germany

 "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8

Meet Joel.

"Heimat" is a German word which has no perfect English translation. It's a bit of a mix of "birthplace" and "home," often filled with sentimental emotion. Kansas will forever be my "Heimat", even if Germany is my home. But what about the time before I called Germany home?

I started attending FBC in August 2017 and immediately it became my home church. It happened quicker than I ever could have imagined. Then in Spring 2018 I stepped into the great unknown, following the calling of the Lord across the Atlantic, a calling I had first received some four years prior. It wasn't long before I joined together with an organization called Youth With A Mission (YWAM) as a full time missionary, the Gospel in tow. That's where I am today, in Nuremberg, Germany. With the Lord by my side, I am his hands and feet to a neighborhood, city, country, and world in need of a Savior.

Joel's Ministry

When you hear "missionary," it probably conjures up images of a westerner in a southeast Asian nation holding an orphaned child or in an African country drilling a water well. Likely, you don't picture an American in urbanized and well-off Germany. This is partly because there *are* such physical needs in many parts of the world. These are needs which the Church is equipped to meet. And I myself do not solely focus on the nation of Germany in the work I'm involved in. But, when Jesus said, "it is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick" (Mark 2:17), he wasn't talking directly about those who have cancer, who need basic medical aid, and who don't have access to a hospital. Rather, he was talking about those who are spiritually sick. Germany is a nation which is just that, sick, in need of a Healer.

I'm sure one question remains at this point: "What do you do?" It's a fair question. Close to the beginning of March 2022 YWAM Nuremberg opened their doors and started preparing the beds for what would soon be some 20+ refugees from Ukraine. That number continues to increase as a wave of people seeking a roof over their heads flood into Nuremberg. Keep reading to hear how we as a team, and how I personally am responding.


Upon prayerfully deciding to devote myself to a full-time response to this crisis, I partnered once again with YWAM Nuremberg, as they had expressed that they would like to jump immediately into action. We met as a team on Monday, the 28th of February to talk about this initiative for the first time. Two thing were clear: 1). we would open up to receive refugees in our building, and 2). there was a need for supplies.

Within hours of that meeting flyers were printed, responsibilities were taken-on, and the praying continued.

The response from the neighborhood and city were overwhelming. Clothes, sleeping bags, and mattresses flooded our space. We packed things together, google-translating the labels into Ukrainian, and another volunteer and myself drove a cargo van full to the border of Poland and Ukraine. (MANY miracles on that trip, alone!) From there the things would be transported to another YWAM base in Ternopil, who was in turn helping to provide necessities to the base in Kiev, as well as housing internally displaced people. I remarked then how incredible it was to see Christian and non-Christian alike, laying aside differences to serve. To God be the glory!

Fast forward two weeks and we find ourselves with a house full of Ukrainians who have fled their homes, leaving all they have behind. Usually they left with only one small bag per person. Will there be an apartment or home for them to return to? For many it seems unlikely.

One man came knocking on our door this last Monday with his wife and three children. I saw them through our store-front like windows and immediately knew they needed help. They had just arrived in Nuremberg from Kiev, a journey which had taken them five days and through four other countries. Only one night on the road did they have a bed to sleep in. Their destination was Stuttgart (though they had no specific tie to this city), but upon arriving in Nuremberg, the father knew he couldn’t drive any further. He had hardly slept at all since leaving their home and could no longer concentrate on driving due to sleep deprivation. They asked for a place to stay, and within a few minutes I could confirm that we had beds for all five of them. Their otherwise tired, distraught faces cracked a smile — they had found help.

I later asked him, Anton is his name, how he found us. After all, Nuremberg is a city of over 500,000 people. He said he was sure he could find help at the main railway station, and after parking his car, set out on foot in that direction. They were passing by our building (which is only a few meters from the station) and noticed that we had signs in the window written in Ukrainian. Upon hearing this, we both agreed that God had guided them to exactly where they needed to be. His hand was on them and was protecting them. He began to tear up as he reflected on their journey and arrival in Nuremberg, and proceeded to give me a huge hug. I embraced him and began to tear up myself.


Anton, and numerous others who have made the tough decision to leave Ukraine have, as I mentioned, arrived at our doors with nearly nothing. We made the decision that for at least the next three months they will receive a place to stay and food at no cost to them. This is where things get practical: we need your help. You can click on the button below to see how to give your time or resources.

Please keep us in your prayers — it changes things. And let’s all continue to pray, as well, for the war in Ukraine; the governments involved, the soldiers on the front line, and the millions of civilians taking the brunt of this war. Even so, God is good. Miracles are happening and lives, yes souls, are being saved in the midst of this!
Now, if you need me, I’ll probably be in the kitchen cooking for our new house-guests.

Blessings,
Joel

An Important Message From Joel!

Dear First Baptist,

A quick and important update on how you can now support me, including how to set up monthly donations. As you know, as of February 21st my donations are no longer being processed through YWAM Tyler, Texas. 

The good news is that I have a wonderful organization who will now be serving in this capacity: Mission Enablers International (MEI). The process of getting this set up has taken longer than anticipated, but now I have been given the green light to receive my support once again. Praise the Lord!

IMPORTANT: My personal ID number is KJ3864. This needs to referenced in every donation made.

Here is information on how to give:

1. Cash or Check AND Bill-Pay
If you want to mail a donation by writing a check or sending a Bill-Pay through your bank, please make the check payable to Mission Enablers International or MEI and send it to:

MEI
P.O. Box 2127
Bentonville, AR 72712

--and attach a separate note stating that the donation is for Joel Knox (along with my personal ID number) or put the number on the memo/reference line.

2. Credit/Debit Card*
U.S. and International MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Discover donations can be recurring or one-time. Visit meigiving.org/donate-associate to donate. You will need to use my account number or fill in the blank with my name.

3. E-Check or Direct Draft from Checking or Savings
Visit meigiving.org/donate-associate and choose E-Check for their payment method. These donations can be recurring or one-time. You will need to use my account number or fill in the blank with my name.
Please contact the MEI office for Wire Transfer instructions.

4. PayPal Donations*
PayPal donations can be recurring or one-time. Visit meigiving.org/donate-paypal to donate.
If you wish to make a PayPal gift recurring, you must manage that from within your personal PayPal account.

*Please consider that when giving using credit/debit card or Paypal a fee of 6.5% is deducted from what I receive, versus the standard 3.5% fee.

For any clarification questions on the technical side of how to donate, please direct your emails at: donate@meigiving.org. They’re more capable of helping on that front than I. :)

Love you all, 
Joel

"Will you partner with me in what the Lord is doing in germany?"

Joel would love to hear from you! Click the button below to send him a message directly!
Joel's ministry is done through a partnership with YWAM. If you would like more information about the YWAM ministries please visit their website!

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