Dillard Family Update

December 22, 2017

Merry Christmas! Thank you all so much for your prayers and support! 

We have had the privilege over the last few months to have many interactions with international students and their families! 

Derick was able to help organize "Thanksgiving dinner in an American home" between several host families from our church and students at the University of Arkansas! Jill's family opened their home to several students and their families, and we had nearly 20 guests from several different countries (mostly Muslim families)! Derick is currently working to arrange the same thing for Christmas with any students who will be in the area for the holidays. 

One of the Ph.D students from an Arab country brought her husband and child. Her husband seems very open to the gospel and even said if they were going to be in the area longer that he would've loved to visit our church! Jill's family's pastor was also able to talk with him a lot on Thanksgiving and even took him hunting the next morning! We are praying for him as Derick and others continue to befriend him that God will save his soul. Our goal is that, through these host home - international student matches, many relationships would begin that would extend beyond a one-time holiday experience.  

Jill and the boys have been able to be a part of a weekly Arab ladies English class, with Muslim ladies from several different countries (Iraq, Palestine, Saudi Arabia & Albania). Every week the ladies meet at a friend's home where they learn to make an American dish, eat together, then read a Bible story and discuss the English language, before hearing from a speaker on a topic of life (e.g. marriage, pregnancy, etc.).   

On Black Friday, we were doing some shopping and saw a of couple ladies wearing burkas, so Jill stopped to ask them where they were from and invited them to the Bible study. They came that week, and one of the ladies brought some traditional tea and treats to share. When asked if they had ever read a story from the Bible, both ladies said they had not. We are praying they will return to more Bible studies. One of the ladies said she and her husband would be excited to come to our home for dinner after her husband's finals are finished. 

Israel and Sam are doing well now after both having had colds the last couple weeks. We are enjoying being close to both of our families for this season and are grateful for Cross Church School of Ministry right here in our area that we get to serve with during the next year!  

Thank you to all of those who have prayed with us and given support toward our fundraising goal! We are so grateful! In addition to helping start the International Student Ministry through Cross Church's College ministry (C3), Derick has been working hard to keep up with class assignments through the School of Ministry and has finished two of the five-week seminary classes, totaling six credit hours (during the next year he will get about twenty-seven hours!). 


Prayer requests & praises: 
• Pray for continued opportunities to share our faith and for souls to be saved and disciples made! 
• Pray for our Arab friends.
• Pray for "Home for the Holidays" Christmas dinner in an American home—for God to bring the right students and host families. 
• Pray for a Japanese student who lost his mom and recently moved to the States. 
• Pray for continued health during flu season.
• Praise God for the connections that have been made with international students and their families!

Derick with a couple Nepali friends he met at an international festival. He has enjoyed practicing his Nepali language skills. 

Sam's baby dedication at church 

One of our Fall family photos

Jill and Israel with one of our Muslim friends at Thanksgiving dinner

Fall Family Photos

November 2, 2017

The other day our friend took some family photos for us on the University of Arkansas campus. We've been loving the cooler weather and seeing the colors of the changing leaves. Our boys are changing and growing a lot too! Happy Fall!! 

—Jill

These photos are considered the property of the Dillard Family and may only be used with their written permission. To request permission to use the photos please click here.

September Family Update

September 4, 2017

Dillard Family Update—September 4, 2017

Things have been super busy for us over the last month as we have moved, Derick has started Cross Church School of Ministry, and his ministry track (international student ministry at the University of Arkansas through our church’s college “C3” ministry) has gotten into full swing with all the students arriving on campus only a few weeks ago.
 
We have all been able to be involved in ministry together in various ways. Derick has helped with a number of outreach events where we have seen several people come to know Jesus as their Savior! Last night, we were able to have a Muslim family into our home for an American dinner after Jill and our boys met them at the park for a play date with Jill’s sister. We are so excited to see what else God will continue to do!
 
Over the next year, we will have the opportunity to serve on several missions teams. We would be so grateful if you would pray for us as we prepare for these trips. Details will be coming soon on how you can be involved in supporting this ministry. 


Thank y’all so much!
Derick & Jill Dillard

We are excited to be a part of C3 in reaching international students for Jesus! 


Derick in class

C3 small group leadership retreat 

Israel and Derick had a great time connecting with students at a freshman cookout

Derick has been able to help with several events through our church's college ministry "C3" 

Jill and Israel helping pass out snacks with friends from church during sorority recruitment week at the U of A

Israel and Samuel enjoying some time with "Mima" 

New Direction in Ministry

August 9, 2017

New Direction in Ministry

Thank you so much for your support of Dillard Family Ministries through your prayers and financial resources.  It has been a joy and blessing to see how our Lord has worked in Central America, and your generous giving has been a huge part of making that possible!  During our time working with SOS Ministries over the past 2 years, we have witnessed God transforming the lives of many involved in the gang community and positively influencing the lives of young people for the sake of the Kingdom.  Through numerous efforts of community development, skills training, sports outreach, and local church ministry, a strong foundation has been laid that I believe the Lord will continue to grow for many years to come.      

Through a number of circumstances, and guided by much prayer and counsel, we are discerning the Lord leading our family’s full-time ministry back to the United States for the time being. 

We understand very well that mission work definitely requires flexibility.  This, we have witnessed and experienced first-hand in our years of ministry.  It is, and always has been our aim, to seek the Lord above all else.  This includes walking in close relationship with Him daily, seeking His direction for our family, and doing our absolute best in everything, namely, being a Gospel witness and Kingdom worker in whatever context He places us. 

At this time, God has seen fit for our family to continue serving him in ministry within the context of Northwest Arkansas. 

 

Because He Lives,

Derick and Jill Dillard (+Israel & Samuel)