Ministry update and thank you letter from Natan and Sandi to those who supported Hoshana Rabbah in 2016…
Shalom aleichem partners with us in Yeshua’s kingdom work!
Once again, please accept our heartfelt gratitude for all of your financial contributions large or small to Hoshana Rabbah Biblical Discipleship Resources. We thank Yehovah Elohim for each of you and pray a blessing over each giver each time.
Although we run a frugal operation out of our small home and try to keep our expenses low, as you know, everything costs money. The internet and YouTube may be free, but computers, online servers, domain names, video equipment, phone and internet lines, paper, printers, hard drives, electricity, etc., etc., still cost money. It all adds up.Natan still takes no remuneration for his ministry work, but Sandi for her expert services managing the website, the finances, answering phones and all the myriad tasks associated with running a ministry takes a small monthly stipend. For her high level skill set, she could make a lot more money working elsewhere, but then the ministry would suffer. All this is to say that your loving support is necessary and a great encouragement to us as well.
After Sukkot 2016, Sandi and Natan retired from pastoring the local congregation we started in our home 18 years ago. We reluctantly did so, but several factors necessitated it. Frankly, we were tired and burned out and we lacked the necessary local support to be able continue. Moreover, and very importantly, the pressure was beginning to affect Sandi’s health deleteriously. We’re getting older and the strain was just too much. Additionally, I’m still working full-time in my tree care business, and I just was lacking the energy to do it all.
When one door shuts, another opens. Since closing the local congregation, we have rededicated ourselves to improving services on our internet, global outreach ministry. Presently, the Hoshana Rabbah YouTube channel continues to grow steadily with new subscribers and viewers. Currently, there are more than 320 videos on our channel. Natan does all the filming, editing and uploading, and is the researcher and teacher on nearly all of the videos as well. A lot of work, but lives are being touched globally as we endeavor to connect the message of the gospel to its pro-Torah, Hebraic roots. Currently, we have nearly 5,000 subscribers with 665,000 view. This seems pretty good for a tiny ministry in a niche market.
Natan’s Bible study blog continues to be very active. Hundreds read it each day, and the numbers are still growing. Currently, He has posted nearly 2,000 self-written articles on his blog on a huge variety of biblical subjects. In his great commission command, Yeshua told us to make disciples (not just converts). This blog along with the YouTube channel and the many resources on the Hoshana Rabbah website are our way of helping to fulfill Yeshua’s command to take the gospel to and to help gather in the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Agains, thank you for your prayers and financial support in helping us to make these resources available free of charge to the world.
After Sukkot, Natan began to record a video teaching for each Torah-portion or parashah for the entire year—there are about 54. So far, he has recorded all of Genesis and is well into Exodus. Some of the videos are a couple of hours long, while others are more than five hours long. These videos are ideal for individual and group study sessions. As always, they’re gospel-oriented. We always try to keep Yeshua the Messiah at the center of everything as the early apostles did as recorded in the Testimony of Yeshua (New Testament).
Even though Natan is no longer pastoring a local congregation, he is making himself more available to be of assistance in an advisory role to new congregations or home fellowships starting up. He wants to be a big brothers to anyone who needs it. He’s available to help via email, phone and Skype. Through Skype, he is available to speak to congregations, to answer biblical questions and to pray with, encourage and to speak prophetically over groups upon request.
Sandi also plans on redoing the Hoshana Rabbah website—a huge and daunting task—and bringing it up to current web standards. This will hopefully reposition ourselves more favorably in the web marketplace of ideas, so that we can reach even more of the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
Together, Natan and Sandi are hoping to begin updating the adult Torah study guides. Natan has much fresh material to add to the existing ones. This project may take a couple of years.
That there is a quick update on the Hoshana Rabbah ministry. We’re probably forgetting something, but that’s the main gist of it.
Again, Sandi and Natan want to express our heartfelt and sincere thanks for all of your love and love offerings. We pray that we may be able to continue to earn your love and support, and to be fruitful ground into which you are pleased to sow your finances, and, most importantly, we want to be pleasing to Yehovah Elohim and Yeshua our Master as we together show them our love and devotion by doing our reasonable service for the advancement of Elohim’s kingdom!
Yeshua’s Bondservants in His Love,
Natan and Sandi Lawrence