How can I begin to share the changes taking place at my heart level? Learning, seeking, growing, and transforming.
When I came down here a month ago I felt my task was preparing the Bambu base for arriving missions teams. Having accomplished much work in the plumbing, carpentry, and electrical systems I sat back and waited for the team to land and get about doing the task of spiritual teaching. I felt satisfied in my anticipation that my job was done.
I did feel the tug of God on my heart that He had more for me to do, but out of fear I ignored it and pushed it away. I wanted to lean on the pastors and missionary teams that were coming from the States to do the preaching and teaching. I just wanted to fade into a corner someplace. But God had very different plans in mind.
When the team had to cancel the entire trip due to Covid at the last minute, Karina and I had to scramble our plans and make some quick decisions. We had 3 churches and many people expecting a conference to be held. We looked at each other and said “ wait a minute, we are the missionaries here, the ones that moved here for this work, we can’t let these churches down and simply cancel, WE can do this!” and so we prayed and moved on with the plan’s trusting that God had equipped us “ for such a time as this”.
Karina assembled her team of warrior women, borrowed a couple of girls from the Teen Challenge center to help us out, and off she went to preach and offer encouragement to the women in the villages. For their part, the Teen Challenge girls were not only a real blessing but experienced breakthroughs in their own stories and saw the value of a life changed and transformed to be of service to others. Karina held children’s clubs and spread the word of the Nest mission.
For my part, I took a fine young man from YWAM to translate a Bible series that God laid on my heart to teach. We crossed the river and took a truck ride up into a remote village for a 3 day Bible teaching with about 10 men from the nearby hills, gathering together in a thatched roof church.
Sharing my testimony and speaking the Word into their lives felt natural and inspiring. In turn, they opened up and shared their stories with me. Kendall, my translator was moved and felt that the timing and teaching were exactly where God needed him to be this weekend.
This also marked the first time that we’ve been able to share the Nest mission with BriBri men. And the need couldn’t be more urgent as I learned first hand that the sexual abuse of girls and women is not only a real thing but is actually a custom amongst the tribe. We are waging a battle against generational abuse and victimization and the need for the Nest couldn’t be more apparent. That I was able, through the prompting of the Spirit to speak directly to the effects of this practice on the condition of a soul was a real breakthrough.
I will be going back to this and other villages to follow up and keep on speaking the truth into their hearts. Also as another result, I’ve been invited to teach this series at a men's Teen Challenge center near our home, so that’s a door that I was praying would open up for me.
Karina and I are still very much praying that the postponed trip from the United States will be able to happen so we can share in the service and fellowship of what God is doing here. We feel blessed to have been pressed into service and more than ever feel the confirmation of the call to ministry.
Please continue to pray for us as we navigate the details of continuing the construction at the Nest site, our need to raise more monthly financial partners, and living a lifestyle of community as we live and breath God's love into those He’s entrusted to us.
With love and gratitude