Monday, August 01, 2022

June-July 2022 Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope

Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13 

Search as they may, joy and peace are scarce commodities for today’s world full of strivers. Yet the offer is plain and clear, there for the asking, for believing in our all-powerful God of hope. Though adverse circumstances and problems swarm, He alone offers all joy, peace, and hope that's humanly unexplainable, not by relying on feelings, people, governments, or anything we can see, but instead, by solely trusting God’s power. And that sustaining God-given hope has one distinct purpose: giving it away, sharing it with the hopeless. 

The past two months in Tepic and surrounding villages have been filled to capacity with examples of the sharing of that abundant hope
Members of Pueblo Nuevo (meaning “New Town”) left their village of Guásima de Caimán insisting that they had had enough of the Gospel and the growing group of villagers who are believers. They moved to a new village where they could continue following their traditional ways with NO Christians allowed! …until Eugenio took a nasty fall that left him bedridden. The brothers from Guásima came and prayed for his healing. He was twice-healed and began to share his joy, peace, and hope through the power of the Holy Spirit with his neighbors who believed, too. Now Pueblo Nuevo is truly a NEW town; half of the adults there have believed and been baptized! 

Huichol pastors and leaders from village churches throughout the Sierra Madre met together in Zapote de Picachos for their second annual pastors’ conference. The theme this year was Suffering in the Ministry, based on the life of Moses. These guys know the key to finding and sharing joy and peace and hope in the midst of difficulty. Pastors Manuel and Joaquín were officially ordained at this conference. 

After two long years of not being allowed to host our OANSA club at IBBM-Tepic, we finally got the “go-ahead” in January. Our OANSA year was shortened, but joy and peace and the reason for the hope that is in us thrive as we hide God’s Word in our hearts and systematically train the next generation of IBBM leaders. 

Then followed the annual ladies’ retreat with our sister church in Ixtlán del Rio, “How Sweet to Trust in Jesus,” the Source of our joy, peace, and hope. 


As soon as that retreat was over, we organized a youth camp for our IBBM students, inviting high schoolers from sister churches in Durango (Mexico), Compostela, and Ixtlán. The theme was “Run the Race,” a reminder that joy, peace, and hope come from God alone, but sharing it requires making a choice, discipline, and active personal participation. 
The baby church in Huichol village of Vizcarra is in the process of clearing land and working on a building for them to meet in. They have so little, but they were determined to get started with what they have. They pooled their resources to buy land from a coffee plantation owner and buy cement, and they used their strength to start leveling the land, digging the trenches, and scouring the mountains for rocks that they have hauled in gunny sacks for the footings. Unexpected gifts from friends all over the place, some who are reading this, have paid for the bricks they need, provided for the roof when the walls are up and ready, and donated a 1,100-liter water storage tank and its connections, a graphic reminder that God miraculously provides Living Water to those who least expect it, when they need it most. That Living Water is the source of joy, peace, and hope for the people of one of the most beautiful villages ever. 

IBBM-Tepic celebrated the completion of the final details of Phase One (the lower level) of our 2-year classroom construction project, and this phase has been dedicated to God’s service. It is beautiful and extremely functional, and we are thankful for many who have had a part in making this dream a reality, especially for the power of God that sustains us with joy and peace and hope, gives us a place to prepare students to give an answer to everyone who asks for the reason for their hope, and leaves us with more than enough of that hope to give away to others.


At 8:52 AM, Blogger Kim McInturff said...

Such a beautiful expression of Jesus in every way! I can't love this enough! So many amazing things happening there in the Tepic and Huichol churches! I I love the theme of the women's conference - "Tis So Sweet To Trust in Jesus!" I am so touched by the reciprocal love shown between the brothers and the sisters in countless tangible ways! Praise the Lord for continued growth among the believers there!


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