Archive for October, 2011

Our family in San Diego

It’s been so good to have our whole family together on the border this past week. It’s the first time that Jonathan has been able to join us in San Diego, so that we can all be together again.

As we get our whole family out here, it gives us a picture of what things might look for us when we are able to move and live here permanently. Every time we are able to visit we see the Lord deepening relationships, and opening up new doors for us. It’s thrilling to be along for the ride, as we experience life together on the border. I’m so glad that Jonathan has had such a great experience with us here.

David and Jonathan have really missed each other. It was encouraging for me as their papa to watch them together again. They just enjoy being together, and hanging out. We continue to pray for the Lord’s leading for our family. His timing for when our house will sell, so we can move. His leading on where he wants Jonathan to live. We’d love to have him join us on the border. He sure does fit in here.

David with Stephen, a friend from SDCC

It’s also been reassuring to see how much David is enjoying school. He is flourishing at San Diego Christian University (SDCC). He’s excelling on the debate team, and the Lord has given him some wonderful friends. He’s also enjoying interning at the Harbor Mid-City church. God is blessing him so much, it’s hard to believe. It’s heart warming to see him growing and maturing as a young man of God.

O Lord, we continue to look to you, and to ask you to guide and lead us. Lead our family forward as we desire to serve you together on the border. Provide a buyer for our house in your good and perfect timing. Grant us the patience to wait on you. Go before us, and open doors so that the kingdom of God will be expanded on the border. Thank you, Jesus!

In His Grip, Dave

Rick Vasquez at Skyview's new church building

I mentioned in my last post that I would be preaching at Skyview Presbyterian Church on Sunday. Dawn, Hannah and I drove up to Skyview, and the Lord richly blessed our time. What I didn’t realize is that last Sunday was the church’s last time to worship in Trailblazer Elementary School. Where they have celebrated Christ for the last 11 years.

Next Sunday they will be at a new site. A church building that they just purchased. It was a privilege for me to be able to preach on their last Sunday at the school. My sermon was titled, “Come Dance the Dance of Grace.” I spoke about the need to be on mission with God. Pastor Rick Vasquez, and others in the church said it was a good send off sermon as they get ready to inhabit a new land. I pray the Lord’s blessing as they are salt and light in the community they will serve in.

The late missiologist David Bosch said, “There is a church because there is mission, not vice versa. To participate in mission is to participate in the movement of God’s love toward people, since God is a fountain of sending love.” As the church is on mission with God, we are sent out into the harvest. In Matthew 9:35-38, Christ exhorts the apostles to pray for workers, and they become the answer to their prayer. They are the sent ones.

Dave preaching at Skyview

We start in our Jerusalem, and from there are to go out to the farthest corners of the earth, and everywhere in between. For Skyview their Jerusalem is Highlands Ranch, and then greater Denver. Dawn and I are an extension of this ministry as we are sent out. We do not work in isolation. The church is a body. We do not go alone. We would fail if we didn’t have a faithful group standing with us, and sending us out.

Thank the Lord for churches like Skyview, and for friends like pastor, Rick Vasquez and his family! Thank the Lord for you, for standing with us in prayer!

In His Grip, Dave

Rick & Kathleen Vasquez and their beautiful family

This Sunday I have the privilege of preaching at Skyview Presbyterian Church in Highlands Ranch, Colorado. A good friend of mine, Rick Vasquez is the pastor at Skyview. Dawn and I along with our kids have become good friends with Rick and Kathleen, and their family. They are great. We really love their family! We’ve also, been able to visit the church over the past years, and we have made friends with people in their church.

Skyview has a real interest in our ministry on the border, which is a great encouragement to us. One family in the church has an interest in checking out BEAMM in San Diego – Tijuana to see if the Lord might be calling them to work with us there. It’s hard to know at this point how long it might take for them to join us, if the Lord indeed is calling them. We look to Jesus for his perfect timing. We do pray for the Lord’s leading and direction, and continued blessing in our partnership with Skyview.

I will be preaching on Matthew 9:35-38 this Sunday. Jesus told his disciples in Matthew 9:37-38, “…The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” There is always a need for workers to labor in the Lord’s harvest field. The idea is not just that there is a lot of harvest (the harvest is plentiful), but that there is an urgency to harvest it. So we pray that the Lord will raise up workers to minister alongside us. We also pray that the Lord of the harvest would send them quickly.

We need you to pray with and for us in a similar manner. Recently I’ve met a number of people who might be interested in joining our ministry team. At this point, I’d say that they are interested in learning more about us, and checking us out. I wrote about the opportunity I had to recruit new workers at MTW’s vision retreat a few weeks ago. It’s been exciting to meet so many people who have a heart to serve. People who are seeking the Lord, and asking Him where He wants them.

Over the next two weeks we will be in San Diego and Tijuana. While we are there we have a friend who is coming to visit, and explore the possibility of joining our team. He would help us in administration and training, which are two huge needs that we have.

Edgardo, Mario, Dave, Dawn, Elizabeth, and Silvia (with child)

I talked to Mario Silva last night. They are still hoping and praying they will be able to join us soon. Silvia is due to give birth to their son on November 4th. Keep them in your prayers, as their family grows. We pray that the Lord will open the door for them to join us in 2012.

We see that the Lord is building our team, but we really have no idea of what it will look like in a year or two from now. We are praying, and dreaming about it though!

Our family also continues to wait on the Lord’s timing to sell our house, so that we can move to the border.

Thanks for standing with us in prayer!

In His Grip, Dave

In our last prayer letter that I sent out October 13, I mentioned the wonderful testimonies on a new video from our friends at Harbor Mid-City. The video is celebrating the many changed lives through four years of ministry at Harbor. It’s so encouraging to see how the gospel does change everything!

Continue to pray with us for Stephen and Bradford Phelan and their ministry team as they serve at Harbor Mid City. We also appreciate your prayers for our upcoming trip to San Diego and Tijuana  from October 24 – November 6. Dawn, Hannah, Jonathan and I will be going on the trip. We are grateful that we will have our whole family there for the first time, as David is already there.

Here’s the video – I know you’ll enjoy it!

In His Grip, Dave

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Our house with a little snow from a recent storm

Over the last three months we have been asking you to pray that our house will sell, so we can make our move to the border. It still hasn’t sold, and to be honest it’s hard to wait, especially when we feel we don’t have any control over the situation. The only thing we can do to make it sell quicker is to reduce the price, which may be necessary, but it’s not a very encouraging prospect.

Both Dawn and I were very confident that the Lord would sell our home within a month of when we put in on the market. We realized that it’s a buyers market, but we have heard some encouraging stories of some houses selling quickly.

Since our house has taken longer than we had anticipated, it’s caused us to reflect, pray and ask the Lord what His plan is. We’ve asked, “why might it be that God has not had our house sell yet?” “What does He have for us here in Colorado Springs, that we have yet to do?” And other similar questions.

I’m not sure that I have the answers to these questions, but I do know the Lord has a purpose, even in this. A couple of things that we do know are that being here longer has allowed our support to come up. We’d really like to be fully funded by the time we move. We are almost there, but we still have a little ways to go. We are at 90% of our monthly support need. We are also trying to raise funds, so we have enough to cover our moving expenses.

Another possible reason the Lord has seen fit to keep us here longer is that our son, Jonathan is planning on staying in Colorado through at least this school year. Maybe the Lord wanted him to be in our home a little longer before he moves out?

I believe another valuable thing that God is doing as we wait is teaching us to trust Him. That’s easier than it sounds, sometimes! It’s easy to trust Him when things are going the way we want, but not so easy when His plan is different from what we think it should be.

On the positive side, Colorado Springs is a beautiful place to live. We have a lot of great friends, and a wonderful church here. I’m sure we will miss all these things when we leave! So we must cherish each day, and bloom where we are planted.

One of the challenges we face is that since we had to pack up a lot of our belongings to get our house ready to show, most of our cold weather clothes are packed away. Last weekend it snowed! Staying warm could become difficult as we move towards winter. Thank the Lord that He is in control of even this!

In His Grip, Dave

Dave sharing about BEAMM at CovCom

This morning I woke up to snow falling in the Springs. It’s hard to fathom, especially since I just returned from Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona. Most of the days I was there it was over a 100. One of the highlights of my trip was being able to visit Covenant Community Church. CovCom as many call it is one of our partnering churches, so it was a great opportunity to get to know them better and to share with them more about our ministry with BEAMM.

I’ve had a lot of opportunities lately to share about all the things God is doing on the border, and I find that our friends are extremely interested. They are concerned about all the violence, and other issues that affect the border. We are grateful that we have the answer in the gospel. That as my friends at Harbor and others have said, “the gospel changes everything”. The gospel gives us hope. So when I share about what God is doing, I’m sharing about the hope that we have. I’m encouraged as people respond to this message.

A friend recently told me that God was going to take me places I’ve never been before, and that I have to trust Him. If I look to my own strength, I’m going to realize how weak and feeble I am. Left to myself, I really am hopeless. Dawn and I along with our ministry team need to hope. Our eyes must be fixed on Christ, and our focus on the gospel of grace every day.

Friends during the service at CovCom

CovCom and other churches like it encourage us and strengthen us. This also gives us hope. It reminds us we are part of a greater Kingdom. His Kingdom. Jesus taught us to pray, “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Wow! What a blessing! What a privilege, to be part of God’s Kingdom, partnering with other like minded churches and individuals to bring the life changing message of the gospel to the border.

Thanks for strengthening us by standing with us! This too gives us hope.

In His Grip, Dave

Dr. Greg & Sally Livingstone

I was just at a conference for missions leaders in Scottsdale, Arizona, called Reset: Mission in a Context of Deep Change. It’s always a blessing to rub shoulders and learn from other people who are gifted and passionate about missions. On Friday night, Greg and Sally Livingstone, were honored with the lifetime achievement award in missions.

It’s a wonderful testimony to see these faithful men and women who go before us, blazing a path in missions. Greg Livingstone founded Frontiers. He founded the mission in 1983, and has helped moved missions forward as we seek to reach a people who have been resistant to the gospel. It’s sometimes overwhelming to think about all the needs around the world. Thank God, that He is a BIG God. Thank Him that missions flows out of His love the for world as stated in John 3:16, and Matthew 28:18-20, and many other passages.

As I’ve mentioned in my last few posts, please pray with us for faithful workers on the border. There obviously are many other needy places around the world, and Christ has asked us to pray to the Father that He will thrust out laborers into His harvest field.

In HIs Grip, Dave

Participants at MTW's vision retreat

One of the enduring truths from scripture is the need for workers to bring in the harvest from the field. Matthew 9:35 – 38, is where Jesus says, “…the harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.” We need faithful laborers to join us on the border. That’s one of the reasons why I was at Mission to the World’s (MTW) vision retreat.

It was a great opportunity to meet new friends who are interested in pursuing missions. Now they are just trying to figure out where God is calling them to work. We had field missionaries from Romania, Ukraine, Bulgaria and Thailand there along with me sharing about the needs we have on our respective fields. It was a great experience to not only meet the people who have an interest in serving in missions, but to rub shoulders with other missionaries, and learn about the needs where they are serving.

Ray & Michele Call and family

Pray with us that the Lord will provide more workers to work with us and the Calls‘. We are excited about a recent develop. A close friend of our family, who worked with us in Mexico City desires to work with us on the border. He will help us in administration and training. These are huge needs!

We also have Mario and Silvia Silva, that I’ve mentioned frequently, who are very interested in working with us. We still need to figure some things out, so they can labor with us. Thanks for praying for this need.

Some other holes that we need to fill are to find people gifted, who have a heart for mercy ministry. I feel like we could always use more evangelist, and people who are gifted in church planting. Lord, please do answer our prayer and send workers!

I talked to our good friend, Stephen Phelan the other day, and Harbor Mid City has a need for a director of children’s ministry. If you know of someone that has gifts for that ministry let us know. Another prayer request related to Stephen and Bradford is they are considering adopting. You might remember that Bradford just had a miscarriage in August. Now an opportunity has opened up for an adoption. They are seeking the Lord for His direction on this. They have a phone call with the birth mother this Monday, October 3. Pray for God’s leading, direction, peace and blessing. So be it Lord!

In His Grip, Dave