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MEXICO MISSIONS REPORT FOR JANUARY 2017

 

What a way to begin the year! As the Lord promised, we have been inundated with very good, delightful happenings both in the ministry and personally. For our first trip of the year, we drove our “new-to-us” van to replace the one we'd been using for some time. The Lord provided in a great way a 2011 Town & Country van with only 50,000 miles on it. It is quite a blessing to us.

 

Even before our trip in, we began to receive good reports from some of our members. Since the little boy in Rio Bravo was healed of a tumor threatening to block his airway that doctors could not remove, the grandmother no longer prays to her idols of saints and states she no longer feels the need to do so. In addition, the father and son have been seen reading the Believers' Voice of Victory magazines that are distributed monthly when they think no one is looking. We expect the whole family to come into the faith!

 

Chela and Oscar made another trip to the church in Queretaro. Because of the extreme cold that the torn tarps could not withstand, they chose to visit the homes of the new believers, instead. They report that the family that has donated a plot of their land for the church has prospered greatly. Since they made the decision to sow the Word there instead of sowing grain, their lives have greatly improved beyond their expectations. An offering of $1000 recently arrived for the construction of a room for services on their land. This will go a long way in providing a comfortable place for the church to worship.

 

It was a very chilly 41 degrees when we arrived to Victoria for the first discipleship class, yet the people did not allow the uncomfortable temperature to deter them from getting together. In fact, the meeting room was packed, and the atmosphere was filled with the joy of coming together. Following the teaching, we enjoyed a fellowship of hot chocolate and capuchino accompanied by the traditional rosca bread which they had organized to bring.

 

During the fellowship, one of the ladies related a dream that another sister's 6-yr-old son had had. He said, “I saw God. Though I didn't see His face because there was too much light around it, I knew it was Him because I heard His voice. He was in a palace, seated on a big throne. He said to me, 'The blood of the Lamb covers your house, and no evil shall come near you or your family.'” His mother doubted him, thinking that it was just his vivid imagination, but he insisted that it was true. Later, Jeanette, remembering a prophetic word that Kenneth Copeland gave regarding signs and wonders being manifested in and by our children notably this year, found it on the internet translated in Spanish and sent it to the mother as confirmation.

 

During service the next day, the mother and sister of two ladies who attend our church in Victoria spoke with us following the service to let us know that they planned to become part of our congregation and have already spoken to their pastor of 10 years to let him know. When asked how they came to that conclusion without even knowing us, they replied that they have seen the fruit in the two ladies who attend, and they want in on it. (It is never our intention to take “sheep” from another “fold,” but we feel we cannot turn them away as they already made that step of faith.) They have also been recipients of the word that is taught at our church for 10 years because one of the ladies used to take very precise notes of the messages and then teach them at a GDA (grupo de alcance, outreach group) in her home to her family. There have been great changes in her family attributed to her labor of love. Never once did she invite the ones who attended another church to come with her to ours. This is something the Holy Spirit did as He is uniting the family in the faith. Also interesting is that there was a time when she did not attend any church, and her sister sought out a GDA for her to attend to draw her into the faith. She then began to grow leaps and bounds and was used mightily to impact her family, and now it is her sister who wants to come to our church. On the same day, we were so pleased to see in attendance the husband of one of the families that attends who is Mormon. He all of the sudden announced that he would go.

 

A mother of a 4-yr-old told us that, when listening to the recently released CD which contains original songs followed by related verses of the Bible recorded by Rodrigo (whose voice is very anointed for reading the Word aloud), he exclaims upon hearing a particular verse, “That's my favorite verse! Play it again, Mom!” We knew that the CD would have an impact on people, but who knew that it would impress a 4-yr-old?!

 

In the nearby village of Mariposas y Mahuiras where Rosi and Mario have been so faithful to serve weekly teaching the children, construction of a building for them is soon to begin on the land that they donated to the ministry. We are waiting on estimates of costs to begin. In the meantime, electricity was installed in the room where they currently meat at no cost to us. We are not sure how this came to be as no explanation was given.

 

We left a little early another full house in discipleship class the following week in Victoria to participate in a very “bitter-sweet” wedding as the presenters of the Bible. A lady from the church for whom we had prayed to find the right husband did, indeed, find a kind, Christian man, but he attends another church. So the decision was made for them to make that church their home. In faith and love, we laid hands on her and blessed them both, leaving them in very capable hands with their pastors whom we very much enjoyed meeting.

 

We received two testimonies in Victoria among the “delightful surprises” that were prophesied that we should expect this year. One of the ladies in our congregation received a promotion and was moved to another position without her even requesting it, and it had been a desire in her heart. Another sister had been thinking about quitting her job because the hours were too long and inconvenient. Then, again without having requested the change, her schedule was changed to exactly what she needed. Also, there have been family members suddenly and on their own decide to attend church after years of resisting.

 

A few days later, we were delighted to receive a call from Pastor Max who informed us that his radio station in Oklahoma was to be up and running within a few days. The station's call letters are KWHR (World Harvest Radio), FM92.7, which will also be accessible soon by internet. He plans to offer teachings and music in both English and Spanish (to reach the Hispanics living in the area), provided by leaders from our ministry as well as himself. Carlos from Victoria has already submitted an excellent teaching, and the CDs from Victoria and Willy's group Los Leones are also being played on the air.

 

During our first visit of the year to the congregation in Rio Bravo, wewere very glad to see them standing strong in the faith, and we caught up with Chela and Oscar to discuss their recent trip to Queretaro and upcoming plans. Please pray for Chela who is dealing with gall-bladder issues. Surgery is planned to take place soon, so we will send others in their place until she is recovered. Praise God that there is a long list of people just “chomping at the bit” to go and be a part of this growing church, despite the distance.

 

Our visit to Voz was quite pleasant. The children who attend the SuperBook meetings on Fridays attended the regular service on Saturday and have been now for several weeks. In addition to showing the video, Isai and Karen are making time to teach them to play instruments and sing. The kids are very excited about that. They are also memorizing scriptures very enthusiastically with Cynthia, their teacher. Several recited their memory verses during class with Jeanette. These are children who have not been a part of the congregation for very long and attend without their parents, so this is quite significant.

 

Following our visit to Voz, we spent the night at the cottage. Before leaving the next day for Mante, we were entertained by the happy chatter of a flock of parrots while they nibbled on the fruit of the trees surrounding the house. On the way to the church, we were stopped by soldiers and asked to get out of the vehicle so that they could search it. It had been some time since we've had that pleasure. While Jose was witnessing to one soldier in the back, another soldier asked Jeanette if we were selling Bibles because he had spotted one. She answered, “Oh no! We want you to have one, and she handed him a New Testament with tracts placed in it. Then she gave him another for another other soldier who was busy looking over the van. He then said, “There are five of us.” So she gladly handed him enough for all of them and thanked them for their service, telling them they are in our prayers.

 

While at the church in Mante, Araceli mentioned that one of the new members takes a Jehovah's Witness Bible to church. It just “so happened” that Jose had placed an extra large-print Bible in the van, so Jeanette quickly went to get it and exchanged the brother's old one for the new one. He was thrilled because he'd been wanting a large-print Bible, and Jeanette was glad to dispose of the other one. We can perceive that Mante is on the verge of taking a big step up in maturity and stability. They are also prospering more. As an indication, two members recently purchased vehicles.

 

After visiting Mante, we returned for a couple of meetings in Victoria, one with our leader of the intercessory prayer group, and another over dinner with our core leaders. They had secretly arranged a surprise party for Jose's birthday, complete with balloons and even a pinata which we all took a swing at! The members of the discipleship class were all hiding in the dark while we discussed ministry plans until we headed to the gazebo where they were waiting, and then the happy, loving celebrations began.

 

During the fellowship, we had several interesting conversations. Mario and Rosi offered to help in Voz with much needed repairs and to take the necessary supplies. We are so grateful for their support throughout the years. They also expressed interest in going to Urecho to help with the building construction there. Mario has experience in construction, so his input will be greatly appreciated.

 

Sister Vicky told of a striking dream that she'd had which confirms the plan that she and Sister Rosario have had on their hearts to minister in the schools. Reminiscent of the apostle Paul's dream of a Macedonian beckoning him to Macedonia, she heard in the dream a soldier saying, “We would not have to deal with the problems we face if you would reach the youth in the schools.”

 

A vehicle has been obtained for the use of the people who drive to minister in Mante and other places from Victoria. The ministry owns a van, but it uses a lot of gas (for which the price has risen 25% recently), and the seats are hard plastic, making the trips quite uncomfortable, so the car will be very convenient

 

On the way to Victoria the following week, we received word that the congregation in Rio Bravo has been allowed use of a city government bus to take them to the annual convention coming up. All they have to pay is the cost of the gasoline. Hallelujah! We also received a request to pray for Maria Elena Cordoba Burciaga, cousin of a member in Victoria, who needs to obtain a passport and visa to enter the U.S. in order to accomplish some very important objectives for the Kingdom of God (of which we will provide more details and reasons for much rejoicing as soon as possible). Please join us in prayer of agreement for favor for her and her daughter who will accompany her to the U.S.

 

Willy joined us on this trip and, as usual, we split up to be more effective and make better use of the ministry giftings. He and Carlos headed to Voz and then Mante, while we stayed in Victoria for a prenuptial meeting and the monthly marriage class, as well as the service the next day.

 

Willy submitted the following report on their activities:

 

“Carlos and Willy arrived early to Voz to practice with Isai and Karen on that chilly January afternoon. This was probably the first time in many years that the brothers experienced a chilly day in Voz. They found the place already buzzing with noise and the playful sounds of kids. Service started promptly, and the men were so blessed to see about 12 children ranging from 2 -11 seated in the front two rows of the church. Several other adults were there as well. Willy mentioned that he was so blessed to see some of the former kids that grew up there were there but now as mothers with their own young children. The praise began with Carlos and Isai leading, Willy on accordion, and Karen on drums. What a delight to see husband and wife praising together! Willy then ministered the Word, and he focused on Dreams for the Future and how to fulfill them on this earth. He asked the children to share their dreams. Many said they wanted to be doctors, others teachers, one a veterinarian, and another boy a soldier. It was such a great blessing to see that these kids know that a great future is ahead of them. Willy then asked if all had Jesus in their heart, and all did except one boy, Fernando. Fernando gladly stepped up to the front and received Jesus as his Lord. The service ended with a birthday celebration for Isabella, Karen and Isai’s daughter, who celebrated 3yrs--what a blessing to be a part of such a great day! Soon after, Willy, Carlos, Karen and Isai left to Cd. Mante to fellowship with the praise team and minister to them as the Lord led.

 

In Cd. Mante, they were so blessed with the meeting as Carlos led them in worship and Willy played the guitar, and they all loved on the Father. Later that evening after dinner, Willy and Antonio practiced accordion until midnight because the young teen has such a strong desire to play accordion for the Lord.

 

The next morning, the praise team arrived early and, again Willy, Carlos, Karen, Isai and Juan led the

praise service. Praise was filled with a lot of joy as they praised with cumbias on accordion; the people

really rejoiced! Willy then ministered the Word, and the people received it well. After the message, there was a time of worship, and several people went forward for prayer for which the Lord gladly fulfilled their need. An elderly man was also called to the front and was asked if he wanted to receive Christ, and he gladly accepted. Overwhelmed by the touch of the Lord, he could barely speak as he prayed. The service was such a great blessing, as the people ministered to the Lord, and He ministered to them. Carlos and Willy were also blessed that they were able to go to these churches in the new ministry car that was purchased by the Victoria church. Such a great trip!”

 

During the marriage class in Victoria, a large part of the time was devoted to giving testimonies. One rejoiced that the elderly father of a daughter-in-law has begun to recover from a serious condition because of the Word shared and praise music that they put on for him. Another gave God thanks that her children have not been ill with so much as a cold for over a year. And a new believer in Christ said that she at first was sad because she didn't have anything in her purse to give in the offering Sunday, but opened it and found money there. She said the Lord has been doing this often for her. And a newly expectant mother gave God praise for providing her with a job with benefits just before she found out she was pregnant. Also a testimony of provision, a couple gave testimony of the Lord working mightily on behalf of their son who recently had surgery in Mexico. All of their needs, financial and otherwise, were met. In fact, the Lord even sent Christian strangers to support him when he was alone there. And now, recovered from the surgery, he recognizes the hand of the Lord on Him and has begun to participate in the activities at church.

 

Our service the next day included a quinceanera (a traditional 15th birthday celebration) for a young lady who has been with us for a few years, most of the time attending on her own as her family was not attending any church when she began with us. Her enthusiasm for the things of the Lord lead us to know there are great things in store for her.

 

During the fellowship, a couple asked to speak with us, informing us that they have decided to make our church their home. When the man gave his name and the name of his mother (whom we had baptized years ago), a light went off in Jeanette's head as she recalled being in his mother's home where his mother showed a picture of him and asked for prayer for him to be saved. He was living in Monterrey at the time and was, indeed, led to the Lord there. Eventually, he made his way back to Victoria. It is interesting how the Lord brought this man and his family to us.

 

After service, we met up with Willy to return home. On the way, he told a remarkable story of an experience that he recently had when a lady approached him at a fast food place asking for money because her husband was disabled and didn't qualify for assistance. He offered to buy her a meal, but she told him, “Frankly, I can buy much more groceries with the money you would spend here.” So Willy gave her money and immediately regretted not having prayed for her husband who was nearby in a vehicle. He asked the Lord for another chance to some day pray for him, and 3 weeks later, he spotted them again! Quickly, he went and began speaking with them. He asked if they knew Jesus. The man said as a child he attended a Baptist church, and the wife said she was raised Mormon, but declared, “Jesus is Lord.” In addition to receiving words of encouragement to be free from begging, they allowed Willy to pray for the man, and there was an instant change in their demeanor. The two beamed as they parted ways, and Willy was so grateful for the divine appointment to meet them again.

 

It's been a great way to start the year! And even more of our harvest is yet to come! Thanks so much for being a part of it all.

 

With love in Christ, and praying you have a very blessed “Day of Love and Friendship” (Valentine's Day),

Jose and Jeanette, and the Missions team

 

He turns a wilderness into pools of water, and dry land into watersprings. There He makes the hungry dwell, that they may establish a city for a dwelling place, and sow fields and plant vineyards, that they may yield a fruitful harvest. He also blesses them, and they multiply greatly; and He does not let their cattle decrease. Psalm 107:35-38

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