of the game… even if I don’t get the license — and I’m assuming I won’t. (They send you the evaluation via the mail, weeks after the clinic… so I have yet to hear the bad news.)

Bottom line: Find someone today you can lift up. They just might be looking at the rocks over the side of a lonely bridge!

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BRIGADA TODAY IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE FOLLOWING TEAM OF REGULAR VOLUNTEERS:

*Global Glimpses: John Hanna, Caleb Project, jhanna@cproject.com
*Brigada Website: Bob Mayhew, WebServant@brigada.org
*Brigada Customer Service Manager: help@brigada.org
*Brigada Coordinator: Doug Lucas, Team Expansion & Brigada, DLucas@teamexpansion.org
*and many other occasional contributors too numerous to mention!
But thanks for working together! That’s the dream of Brigada!