One of the main vision points of Kehilat Poriya is the idea of community. The Hebrew word "Kehilah," which can be translated "Congregation," also means "Community." Seeing people regularly during the week as well as at our Shabbat meetings makes things very intimate and keeps us in touch with those we care and pray for. This makes it possible to have deeper fellowship with the family of God. We want to "... break bread from house to house", as they did in the Book of Acts (2:46b), not only be together once or twice a week at meetings.
Since the majority of our members live in the same small village (Poriya Illit in the Lower Galilee), we are in a unique position to do this. Most of us can walk to each other's homes in a few minutes, enjoy regular fellowship and interaction, and be involved in each other's lives. This is not always easy, but we believe it is the best way to grow in maturity and in relationship with the "living stones," the true congregation.
Another way we express this community element is that our meetings are based on an "active, active" model, rather than an "active, passive" model. Many get opportunities to bring messages to our congregation, and during the typical meeting several others bring a word from the Lord; a testimony; a Scripture that adds to what we are learning; or a prayer request. It is the community in action with almost everyone taking part.
This is possible partly because we are, by design and vision, home-based. We want to continue meeting in a home, even as we grow, so that we can maintain the intimacy of a small, family-style congregation. As the Lord increases our numbers, our strategy is to help plant other home-based congregations in the area.
Part of being a community is to be aware of each other's needs and to help each other whenever and however we are able. We want to be servants to each other. Paul exhorted us to be those who "... look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others" (Phil. 2:4b). Yeshua Himself said: "... the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve and to give His life as a ransom for many" (Mat. 20:28b). If He, the only begotten Son of God and the creator of the universe, had this attitude of Servanthood, how much more should we, His disciples, have it?
There are many ways this takes place in our midst. Here are a number of examples of what God is doing among us:
A Helping Hand
We are helping provide food for a large believing family with nine children, whose father is a very talented craftsman and hard worker, but who struggles constantly to make ends meet. We are also helping to raise money to purchase a newer and larger vehicle for this family, whose old station wagon is falling apart.
The Lord has used us to help a widow, whose husband passed away a few months ago and who has 4 young children and another on the way. Funds have been provided to help pay household expenses and acquire much needed furniture (from a donor in another city). To help the 3 older boys (ages 5, 7 and 12) get through their first summer without their father, we arranged a membership at a local kibbutz swimming pool, and took them ourselves twice a week. Others took them other days. On the last day of summer, Eric took them to the local water park for their "Grande Finale" of the summer, a day on the water slides and wave pool. Their grandmother said it was "The best summer they have ever had."
Released From Bondage
We also minister almost daily to a prisoner in one of the larger prisons in the center of the country, who has become a strong believer. Our prisoner has, in turn, been able to minister to many fellow prisoners, leading some to the Lord, and discipling others in Hebrew, Russian, Romanian and English. He is taking a Bible study course, and will soon be allowed to teach Bible classes, including the New Testament, in this Israeli institution!
A young man who was trapped in a lifestyle of alcoholism, and also in trouble with the police, received the Lord a few months ago, and is now in a believing rehabilitation center in Haifa. He is doing so well that other students there call him "The Preacher."
We are ministering to several others in the same disadvantaged neighborhood in Tiberias, who are trapped in similar addictive lifestyles. One of them received the Lord in a recent Shabbat meeting. We are discipling another new believer in the same building.
Recently, a Jewish Israeli friend of ours, who is not yet a believer, asked Eric to immerse ("baptize") her sister from the U.S. In an interview before the immersion in the Jordan River, we realized the sister had not yet fully accepted Yeshua as her savior and Lord, and were able to lead her in a prayer of commitment on the spot. Last month we immersed another woman who had not been walking with Him, and she re-committed her life at the baptism site.
One of the families in leadership in Kehilat Poriya has a healing outreach to individuals and families all over Israel, with their "Be in Health" teaching and seminars.
We greatly desire to assist people from the nations connect more strongly with Israel, and help Jews who want to obey the Lord's call to return Home ("Aliyah"). People we know from America, both Jews and Gentiles, have asked if it is possible for a person who does not live in Israel to open a bank account in Israel. They are concerned at what they see developing and would like to get some of their financial assets out of the U.S. We have investigated and found out how this is possible, even without coming here. If you would like step-by-step instructions on how to do this directly with one of Israel's largest banks, you can request them at our e-mail address: email@example.com. Also we have a website. Please check us out online at www.kehilatporiya.org.
As we get ready to celebrate together, and with our people Israel, the wonderful and awesome Fall Feasts, we wish you holiday blessings!
May the LORD who made Heaven and Earth BLESS YOU from ZION! (Psalm 134:3)
Eric and Terri Morey and the Leadership Team at Kehilat Poriya.
|Let us know what you think - why not comment to this article. The authors of these articles are often involved in intense ministry and are thus unable to respond to most comments. As is normal with print and online magazines, Tikkun reserves the right to publish only those comments we feel are edifying in tone and content.|
Also in this issue of the newsletter:
|Daniel Juster: Assimilating Jewish Christians|
|Eitan Shishkoff: Come Out of the Cave!|
|Asher Intrater: God's Transforming Presence|
|Asher & Betty Intrater: Prince & Princess|