Thursday, March 01, 2018

January/February 2018 - Come, Follow, I'll Make you Fishers of Men

January/February 2018
 And Jesus said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Matthew 4:19
Román teaching José López and José Carrillo
He did not even know the divine mandate yet, but from the day José López believed, a still small voice within bore witness with his spirit that it is a privilege and the obligation of a son of God to come follow his Savior Who promises to make him a fisher of men. He learned early on that even in this world of much tribulation, he could have peace, be of good cheer, and place his total trust in the Overcomer Who has promised that He alone has authority in heaven and on earth, and He would be with him always as he went about making disciples, baptizing them, and teaching them as he had been commanded.

Thirty-six years ago, when José believed, the Good News changed his purposeless life completely. He learned to read and study, so he would be able to share God’s Word with his people, the Huichols, who had never heard the Truth. He set out with a one-track, determined focus on carrying the message of salvation, true freedom, and eternal life to remote mountain villages in the Sierra Madre. Many rejected the Savior’s message, but many others believed. Regardless of the immediate outcome or intense trials, he was never distracted from the divine directive.
Last week 26 Huichol pastors from now-established village churches throughout the mountains of our state, gathered at the centrally-located church at La Bendición for the first-ever, week-long Huichol pastors’ conference. A dozen or so others were unable to attend. That “gathering” required all kinds of creative travel from hiking on foot through the mountains, speeding downriver in boats, UIM-A airlifts, urban buses, and hitching truck rides. Mexican pastors Martín and Nacho moderated the program.
 STOP and soak in the magnitude of meaning behind this remarkable picture. Do we realize what God has done to make this shot possible?  His orders are to “Come and Follow.” His promise is to bring in the fish. Román and Kirt brought and taught José who has been life-long faithful. Nacho was faithful to bring his “brother,” Martín to Jesus, both of whom have been life-long faithful to their callings. You, on the team behind all of this, have been life-long faithful. And God has faithfully fulfilled His promise, bringing in, one-at-a-time, and personally cleaning the fish with whom He has chosen to fill His brimming and overflowing nets.
The theme for the week:  Jeremiah 3:15 “And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.”   Pastors According to the Heart of God No more, no less.

The 39th two-week OT translation workshop begins this coming Monday. José and the rest of the translator team will begin arriving Saturday to be in place for the continued revision-work and text assessment they have been working on in their assorted villages. These hard-working friends have done an amazing job learning and applying principles of good translation, keeping their noses to the grindstone, and joyfully doing a task that began 11 years ago and seemed insurmountable. If all goes as expected, by the end of 2019, the Huichols will have a complete written and audio Bible in their heart language. Oh, and not the least of the things they have learned is the ability to systematically and neatly load their own dishes in the dishwasher after every meal...thank goodness! 
 Please pray diligently for this effort that the enemy obviously has been opposed to from the outset. Pray also for the 7th annual Huichol youth camp we will be hosting Easter week. The theme this year is Jesus is Coming. Though we never know how many will arrive until the first day of camp, we’re expecting at least 200 Huichol teens and their leaders, and around 20 IBBM-Tepic Mexican youth leaders this year. Pray that these efforts, and others, will continue the job of preparing the next generation of Mexican and Huichol leaders in the essential, future-focus of faithfully coming, following, and fishing for men.  
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind…”  Matthew 13:47


At 1:58 PM, Blogger Tim Mellberg and Heidi Leischner said...

Love this!


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