Monday, March 01, 2010

January/February 2010 Be Mine

January/February 2010

In one of His classic “Be Mine” declarations, our Father speaks, “Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. (Isaiah 43:1b) The word “Valentine” is hardly ever used in Mexico during the month of February, but the theme of “Love and Friendship” is big; and in the Iglesia Bíblica Bautista Misericordia (Tepic church), it lasts all year.

January started off with a big answer to prayer. UIM missionary pilots have been praying with us about the possibility of setting up a base of operations in Tepic. They shuttled Huichol pastors Manuel and José to the very remote mountain villages of Zoquipan (La Quemada) and Tierra Blanca (Los Aires), landing, as pilot, David Wolf says, on “rocky, sloped dirt airstrips” 25 air-minutes from Tepic (19 bus and foot-hours!). Manuel and José spent the week teaching much needed Bible classes in the strategic villages, then the pilots transported the teachers back to Tepic. José Lopez, the chief Huichol leader among the Christians, is 65 years old, and he is suffering from severe knee problems. The 25-minute flight made it possible for him to share God’s Word in a village he presented with the Gospel years ago and that has been begging him to come. These are pictures José and Manuel took of their ventures. David Wolf will be returning next week to give a “lift” for the second segment of their Bible teaching. Please join with us in thanking our Father for once again showing His “Be mine” answer to prayer for our Huichol brothers and sisters.

The 10th Huichol OT translation workshop is officially over, but the work continues, and not without multiple obstacles to overcome. Two of the solar-powered laptops earmarked for the work have been returned to Tepic for repairs. While six of the mother-tongue-translators are working diligently in their remote villages, José López comes to town every Wednesday for a special review of his chapters. We went over Leviticus 5 this week...lots of details about sacrifices and offerings that are pretty complicated concepts for translation into Huichol. Please continue to pray for wisdom, understanding, discipline and functional hardware. Our Father has promised our Huichol brothers and sisters, “Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.” How wonderful it will be when they can read this promise out of Isaiah in their heart language!

The semi-truck full of “Operation Christmas Child” shoeboxes earmarked for Tepic made it through the border and to Tepic in time for “Love and Friendship” parties in the Tepic church and in three Huichol village churches. God was faithful in giving the strength, dedication, and vision for working out the details of the enormous effort to share the Samaritan’s Purse gifts, and especially the Good News, with 700 children and many of their parents. We had our final Festiniños celebration last weekend when we passed out the last 176 boxes of 700 we were allotted. Imagine! 176 kids and a LOT of accompanying parents captive for nearly 2 hours. It went great with terrific organization and a wonderful dramatic evangelistic presentation put on by the OANSA leaders. Please pray with us that those who heard the Gospel for the first time will accept God’s invitation to “Be His.”

The week before, we prepared a “Love and Friendship” banquet for the Tepic church young people. It's invigorating to see lots of new kids seeking and lots of old faithfuls serving. Please pray with me that they will choose to resist the enemy’s pointed daggers aimed at their hearts. Then, THEY (the Tepic church young people) got the bright idea to throw a big, fancy banquet for the adults of the church so we could invite our friends, too. The kids prepared the food, rearranged the auditorium chairs, bought candles and flowers for the tables, prepared fun games, acted out 1 Corinthians 13, performed some hilarious parodies of a few of the church couples, Jonatán and Mishna sang a duet to accompany a PowerPoint presentation several of the kids prepared of the adult "friends and couples" in the church, and Pastor Martín gave a great message on relationships. The party started at 8 after the last OANSA kids had been delivered to their homes, and lasted until 11:30 Saturday night. The closing comment from the young Master of Ceremonies was that we just wanted to show you (adult leaders) that we care and that we appreciate all you do and have done for us. You deserve this and more. WOW! They are learning well what it means to “Be His”!

Click here to see slideshows of Jan/Feb pix.