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Mexico Missions Activities for September 2013

Before heading to Mexico for our first trip of the month to lead a leadership class in Victoria, we sent Joshua off to Texas Bible Institue with Ivan, another young man from our church. We prayed they would not encounter rain on their 5-hour drive, and that we wouldn't either going south. Though it briefly rained lightly, most of our drive was clear, despite the low, gray clouds. Joshua and Ivan had a clear road the whole way to Columbus. Due to departing late, we were unable to attend the Day of Prayer held at Victoria's civic center, but many of our members were in attendance.

 

During church service the following day, Jeanette and Lucero spent much time counseling and praying with a member who has dealt with many bondages due to sexual abuse as a child, exposure to witchcraft, and much evil in her home. She has been delivered from several evil influences, but still struggles in certain areas of her life. Please lift her up in prayer that she would walk completely free in newness of life.

 

Please also uphold in prayer a couple in one of our congregations who are victims of extortion at their business. They have been threatened harm if they do not pay a regular “fee.” This is the first and only case that we are aware of among our members.

 

The following weekend we made the decision not to travel due to hurricane Ingrid which had blocked entrance to every place we had intended to go. The Mexican Independence Day festivities that were planned had to be postponed, as well. We thank God that there are strong leaders that can easily minister in services and leadership classes in our absence. During the week, they also organized the congregation to collect food, water, and the like, for those affected by the flooding around the city. We praise God that none of our members were adversely affected by the storm.

 

The Lord sent a northern wind that pushed rain out of the way the following week, enabling us to continue with our regular missions activities. Sister Mari of Rio Bravo later sent a remarkable testimony of how she also prayed regarding the weather and saw results. The manner in which she expresses her use of the scriptures in prayer is amazing and quite noteworthy. In fact, most of the members of the congregation in Rio Bravo are very effective in declaring the Word in their conversation and prayers.

 

Our activities started with the church in Victoria hosting a wonderful Mexican Independence Day celebration. There was a great turn-out of about 150 people, LOTS of food, games, prizes, and a Mexican costume contest (Jeanette, a “gringa,” was asked to be one of the judges!). We were very pleased that Chuy, the man in charge of setting up the rooms for events, and his family attended, as did Rudy, the owner of the banquet hall, with his family. The next day in the service, we were so pleased that Chuy joined us and told Jose that he will continue attending weekly as long as his work allows. Praise the Lord! We are praying that all of them come to Christ and become a part of our congregation. God sent us there for a reason! They have been a blessing to us, and we are so grateful that we have had great favor with both Chuy and Rudy. They are quite kind to us.

 

In the same service, three accepted Christ at the altar call, and others went forward for particular needs. We were also pleased to see in attendance the parents of a young man who used to attend. They went without him on their own. Because of some family issues that we are aware of, their attendance is particularly significant and exciting.

 

Vicente, our elder in the village of Voz Campesina, was asked to be the “anchor” in Mante, and he readily agreed. Though his village is an hour drive away, he doesn't mind going weekly to provide a stable presence of leadership. Since the existence of the congregation, in addition to us popping in as time permits to minister, we have been sending leaders weekly to the leadership classes and regular services. While this has been good, we have felt it necessary to take this step in order to have some kind of consistency, though we will continue to visit and send others to minister regularly. We are glad that Vicente is available, despite the distance for him and look forward to great results due to the decision.

 

Later that week we had already planned to visit the congregation in Rio Bravo for their mid-week service, but learned that we would be going to console a sister whose mother had gone home to be with the Lord, instead. We found her and her family comforted and strengthened, surrounded by the Body of Christ. The next day they had the funeral, and Don Tino and Dona Maria ministered with great anointing along with another minister.

 

For our last trip of the month, we first drove to the cottage after being away for a few weeks due to other obligations and the delay of the weather. In the afternoon, while Carlos, Mario, and David taught the leadership class in Mante, we headed to the service with the brothers and sisters in Voz. On the way there, we could see the obvious signs of high waters in the area. The raging waters had gone over the bridge that leads to the village, but, gratefully, there was no destruction to it.

 

The service in Voz went very well. Jeanette and Jose tag-teamed to share the Word and both ministered to the people during the altar call. A young man named Patricio, a coworker of one of the men at church, went forward to give his life to Christ. Another man went forward to rededicate his life to the Lord after being away for years. Following the service, a young couple expressed their concern for another couple they have been ministering to who are separated. They asked Jeanette for a copy of the movie “Fire Proof” to show them. This is the first time we have heard them show interest in the spiritual well-being of others. This truly thrilled us!

 

Vicente also testified that a man in the village sought him out to ask how he got free from alcohol, and he was able to tell him how Jesus Christ changed his life. Vicente says this man desires to attend church services, but there is strong pressure in his home to not abandon their traditional ways. Cinthia , Vicente's daugter, also testified that her mother laid hands on her sore ankle the night before and was healed.

 

We are so grateful that the people of Voz are walking more evidently by faith and willing to share their faith. In addition, they are much more expressive in holding conversations as we fellowship during the meals after the service and are more eager to participate in the pot-luck dinners. It used to be that many would not attend service on the day of a church dinner. In general, the congregation is showing more and more signs of growth in every way.

 

While we were in Voz, Omar and Miranda were in Rio Bravo, as usual. At the end of the service, there was an altar call and several responded, including a young man who had been away since the end of April when he was spoken to sternly for some serious misbehavior. Apparently, he returned repentant and ready to receive from the Lord. Others also received a touch from the Lord in other areas. Dona Maria had dreamed the scene of praying for several in the service just the night before.

 

The last day of the month was spent ministering in Mante. We rejoiced in seeing the congregation strong and increased in numbers. In fact, they have doubled in size since the last time we visited! They have also gotten organized in ministering to the children and youth. There was a great response during the altar call with many going forward for various needs including healing, marriage problems, and one man went forward asking for prayer to be able to love. He confessed that he has been living only for himself and desires to love like God does. We also prayed for a doctor named Gastro Rodriquez who sent word for us to pray because he has cancer that has invaded his body. We would greatly appreciate it if you uphold him in prayer.

 

During a time of fellowship in Mante, we learned that Gelo's sugar cane crop that we had prayed for due to an infestation was “healed.” He had sprayed his crop, but then it rained heavily. However, his crop was healed of it, anyway.

 

In Victoria, Pepe preached and gave an altar call to which some forty people responded. We should later learn the details of everything God did in their personal lives and the results of that day.

 

It has been a very joyous and satisfying month. After leaving each congregation, we drive away rejoicing in what God is doing and the growth in the members. We look forward to what God has in store for the month of October and will be sure to keep you informed. Thanks so much for being a part of it all.

 

In Christ,

Jose, Jeanette, and the missions team

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