Archive for July, 2014

God’s Heart for the Nations
Skyview and Iglesia Nueva Jerusalén in Ensenada

Skyview and Iglesia Nueva Jerusalén in Ensenada

I love to see glimpses of God’s heart for the world scattered throughout the Bible. It sometimes is more subtle than other times, but it’s there.

Joshua’s encounter with an angel of the Lord is one of those instances, where God shows his love for the world in an indirect way.

In Joshua 5 at the end of the chapter Joshua asks the angel a question. The angel answers the question indirectly.

When Joshua was by Jericho, he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing before him with his drawn sword in his hand. And Joshua went to him and said to him, “Are you for us, or for our adversaries?” And he said, “No; but I am the commander of the army of the Lord. Now I have come.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped and said to him, “What does my lord say to his servant?” And the commander of the Lord’s army said to Joshua, “Take off your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did so. —‭Joshua‬ ‭5‬:‭13-15‬ ESV

Joshua asks the warrior angel, “Are you for us, or for our adversaries?” And the angel answered, “no”. That seems like an evasive answer, but the point appears to be that he’s not for one more than the other. God’s heart isn’t just for Israel, he cares for the world. He always has, because he has a missionary heart.

He’s a missionary God, which gives more credence to what Dawn and I do.

What a wonderful response, and what a wonderful God.

I thank the Lord! I’m grateful that I serve a God who has a passion for the nations!

In His Grip, Dave

Dr. Lloyd Kim Nominated as New Coordinator
Dr. Lloyd Kim

Dr. Lloyd Kim

Mission to the World (MTW) announced yesterday that Lloyd Kim is the new coordinator. We have been praying for a year as the search committee has been looking for a new coordinator to replace Dr. Paul Kooistra.

It’s the beginning of a new era for MTW.

Dr. Kooistra led MTW for 20 years. The mission grew from serving in 36 countries when he began in 1994 to 88 countries today. 738 missionaries and 1028 national partners serve with MTW.

Paul Kooistra said, “I can’t think of anyone who can better lead Mission to the World than Lloyd Kim.” Read more about Dr. Lloyd Kim and the transition here… 

Join us in Prayer
  • Dave & Hannah in line to cross the border

    Dave & Hannah in line to cross at the border

    Pray for the Kim family as they transition into this new role.

  • Pray for MTW as we work to plant churches and transform communities around the world as well as here on the border and in the Baja.
  • This week Dawn and I have sensed spiritual attack. This comes on the heals of a successful week in Ensenada.
  • Continue to pray for Pastor Leo Nevarez and his family. He is still waiting to hear from the hospital to schedule his surgery to remove his kidney, which has a cancerous tumor. We continue to pray for the Lord’s healing for Leo.
  • Pastor Daniel Nuñez and his wife, Yolanda are leaving for a two-week missions trip to South Africa today. Pray for safety as they travel and that it will be a fruitful trip.
  • That the Lord will advance our work on the border and beyond. We are praying for more workers and we continue to work for more church plants as well as healthy and growing churches.

Thanks so much for joining us on this journey.

In His Grip, Dave

The Bittersweet Good-bye
The youth at the van with some of their young friends  that they made during the week

The youth at the van with some of their young friends that they made during the week

The setting was bittersweet when we all said good-bye this last Saturday.

It was bitter, because it was hard to say good-bye, but the reason for the tears was sweet. In just a weeks time people from two different cultures, who speak two different languages and who live a long ways from each other came to love each other.

In the serving together to pull off the VBS and the fellowship during meals and outings a bond was built. Thank you Jesus for your great and mighty work. Thank you for hearing and answering our prayer.

The Unexpected Gift
Our last meal with our friends from the two churches - Skyview and La Nueva Jerusalén

Our last meal with our friends from the two churches – Skyview and La Nueva Jerusalén

I didn’t know what exactly to expect from this last week. I hadn’t spent a lot of time with the Nueva Jerusalén church, so it was a learning experience for me as well.

It encourages me not only that the ministry went well. Many kids heard the gospel. I’m also thrilled that those that served grew to love each other. The love of Christ shone brightly!

Dawn and I hope that this will lead to something greater. A furtherance of the kingdom through these relationships. The possibility of more churches started in Ensenada. O Lord, please do work. Hear our prayer and build on the foundation built this last week.

We also hope that those that came from Denver will be forever changed by the experience, even if it’s in a small way. We hope they will grow in their passion for missions, and the needs of our neighbors in Mexico.

Dave and Dawn with Jesus Petrikowski and his wife Yudi

Dave and Dawn with Jesus Petrikowski and his wife Yudi

There were many tears when we said good-bye. It was sad, but it encouraged me knowing that they connected in a significant way.

St. Paul’s Good-bye

It reminds me some of when Paul said good-bye to some of the churches he started. There was much weeping. That was a longer and stronger relationship, but we got a taste of what Paul experienced.

“And when he had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all. And there was much weeping on the part of all; they embraced Paul and kissed him, being sorrowful most of all because of the word he had spoken, that they would not see his face again. And they accompanied him to the ship.” —Acts‬ ‭20‬:‭36-38‬ ESV

One of the most difficult things about missions, even short-term missions is saying good-bye.

I pray the Lord will bless and encourage both of these churches as they continue to be faithful to serve the Lord. O Lord, give us the opportunity to serve you together again!

In His Grip, Dave


The Beauty of Ensenada!
A view of Ensenada at night

A view of Ensenada at night

Ensenada is a beautiful port city in Mexico. It’s about 70 miles South of the border. This week we’ve grown to know the beauty of the city and the people. Skyview Presbyterian from Denver, Colorado has been in this city all week loving on and encouraging the people.

It’s wonderful to see people from different cultures and languages come together to serve the Lord.

God Comes Through Again!
VBS at the Nueva Jerusalén church in Ensenada

VBS at the Nueva Jerusalén church in Ensenada

Iglesia La Nueva Jerusalén (The New Jerusalem Church) has worked side by side with Skyview all week-long. Over 50 children have shown up for VBS.

One of the participants from Skyview said he didn’t feel like they were helping very much. Then a friend from the New Jerusalem Church said that the church didn’t hold VBS last year, so that Skyview’s presence gave them the boost they needed to get it done.

Many smiles and happy sounds are seen and heard around the church this week. The church is reaching children from families that aren’t part of the church. We pray that some of these families will soon come to Christ.

The Value of Short-term Groups
The Skyview group at the New Jerusalem church in Ensenada

The Skyview group at the New Jerusalem church in Ensenada

Dawn and I love short-term mission projects for a number of reasons. God used short-term mission trips to call both of us into missions, so we personally have benefited from them. We know God can use a trip like this to grab a person’s heart and change it forever for the good of his kingdom work.

When these trips are done well, they can also be a tremendous encouragement to the church receiving the team from the U.S.

The Lord is Opening Doors for Ministry Expansion

Our prayer is that the New Jerusalem church will grow to be even healthier and strong, and that we will be able to partner to see new churches planted in Ensenada. We already have some missionary candidates interested in serving here. The local church also has a vision for church planting.

Everything in Mexico happens through relationships, so trips like this are key to building and strengthening our relationship.

Enjoying fellowship in one of the house church groups

Enjoying fellowship in one of the house church groups

Our friends will head by to Denver tomorrow evening, but the work here continues. They will have left with new friendships and having strengthened and encouraged the church here as well as our missionary work.

We give thanks to the Lord for the work he is doing here and his faithfulness!

Thanks for praying for God’s care and the advance of the kingdom.

In His Grip, Dave

P.S. Please continue to pray for Pastor Leo and his wife, Gloria. He is in the hospital waiting for surgery to remove the cancer in his kidney.

Pastor Leo Nevarez and Dave

Pastor Leo Nevarez and Dave

Lord Bring Healing

Pray for our good friend, Pastor Leo Nevarez and his wife Gloria. Pastor Leo just found out he has cancer in one of his kidneys. He is in the hospital and they will operate in the next couple of days. We are praying for God’s complete healing and a full recovery.

Pastor Leo is the church planter for the first church that Harbor and Lo Mejor del Trigo came together to plant in 2012. The church is doing very well. It is growing and God is blessing.

It would be wonderful if he would be healed without surgery. We look to the Lord for his healing touch!

Oren por nuestro amigo Pastor Leo Nevarez y su familia. Pastor Leo tiene cancer en uno de sus riñones. Van a operarlo esta semana. Estamos orando que Dios lo sane completamente!

Skyveiw’s Missions Trip in Ensenada
VBS at the Nueva Jerusalén church in Ensenada

VBS at the Nueva Jerusalén church in Ensenada

We are in the middle of Skyview’s missions trip working with the Iglesia La Nueva Jerusalén (The New Jerusalem Church) in Ensenada. They are working with the church to lead VBS and helping with other outreach in the community.

The week is off to a good start. We had close to 50 children come on the first day, we are praying that each day more will come.

Thanks for praying and partnering with us!

In His Grip, Dave


A Mother’s Reminiscing & a Trip to Mexico
David & Chivis ready to take off for Mexico City

David & Chivis ready to take off for Mexico City

Here are some thoughts from my heart to my David Jr. right after I hugged and kissed him goodbye, sending him on his way to Mexico City for the first time in 13 years! ….

My David, I’m so excited for you sweetie! I’m praying that God blesses you there in many ways…way beyond what you can even ask or think! We will be missing you here son, but we are glad we can bless Mexico City and Chivis’ family with you! Please give everyone there big hugs for us!

…With tears in my eyes I can see you there in our first home in Mexico City, even before God had given us our Jonathan, well he was probably in my tummy! You would be standing there, down by my side… looking up at me and smiling and asking me your daily morning question, that I could always count on, “What we doing today Mommy?”, and for emphasis you would repeat, “What doing Mama?”

little David with his mom

Little David with his mom

You were always ready to take on the day, and excited to discover what God had in store for our day. You loved to be able to leave the house and explore the world of Mexico City; it’s amazing people, places and events, and we can’t forget the Mexican food…. and hot chili candy…that filled your little life with great adventure!

From the very beginning of your little life you began to change your world for the better; with your joyful, expectant heart, your desire to serve others, and your love for people! Every time the doorbell rang you were excited to be a little host.

You wanted to greet everyone with your gregarious and welcoming smile and personality! You would then run to the kitchen to get out a big bowl or serving tray so we could share some chips or other yummy treat with our guests.

David having fun with the Piñata in Mexico

David having fun with the Piñata in Mexico

You always wanted everyone to feel welcomed, loved, and to have fun with us in our home! Your love for people and excitement about life was contagious from the beginning of your little life!

Blessings on your return to the roots of your childhood, son. We are grateful to Mario Silva and Silvia Arellanos for this precious and generous college graduation gift of a two-week, all expenses paid, trip to Mexico City! May God richly bless their family for their gracious generosity of this amazing gift to you, our first college graduate! Sending a hug your way!

written by Dawn Diaso

In His Grip, Dave

P.S. Pray for the group from Denver, Skyview Church that arrives today. We will be working in Ensenada, Mexico this week with the Iglesia Nueva Jerusalén.

Rocio & Ivan

Rocio & Ivan

New Life in Ribera del Bosque

Today I met with Ivan Casados and his wife Rocio. They are planting a church in Tijuana in Ribera del Bosque.

God is changing lives through the testimony of their church!

Ivan and Rocio shared with me how God is bringing life to their community. It was so encouraging to see the smiles on their faces as they told me all that God is doing in their church.

Joanna’s Story

Joanna and her husband Felipe were not getting along. Felipe got fed up with all the fighting, so he decided to walk out on the marriage. Joanna felt so down when Felipe left that she swallowed a whole bottle of pills in an attempt to take her life.

One of Joanna’s neighbors, Mari goes to the Lo Mejor del Trigo, Ribera del Bosque church. Mari found out what happened to Joanna and she began to love on her. She loved her with the love of Christ.

Joanna started coming to church and she heard the gospel message and she realized there was hope for life. She gave her life to Christ.

The story doesn’t end there. Felipe, Joanna’s husband came back home and now he’s started going to church. Ivan said that Felipe has not yet given his life to Christ, but he is showing great interest.

Felipe and Joanna also have a daughter who is coming to church with them.

Mari is growing and being used by the Lord as a faithful witness. Yet it wasn’t too long ago that Mari was angry and spiteful woman. Through the ministry of the church Mari came to Christ. The gospel is changing her. Ivan and Rocio told me that Mari is a leader, so they are encouraged to see God at work in their midst!

Join us in Prayer
  • Pray for Joanna and Felipe that God will bring healing to their marriage and that Felipe will soon come to Christ.
  • Pray for Ivan and Rocio as they minister in the church.
  • Pray for Dawn. She is having oral surgery today. Pray for her peace and a successful surgery.

In His Grip, Dave


Unity at the Table
The Lord's Supper, image by

The Lord’s Supper, image by

Yesterday I led communion at our Harbor Mid-City church. Our service is bilingual, English and Spanish, which adds a degree of difficulty when we are leading the church.

I appreciated the opportunity to lead our people to the Lord’s table. It gave me the opportunity to reflect on our unity in Christ.

People at the border waiting to cross into the U.S.A.

People at the border waiting to cross into the U.S.A.

When I go to Mexico I see the fence or wall that separates our two countries. It’s a reminder of the division between Mexico and the United States. Even in our own country there are many things that serve to divide us: race, culture, status, etc.

The Apostle Paul speaks of how Christ broke down the wall that divides us. He makes us one in the family of God.

Galatians 3:26-29 (ESV)

for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.

The Lord’s Supper, the communion table is a beautiful picture of our unity in Christ. We are all sinful needy people, who depend on a Savior, who is Christ Jesus our Lord. In the Lord’s Supper we are remembering what Christ did for us on the cross. We are also proclaiming the Lord’s death until he comes.

There is unity at the cross.

Brokenness and Bridging
Worship Service at Harbor Mid-City

Worship Service at Harbor Mid-City

Harbor Mid-City has been going through a difficult season. In part this is due to the difficulty of bridging the gap between the Hispanics in our church and the English speakers. Last Sunday we had a time of corporate repentance with foot washing. It was a beautiful expression of the love of Christ.

We admitted that we had failed to love our brothers and sisters in the ways we should have. We confessed together how we hurt one another. People expressed their faults. Many tears flowed that evening as God’s Holy Spirit came in and began to repair and restore broken relationships.

Healthy relationships are not easy to maintain, and it’s even harder when we seek to do this across cultures and languages.

One day we will all be standing before the throne of the Lamb of God worshipping together.

“After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”” —Revelation‬ ‭7‬:‭9-10‬ ESV

We ask at Harbor, “why not now? Why can’t we see people from different nations, cultures and languages worship together in unity now?” This was the vision that God gave pastor, Stephen Phelan when he started the church.

Pray with us that this vision will be a reality in our church as we seek and serve our savior and one another.

In His Grip, Dave

A Full House
Jon, Kiara, Chivis, Hannah & David

Jon, Kiara, Chivis, Hannah & David

This summer has been one filled with nonstop visitors, which we love. It is one of the ways we minister to others.

Last week we had a young friend, Chivis from Mexico City staying with us, and another young friend, Kiara from Oklahoma. Today Chivis’ whole family will join us.

Dr. William Iverson’s Influence
Dr. Bill Iverson & Dave

Dr. Bill Iverson & Dave

When I was in seminary the professor that had the biggest impact on my life was Dr. William Iverson. He’s been one of the most important men that God has used in my life. Bill taught me by example the importance of ministering out of the home.

Dr. Iverson wrote a book titled: Jesus and the Ways of Socrates. It’s a wonderful book that I highly recommend. In the book he discusses how Jesus interacted with people and created curiosity. Bill believes that study centers in a hospitable setting is one of the best ways to create a good learning environment. Dr. Bill and his wife traveled through Europe exploring some of the various ministries like L’Abri.

Bill has done a wonderful job of promoting and replicating these learning environments in the places where he has lived.

Ministry Through Our Home

While our home isn’t quite a study center. We do pray that it will be a place where people can come for healing. Dawn and I feel like God is equipping us to be able to minister to people in this way.

Our desire is to minister and bring healing to the pastors and leaders we work with as well as those that come into our home.

One of the biggest keys to doing this successfully is having a wife that is equally committed to ministering to people out of the home. Dawn loves to entertain. She is the one that works the hardest to prepare for our guests. Without her hard work we wouldn’t be able to love on people the way we do.

This may be somewhat of a side ministry for us, but I think it’s an important and valuable one. As I wrote in my last post and other writings one of our hopes is to be able to develop a strong internship program and to really build into the lives of young people that the Lord brings our way.

O Lord, we do pray that you will continue to increase our borders as we serve you here on the border.

In His Grip, Dave