Dear mission partners, friends, brothers and sisters in Christ,
The feel of things here is beginning to change. But change for the good. The church, though still relatively small, is beginning to grow in other ways. There are new people coming. Some new converts, others who have come from other unbiblical churches and are seeking truth and wanting to be fed. The most encouraging thing is the answered prayers we are receiving. We have a good amount of men coming to the church now. Most have come through intentional outreach efforts, evangelism and home visits. They are learning and asking to meet more often. They are wanting to spend more time together and they look forward to going out sharing the Gospel. We even have some aspiring the office of an elder. We are now putting together a plan for the next phase of growth. Pray about those plans. Lord willing, it is just a matter of time before our men grow in knowledge and maturity and we discover their gifts before we consider planting. Pray for this.
Christ is building His church here, there is no denying it. And God is so gracious and loving in His use of such flawed and weak vessels to do so. But it hasn’t come without a price. Many missionaries would steer clear away from sharing bad news or anything remotely negative at all in a newsletter. I have personally been told by other missionaries not to do so, that it isn’t good for supporters to hear, but we know the importance of prayer, and we NEED your prayers.
In the great awakening of the 1700’s during the time of Jonathan Edwards, early America experienced waves of revival and a moving of God’s Spirit unlike any other. According to the biography ‘The Short Life of Jonathan Edwards”, after times of great movements of God’s Spirit, there were some strange and evil things that followed. An obvious working of the evil one, people were hearing voices and having thoughts of suicide. Though futile in comparison, there certainly was a “counter attack” if you will, by the enemy in response to the many who were experiencing true repentance and strong new affections for Christ with an awe and fear of the holiness of God.
It is probably safe to say that it is not strictly unique to the great awakening, and has probably happened elsewhere in the world after times of revival and salvations during different periods of church history. Though on a much smaller scale, this has been our experience as well. The last year and a half, we have experienced some of the hardest times with many challenges and periods of attacks on our family, our marriage, our children. It can take it’s toll. God has done so many great things around us in a remarkably short period of time, but the battle has also been most fierce during this time. Discouragement, deep emotional wounds and despair are no strangers. By God”s grace we stand united and trusting in Him. We stand still waving the flag of our Lord, proclaiming His glory and His mighty power, but we stand as those injured and weary after the war.
Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. – 2 Timothy 2:3
We still continue and will not surrender, but we do need your prayers. We are pushing forward and see that God is still working in so many things. We are praying for wisdom in when we can take a furlough for a time of rest and recuperation. But in light of the Gospel, to be sure we have made no sacrifices.
I never made a sacrifice. -Hudson Taylor missionary to China
Nothing is too great a cost to pay in comparison to Christ’s work on the cross on our behalf. But we are just weak humans and we need a little rest from time to time. We pray that our soon to be five years on the field can justify our need for a furlough for the health and longevity of our family on the field.
Please pray for Yeison’s visa. We are still waiting for that process to be finished. Then we would take a furlough so we can be together and Yeison can meet the rest of our (and now his) family for the first time. Christen has not seen her father, who suffers from Alzheimer’s, in a long time and now her mother is discovering some medical conditions affecting her health and she desires to see and spend some time with them.
I will be in the states sharing the things the Lord is doing here and seeking further support for the Biblical Christian Missionary Society. A plan to send out of Hato Mayor and support both Dominicans and Haitians, closley working with them in the spreading of the Gospel, in the city, and to other parts of the island. This requires a much larger network of supporting churches partnering with us. Lord willing, and with the help of the brethren and mission minded churches back home, we will soon be able to send and support local missionaries here out of the city. We believe that the Lord has brought us to this place for this purpose.
We have worked in more rural areas in the past, and the Lord has blessed those efforts, but our philosophy of missions has changed over the years. Now it is geared more towards equipping local men in the city who can be sent to reach their own people in places like where we used to work, and with the prayer, resources and proper training, do so more effectively than we could. Please pray for the Bibical Christian Missioanry Society and for the Lord to open doors to new partnerships that would help make this possible. The Lord is rasing up faithful men and we are reaching a point where we only lack the resources to be able to effectively and consistently send more laborers into the harvest and more soldiers into the battlefield.
Those who pray and give towards missions play a role just as important as those on the mission field.
It was only a few years ago that we were praying for the Lord to send us men. There were days when I would sometimes preach to just my family and a couple of other people. That is still our continued prayer, for Him to send more laborers, but it is a beautiful thing to know God heard and answered those prayers. Not always how we would expect Him to, but in better and often time bigger ways. Just yesterday I sat with a brother who was expressing his love for the Word and desire to preach the Gospel and teach others. Wow, just wow.
Our God is Good and He is Faithful, blessed be the name of the Lord and to Him alone belongs all the glory forever and ever. Pray.
… For my name will be great among the nations, says the LORD of hosts. – Malachi 1:11