Archive for December, 2011

Happy New Year from the Diaso family

Happy New Year from the Diaso family

This is my last post for 2011. Hard to believe another year has passed us by. I started this blog in January of 2011. At first I was fearful that I would be able to keep up with it, or that I would enjoy it. The blog itself has been a huge blessing, as it allows us to let people know what is going on in our life and ministry. It is also great that our friends can interact with us through the blog. I thank the Lord for our blog:

I also thank the Lord for the many friends that he has given us to encourage us along the way. I wrote some posts about our champions. And more champions!

Just a couple of days ago I got together for coffee with one of my champions, John McKeever. John strengthens me as he gives me perspective. He helps me to remember how far we have come. Believe it or not sometimes I do get down. I think about all we have left to do rather than what God has already done. John was one of the friends that encouraged me to start my blog, and to work on my email prayer updates. Thank you John!

Dawn and I have a number of champions, and by mentioning a few I realize that I’m leaving out a number of people who have spurred us on. I’m grateful for all of our champions. David Quintanar, who I wrote about earlier in the year has been a huge encouragement to me. Dick Gascho, who’s been a great friend and coach to me over the last few years. He also helps me to keep things in perspective, and to work on setting achievable goals. Dawn also has some great friends that come alongside her. Then there are many families that hearten us along the way. Thanks to all of you who have stood with us, strengthened us, encouraged us, motivated us, cheered us on and believed in us during this long journey!

David, Jr., Dave, Daniel, Bill and Ray

Another huge ministry highlight for us in 2011 was the Living in Grace conference we held in Tijuana in November. More people looked at our blog on the day we launched our ministry in Tijuana than any day of the year. It was so good to have my friend and colleague, Bill Yarbrough with us leading the conference. It was wonderful to hook up with Daniel Nuñez and the great people he has connected with in his ministry. I enjoyed being able to have my son, David Jr. join us for part of the conference. A good friend and co-worker, Jim DeWitt flew in for the conference, and to learn more about our ministry on the border. BEAMM teammate and friend, Ray Call helped out. We had a great group.

I pray this will be the first of many such ministry events where we will see the gospel go forth, and be a blessing to other ministries. I’m so encouraged by Daniel Nuñez. He’s a gifted and godly leader that’s doing a great work in TJ.

Dawn and I appreciate your prayers for David Jr. We learned on Friday that he will need surgery for a torn meniscus. Now we have to figure out when and where. He leaves for college on January 9. Never a dull moment with our family.

Thank you so much for loving us, and for taking an interest in our lives and our ministry. It’s been a great year! I can’t wait to see what the Lord will do in 2012. Happy New Year!

In His Grip, Dave

Cesia, Mario, Chivis, Diane and Silvia (from left to right)

One of our huge highlights for 2011 was reconnecting with our friends from Mexico, Mario and Silvia Silva. You might remember that their daughter, Chivis stayed with us for six months starting in September of 2010. Mario came out to Colorado to bring Chivis home in February. Then we were with the whole family in San Diego in August. It was so good to see them again!

We hadn’t seen them in almost 10 years. Mario and Silvia were our best friends in Mexico during our second term. They were very involved in one of our church plants in Mexico City.  We love them and their family. So it was a thrill to be with them!

Mario and Silvia are very gifted in ministry. They have a great love for people to reach out and serve others. We’ve been praying for God to raise up a team to work with us, so to make it even more exciting I asked Mario to pray about joining us in reaching Hispanics on the border. God is working and Mario and Silvia have a growing desire to serve with us in the bi-national city of San Diego – Tijuana. Thank you, Jesus!

When Mario was with us in Colorado I asked him to share more about his calling and how the Lord is working in his life. So Mario shared his call to ministry on some short videos that David and I shot. Check them out here – God’s leading and call for Mario Silva 1, 2, 3 & 4.

Mario & Silvia, Dave and Dawn with the Phelans

It was a lot of fun to be with them, and we loved having them meet our co-workers, partners and friends. And they made quite an impression. Stephen Phelan keeps asking me about them, and letting me know how much he and Bradford enjoyed getting to know Mario and Silvia.

We are praying that Mario and Silvia can join us in our work on the border soon. Please pray with us. There are two big areas that we have to figure out with them. One is getting them a visa to live and work on the US side of the border, and secondly is their funding.

Another big highlight for the Silva’s was the birth of their son, Daniel Ezequias. He was born on October 28! Their first boy. Wow! God is so good! We love the Silva’s and pray that the Lord will give us the privilege of working side by side with them for the harvest.

In His Grip, Dave

P.S. Please be in prayer with us for David Jr. He had an MRI for his knee which he hurt playing rugby. We will find out today whether he will need surgery or just physical therapy.

Dawn encouraged me the other day to take time to think about the good things God is doing, and to write them down. This is the third day in a row that I’ve reflected on the myriad of blessings that the Lord bestowed upon us in 2011. It has lifted my spirits! I hope it’s done the same for you!

Today I’d like to take some time to give thanks for the wonderful blessings God gave our family at the start of the summer, and then at the end of the summer.

Jonathan's graduation speech

We kicked the summer off with the graduation of Jonathan from high school. It was a great time of celebration. Dawn and I are very proud of the young man our son has become. He’s a very hard worker, and he loves people. He brings a lot of smiles to our family. You can check out more of what I wrote about Jonathan in two posts – Jonathan’s Graduation Celebration 1 and 2.

Jonathan is off to a good start at Pikes Peak Community College. We continue to pray with him for the Lord’s guidance and leading for his future.

David & Matt in their dorm room

Then we ended the summer sending David Jr. off to school at San Diego Christian College (SDCC). David has flourished at SDCC. Matt May also from Colorado Springs is his roommate, and I don’t think David could have found a better one.

It’s encouraging to meet the awesome friends from school that God has given David. He’s excelling on the speech and debate team, and in the classroom. We just learned that he made the President’s list this first semester! Wow!

The Lord has also given David an outstanding opportunity to intern at Harbor Mid-City with Stephen Phelan and his team. That’s been a wonderful experience for him, and it’s a great fit for him. He desires to pursue missions and ministry upon graduation. It was hard to send David off, but it sure makes it easier knowing that he is doing so well.

David Jr., Hannah and Jonathan

We are proud of both of our boys! We are also proud of our beautiful little daughter, Hannah. She has a tender heart for the Lord, and she is very caring. Hannah will be graduating from high school this May. Soon we will praising the Lord for her passage from high school to college. How did we get so old anyway!?!

Please pray for David Jr. as he hurt his knee playing rugby at SDCC. Some of the students just started a rugby team. David learned the hard way that maybe he should stick to baseball. No tackling in baseball! The doctor said he needs an MRI to determine whether he will need surgery or just physical therapy. We are praying for the later. Join with us as we pray.

It’s so encouraging to see what God is doing in our family and in our ministry. Thanks for caring about both. In fact, I’ve noticed I get more hits on my blog when I write about our family.

In His Grip, Dave

Stephen & Bradford Phelan from Harbor Mid City

God blessed us in many ways in 2011. One of the many ways is through some great friends and ministry partners. In March Stephen Phelan and I talked over lunch at conference we were attending, we quickly found out we had a heart for many of the same ministry ideals. It was so encouraging to meet Stephen, and later Dawn and I got to know his wife, Bradford. They are one of the most gifted, positive, loving couples we have met. What a thrill to see their bilingual ministry, as they are reaching out to English and Spanish speakers.

Stephen has gathered a great group of godly leaders around him. Edgardo Avila is pastoring the Spanish speakers at Harbor Mid-City Church. His wife, Elizabeth is very loving and caring.

Edgardo & Elizabeth Avila

Since Stephen and Edgardo have already started reaching out to Spanish speakers, we believe that it made sense to partner in ministry. It was so encouraging as we got to know them better to discover that we are like minded in many important areas including the desire to reach the bi-national city of San Diego and Tijuana.

Dawn and I just love Stephen and Bradford, Edgardo and Elizabeth and their ministry team. Thank you Jesus for bringing us together! We are so excited to work with them.

God also blessed us with new BEAMM team members in the spring, Ray and Michele Call. They are our first team members, and we are glad to have them working with us. They spent two years in Mexicali before joining us on the San Diego – Tijuana border.

Ray & Michele Call and family

One interesting connection that we have with the Calls is that they spent a couple of years in my hometown, Fresno, California when they were on staff with Campus Crusade for Christ – now Cru. They also attended the same church that is our home church in Fresno, Sierra View Presbyterian Church.

We’ve enjoyed getting to know the Calls over the last several months. They’ve beat us to the border, as they moved from Mexicali to Bonita in May of this year. This is one of reasons we can’t wait to get to border to start our ministry there with them.

Thank you Jesus, for bringing us such great people to serve with. We are so thankful that we don’t have to do this ministry alone.

Since we are at year-end for 2011, Dawn and I would like to encourage you to make a year-end gift to our ministry with MTW. We are praying for at least $25,000 to come in by December 31st, which will help us launch our ministry in the great bi-national city of San Diego – Tijuana. You can give online by clicking on this link: 

In His Grip, Dave Diaso

P.S. Please designate your gift for David & Dawn Diaso – #11717. If you need any help with your online donation, you will find it here…

The Diaso Family - Praising God for His many blessings in 2011

As I reflect back on the 2011, I am reminded of the many blessings that we have received this year. Over the next few days I’d like to recount some of the highlights of 2011. It takes discipline to be thankful, for some reason it’s easier to complain, or worry about what is yet to be done. Let’s praise the Lord together, as we recount some of His bountiful blessings in 2011.

We began 2011 in the midst of transitioning to Mission to the World. We had some big financial needs to meet, in order to begin our ministry.

First, we finished 2010 with the best year-end giving in our 22 years of ministry! Wow! what a blessing! I must admit I worried, “what would happen as we made the transition?” Dawn and I believed God’s provision was further confirmation that He was calling us to serve Him on the San Diego – Tijuana border.

The Lord’s bountiful provision continued in the first quarter of 2011, as again many of our long time supporters as well as new friends joined us on this journey. This was hugely important as it allowed me to travel to build relationships with individuals and churches. It also gave Dawn and me the opportunity to travel to the border to strengthen our relationships for ministry there.

Mexico Border Crossing

Mexico Border Crossing

I started 2011 off by traveling to Nogales, Mexico to meet with many of our BEAMM co-workers. It was my first time in Mexico in quite a while. With all the notoriety about the border, I must admit I had some fears going in. You can bet that I prayed, but it was a great time and God richly blessed the meetings.

Right after I left Nogales I drove up to Phoenix and Tucson to meet with a number of churches. These were great meetings and connecting points. One church in particular, Covenant Community Church in Scottsdale later joined our support team. There are other churches there that are considering partnering with us through prayer and financial support. Pray with us that this will happen soon!

The other significant trip that I made in the first quarter was to Salt Lake City. I met a number of pastors from Northern California and Utah on this trip. Two key churches that I built a relationship with were Grace and Hidden Valley both in the Salt Lake City area.

Later in the spring I made a follow-up trip for Hidden Valley’s missions conference. Paul Kooistra, Mission to the World’s coordinator was the featured speaker for the conference. The Lord raised up some new partners through this trip, and Hidden Valley has expressed a strong interest in partnering with us.

These are a few of the things that the Lord did in the first quarter. It’s a small taste. It’s so encouraging as I think back on where we were, and where God has brought us to now.

Since we are at year-end for 2011, Dawn and I would like to encourage you to make a year-end gift to our ministry with MTW. We are praying for at least $25,000 to come in by December 31st, which will help us launch our ministry in the great bi-national city of San Diego – Tijuana. You can give online by clicking on this link: 

In His Grip, Dave Diaso

P.S. Please designate your gift for David & Dawn Diaso – #11717. If you need any help with your online donation, you will find it here…

Jon B. & Katie Dinwiddie

This past Sunday a new friend, *Rafael (not his real name) was baptized at Harbor Mid-City. The story of how God worked in his life to draw him to Christ is amazing!

This past June I was speaking at New Life Church in La Mesa. The same church I wrote about in my last post. After the service Dawn and I met David and Susan Dinwiddie. We first met them 20 years ago at Church in the Canyon in Calabasas, CA. They told us that their daughter, Katie was just returning from serving for two years at a mission school in Africa. They mentioned that she had a real heart for the Lord, and for missions.

When we talked to Katie, who when I do the math was probably between 7 – 10 when we spent some time getting to know her church in the mid-90’s, said she remembered our prayer card, and praying for us. It makes us feel a little old, but what a blessing to meet this lovely young woman, who prayed for us as a child.

Dawn and I were excited to meet Katie, in part because we thought she might be interested in working with us on the border. We met her in August, and learned that she was interested in exploring other missions opportunities. She said while she was in the area she would like to be involved with us as time allowed. We could tell she had passion to share the gospel. She’s short of stature, but she’s a little dynamo, and cares deeply for lost and hurting people.

Jon & Katie with a friend on top of Cowles Mountain

Katie also told us that she was in a budding relationship with Jon B, a missionary in Asia. Well that relationship now is in full bloom as they just got engaged last month. They are a great young couple. The type of couple that we would love to have serve in missions with us. Dawn and I are excited for them. It is a win for the kingdom as Katie and Jon plan on serving in Asia after they are married.

While Katie and Jon were together last month they went for a hike on Cowles mountain in San Diego County. While they were hiking they met Rafael.

Rafael had been going through a really tough time. He was separated from his kids and family, and this among other things led to much discouragement. He began to entertain thoughts about committing suicide. So he decided to go on a hike. You know, to get some air and try to make sense of things. Little did he know that on that hike he would meet a friendly young couple, Jon B. and Katie Dinwiddie. Jon and Katie struck up a conversation with Rafael on Cowel mountain.

Worship at Harbor Mid-City Church

After their hike they took Rafael out for lunch, and they shared the gospel with him. He responded to the promises of the gospel and prayed to receive Christ with them!

I saw Rafael the last time I was at Harbor Mid-City Church. He seemed more content. He told me that he was planning on getting baptized the following week. I just found out today, that he was baptized. Wow! What a great celebration! Thank the Lord for using our fellow missionaries and friends, Jon and Katie. Soon to be Jon and Katie B.

In His Grip, Dave

Dave preaching at New Life in La Mesa

Dawn and I just returned from the San Diego-Tijuana border. We brought David Jr. back home with us for Christmas break. It’s wonderful having the whole family together under one roof again! While we were in San Diego we were able to connect with some key churches and ministry partners including New Life in La Mesa.

This past Sunday I had the privilege of preaching at New Life. Then after the sermon, our BEAMM teammate, Ray Call administered communion. What a great blessing to serve together. Even though we are just beginning the Lord is opening up doors for us to minister on the border. In November we held our first big event, “Living in Grace,” in Tijuana. On Sunday we served together at New Life, a church that has a vested interest in our ministry on the border.

Ray Call administering communion

It does take time to get new initiatives ramped up. We are confident that it is a new day on the border, and that as the Lord goes before us He will indeed bless our work. We walk by faith and not by sight (2 Cor. 5:7). Not knowing what lies ahead can cause anxiety, but prayer and faith give us hope.

William Carey, missionary to India and the father of modern missions said, “expect great things from God, attempt great things for God.” We have not been given a spirit of fear. “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control” (2 Tim. 1:7).

It’s exciting as we begin to get more opportunities to see the Lord work. We need a strong network of ministries standing with us to strengthen us, so that we will be successful. We receive inspiration from churches like New Life that have a strong interest and desire to see the gospel go forth to Hispanics on the border.

In His Grip, Dave

P.S. We just found out that a family is coming tomorrow (Friday) for a second showing on our home! Pray with us for the sale of our home.

Bill Iverson & Dave

As Dawn and I embark on this new endeavor to see the border transformed by the gospel I must admit that often I wonder, “what am I doing?” And “what have I gotten myself into?” I’m glad we are not on our own. We have some great partners that we are working with. But in my weaker moments I still have my doubts.

I found it comforting when I read my mentor, Dr. William Iverson’s response to an article written about him in byFaith Magazine. Here are Bill’s words of wisdom, “I am grateful for the fact of Christ being the sufficiency of the call. But as in all my life in ministry, there is fear of failure, wondering if I am doing the right thing, and realizing a chilling sense that I can’t do it. When I realize ‘I can’t,’ and he says ‘I never said you could.’ And that has made all the difference.”

Dave & Dawn at San Diego Harbor

That’s a good reminder that when I fear failure, and realize I can’t do it, that He never said I could. My sufficiency is in Christ. It’s like my friends at Harbor like to say, “the gospel changes everything.” It’s not dependent on me. It never has been about me. Yet I can be confident. I can be encouraged, because Christ goes before me. He leads the way. It’s only in Him and as He works through me that I have any hope of success. With this confidence we continue to fight the good fight and to serve.

Thanks for going with us on the journey!

In His Grip, Dave

Dave sharing about our border ministry at New Valley Church

Our journey to see God raise up ministry partners takes us to many places. This last weekend, Dawn and I were in Phoenix. We had an outstanding time with some new friends at New Valley Church. It’s a great church with some wonderful people.

When we go to Phoenix we are able to meet new friends, and reconnect with others. People partner with us in many ways in our ministry on the border. Some of the principle ways are through prayer, encouragement, financially and some want to come join us.

Dawn and I find it encouraging when friends reach out to us, pray for us and are genuinely interested in what we are doing. We love talking about the ministry, and connecting with people who want to come down for a short-term trip. It’s also super when we find an individual who is considering the Lord’s call on their life. When they are exploring whether God might be calling them to work with us on the border.

We found all of that on this trip. New Valley Church and Covenant Community Church are both interested in sending down short-term teams to encourage and help us as we launch our ministry on the San Diego – Tijuana border. One of the short-term trip projects that I’m developing is a focus on groups prayer walking. This involves walking the streets, and praying for the city and the people. We’d also like for people to take pictures, which we could then use technology to geo-tag. This allows us to get to know the city better.

Initially we could accommodate groups of 4 – 8 people. If you think this is something you might be interested in let us know. This is an opportunity to not just talk about prayer, but to pray. To ask the Lord to give us His eyes to see, and to lead us to where He wants us to launch. It aids in showing us where the needs in the city are, and what opportunities there might be to meet those needs.

Dave at New Valley Church

We also talked to a young woman who is very interested in working with us on the border. We do need workers! Pray with us that God will make it clear to her and to us. We are praying for someone to help us in mercy ministries, which incorporates all kinds of ministry possibilities. We have needs for people gifted in evangelism and training as well. We are working on recruiting an administrator, but still unsure where that will go. We trust the Lord will build our team! We wait and pray for His timing.

We leave for San Diego this Friday, where I’ll be preaching at New Life La Mesa on Sunday. Then we will bring David, Jr. home with us for Christmas break.

Thanks for being on this journey with us!

In His Grip, Dave

P.S. We just found out that the transmission in our car is shot. We need to decide whether to replace the car or the transmission. Our budget is tight now, so this comes at a difficult time for us.

Dr. Thomas Graham

Today is my birthday, so it puts me in a somewhat of a reflective mood. I do hope that as I get older I’m also getting wiser. This reminds me of some of the wise godly mentors that the Lord has given me.

In my last post I wrote about the tremendous value of giving thanks. One of the many things I have to give thanks for are the godly mentors that the Lord has brought into my life. Dr. William Iverson, and Dr. Thomas Graham have been a gift from God.

I worked with Dr. Graham for three years, and he’s been a valuable mentor since we landed in Colorado Springs 12 years ago. The Lord brought him into my life when we came off the mission field. Right after we left Mexico. Tom is one of the wisest, and most humble men I know. When we came off the field Dawn and I were going through a tough time, and I really needed a friend and mentor like Tom.

I still remember when we were struggling with whether to go back to Mexico or not, and Dawn wasn’t too keen on the idea. She was concerned about the security issues in Mexico City, since I had been kidnapped, and held up at gunpoint while we lived there. Tom said, “Dave you need to take the pressure off of Dawn about returning to Mexico.” I may have feared that was true, but it was hard for me to accept at the time. Those words came at the right time, and gave me the gentle nudge I needed to make the difficult decision to not to return to Mexico.

The Lord definitely spoke to me through Tom’s words of wisdom. There were many other thoughts and ideas that Tom shared with me that helped guide and shape me.

I remember I used to struggle a lot with performance anxiety. I had a hard time living in God’s grace, and felt like if I didn’t perform I was a failure. Or at least those were the fears I had. I told Tom that I felt like if I didn’t complete a project I was working on related to church planting in about a year that I would feel like a failure. He gently reminded me, “Well, that’s how you should feel if you are living with performance anxiety.” It was like, “O yeah, I guess I do still struggle with that, don’t I?”

Dave & Dawn

I will always be grateful for Tom mentoring me, and being my advisor in ministry and in my doctoral studies in Missiology. Although I don’t use my title much. Dr. Diaso seems too formal in this informal culture we live in. I value the things I learned as I studied. I remember often thinking, “wow, I wish I would have known this when I was on the mission field!”

Hopefully, now that Dawn and I are going back to the front lines, on the border, I can apply the many lessons I’ve learned from Dr. Thomas Graham.

Thank you – Tom!

In His Grip, Dave