Our Faith-Based support raising over the last eighteen months has been a time of deep spiritual growth and blessing in our lives. Our supporters now include 70 individuals plus several churches who trust our calling to the Lord’s work in Guatemala. Each supporter has a unique story of faith. One such story that has blessed us is that of Louis Nuanez. He was our first official doner last July 2012. The first month he donated, Louis received word that his Leukemia had returned, and his donations were put on hold. For 12 months he battled for life, accepting his inevitable death due to no matching donor available for a transplant. Then one day the Doctors told him they had found a 100% match on the international donor list, a twenty-seven year old female from Europe. A volunteer pilot flew the blood from Europe to Denver CO for the operation. The transplant was a success and in July of this year Louis called to share that he was on day 83 of 1oo days of his recovery, and he wanted to continue his commitment of support for our Guatemalan Mission. God gave our friend his life back and renewed his commitment to the work in God’s kingdom. Louis, who is passionate about his faith, is currently giving back to God what has been given him through his work helping other patients in the Leukemia Donor Program. Follow this link and sign up! http://marrow.org/Home.aspx
Since our April 2012 “update” on raising support, God has been working miracle after miracle. Our financial supporters now span from seven to seventy years old and the list of financial and intangible support continues to grow as the Lord brings His blessings our way. Our support “gifters” continue to grow with: Ron and Peggy Demaray, John and Carol Cochran, Connie and Art Krelle, Anne and Randy Slaughter, Steven and Keri Sobolik, Walter and Denny Blood, Chuck and Martha Montano, Todd and Allison Bisio, William and Marilyn Schotanus, The Church of the Living Hope, Shizuka K. McClellan, Mr.and Mrs. Glenn Connors, Dave and Barbi Cappel, Jim and Kay McMillan, Cathy Smith-Hartwig, Brent and Jan Christner, Charles and Nancy Judkins, Cori Irwin, Suzanne Hayes, Martha Nail, Jane and Curt Matheu, Bec and Clint Campbell, Daniel (9 years old) and Christopher (7 years old) Huntley. Julie and I are blessed and encouraged by notes like this on on the right (Christopher) from those of all ages that model such faith, love and support. We are also humbled by parents and grandparents that continue to instill in young people a sense of responsibility in what the Lord is doing in global missions. They could possibly be the future servants that will answer the call to go or support future missions.
Lord, as we pray for a few more monthly supporters, continue to reveal to us your sovereign plan for Albuquerque, Guatemala, and the world.
Jeremiah 32 : 17 is a well know prayerful declaration by Jeremiah of a powerful and capable God. “Ah Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you.” We forget that he prayed this right after the Lord instructed him to by a field occupied by enemy soldiers while he was incarcerated by his king Zedekiah. The same field and prison he prophesied would be burned to the ground and occupied by Babylon. By world standards a pretty poor investment, by God standards a wise one because of ”the promise”. In 32: 37 the Lord gave Jeremiah the word that “I will bring them back to this place and let them live in safety” and he believed God. The documents were then probably retrieved from thier hiding place in the clay pot and the land occupied. As Julie and I draw nearer to raising our financial support for the Lord’s Call for us to serve in Guatemala many have decided it is a pretty poor investment with little to no return on the principle but praise God for those of you who have heard God’s many promises of heavenly returns and believed them. John 4:35 “…open your eyes and look at the fields, they are ripe for harvest!” A spiritual return for both the giver and the reciever in the eternal economy.
In Daniel 3:1 Nebuchadnezzar had an “image of gold” constructed that was 90 feet high and 9 feet wide on the plain of Dura in Babylon. All those summoned to the dedication were commanded to fall down and worship. Of course Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego would not sinfully worship a god other than the God of the Jews, despite the consequence of the blazing furnace. The image of the King, his father or the god Bel was intended to be another diety. So, the saving of them from “sinful compliance” was a greater miracle in the “ kingdom of grace”, than the saving them out of the fiery furnace was in the “ kingdom of nature”. The ancient Mayans were faced the same consequence as thier kings constructed “stellas” and “temples” to honor thier own deity. This last week the Mission Team from First Bible Church in Decatur, Alabama traveled to the “land of the Mayans” to help with the construction of the new Dining/Kitchen/Dormitory for Centennial Camp. The team of 15 led by Johnny and Marie Coker spend thier own funds for the trip to benefit Mayan Christians. Unlike these examples from the past this building will not be built to be or house a deity. It will provide, though, the means for many to worship and serve our Lord Jesus as they experience their miracle of obedience in the “Kingdom of Grace”. Many of the Mayan Evangelical Churches of Camp Centennial worked alongside of the USA Mission team from Alabama. Pray for additional construction funds and more willing workers to finish this important addition to Centennial Camp.
Nothing can stand in the way of God’s Plan for His Kingdom. Even as captives, Daniel and his countrymen traveled in the middle of God’s Will for thier lives and His Kingdom Plan. We are fortunate indeed to journey across borders in freedom as we endeavor to take part in the Lord’s Great Commission. Lord let that not deter our hunger and thirst for all along our path to know You and Your Saving Grace. Our blog this month finds us again in Guatemala for 2 weeks thanks to the generosity of First Bible Church of Decatur, Alabama and Suzanne Hays of Sandia Presbyterian. Two years ago in June a tremendous tropical storm caused landslides and stream erosion that compromised the perimeter fence at Centennial Camp and finally an opportunity is afforded to restore that fence and stabilize the slide area behind the missionary quarters at the camp. Former Directors Johnny and Marie Cokers are leading a team to Guatemala this week to do the repairs and we are priveleged to join them. Pray for good weather and good health for our team this week.
Julie and I seem to be especially joined to our Lord’s Mission to Calvary and the Resurrection this year as Good Friday and Easter rush up on us along with all believers and non-believers. He died for all of our sins yet we still find ourselves oddly wishing our Jesus did not have to suffer the injustice of that week!
As we die to self daily we are so encouraged by those who travel our Mission road to Guatemala with us. There are major updates to our “Give Honor to God Role” with the SPC Men’s Prayer Breakfast, Greg and Karen Chalmers, Randy and Betsy Everett, Art and Connie Krelle, John Cowherd, Vee and Mary Seal, Janet and Art Osborne, James and Bird Ford, William and Anita Byrant, Charles and Leah Pabst, Karl and Clover Alexander, Rick and B.J. Jones (Julia), Anita and David Roe (Kayliegh), Pastor Rick and Barbara Hull, George and Sebilla Boerigter. God Bless you all.
Also in April, Julie and I are participating in our churches 6-week forum entitled ”The Church in Latin American”. We will be speaking to the adults and children and organizing a silent auction with the youth and missions committee for our support. Please pray for us! We have reached 80% of our financial goal in our “committed giving” in March, Praise God!!
We are looking forward to the CAM Convocation 2012 in Estes Park, CO on July 15-22. We will be able to meet and get to know many of our CAM mission heros from all over the Latin World.
Verse 9-10 “The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever. The ordinances of the Lord are sure and altogether righteous. They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey from the comb”
1 Peter 2:2 “Like new born babies, crave pure spirtual milk, that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is Good.
Certainly an acquired taste for the Word of God that provides the primary source of our spirtiual growth! The Word is alive! It cuts like a sword through the darkness! With a message of life to the hopeless and afraid! Bringing life to all who believe! It’s truth will not pass away!
Acts 8:30-31 “Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. Do you understand what you are reading? Philip asked. How can I? he said, Unless someone explains it to me? So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.
The first Great Commission “to the ends of the earth” step in the Acts 1:8 that calls Missionaries to carry the Word across cultural or ethic boundaries, whether across the street or around the world.
The industrious nature and the overall Divine blueprint for the creation of the Honey Bee have much by which we can be amazed and challenged.
Honey bees obtain two things from flowers: nectar (for honey production) and pollen. As the female worker bee sucks nectar from flowers, it is stored in her special honey stomach which she uses as a “nectar backpack”. This is completely separate from her digestive stomach although there is a valve connecting the two which she can open when hungry. This allows her to pass through some honey to be converted to energy for her own needs. After visiting between 150 to 1500 flowers, the honey stomach is full and almost equal in weight to bee herself. At this point the worker bee laboriously returns to the hive with her load.
The worker bees retuning to the hive laden with nectar are often confused with other workers returning with pollen (they never do both on the same trip). Worker bees have hair-like “baskets” on their hind legs and it is into these that they pack pollen grains while visiting flowers. These bees are easily identified because of the brightly colored orange (and sometimes yellow) pollen packed into their baskets. They present an almost comical appearance as they “waddle” about the hive carrying their oversized loads of pollen. The pollen is sometimes referred to as “bee-bread”, and when mixed with honey forms the diet of the next cycle of brood being raised in the hive. When inspecting the brood combs of a hive, a multicolored ring of pollen can normally be observed encircling the brood in the center of the comb.
A bee returning to the hive with a load of nectar is almost immediately greeted by other workers ready to relieve her of the load. A mouth to mouth transfer is normally done between a field bee and one of the hive bees as the adjacent photo shows. Notice the extended “tongues”. The recipient bee processes the honey in its mouth and honey stomach by the addition of enzymes that break the complex sugars in the nectar into simple sugars that is both more digestible by the bees and ultimately gives the honey its characteristic long “shelf life”.
Nectar returned to the hive at this point is barely recognizable as honey. The nectar initially is nearly 80% water with the remainder consisting primarily of complex sugars. After processing the honey with enzymes, small droplets are typically deposited on the upper side of a cell wall awaiting its final conversion into viscous honey with which we humans are acquainted. This conversion is largely an evaporation process which, in turn, is hastened by the warm temperature (95 degrees F) maintained in the hive and the movement of air across the honey combs. Leaving nothing to chance, the bees actually control the movement of air by fanning their wings in a coordinated effort. The buzzing sound coming from a hive (even at night when there is no flying) is due to this “forced evaporation” process. The end result is thick, viscous honey with a 17% – 18% moisture content.
In the peak summer months a worker bee literally works herself to death visiting flowers and transporting the precious cargo back to the hive. During this frenzied time of activity in preparation for the coming winter, a worker bee only lives approximately 35 days. At the end of her days, her wings become so frayed that her usefulness is over and she is rejected by the colony.
It has been four months since our last update on our fund-raising. More and more wonderful people are responding to the Lord’s call to join our support team. Julie and I are experiencing the Lord’s blessing, guidance and presence in our lives in fresh ways and from surprising places…His Word, His People and His Person. He is reminding us over and over again that we need to be patient and wait on Him for results and be mindful to pray for all of you as you pray for us!
Our updated “Give Honor to God Roll” through the month of November includes Dave and Deb Casson, Dave and Linda Kirby, Chip and Jan Mansure, Lyle and Jeanette Petersen, Bill and Janie Weaver, Rick Robinson, Bob and Beth Gehrman, Ken Fanning, Don and Barbara Meisinger, Ron and Sheila Harris and Terry and Connie Johnson, Ken and Teri Boll, Bill and Suzanne Ebel . Thank you all !
Many have made verbal commitments and pray for them as the Lord is making a way for them to follow through in faith in this difficult economy. God is on His Throne!
Please remember our Noon Day Ministry friends who are on the streets of Albuquerque during this cold cold weather. Some with names are Robert who just accepted the Lord , Gary who is struggling with addictions, Duane and Rick who is sharing the gospel daily from thier bed roll on the street, Danny who shoulders the Noon Day program daily…those who want work but can’t find it.
Luke 1: 30-33 ” But the Angel said to her “Do not be afraid” Mary you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus”
Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord …..and He will direct your path. Dave and Linda Kirby from Sandia Presbyterian Church, our church, have been leading a Living Water Team to Guatemala every year to drill water wells, explain the benefits of clean water and share of Christ’s Spiritual Living Water with villages in Guatemala. So when Julie and I got a call from Mark and Sally Vanciel on First Presbyterian, Visalia CA with two more slots on thier LW Team that installs Ozone Water Filtration Systems in Guatemala, we thought that odd but trusted that the Lord was directing..diverting us from our fund raising efforts and ministries here in New Mexico for a couple weeks. The Lord knew exactly what He was doing!! Our November 12-20 trip provided not only opportunities to directly serve Iglesia Bethel of San Juan La Lago with a new water filtration system but meet the Pastor Armando Hernandez, his family, the wonderful Christians there.
We also met the Centennial Camp Council and traveled to the camp location where we will be serving ultimately. A special treat was to meet briefly with the Country Cousins more specifically our support family of CAM Field and Seminary Missionaries now serving in Guatemala.
If that was not enough we had the privilege of traveling with our LW team of 21 amazing men and women from Presbyterian, Baptist and Assembly churches doing what the Lord has called them to do! Each with a personal spiritual Proverbs 3 journey that we were blessed to discover during working days, bus and boat travels and late evening dinners and devotions. God just knew we needed the encourage from these specific people on our journey. Praise His Holy Name. Thank you Mark, Sally, Sam, Mike and team plus First Presbyterian Visalia, CA. May you mount up with wings.. as eagles!