Newsletter January 2019

Dear <<First Name>>,

First of all, we hope you’ve had a good start of this new year. They certainly did in India and Myanmar, with many believers encouraged and others who heard the Gospel for the first time. But in this newsletter we won’t share about that.
We’ve been looking forward to write to you, as we’ve had quite a few developments over the past months that we wanted to share. In our last newsletter we announced that we are moving to YwaM Amsterdam. We believe our Heavenly Leader considers the part that we had to play in Amersfoort as completed, and it is time for us to move to the next assignment. It is a big change, but, as we mentioned, our larger vision remains the same. We continue to be a part of the same big plan, partnering with the same and new people to further the Kingdom and prepare the nations for Jesus’ return.
As this calling from the Lord came to help build night and day prayer in Amsterdam, and from there into the nations, soon we started to see that this would be a larger transition in our lives. A chain-reaction of changes unfolded, and coincided with some other developments. In this newsletter we’ll try to give you a short overview of the largest ones, and then share a bit more about some of those things, as there is simply too much to go in depth about it all. We really value your partnership and prayer, and hope that this will help to know and understand the changes and the season we are moving into, so you can continue to engage together with us. So here’s the shortlist:
  • The call to Amsterdam to help build night and day prayer, a place where the Lord can rest, in the context of YwaM Amsterdam and internationally, together with the wider church.
  • Leave Gebedshuis Amersfoort and our community in Amersfoort, sell ‘our’ apartment and move to rooms in the YwaM community building.
  • Hand over all leadership of Forerunner foundation to a team of trusted friends who will continue to build towards the vision. Huge!
  • Cancel all current programs under the European Prayer Project (EPP, part of YwaM Amsterdam) and changing the trusted ‘Crescendo’ school for this Summer to focus more on actual prayer and worship itself – exciting! But also much to figure out.
  • Cancel all Asia and Africa travels for a season to focus on one thing.
  • Our sending church Jozua Dordrecht and current church Rafael Amersfoort are standing behind these changes, but we are evaluating together what partnership in the future will look like. This might really shift our support base.
  • Do a DTS in Thailand (lecture phase: February – early May 2019) and outreach in Amsterdam, which also means handing over daily leadership of the EPP for a season.
  • Stop our essential oil business (while we continue to love and use the oils).
  • And while all this is unfolding, we discovered to our joy that we’re expecting baby #2!  Little bean’s due date is July 6th, Zadoks birthday. Once again right in the middle of all that’s going on in the Summer – helps to prioritize!
So we’re starting a new chapter, in some ways starting all over again in a pioneering situation. But we’re drawn to the heart of Jesus, who asked us: ‘who will go with Me?’. We’d rather leave all and be there with Him, sell all for that pearl of great price, then stay comfortable where we were.
We’re handing over Forerunner!
After our call to Amsterdam it became clear, after much prayer and considerations, that Johan could not continue to lead Forerunner, for a number of reasons. We also noticed that lately the Lord had not given new revelation about where to lead it, while He did speak about what He wants to do (with us) in Amsterdam. Furthermore, seven years after Forerunner was started it has grown to a place where it is mature and steady and can be handed over to others. At the same time Ewout (secretary) and Roelof (our only volunteer) also felt it was time for them to step back from Forerunner, leaving only Sjoerd as board member. These were all signs that changes were coming up – God was on the move, shifting the team members to get the right people to lead Forerunner into the next chapter! So we asked Him to show us who then would take our places.
One morning as Johan was praying for it he felt to ask two befriended couples. That same day another friend e-mailed, telling us she is now working half a day less each week and wanting to use part of that time to help with Forerunner. The others also felt the Lord tell them to become part of the team, of which two as board members. Amazing! We have known them for many years, and all have a heart for and experience in the prayer movement. The two couples had actually each been writing down their vision in the months before and noticed it was so similar to that of Forerunner. When we looked at their giftings and skill sets it made for a perfect mix of visionary leadership (with great ideas where to lead it from here!), and administrative, technical and relational skills. How amazing is God in His leadership! So we have full confidence that this team will not only keep Forerunner afloat, but truly will lead it further than where we can bring it.
Last week Ewout and Johan laid down their roles as secretary and chairman of the board, respectively, and the four new team members joined in, of which three as board members. After getting the new board members acclimated Johan will then also step down as director at the end of June and no longer be employed by Forerunner. Somewhere this Summer we will then become fulltime YwaM Amsterdam staff, after our DTS is completed. Roelof, thank you for giving new input! Ewout, thank you so much for 3.5 years of serving as a secretary! It has been so good to do this with you and Sjoerd. Sjoerd, thank you for your faithfulness and friendship, and bless you as you continue on the board!
After more than seven years it is a big shift to not be leading Forerunner. It has become intertwined with all kinds of aspects of our lives. We love all that the Lord is doing through it, and serving so many missionaries in what they are doing. We will really miss that, although we don’t necessarily cease to be friends. Financially it is also a bit of a step of faith. The monthly support and one time donations that were given for us to Forerunner were being paid out in a steady monthly salary, and we will lose some support in this shift. Yet we also feel excited, freed up to fully jump into ‘whats next’, and to encounter Gods heart in the surprises He always gives when you need to see Him move some things around to make the finances work out. We will keep you updated about this transition in the coming months, and also introduce the new team to you!

Specify your donations
Some of you liked to give undesignated gifts to Forerunner with the understanding that we could decide whether to use it to support the children in India and Myanmar, or our work (leadership, prayer, worship leading, teaching, training, travel) and livelihood. From now on, if you want to give, it will be needed to specify what you give to. If you want a part designated to our work and livelihood specifically, use FR501 (do not write our name). We also give a part of that towards the support of the children where its needed most. If you want to give to one of the children’s projects, use FR201 (India) or FR202 (Myanmar).

DTS in Thailand! (February 7 – May 7)
We are so excited and expectant about the upcoming three months in Chiang Mai, Thailand, for our Encounter Discipleship Training School! This DTS is a new kind that combines components of Crescendo with the normal DTS. We also hope to start one in Amsterdam this Fall, in partnership with the Urban Presence DTS! To our surprise and joy, a whole team is going, including dear friends from 111Global that we’ve worked with for years, and several of our EPP team members, and Alette’s younger sister. The Lord is truly bringing together the missions- and prayer movement, integrating the worlds of YwaM and IHOP-KC more and more into a multi-faceted Kingdom expression. After the lecture phase in Thailand we will go back with a team of six or more of these people to have our outreach at the Amsterdam base (until half July), and to prepare for this Summer together. The Lord is giving everyone a lot of joy and expectation for this time, like we used to be excited as kids to go on a camp! We are grateful to have a period in which we will have less responsibility, and can be refreshed, revived and full of renewed vision once we return to Amsterdam to enter into the new season there.

Three weeks of unceasing prayer and worship in Amsterdam this Summer!

There is much to say about this, but for now we just want to say: please consider reserving some time in your agenda between July 12th and August 2nd to join together in Amsterdam for three weeks of non-stop prayer and worship with a great family of Jesus lovers, together with a training component. Crescendo originally had much focus on training in Biblical foundations for night and day prayer, musical training, and coaching in leading worship as a team; with times in the prayer room. This was powerful. However, we feel to switch the priority of the two parts around: the core will be to have ongoing prayer and worship in the prayer room, from which then the training flows as a discipling into that reality. We believe the Lord is calling His family in this time to build night and day prayer in Amsterdam, even if you can only do it for a season, before returning to your own home town and prayer initiative there. So whether you have done Crescendo before or not, be invited to be a part of this!

Essential Oils – why we stopped the business yet love using oils
Some years ago we wrote about how we got excited about essential oils, and started building our own network as a side business. Since we announced this publicly, we also want to tell you what happened since. We love using oils, and believe that God has intended the properties of the essential oils from plants and trees to be used for the health and well-being of His creation. Also, that He doesn’t want it to be taken by the enemy for his purposes by disconnecting the blessings put in creation from the Creator, resulting in people continuing to walk independent from God, who has created us to have Him alone as our sole God, our sole source for everything.
However, after going back and forth many times and struggling to put our finger on what felt off about the network marketing business, we decided to take time to seek the Lord. We believe the Lord clearly answered us last month, even by giving Alette and I a parallel dream in the same night, warning us that this approach has the appearance of being harmless, an angel of light, but is not. And since it is appears to be light, we have seen that especially Christians get really excited about it. (continue reading here)
To summarize, we feel led to stop with the business, while we continue using oils. We were not going to write much about it, but since more and more people ask us what we think about essential oils, once they get approached by friends in a network marketing company, we believe we should share our story in this newsletter.
Read the full story here
By the way, Johan has started a new hobby to dial down sometimes, making beeswax candles from old wax that he buys from local beekeepers. It's not really a business, but if you would like to get some nice smelling, air cleaning natural bees wax candles for a good price, let us know!

The BIG announcement – Little Bean!
We of course should close with the biggest blessing of this whole update: Baby #2 has been conceived and is being knit together as we speak! Amazing! Even more interesting: the due date is on Zadok’s birthday, July 6. And EVEN more interesting: our good friends who we lived with right before we were pregnant with Zadok had a daughter, Rosanne, five hours before Zadok was born, on July 5th (both having names referring to serving the Lord/the priesthood), and now they are expecting another one on July 5th! What are the chances?! We are curious whether the Lord has something to say through this about the coming season – it is right around the time that we are finishing our DTS and kicking off our time at YwaM with three weeks of night and day prayer and adoration for the Lord in the heart of Amsterdam!

Alette is doing well, although the beginning of the pregnancy was a bit harder than last time. At the same time, it is much to have all the changes going on and to be moving to a new place where her natural desire would be to be nesting in this season. So prayers are welcome!

Much love from us,
Johan, Alette, Zadok and little bean, as well as the old and new Forerunner team!
What is Forerunner?
We exist to raise up prayer and justice in the nations. We partner together with friends, organizations, and ministries around the globe to see this vision realized.

Johan and Alette are currently based in the Netherlands and serve in full-time ministry with Forerunner foundation, primarily as intercessory missionaries in the House of Prayer, Amersfoort and in project based activities with partners such as the European Prayer Project.


Forerunner Foundation
Website:    www.forerunner.info
Mail:          johan@forerunner.info
Address:   Assumburg 119, 3328 BD Dordrecht
Giving:      PayPal - or - 
                 Account by name of 'Stichting Forerunner'
                 IBAN: NL60INGB0005358287
                 BIC: INGBNL2A
                 Write as designation: FR501

Tax-deductible giving (USA):
Check or bill pay: make out to 'Malachi Network'. (leave memo blank, include separate note with 'Verhoef')
Mail to: The Malachi Network, PO Box 292, Quarryville, PA, 17566

Online giving: malachinetwork.org -> donate -> select 'Johan and Alette'

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Forerunner · Assumburg 119 · Dordrecht, ZH 3328 BD · Netherlands

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