Monday, November 06, 2006

“O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!” Romans 11:33

I am so thankful to send this report of God’s abundant blessings during the past two months; and at the same time, I want to ask you to join with me in prayer for some current needs.

The first Saturday in September, marked the beginning of another exciting year of AWANA (OANSA) activities in Tepic, as well as in the Huichol Indian village of Zapote de Picachos. Though Hurricane John threatened to hit us hard, 52 Tepic clubbers and an army of workers refused to be dissuaded, choosing to ignore the possible storm in order to attend the first meeting!

God continues to work miracles as He provides on a daily basis. The HUGE project of building a "ramada" over the multi-purpose game court at the Tepic church was completed in mid-September. The covering makes the court much more usable during the rainy season, during the days of extreme sun, and for the many church-wide dinners and activities for which we have previously had to rent a canopy to shelter the guests. We contracted the job (long story) with Pedro Rios, an old friend of Kirt's, who finally, after 25 years of inviting, has begun coming to church on Sundays. They did an indescribable job of positioning the immense metal struts for which they had to invent and weld together a special pulley assembly since no crane could get back to the area. Since the installation of the structure, we've weathered the effects of 2 hurricanes, John and Lane, and the covering held up perfectly. The ramada will be used this coming Sunday for an additional “classroom” for our junior high-aged kids. Please pray for Humberto, José Luis, Jr., and Aarón (All three of the exemplary young men are graduates of and now leaders in OANSA, as well.) who have taken on the responsibility of team-teaching the new class.

The ridiculously humanly-impossible goal we had set for placing an order for 1000 MegaVoice Ambassador Mp3 players for the audio Huichol New Testament is nearly a reality. Many churches and friends, and some people we have never even met, have had a part in contributing to this extraordinary project. We expect to have delivery of the players by mid-January, and Jacob will get them loaded up and ready for distribution shortly thereafter. We are convinced that this will be an effective tool for evangelism, personal growth and teaching among the Huichols. Thank you so much for your prayers and sacrificial involvement in this unique opportunity.

In the previous prayer update, I mentioned the meeting that Timmy had with his good friend, Roberto, an administrator at the State Department of Human Rights, regarding the persecution of the new believers at Guásima del Caimán. Roberto followed through on their July meeting and summoned Professor Clemente along with the municipal judges to give them an "applied civics lesson" issuing them formal reprimands and to remind Clemente that the Mexican Constitution guarantees freedom of religion and the right to an education for all. Clemente left Tepic with the clear understanding that his job might be at stake; and the judges conveniently decided they would allow the believers to plant their corn after all. This is another example of “… it’s WHO ya know that counts… and it helps to be a child of the King!” For more details see:

And speaking of the believers at Guásima del Caimán, they celebrated the one-year anniversary of their acceptance of the Gospel message and their entrance in the "family" on October 15 with a big corn harvest festival to which they invited all the believers from “nearby” (within a day’s walk, or so) villages to share with them. They are growing like weeds and hungry for more. They have officially “organized” their local church with Refugio (plain white shirt) as their lay-pastor, Mauricio (son of the village shaman, brightly embroidered shirt) as his assistant, and Gregorio (navy blue shirt) as secretary-treasurer. Santiago and Gabriela (from the remote village of Santa Catarina - Read more about them here: were also there with a list of eight names of people from their village who have “signed up” that they want to receive Christ as soon as someone can take them the message. (Hint, hint!) Please pray that the opportunity for Catarina, Faustino, Geronimo, Angelica, Miguel, María Lupita, Lucia and Rosa will be realized soon.

It’s nearly impossible to believe that the first week of October we celebrated fifteen years since the foundation of the Iglesia Bíblica Bautista de Tepic. Our theme for this year’s commemoration was, “15 Years of God’s Amazing Grace.” Pastor Phil McKeown and two members from the North Village Baptist Church and Mike Blythe from Florida came to Tepic to share in the celebration. Pastor McKeown spoke about four lost things, the 100th sheep, the coin, the prodigal, and his brother; and he closed the message saying, "God wants you to know that no matter why you are lost, He loves you. God wants you to know that He will stop at nothing to find you." What amazing grace! Check out the included follow-up story, “Peace in the Midst of the Storm,” and see some digital pictures from the celebration here:

And thank you for praying with and for me in this enormous, but rewarding task. Again, as Kirt always concluded our prayer updates, “We are forever grateful for your love and care that allows us to be here sharing God’s love.”

All because of Jesus,

Debbie Mellberg

Quick Reference Version of September-October Prayer Requests:

1. Tepic and Zapote Awana/Oansa clubs
2. Humberto, José Luis, Aarón – new junior high class
3. Huichol New Testament MegaVoice Ambassador project
4. Infant church at Guásima del Caimán (leaders: Refugio, Mauricio, Gregorio)
5. Santiago and Gabriela and their friends from Santa Catarina who want to join the “family”
6. Huichol Old Testament Translation project to begin in January 2007
7. Faithfulness and continued growth of 1st and 2nd generation believers in the Tepic church


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