Women’s Team to India

Church,

In less than a week, our Team will be heading to India to encourage believers and share the gospel. Our team is unique in that it is the first all women’s team our church will send to India. We will be serving March 30-April 10!

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Heather Waldrop, Liz Eckbreth, Amanda Rosen, Lindsey Zito, Hillary Dabrasky, Jenna Hurst

The team will visit several centers in North India to encourage women who are seeking to grow in their  knowledge and obedience of the Lord and His mission. For this trip, we’ve felt burdened to teach the women about various aspects of faithfulness.

Proverbs 20:6 says, “Many a man proclaims his own steadfast love, but a faithful man who can find?”

Our prayer is that through our going we, along with the women in India, will grow in faithfulness to the Lord. The content of our teaching includes:

 

Faithfulness to the LORD- Mary/Martha (Jenna)

Faithfulness as Exiles- Esther (Lindsey)

Faithfulness in Waiting- Hannah (Hillary)

Faithfulness in Marriage/Parenting- Ephesians 5 woman & Abigail (Amanda)

Faithfulness to the Church and His Mission- Woman at the Well (Heather) & Priscilla (Liz)

 

Pray for us as we each finalize the content of what we’re teaching. Pray God’s Spirit would give us supernatural insight into what these women need! Ask that we’d know how to encourage and challenge them.

Pray for unity. We know the world sees the gospel through our love for one another. Pray we’d love and serve one another well.

Pray for health. Pray we’d be healthy in the little time we have, so that we may make best use of the time we’re given!

Pray our teaching would flow from our love and passion for Jesus!

Pray for the women we’re meeting!

Pray for our partner, Emmanuel, and his family. We will have a couple days with his family. Pray this time would be one of sweet fellowship and deep prayer for one another.

Thank you, Church, for partnering with us through prayer (and for those of you who have given financially)! The work we are doing involves many more than simply the 6 of us. We are thankful for your partnership in the gospel as we all earnestly seek for God to be glorified in North India!

For the team,
Liz

 

Finishing Well

I (Laura) am happy to tell you that we made it safely back to Guatemala City this evening!  There were some interesting sights along the road, and many beautiful views.  We were so glad to get to hang out with the White family a little longer – what a joy they have been to work alongside, and I hope they were as encouraged by us as we were by them.

Upon arrival to the city, we first spent some time with tens of thousands of our closest friends in traffic.  After that, we went to the market, ate some dinner, got to walk around a mall for a bit and stretch our legs, bought some coffee to bring home to our friends and family, and then drove to the missionary guest home.

We unloaded, got settled, and then sat down for our final team time.  The FBC mission teams always have a special get together at the end of each trip to debrief a little.  We spent some time talking through the week’s highs and lows, and then shared personal encouragement to each other about how we saw God working throughout the week.  This was such a special way to finish up our time here in Guatemala.

We’d like to say a special thank you for your prayers before, during and after this trip.  We KNOW, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the boldness we felt to share our faith, and any good thing that we were able to accomplish, came directly from God’s almighty hand.

Please enjoy a little sampling of photos, and be sure to consider traveling with us next time!  You will come away with a new understanding of the global Church, with a joy in seeing Guatemalan believers worshiping freely, and a renewed commitment to sharing your faith openly with the people around you.

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Last Day on the Mountain

Hello to all of our church family and friends!

First of all, we want to thank you for your continued prayer and support this week, as we wouldn’t be here without you. We thank you for your faithfulness to pray and encourage us  on this journey.

This was our last day on the mountain and in the villages…and what a day it was! We were also thankful to have Regina, Cruz, and Ben join us today!

After a great breakfast of eggs, beans, fresh fruit…and COFFEE…Nathan shared a few verses of encouragement for the day, during team devotion time, and then we loaded up and headed towards our first destination – Jocotan.

In Jocotan, we visited with Jane, the Principle of the school – El Olam. It was a blessing to be able to pray with her this morning. We were welcomed there by children saying, “Ah, Americanos”! Cruz White, David & Regina’s eldest son, actually attended there for 2.5 years, and enjoyed every minute. Jane is full of life, and of Jesus! She is from El Salvador, and started the school 6 years ago. She is giving the children a bilingual education, and teaching them that God created them. She knows that the word of God grows! Please pray for the teachers there (18 teachers) to also have a heart for God, and please pray that she’ll be able to offer more scholarships to some of her older students this coming year.

After visiting with Jane, we had a few moments to walk around the town square and through the market. The Catholic Church is in the center of town, and the market is full of very interesting things to purchase – for example: chicken, tomatoes, toothpaste, doctor remedies, jewelry…the list goes on.

Our second stop was in La Libertad. We visited with the pastor’s family there. Nicolas is the pastor, and his wife is Prudencia. They were extremely thankful for the encouragement and our prayers of support for their church and their members. They went through a period where some of their members were not active; however, some have recently returned, which is a blessing. Also, the pastor hasn’t been in good health, but is getting better. A big thank you for Miguel for translating for us during this visit! Continue praying for more people to attend the church. This reminds me of a song:

“You are my strength when I am weak, You are the treasure that I seek, You are my all in all. Seeking You as a precious jewel, Lord to give up, I’d be a fool, You are my all in all. Jesus, Lamb of God, worthy is Your name, Jesus, Lamb of God, worthy is Your name. Taking my sing my cross my shame, rising again, I bless Your name, You are my all in all. When I fall down You pick me up, when I am dry, You fill my cup, You are my all in all. Jesus, Lamb of God, worthy is Your name, Jesus, Lamb of God, worthy is Your name.”

After a stop for lunch, we drove up to Nearar and prayed over the new land, right across from the school that will soon be the location of the new church building! What a praise! Women of the village joined us there to pray. How awesome is it that we were standing on the very ground where the word of God will be preached for years to come?!

We then headed higher up, parked, and continued hiking on foot, up to Bible Study time with the church at the pastor’s home. The pastor’s name is Anaclato, and his wife is Nelba. We were welcomed with open arms to share the word and worship with them. Mike & Jennifer shared a Bible Story with the adults, with David interpreting; while Laura, Nathan, and Miguel enjoyed time with the children. Mike & Jennifer both spoke from the book of Hebrews, on Faith, and on people in the Bible that had great faith. They are examples for us to follow in our daily walk with the Lord. It is impossible to please God without faith. He rewards those that seek Him. Faith is a confidence that what we hope for will actually happen. Our faith is in God, and our Hope is in Heaven. How great is it to be able to worship outside, with fellow believers in Christ, on the side of a mountain?! This reminds me of the following song:

“Alleluia, alleluia, the majesty and glory of Your name!”

After a long day, we settled back in for a pasta dinner, and devotion team time with Cruz & Ben! We sang “Your Name”, and “How Deep the Father’s Love For Us”, Cruz prayed, and Ben recited Bible verses for us!

Just a remarkable day, one we will never forget, seeing God’s great creation, and worshipping with the people of Guatemala. It reminds us that one day, every knee will bow, and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. All praise and glory be to God, forever and ever!img_1739img_5487img_5485

Please pray for our safe travels tomorrow, back into Guatemala City, with anticipation of our journey home on Saturday. Please pray for the Holy Spirit to continue working in the lives of the people here. Please pray for David & Regina as they continue to bring the Word of God to the villages.

-Heather

 

2nd Day in the Villages

Good morning!

I’m sorry we didn’t have a chance to blog last night. It was a wonderfully fulfilling-somewhat exhausting-wouldn’t change a thing kind of day. Needless to say, we were pretty spent by the time we got back to the hotel.

We made four visits in the villages yesterday, beginning with a return trip to Chanco. There we met with Ramiro’s daughter and granddaughter, along with a laborer who was working on their home. Mike, Nathan, and David spent time with the young man, while Laura, Heather, Miguel, and I spoke with the young ladies.

After that, we met with Miguel’s brother, Transito, who has just returned from the States. He was very welcoming and kind as he listened and answered all our questions. We had lunch on his porch and then headed to another home. There we spoke with Milton, Gladys, and their son Ronaldo, friends of Miguel’s. Milton has also recently returned from the States. The fellas spent some nice time with him while the girls spoke with Gladys and her son.

Lastly, we stopped by the home of the young driver who brought us from Guatemala City Sunday. The driver, Darvin, wasn’t home but we visited with his mother and sister. Angelica and Brenda seemed to really enjoy our visit. They made us fresh squeezed orange juice and shared with us about another daughter who is in the city with her husband recovering from a very serious car accident.

Throughout these visits, we were able to tell our personal stories, share the Gospel, and ask questions about their faith. We also left them with specific verses they can refer to as they study the Word on their own. As usual, everyone was very respectful and happy to talk with us. We ended each visit with prayer and the hope that the Lord would reveal Himself in a very real way to those people.

Last night, we returned to Fito’s church in Chiquimula for a mid-week service. It was wonderful to worship along with the national believers. The team, along with David, sang “At the Cross” as an opening hymn. It was beautiful to see the congregation singing along in their own language. Laura and I shared some scripture (Laura very comfortably in Spanish – I’m so jealous!), and then we sang some more songs and listened to a message about obedience from Joshua (sound familiar?) It was a very encouraging experience.

We’re heading out in a few minutes to visit some local believers and village churches, including Bible study this afternoon in Muyurco. Please pray for us as we go – that our joy in Christ will easily overflow to strengthen the faith of these believers.

In Christ,
Jennifer

Here’s a photo of the gang with Angelica and Brenda.

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Heat’n Up!

Hello, everyone! Our third day started out a bit chilly.  It was a nice morning and the whole team was well rested, ready to tackle the Lord’s work for the day.  We knew the Holy Spirit was going to be with us today; ready to spill over and to soften hearts.

Breakfast was delightful as usual as Mike enlightened us with our morning devotional on 2 Corinthians 12: 1-10.  Fueled by coffee, we loaded up the trucks and were on the way to our first stop to visit a young man named Fabricio and his grandmother.  Miguel had heard about them through a local teacher in the village.  Fabrisio is currently handicapped and cannot walk due to Guillain-Barre Syndrome.  He has a great spirit and a wonderful smile even though his friends have stopped visiting him and he is bed-ridden most of the day.  His great attitude may have inspired us more than we were able to inspire him while visiting and showing our support.  Fabricio loved to play soccer before the paralysis, which completely disabled him in less than an hour nearly 5 years ago. We prayed with him and promised to keep him in our prayers.

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Our next stop was to visit Marcelino and his family.  Again, they were very welcoming along with everyone else we’ve encountered so far.  Marcelino is 95 years old and dealing with dementia.  His family (two sons, daughters-in-law, and grandchildren) have moved in to help care for him. Although his memory is failing, he told us that he built the home himself fifty-five years ago. We enjoyed each others’ stories and prayed with the family. (We were also all very impressed by the family cat that took care of a small rodent problem right before our eyes!)

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Lunchtime was approaching as we met with Miguel’s family (our wonderful translator) in his village of Chanco and enjoyed some food with his mother and sister.  Then the team split up and visited two homes each – sharing personal testimonies and more of the Gospel with the local villagers.

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The day was coming to an end as we got back to the hotel and washed up for dinner.  Quesadillas and fries were on the menu tonight!  Afterward, we headed over to David and Regina’s house to visit and have team time.  Laura opened up in prayer and gave the evening devotion on Psalms 40: 8-10.  We discussed our ups and downs and then encouraged each other, never forgetting to give all the praise to our Lord God Almighty.  The women are playing cards now as Mike has already called it a night and I am not too far behind him.  Goodnight World and we’ll see you manana!

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-Nathan Rhodes (aka Mr. Roboto)

 

 

 

 

Encouragement for Local Pastors

img_5355img_5377img_5396Our first day began with fellowship and a morning devotional led by Heather. David told us we would be visiting three churches nearby, so travel time was pretty minimal. Our first visit was with Fito, the pastor of the church Chaloom – an open air church with a view of the mountainside. We enjoyed our visit with prayer and a passage from Ephesians 1:3-9. We were encouraged to hear that his church averages around 45 in attendance, and groups meet there 5 nights a week. We’ll be returning on Wednesday evening for one of these services!

Our next church was somewhat more traditional as you can see from the first two photos above. Pastor Elias leads this church, which is called Rivers of Living Water. He has been the pastor there for 40 years! We spent some time with Elias, his wife, and his daughter, getting to know them and talking about the church services, children’s activities, and radio ministry. Elias’ wife has led a study of Revelation through the radio for 16 years! We also spent some time singing hymns together. Laura and Heather even had a turn with the accordion!

The last church we visited was called the City of Peace with pastor Jose Maria. This church is currently meeting on a rented porch, but a new facility is being built (third picture above) on land that the local mayor donated. It was amazing to hear how the pastor and a few others brought in 30 loads of dirt, one wheelbarrow at a time, to level the area, then laid each cinder block themselves. Jose Marie asked that we pray for the church members – that their faith would grow and that they would have a reborn fire for the Lord.

After our visits today, we returned to the hotel and enjoyed some great fellowship and team time. That continued after supper as we met at the White’s house for coffee and a devotion led by Nathan on Psalm 46:10.

The Gospel is spreading throughout Guatemala! We praise God for these pastors and felt so honored to be welcomed by each of them today. Please keep these pastors and churches in your prayers!

-Mikey (with a little assistance) ; )

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’ve Arrived!

Good morning everyone!  Laura Tyler here, thanking you for following our blog as we seek to share the life-changing Gospel message with the people of Guatemala.

All is well here in Central America!  We arrived on time and so did our luggage.  After clearing customs we got into a small van with Miguel, our interpreter, and drove for several hours along a beautiful and interesting road to our hotel.  This hotel will be our “base” for the next several days, and we will be making trips out to the villages from here each day.   On the drive to the hotel, we were able to get closer as a team by sharing our individual stories about how we came to faith.  This made the drive go by really quickly, and it was amazing for me personally to hear about my teams’ lives and how excited each of us are to get the chance to share the reason for the joy that is inside us.

After checking in to our accommodations (Mike and Nate are roommates, and we three ladies are chilling on three little twin beds, camp style), we headed over to the White’s home, where we enjoyed a late dinner and some quality fellowship time.  Their boys are absolutely the cutest, and showed us around their house and homeschool area like tour guides.

Today we will be heading out to visit various churches in the area.  Pray for us this week – that we would be bold and would be sensitive and watchful for opportunities with people whom God has already been preparing.