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  • 12 hours ago
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  • 20 hours ago
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RHM March 2015 Newsletter

  • Whenever Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed, and whenever he lowered his hand, Amalek prevailed. But Moses’ hands grew weary, so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it, while Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side. So his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. And Joshua overwhelmed Amalek and his people with the sword. (Exodus 17:10–13 ESV)

    March Newsletter - 2015

    Hello there,

    Thank you for reading our devotional and being a part of Refreshing Hope Ministries. This is our monthly update on what has been happening here. It has been a busy month at Refreshing Hope and it is hard to believe that it is already March! That said, I am looking forward to spring and warmer weather… 

    We have launched our new ministry website / online church at www.refreshinghope.org and as I write this, we have around 500 members so far. It is still under development and each day brings new changes but overall we are pretty happy with its progress. All of my writings and teachings are being archived on there as well as others. Each member can have their own blog and share their writings with others. 

    As you know, we have changed the email system to send people back to the website. I know that some people preferred the old format, but to us it was like sending an email into space. You never even knew if anyone opened it and often hundreds bounced back to us as spam which was discouraging. People would email us wondering where their devotional was, and there was really nothing that we could do about it. It was lost in cyberspace. The more text in an email, the more difficult it is to get through spam filters. Each word adds points and soon the email is marked as spam and blocked, especially when you send 100,000 emails a day.  

    With the new method, we now we have people coming onto the website and leaving comments, making friends and discussing the teaching in more depth. We love the interactivity and connection that is happening there. We are growing together day by day as a community and getting to know each other better. 

    There is a private prayer network as always where you can submit prayer requests. You do need to be logged in now to submit prayer requests but it makes it much more seamless. There is a nice chat / instant messaging system built into the bottom bar. You can share posts right to Facebook and Twitter. There is a “Printable View” at top of every article that renders it as plain text for printing or better readability. It has a nice mobile interface but we also have Apps now named “Refreshing Hope.” The Android App is out on Google Play and the Apple IOS App is waiting on review. It should be on the App store within a week. It has been a lot of work to get here, but it has been worth it to see all of the connections happening. 

    So we have been praying what now? The key to building a strong community is leaders and there is no way that Sylvia and I can be available 24x7 because just like Moses, we will get tired. We would love to see small group leaders step up and have events. For example, say someone wanted to have a weekly Bible study online, they could create their own group, we could advertise it, people could join it, create an event with a set schedule and say Wednesday evening everyone in that group could meet in a chat room at Refreshing Hope and discuss the Bible together. It would be a bit like a life group, but online with people from around the world and from the comfort of your home. 

    A friend of ours is starting up a Christian Internet radio station and wants us to share the Daily Word of Hope on it, so there may soon be an audio version of the Daily Word that you can listen to, possibly a weekly teaching. We will let you know the details if it comes about. 

    Another thing that we are looking at is a way to do a live broadcast with an embedded chat room under it so that we could have a movie night and broadcast videos, say at 7PM and then be able to discuss it together. Perhaps one day down the road when finances permit it, we may be able to set up a small studio and do live broadcasts weekly with praise and worship and all. 

    For now, we need leaders, leaders, leaders. So if you are up to leading a small group, please let us know. The topic can be anything that you are passionate about. Email us, we will talk about it, pray about it, and if it sounds viable, we will help you get started, advertise it and help you however that we can to make it successful. We will probably attend the first few meetings but then hand it over to you once you are comfortable managing it. Together we will overcome. 

    We have had a lot of prayer requests over the last month, and the transitioning has caused all of our prayer partners to have to create new accounts because it is a new website. We are sorry for the inconvenience of that, but hopefully it is here to stay this time. If you fell through the cracks, please let us know!

    I want to thank you for your prayers and support during this time, we could not do any of this without you. If you have not created an account at www.refreshinghope.org yet, please do so and join us there. We look forward to being a part of an online community where we can connect with each other daily and share our lives with you in a deeper way. 

    I pray that the Lord richly blesses you and that you are covered with His presence as you read this, in the name of Jesus. 

    Pastor Dion 


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21 comments
  • 0
kylie dempsey
kylie dempsey Love this pastor Dion :-D I would be interested in leading a bible study, but the time difference will make this hard, as im in Australia. I'll give it more thought and prayer. Blessings from down under :-D :-D
March 4, 2015
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Dion Todd
Dion Todd What we envision is that you could lead a group in your own time zone. There will always be a time difference somewhere :)
March 4, 2015
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kylie dempsey
kylie dempsey That is very true :-) If it's God's will He will help me find a way
March 4, 2015
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Catherine Doering
Catherine Doering Thank you for all that you do, I enjoy being a part of this group!
March 4, 2015
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Andrea Chaffin
Andrea Chaffin Thank you for all the effort and time that you put into this. I look forward to your emails daily. I post them on my social media account and many others are blessed by them. I have prayed for your ministry. God bless you all. You are a blessing to me!
March 4, 2015
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Jeanie  Fleming
Jeanie Fleming Dion and Sylvia:  You are correct, it was sending an email into space.  This is a wonderful way to reach us and also get feedback that helps you.  So glad you are doing it this way.  Thank you both for your ministry to us out here in the either.  We do get your messages and truly appreciate all you have done in the past and continue to do.  God bless you.
March 4, 2015
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Sylvia Todd
Sylvia Todd Amen, Jeanie! We already feel like we've made some wonderful connections here, and it's just getting started :)!
March 4, 2015
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Dion Todd
Dion Todd Thank you Jeanie. It is exciting to see every one participating like this. :)
March 4, 2015
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Julie Schneider
Julie Schneider I wonder if a book club might work? Maybe read a chapter a week and people can comment about it all week....every time zone could participate. Surely a few books could be suggested and then voted on...maybe several groups would form.
March 4, 2015
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Sylvia Todd
Sylvia Todd I like that idea, Julie :)!
March 4, 2015
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Dion Todd
Dion Todd That sounds fun. Each "group" has its own area for discussion and such so that could work.  :)
March 4, 2015
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Cheryl Hepler
Cheryl Hepler I like when ladies get together caring & sharing where thery're at possibly over a main topic is scripture or of key questions with scripture discussion that then bring discussion.  Edit as needed ......always need feedback.
March 4, 2015
  • 0
Jess Hart
Jess Hart Hi Pastor Dion! I am very excited about all of this news!! God surely is blessing your ministry! I am blessed to be a part of it! Thank you for sharing God's word!
March 5, 2015
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Randy Dodge
Randy Dodge This is so exciting Pastor Dion and Sylvia. I will continue to pray for this to grow and expand. I am transitioning right now to possibly move back to Florida by the end of the year which should give me more time to do more online. Right now I post my devotionals on Facebook which God has been using to encourage others for a couple years now but the tools God is enabling you to develop will make it much more effective. As it is now God blesses me when He sues the things He shows me through my on life and trials to encourage others all over the world with a simple click and it is posted.  This is a sample form yesterday. How to avoid discouragement and never give up! “That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are   being renewed every day.   For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!   So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 NLT The problem often for all of us is the wrong focus. Though God commands us to take care of our bodies to glorify Him with them (1 Co6:19-20) and physical exercise does have some profit though not as much as godly exercise (1 Ti 4:8) we get discouraged because we fix our goals on the temporary things of this life. In comparison no matter how great the troubles of this life or how often they come they cannot compare to the future God has for His own (Ro 8:18). When we fix our eyes, our goals, our desires on the things that will last forever that we cannot see except by faith (and that is how we are to live 2 Co 5:7) then the things that we do see that are temporary troubles, and our aging bodies that will one day die despite our best efforts won’t discourage us. In fact rather than bothering us we will see the trials of this life, the pain, the sorrow, the suffering are just stepping stones producing a glory, a blessing that will last forever!!! God bless
March 5, 2015
  • 0
Wendy Blake
Wendy Blake I just love this concept so everyone can get together and share.  Many of us have our home churches and groups but many can't get out to do that and even if you can it's so awesome to have this forum as well and so happy to be a part of it!!
March 7, 2015
  • 1
Sylvia Todd
Sylvia Todd Amen, Wendy! We have a home church ourselves, but we love having a community like this that is more diverse and available at all hours!
March 7, 2015
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Julie Schneider
Julie Schneider I do too! We travel a lot and cant always attend our church so i am very excited about this wonderful opportunity! Thank you Pastor Dion and Sylia!
March 7, 2015
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Sylvia Todd
Sylvia Todd Thank you, Julie, we are blessed to have you here :)!
March 7, 2015
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Lissy Verghese
Lissy Verghese Wish you success in all your undertakings, dear pastor!
March 24, 2015
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Nell Neathery
Nell Neathery I love everything in this newsletter.  One word I saw stand out was "leader." and the song "Where He leads, I will follow."  I am the oldest of 8 children, and I was given the responsibility of being the leader while growing up.  I was the leader in my marriage by mentoring and teaching my husband to be a medical transcriptionist.  Now, God has made me the leader in my home since January 19, 2014 as a single, independent Christian woman, which I have never done before.  Is He calling me to be a leader in ministry?  He has called me with several other titles.  I need to seek and knock on that door!
March 28, 2015
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Nell Neathery
Nell Neathery oh yes, I almost forgot...I have kept many spiritual and inspirational journals since 2012.  I have wanted to write a book or books from those journals.  Maybe, I should learn about the word "blog" and try that!
March 28, 2015