ABWE: Live Global
|Thank you for your faithful prayers and partnership with our family. We have heard from so many of you after our “raw” January prayer letter. If you have followed our family over these past 7 years, you know I (sometimes to a fault) keep things real. I thank you for standing with us and following our journey. Thank you for your quick notes of encouragement, random phone calls and quiet times of prayer. We are so grateful for you and thank God for you every single day.|
Christian is without a cast! We had to follow up with the pediatric orthopedic at 4 weeks and were already told before hand that depending on the x-ray, he would leave with a small cast, a splint or possibly nothing. We knew that he had a pretty severe break on his femur so anticipating more treatment, we were shocked to hear he is good! He has and will have a bit of a limp as he builds his muscle back up in the leg, but praise God for healing in our little guy. We hear all of the time that “kids are resilient” but to watch it in progress.. impressive! Thank you for praying!
In the last prayer letter, we were pretty excited about rescheduling our trip to Guyana which we were forced to cancel due to COVID restrictions. While we are still working to reschedule this trip, God provided another trip to the Dominican Republic. Jason was able to return from a trip to the Dominican Republic this past week and suffice to say we are so excited about the opportunities.
We have a partnering agency that has come along side Live Global over the years in sharing national partners and other contacts across the globe. While this agency’s primary focus is humanitarian aide in areas like child sponsorship and food, they have come across a need for theological training in the Dominican. We were invited by this partnering agency to meet the national pastors and see the need. It was a quick – one week – trip that completely overwhelmed us in both the expansive need and opportunity. We met Pastor Mede, a Haitian pastor, who for the past 10 years has been ministering in the Bateys (villages throughout the sugar cane fields). He has found that over the years, a building has been established in most villages and even seen a pastor appointed but they were never trained. It was so telling as we asked Pastor Mede how many pastors we would have the opportunity to train and he responded, “You tell me how many you want and I’ll have them here!” Another question was presented of where to start. Should we start with basic skills on how to study your bible or maybe how to prepare a sermon and the answer of Pastor Mede surprised us again. Pastor Mede asked us if we could teach the basic bible stories. He explained that these Pastors were chosen because they were popular in the village or maybe because they were the only one willing to serve in the role. They do not know the basic stories of the Scriptures. We quickly realized that we would need to start from scratch! Please pray for wisdom as we plan future trips to help!
Keeping our eyes on the Lord will be the only way to minister. The needs are so vast that our hearts want to do it all – but we cannot. The prayer of our hearts is that we might know “our part.” Praying that God would make it clear how He wants to use our gifts and skillset to do our part. There are other groups involved in doing their part too. It’s only together that we can accomplish this goal.
The really neat part of the trip is that a young man came to know our Lord and Savior. A young man by the name of Ismael (pictured below) grew up on these Bateys and another group has helped him acquire his paperwork and learn some English to be their “feet on the ground” for their outreach. I met Ismael on Wednesday morning and on Thursday morning he rushed to find a moment to speak with me. Ismael explained that Tuesday evening, he was struggling with who he was in God. He begged the Lord to show him in a dream how he might know God better. Wednesday morning, Ismael woke up and was furious with God because he did not answer his prayer. He told me that he climbed into the truck and sat next to me but was glued to his cellphone without wanting to pay attention to the day. He said that he overheard me telling another missionary a story of someone I knew that had a great understanding of the Bible and was well trained, but did not have a great relationship with God. He said in this moment that God told him to listen to me; that the words I was speaking were not for the other missionary but rather for him. Ismael listened as he heard my heart broken for a man searching, when he already knew the Bible. Ismael continued to explain to me that he could not wait to get home. He rushed to his bible and began to read. He exclaimed, “Jason I nailed it down. I feel so good!” I tried to clarify that his faith should now solely be in Christ and he responded, “Yes! Jason, that’s exactly what I am saying. I am now wholly trusting in Jesus’ death on the cross! Pray for Ismael and wisdom for myself as I followup via text to help disciple him. We are still planning trips to Guayana, Guatemala, Costa Rica and even a return trip to the DR. Please pray for wisdom as we maneuver the COVID restrictions advancing the call which God has given us.