Posts Tagged ‘Hannah Diaso’

Mom’s 86th Birthday
I imagine mom looks more like this in heaven

Today would be mom’s 86th birthday. I miss my mom, Virginia A Diaso, but I am grateful for the hope that we have in Christ. I know without a doubt my mom is celebrating this birthday in heaven with her Heavenly Father. I love the idea of dad and mom celebrating together with Hannah and other loved ones.

Last year at this time a year the Lord gave me a dream. In the dream there was a big parade celebrating my mom’s arrival in heaven. It made me happy to think about her life and the legacy that she left. I wrote about the dream, the parade celebrating mom on her birthday last year.

Mixed Emotions on Life & Death
Mom & Dave on her 25th anniversary

On the one hand, this day makes me feel sentimental, but I also feel joyful knowing that my mom is experiencing perfect health, perfect peace and great joy in the presence of her Savior. Mom’s last few years on earth she had COPD. She had a hard time breathing, because of the damage to her lungs from tuberculosis when she was a young girl. Sadly, mom suffered a lot while in her earthly suit. That is no longer true. No more suffering, no more pain!

I like to think that as my mom took her last breath here, her next breath she was in heaven! Wow! Jesus and the angels welcomed her into the heavenly kingdom of God.

Heaven and Earth!
Dad & Mom (Grandpa & Grandma) with David, Jr. Jonathan and Hannah

There’s a lot of mystery when it comes to our understanding of heaven and the relationship between heaven and earth. I’ve been pondering how the veil between us and heaven is much thinner than we realize. There is a connection, and there is more interaction than most of us are aware of. In Hebrews the Bible speaks of cloud of heavenly witnesses. I love to think of my dad, mom, Hannah and other loved ones cheering us on and interceding for us. Hallelujah!

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,”

Hebrews‬ ‭12:1‬ ‭ESV‬‬

In the meantime, we all groan as we wait for our heavenly home. There are trials and difficulties that each of us face, but thanks be to God that they are temporary. Saint Paul even refers to them as temporary light afflictions compared to the eternal weight of glory that awaits those of us who are in Christ. Hallelujah! Amen!

“For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling, if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked. For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened—not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee. So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, for we walk by faith, not by sight.”

2 Corinthians‬ ‭5:1-7‬ ‭ESV‬‬ (emphasis mine
Make a Donation Today in Mom’s Memory!
Grandma and Hannah reunited in heaven

One way you can honor my mom’s memory is by giving a donation today to the pastors and their families on the Big Island. The scarcity of food, basic needs and medicine continue to be a huge problem. We’d like to ask you to prayerfully consider making a gift today! Thank you!

Click to Donate…

In His Grip, Dave

BeyondBordersLife.org

Missing Our Daughter, Hannah Elizabeth Diaso
Hannah Elizabeth Diaso – 4/09/1994-10/18/2016

The day the music died is the refrain from Don McLean’s song, American Pie. For some reason that is the song I often think of when I think of the day the music died for us, when our daughter, Hannah moved to heaven. I always make a point of it to visit the cemetery where Hannah is buried on this day, the day she died, October 18 (which is the day I wrote this post).

We like to say that Hannah moved to heaven, which softens the blow. Yet it is also true to say that she died. As King David said of his young child who died, that he would go to see him one day, but that his child would not return to him. That’s the reality and finality of death, which is hard to swallow at times.

I’m writing this post while I’m at the cemetery near Hannah’s place of burial.

It’s hard to believe that today marks 5 years since Hannah graduated to heaven.

When I think of Hannah’s life and death I realize it has changed me. The trauma of losing Hannah at such a young age, she was only 22, has caused me to grapple with life. It made me desperate for answers. Desperate for a deeper and more intimate relationship with my Heavenly Father. I’ve gotten to know Papa God and His love in ways that I hadn’t experienced before. That makes me sad, because at least on an emotional level it doesn’t seem like it should have taken the death of my daughter to get me to this place. It is something that I ponder. Why is it that heart wrenching loss causes us to cling to God? I know the Bible speaks frequently to the subject of suffering, and yet there is some degree of mystery to it.

God created the world perfect and without death, so it is only after man sinned that death entered the world. Death is horrible in that sense. I never realized how terrible death was until I had to deal with it in such an up close and personal way.

All of Creation Groans for the Day of Redemption
Our last family photo with Hannah

Thankfully God has a solution in Christ! One of my favorite passages can be found in Romans 8, which says,

“For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.”

Romans‬ ‭8:22-23‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I think that accurately describes not only our hearts, but that all of creation groans for the day of our redemption. I pray and trust the Lord for His redemption and restoration of all that we’ve lost.

I hate that it took something as tragic as my own daughter’s death to wake me from my slumber. Maybe that is an exaggeration, but it’s how I feel. I am more awake now.

I can’t say that I have it all figured out yet, but I do know that I’m hungry for more. More of the Father, more of Jesus and more of the Spirit. I want more of the Father’s presence and more of His great and mighty work in my life and in the life of my family. I long for more fruit in our life and ministry. Also, I pray for a greater healing in my life and in the life of each member of my family.

What Does God Have in Store for Us?
Hannah and Dave

When I think about Hannah, I wish I could have had more time with her. We had a very special, and a very close father – daughter relationship. I remember in the last year or two of Hannah’s life she told me, “We are going to go far in this world, aren’t we Dad?” It makes me ache when I think about it. I don’t know what to do with that and other unrealized dreams. I would have loved the opportunity to go far – to accomplish great things with my beautiful daughter. Maybe somehow it is prophetic and speaks of what Jesus will do, it will just look different than I thought.

One of the areas where Dawn and I have seen God’s hand at work since Hannah moved to heaven is that He’s brought a number of special young people into our lives. It brings tears to my eyes when I think about it. Those relationships keep expanding and growing deeper. There are so many people in need of a father and a mother. As I’ve mentioned in past posts a number of the pastors and leaders that we minister with in Latin America refer to Dawn and me as dad and mom. Of course, that doesn’t replace the hole left by Hannah, but it shows us that God is still alive He is still at work. He is redeeming and restoring in His goodness and His grace.

Just as Joseph said to his brothers who had sold him into slavery, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.” (Genesis‬ ‭50:20‬ ‭ESV‬‬ – emphasis mine). God can turn around those things that our enemy the devil meant to use to destroy us. This gives us hope.

Also, it does make me happy to think one day I will be reunited with my precious daughter. Someone told us recently that those in heaven celebrate the day they graduated from the earth, because now they are with the Father. There is no more sorrow, no more suffering or pain. There is truly much to celebrate, it’s just not so easy to see that from our vantage point. So I will choose to trust in the love of my Papa God. I trust that He has a good plan for my family and for me.

Extend Your Hands to Help!
Hannah loving life and having fun

As I mentioned in this post the Lord has extended our family. We give thanks for His mighty and powerful work in this way. Yet, our familia that lives on the Big Island are suffering through the worst economic collapse that their country has gone through since 1990. They have very little food, basic goods and medicine. The prices of what is available have skyrocketed. You can give to help our familia in memory of our daughter, Hannah. Extend your hands to help today by clicking on the button below.

Click to Donate…

In His Grip, Dave

BeyondBordersLife.org

Thrilled About Serafina

Baby Shower in Colorado for David & Emily and littler Serafina!

New life brings excitement, and we are thrilled about the soon arrival of our first granddaughter, Serafina Grace Diaso. She is our oldest son, David and his wife, Emily’s first child. We just can’t wait to meet her.

Last week Dawn and I were in Colorado Springs for the baby shower. The event took place on March 21st, the first day of Spring. Wouldn’t you know that it snowed! That’s Colorado for you. Although I must admit that the snow did make for a beautiful setting.

We all had a fun time with our family celebrating David and Emily and the coming of Serafina.

While we on our way to Colorado we got some disappointing news, and I took some time to pray in route. As I prayed the Lord encouraged me. He reminded me that Serafina is due at the end of April which is the same month that Dawn and Hannah were born in. I believe that the Lord’s hand is on little Serafina in a special way and that the Lord is going to bless our family and many others through her. Our Papa God is going to use her to bring healing to our family. The healing and the blessing will extend beyond our family.

I don’t feel like this is wishful thinking, I believe the Lord was encouraging me in this way as we flew and headed towards Colorado. Thank you, Jesus for caring for our family and these details!

Dawn and I had such a good time visiting our family, David & Emily and Jonathan & Hannah.

A Special Gift That Made Me Cry

Hannah Elizabeth Diaso and the engraved bracelet

We shared a special meal with David and Emily on one of our first evenings in the Springs . David made some delicious tamales. He’s become quite a cook, and he specializes in Mexican cuisine, which we all love!

When we finished eating David and Emily gave me an unbelievable gift. It was so amazing it made me cry. They gave me a bracelet with something our daughter, Hannah had written before she moved to heaven. It’s also engraved with Hannah’s actual handwriting. Tears formed in my eyes as I read what it said, and Dawn also began to cry when she read what Hannah had written.

It says, “Dear Lord this is what I long for I wanna be where you are! I can’t wait to go home with you and live in happiness all fo the days of my life. I love you! Amen.”

When Hannah wrote this entry in her journal she referenced Psalm 27:4. “The one thing I ask of the Lord— the one thing I seek most— is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, delighting in the Lord’s perfections and meditating in his Temple” (NLT).

It warmed my heart fo read what Hannah had written. It was like a kiss from heaven. A reminder that God was preparing her heart to go home to be with Him in the days and months leading up to her sudden departure. We miss her so much, but we are thankful for the hope that we have in Christ. Hallelujah!

Give thanks with me for new life, and the assurance of the Lord’s good work!

Extend Your Hands to Help Our Familia!

Our Familia on the Big Island!

Before I say goodbye, I’d like to remind you of the ongoing and tremendous needs on the Big Island. I just received a note from a pastor today that told me that his $25 USD monthly salary was only enough to buy a package of coffee, some cooking oil and a package of detergent. Can you imagine living on that!?! How can you feed your family? on top of the exorbitant prices, they are having to wait in line for 5 to 8 hours to buy these products, when and if they are available.

Please extend your hands to help these beautiful families, our familia.

Donate today by clicking on the button below! Thank you!

Click to Donate…

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Remembering Dad & Mom
I love this photo of Mom & Dad, makes me think of them dancing on the streets of gold.

I realized this morning that the last time I saw my mom was on February 23rd, one year ago. I was looking on my phone at some of the last texts that I received from her. It stirs up a lot of emotions. I miss my mom and I feel sad that she’s no longer with us, but I’m grateful for her strong faith. She was definitely ready to go. It was something she talked about a lot during her last months on earth.

She moved to heaven on March 19th, the day after I came back from a two-week trip to Cuba. It’s like my mom waited for me to come back from my trip. Dawn was able to talk to mom just a few days before she left this world. She asked Dawn how I was doing. She was a caring mom to the end.

I believe one of the reasons my mom went before my dad was so that she could intercede with Hannah for my dad. Dad moved to heaven just 67 days later. He made a profession of faith with my brother, John just 3 days before he moved on. Thank you, Jesus!

A Life Giving Church In Mexico
Dave with Pastor Daniel Nuñez on the land where we will build the new church

We give thanks that both of my parents are in heaven with Hannah and Jesus. They are all together, enjoying and worshiping our Heavenly Father! This gives us hope and peace. We know that one day we will join them and we will be reunited.

Since my parents moved to heaven Dawn and I have wanted to honor their memory along with Hannah. We thought that one of the best ways to honor them is to start a new church, a memorial church in Mexico. It’s something that we love to do, and my parents were always supportive. In fact, my dad joined us when we built the church in memory of Hannah. That was a special weekend!

We are partnering with our good friends, Pastor Daniel Nuñez and Ministerios Transformación to build and help start a new church plant in Rosarito. The Ron & Virginia Diaso Memorial Church. It also helps us to honor and remember Hannah.

You might remember that three years ago we built the Hannah Diaso Memorial Church in Mexicali, México. We are excited to build a life-giving center to honor my parents’ life and their memory.

I’ll never forget Jonathan’s words the first time we drove out to see the land where we built the church in memory of Hannah. He said, “I’d much rather visit the church to remember Hannah than to visit the cemetery.” It’s a life-giving legacy!

These churches represent life and they bring light to communities that are in need of the love of Christ.

Help Us to Bring the Light of Christ to Rosarito
Praying over the land with Pastor Daniel and some of the other Ministerios Transformación pastors

You can help us make this dream of seeing a community transformed by the light of Christ a reality. One way that you can make this dream a reality is by giving a gift today. We are raising $26,000 to build the church this summer. Make a donation by clicking on the button below. Also, Join us in prayer for the pastor and Ministerios Transformación as they begin to minister in the community of Lomas Altas 2 in Rosarito.

Thank you for standing with us and for helping us to bring the light of Christ to Lomas Altas 2!

Make a Donation Today
click here to donate …

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Goodbye 2020!
Happy New Year from the Diaso Family!

We’ve crossed into 2021, and I’m sure that for many, maybe most of us it was with a sigh of relief. 2020 was painful to live through. It gives me hope when I think of God’s goodness and his undying love for us. I think ever since my daughter, Hannah, died one of my favorite verses is Genesis 50:20. “You meant evil against me, but God meant it for good…” The Lord uses even the worst of circumstances for good. He isn’t the author of evil, but he can and does work in and through the darkest of times.

There are things to be thankful for as we look back on 2020. Yet, I don’t want to ignore all the hardship that we’ve suffered. On top of what everyone has been through I also lost both of my parents in 2020. My son, David has nonpermanent brain damage. We aren’t sure what the cause was, it could have been Covid, but it was never diagnosed as such, so we don’t really know.

What I’m thankful for in 2020

Despite all of these challenges there is still plenty to be thankful for.

Dad & Mom with our three children, David, Jonathan and Hannah

I give thanks that both my dad and my mom lived long lives. They were both 84 when they died. My mom had a strong and sure faith. She was not only ready to go, she was anxious to meet her savior. I wrote a tribute to my mom that you can find here…

My dad made a profession of faith with my brother, John just three days before he died. The timing reminded me of Christ death and resurrection on the third day. The Lord in his love and grace showered me with hope after my dad passed away. I wrote more about this in the tribute I posted for my dad.

My mom left a legacy of prayer and love. My dad’s legacy was always being there for our family. He showed up. Both of my parents were quiet. I suppose they blended in, because they didn’t like to draw attention to themselves, but we knew they were there at the important life events. They set a great example for me in that. I hope to pass that on to my children, and grandchildren.

It is sad for me to no longer be able to call or visit my mom and dad. It was hard to go through the holidays without them. Yet, I’m grateful for the life they led, and for the relationship we shared.

A few months ago I feel like the Lord gifted me with a dream. It was a special dream. I saw a parade and a celebration. The odd thing was that the parade was at the cemetery. I felt like the Lord was showing me what it was like for my parents when they left this life and moved on into eternity with their savior. Just think one breath they were here, and the next they were in heaven. They saw Jesus, the angels and their loved ones who went before them. That is something to celebrate!

Celebrating New Life
Serafina Grace Diaso

Another wonderful family event was when Dawn and I learned that we were going to be grandparents. When David and Emily told us that Emily is pregnant with their first child, and our first grandchild! Her name is Serafina Grace Diaso.

David and Emily told us this good news just a few weeks before the four year anniversary of Hannah moving to heaven, which is always a hard time of the year for us. We felt like it was such a gift from the Lord in a season of much loss, that he is bringing new life into our family.

We love Serafina’s name. It was also my great grandmother’s name on my dad’s side. Serafina is an Italian and Spanish name for the Seraphim angels. The Bible mentions them in Isaiah 6. Also, Serafina’s middle name is Grace, which reminds us of God’s unmerited gift for those who believe. Hannah means favor and grace. We love the thoughtful name that David and Emily chose for their daughter.

These are some of the highlights for our family for 2020. I was going to include our ministry highlights here as well, but I think I will save them for my next post, which will be either later this week or next week.

The Ron & Virginia Diaso Memorial Church
I love this photo of Mom & Dad, makes me think of them dancing on the streets of gold.

Let me close by mentioning as we look forward to 2021, one of the things we are excited about is helping to start a new church in Tijuana/Rosarito, Mexico. This church will be built in memory of my parents, Ron and Virginia Diaso. Our goal is build the church this summer. You can give towards this project, and help us to make this dream a reality. Click on the link below to make a donation today!

Click to donate…

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Happy Birthday Mom!
Mom, Virginia A Diaso

Today my mom would have celebrated her 85th birthday. She’s been in heaven for a little more than 7 months now. I miss my mom and my dad. They both moved to heaven within 67 days of each other.

Yesterday I had a dream and in this dream, I saw a big huge funeral processional. One like I had never seen before. There were beautiful colors and it reminded me of a parade. I thought this funeral must have been for someone of royalty. It was amazing. It appeared that this funeral was at the same place where my parents were buried.

Mom in the back center with her four sisters and her parents. We called them Vovoa and Vovoo

My mom’s dad, my grandfather who we called Vovoo was with me in the dream. We drove past the funeral/parade together in the car. And I remember we were by my grandparents’ home, which is near the cemetery where my parents are buried.

When I woke up and reflected on this dream the Lord gave me the sense that this is what the funeral of your mom looks like from heaven’s perspective. It is a celebration and a time that those loved by the Lord, in this case my mom and family members are welcomed into the His presence.

The Father’s Care for His Loved Ones
Hannah Diaso, Our beautiful daughter
Hannah Diaso, Our beautiful daughter

The Lord had me read Psalm 116 in my regular devotional reading the day after we passed through the 4 year anniversary of when Hannah moved to heaven. Psalm 116:15 says, “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” (ESV). He keeps reminding me of His love for me and my family on these significant days.

Heavenly Kisses
I love this photo of Mom & Dad, makes me this of them dancing on the streets of gold.

When I think about a parade maybe there is a celebration in heaven for my mom’s birthday as well. I don’t know, but I found this encouraging. This dream was like a kiss from my Father, my Papa!

If I’m honest when Hannah died and then my parents I struggled some with calling their funeral service a celebration of life. I didn’t feel like celebrating. I was sad and heartbroken. It was a time of mourning. By calling it a celebration of life it made me feel like I shouldn’t mourn their loss. Intellectually I can understand the concept of celebration of life, but emotionally it’s not as easy to grasp.

Then the Lord gave me this dream, which encourages my heart. I am sure from heaven’s perspective everything looks so different. There is comfort and it ministers to my soul to look at the death of a believer from our Heavenly Father’s perspective.

I’m sure this is true about so many things in our lives and world, even with all the craziness going on in our own country. If we were truly able to see things from heaven’s perspective I’m sure we would have a totally different outlook. We would rejoice more fully in our hope!

Wow! That’s so encouraging. Thank you Jesus!

In His Grip, Dave

P.S. Our Familia on the Big Island continues to live scrambling to provide for their family since the coronavirus crisis began. Prayerfully consider a gift today by clicking on the link below. Thank you for your generosity!

Click to donate…
Remembering Hannah
Hannah Elizabeth Diaso

Last week Dawn and I went on our first ministry trip since the coronavirus hit. Next week we will be traveling to La Paz, Mexico to meet with our church planters. Things are slowly opening up. At first, I was going to write a post more focused on our ministry activities and all that the Lord is doing, but this morning as I was praying the Lord reminded me that this Sunday, October 18th will mark four years since our daughter, Hannah died (or as we like to say, she moved to heaven). It is less painful when we say she moved to heaven.

It wasn’t that I had forgotten that we were coming upon this painful day of remembrance, it was more that it was highlighted to me this morning. I began to reflect, and I thought it would be appropriate to share some of my reflections with you here.

My Reflections About Hannah & Our Healing
Hannah & Dave

This is what I wrote in my journal today, and I feel a little like I’m opening up my soul to you. What’s going on inside of me.

My prayer to the Lord, “this is a hard week as we remember Hannah moved to heaven. I miss her so much, and I wish that it wasn’t true. I wish there was something that I could do to turn back the clock and change it all. Sadly, that is not an option.

Life has not been easy without Hannah. We do have our hope of heaven. Our hope of seeing her again. We have the hope of knowing she is with Jesus, filled with joy. Now both of my parents have joined her.

After Hannah died I hoped that we’d get a pass on the hard things in life, but that has not been the case. Both of our boys, David and Jonathan have battled with some significant health issues over the last year. Dawn has struggled to sleep at night. It’s not been easy!

In our ministry I do believe that we’ve seen an increase and a deepening. I’m encouraged by what the Lord is doing. Yet, that’s not to say that we haven’t faced opposition and difficulties along the way.

The Lord’s Redeeming Work!
David Jr., Hannah & Jonathan

The Lord is good! He is faithful and that has gotten us through. We live between these two worlds of faith and hope on the one side and trials and difficulties on the other.

I continue to pray for the Lord’s redeeming and restorative work. I do believe that we have seen a measure of that. We’ve grown to know the Him in ways I doubt we would have ever grown to know Him. Yet, I wish it didn’t have to be this way.

I love that Jesus is called the man of sorrows, acquainted with grief this is comforting. There are passages in the Bible that I used to skim over that have become alive to me.

Confident That Jesus Will Complete What He Started
Hannah’s headstone

This morning in my devotional reading I happened to be reading Philippians 1. I’ve always been drawn to Philippians 1:6, “being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” In fact, this verse is inscribed on Hannah’s headstone.

As I continued to read through Philippians 1 today I was struck with Paul’s struggle as he longed to be with Christ in heaven, but felt it was better for the church that he stay longer.

For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body.  Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith,  so that through my being with you again your boasting in Christ Jesus will abound on account of me.

Philippians 1:21-26 NIV (emphasis mine)

I love Paul’s passion for Christ. I pray that I would share that burning love. Hannah’s death forced me to think about life and death in ways that I had never contemplated. There’s a sense in which it woke me up to the hope and the realities of heaven.

As I mentioned above I’ve prayed for the Lord’s work of healing in our lives. I believe the Lord has and is answering that prayer through special people who have become like family to us. I wrote about our Mija Monse in my last post. The Lord has given us some wonderful family in Mexico and Cuba. Friends who we minister with and encourage that often call us dad and mom. I don’t fully understand, but that does fill us up. I believe in many ways that these relationships are only going to grow and deepen. The Lord is going to continue to expand our spiritual family, which also extends our reach. I praise the Lord for His tender and loving mercy shown through our familia.

Serafina Grace
David Jr. all smiles as he is looking on during Emily’s ultrasound of Serafina!

One way that we’ve recently experienced the Lord’s healing work of restoration is that David and Emily told us we are going to be grandparents to a baby girl! Our first grandchild! And the news came at a good time. It lightened the load in way as we head into this season when we remember when Hannah departed from this world.

David and Emily told us that they would like to name their daugther, Serafina Grace. I love all the thought they put into this name. Serafina is Italian and Spanish for Seraphim. One of the angels of God. The Seraphim or Serafina angels surround God’s throne and worship Him. They are referred to in Isaiah 6.

In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him were seraphim, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. And they were calling to one another:

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty;
    the whole earth is full of his glory.”

Isaiah 6:1-3 NIV

One of the reasons David and Emily want to name their daughter Serafina is since Hannah is in heaven it’s a way to honor her and remember her. Serafina was also the name of one of my great grandmothers on my dad’s side. David and Emily told my dad that they wanted to name their daughter Serafina just two days before dad joined Hannah and Serafina in heaven. My dad cried with them when they shared this news as he loved the idea. Just a little over a day after they told dad he joined Hannah and Serafina in heaven. I think this is one of the reasons my dad died in peace.

Serafina’s middle name will be Grace. Hannah means grace and favor. So we just love this name. We are already in love with little Serafina and we are praying for her and Emily daily. She is due on April 30th, and Hannah was born in April on the 9th.

We are very excited and we give thanks for the Jesus and His work of love in our lives and in the life of our family!

Pray & Extend Your Hands to Help Our Familia
Our familia on the Big Island!

Before I say goodbye I would like to ask you to not only remember our family as you pray for us, but remember our familia as well. We just spoke to our familia on the Big Island in the last few days, and a number of them are getting sick with dengue. We have friends that are in the hospital due to dengue. We asked them about medicine, and they told us that there wasn’t any medicine. The scarcity continues, and it appears to be even getting worse. Our familia is in need and your generosity goes a long way on the Big Island. Please, extend your hands and give to these needs. Help to provide food and basic needs for our friends and familia!

Click here to donate…

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Our Special Friend, Who Has Become Much More

Five years ago the Lord blessed Dawn and me with a special friend in Monse Santiago. We first met Monse in Mexico City while she was ministering on the campus of UNAM with Reformed University Fellowship (RUF). UNAM is one of the largest universities in the world with over 100,000 students.

Mexico City has held a special place in our heart since the first time I visited the city in the mid-’80s and later Dawn and I moved there in the ’90s. I remember on my first trip to Mexico I visited UNAM during a short-term mission trip in 1985.

So it felt like the Lord brought a number of things together when we first met Monse. To top it all off the other campus minister, Barush Sanchez is the son of, Fernando, who I worked very closely with in the late ’90s. It was like everything connected, our past, present, and future.

Our Daughter – (Mija) Monse
Dave with our friends Mario, Monse and Barush in Mexico City (I believe this was the day Monse told me she could be our daughter).

Dawn and I have enjoyed getting to know Barush and Monse over the last 5 years. Our relationship has been a real gift from the Lord!

On one of our visits three years ago, we decided to go to Mexico City for Dawn’s birthday and Hannah’s birthday just a few months after Hannah died, or as we like to say she moved to heaven. It seems less painful to say that she moved to heaven.

On that trip, we met with Monse and Barush, and I remember distinctly sharing with them the difficulties and challenges of losing our daughter. At the end of our time together Monse told me, “I can be your daughter.” And then right before we said goodbye she said again, “I’m being serious I can be your daughter.”

Since that time Dawn and I have kind of adopted Monse. Every time we visit Mexico City we make sure we can see her. She’s also been able to visit us here in Chula Vista for the past three years.

The Lord is Bringing Our Two World’s Together
Monse in front of her new school – Westminster Seminary

Monse is very intelligent. She loves to study and to learn new languages. She’s had an interest for some time in preparing herself further for ministry by going to seminary. We prayed with her that the Lord would guide her and lead her in this process.

Last December when she came to visit us right before Christmas we took advantage of the time to check out Westminister Seminary in Escondido. When we arrived at the parking lot we noticed that my car odometer read 111111. One is a number for new beginnings, and it made us wonder what the Lord was up to.

Monse submitted her application to Westminster Seminary and she was able to get an amazing scholarship. The coronavirus did make it harder for her to get her visa, but that eventually came through and she was able to move to Escondido earlier this month. RUF just entered into a partnership with Westminster, which made it easier and opened the door for Monse to be able to attend.

Dawn and I have enjoyed having her so close to us. She now only lives 40 minutes away, which is much closer than the 4-hour plane flight to Mexico City.

The Lord Lovingly Restores and Redeems
Dawn & Dave with Monse

Ever since Hannah moved to heaven we’ve been praying for the Lord to restore and redeem what we’ve lost. We know that no one can ever replace our daughter. We don’t expect that. Yet, we do believe our gracious God can bring us healing, and one of the ways he does that is through others. Monse holds a very special place in our hearts. Sometimes I call her Mija, which means my daughter in Spanish. Dawn has started calling her mi Monsita, which Monse loves.

The Lord is so good and so kind. There are a number of things that I don’t understand about life, about our daughter and her short life. But I do know that our Father, our Papa God loves us. He cares for us. He wraps his loving arms around us. He uses people to show us his love. We give thanks for Monse, and we look forward to what the Lord has in store for her!

Join Us In Prayer
Monse with some of the students she worked with in Mexico City

Join us in prayer for her while she adjusts to life in the USA. Pray that her studies go well and that the Lord provides for all her needs while she is her. If you would like to help her get started you can send a donation to Beyond Borders through the link below. You can also support the needs on the Big Island by giving by clicking on the donate link. Just let us know what your gift is for in the note section when you send in your gift! Thank you!

click here to donate…

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Celebration of Life: Dad & Mom

I feel bad saying this, but it’s a relief to get through the funeral services for my parents. It took more than three months from the time my mom moved to heaven on March 19 of this year to have the memorial celebration of life service on May 27. We ended up having a combined celebration of life service, since my dad died only 64 days after my mom.

Dave sharing during Dad & Mom’s celebration of life service

I’m thankful for all the memories, and the good times that I enjoyed with dad and mom. I have much to be grateful for, but it’s still hard to say goodbye.

We held the celebration of life service at Riverpark Bible Church in Fresno, California this past Saturday. Mom attended Riverpark for a number of years, and she had many friends there. A good crowd gathered with us to mourn their loss and celebrate their lives. I was encouraged by how many came especially since we are still dealing with the COVID-19 restrictions.

The Lord blessed us with a wonderful service. Five of our family members shared about dad and mom and the influence they had on our lives. My brother, John; John’s son, Brandon; my son, Jonathan; my cousin, Nadine; I shared at the end.

I had to lead both of my parents graveside services, so it was a relief to be able to sit and listen as others reflected on the impact dad and mom had on their lives. At certain points I cried and felt sentimental as I thought about dad and mom and all they have meant to me over all of these years.

The Lord used my parents in my life and the life of my family to help us to get to where we are today. I have no doubt that we wouldn’t have been able to do or achieve many of the things we have accomplished if it were not for my parents and their influence in our lives. The Lord graciously used them in our lives to spur us on, to call us higher.

I believe there is more to come! “…rivers of living water will burst out from within you, flowing from your innermost being, just like the Scripture says!” (John 7:38 TPT, emphasis mine). Jesus said this about the Holy Spirit that lives inside of every believer.

The Blessing to 1,000 Generations
Jonathan sharing at his grandparents memorial service

My son, Jonathan put together a video slideshow that I’d like to share with you here. It was so good for me to watch this video and remember dad and mom. Remember their life and their love.

In the video we chose the song, “The Blessing,” which is sung by Cody Cairns and Kari Jobe. The song was written by them recently and it’s become one of our favorite songs. I love the idea of how God works through families and seeks to bring blessing through families. I hope that you will also enjoy it.

Celebration of Life Video: Ron & Virginia Diaso
Ronald & Virginia Diaso’s life and blessings

“For though a thousand generations may pass away, he is still true to his word. He has kept every promise he made to Abraham and to Isaac.”

Psalms‬ ‭105:8-9‬ ‭TPT (emphasis mine)
Welcome Home Dad & Mom
Love this photo and the thought of Dad & Mom dancing on the streets of gold with Jesus, our daughter, Hannah and all the saints

The morning of the memorial service the Lord led me to read Acts 7. This passage gives the account of Stephen being stoned and going to heaven. I was thinking about how our last breath on earth, leads to our next breath in heaven with Jesus. Then I read this passage, and it reminded me of how the Son of Man, Jesus welcomed Stephen into heaven. Jesus welcomes believers, he welcomes those in Christ home!

““Look!” Stephen said. “I can see the heavens opening and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God to welcome me home!””

Acts 7:56 TPT

That’s a pleasant thought. It’s amazing, even too good to be true, to think of Jesus smiling and welcoming dad and mom home! Hallelujah!

If you’d like to make a donation in honor of my parents, or if you’d like to make a donation to help a hungry and needy family on the Big Island click on the button below.

Donate: You Can Help!

click to give online

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Dad’s casket – the white box to the right is where Mom’s remains are. They were buried together

A week ago today on June 8th we laid my dad’s remains to rest. Since my mom was cremated they were both buried together on the same day. Definitely a somber moment.

I feel peace that both of my parents are now in heaven living without pain and suffering. They are in living and experiencing pure joy! Yet, I also feel lost at times with both dad and mom moving to heaven within 64 days of each other.

I don’t know what I would do without the hope that we have in Christ? It’s hard enough as it is. The separation is real, and I miss them. It’s hard to believe that I will never see either one of them again on this side heaven. I look forward to the reunion.

He Showed Up
Dad and Mom visiting us in Colorado Springs in 2010

Today I’d like to post what I shared at my dad’s graveside service. We will have a combined memorial service for them on June 27 at 11 AM at Riverpark Church in Fresno.

At first I didn’t want to lead the graveside service, and when I realized that I was going to lead it I felt some stress. That night, the Wednesday before the service I woke up in the middle of the night and I felt like the Lord gave me the phrase, “he showed up”.

Then when I woke up the next day it was as if the Lord just downloaded the message that he wanted me to share.

Dad showed up. He got involved and that’s how he showed his love and care for our family. I know that everyone in my family has examples of how dad showed up and he got involved in our lives. He showed his interest and love in that way.

I didn’t even have to ask him to join us in building the church in memory of Hannah. Actually, I didn’t think that dad would be interested, since we went into Mexico during a hot time of the year. Yet, he was actually excited to join us, even at 82 years old.

He showed time and time again how he wanted to be a part of our lives, and although not everything in our family was ideal – I think we all gained strength from his commitment and love for our family. The same could be said for mom. They were anchors for our family.

Concern for Dad’s Faith

Dad with me at Jonathan and Hannah’s rehearsal dinner for their wedding on December 1, 2018

The one area we were all concerned about for dad was his faith. We prayed for him, mom prayed for him for years and years and many of our friends prayed for dad.

Before dad died and moved to heaven he began to show evidence of faith. His heart grew softer. He prayed with us some and let us pray for him, but there was still that doubt. I prayed and I know others were praying for more definite confirmation and assurance of his faith.

Just a few days before dad passed my brother, John had an opportunity to talk to dad about his faith. John asked dad, if he was sure that he would go to heaven when he died, and dad said, “no.” So John took the opportunity to explain to dad how Christ died for our sins and rose from the dead defeating sin, death and satan so that we might have life and be forgiven for us sins. He explained that dad just needed to receive the gift of salvation through prayer and placing his trust in Christ.

John said, “mom always prayed for you and hoped that you would join her in heaven.” Dad teared up when John said this, and dad said, “then I guess we better pray then.” John was able to lead dad in prayer to receive Christ. When they were done praying, dad asked if there was anything else that he had to do. He wanted to make sure that he had done what he needed to do.

Praise the Lord for answering our prayers!

Signs & Affirmations From the Father
The Lord is with us and gives us the strength of an eagle as we pass through the valley of the shadow of death

We hoped that dad would have stayed with us and been around longer, but we can take comfort in knowing that he is no longer suffering and that he is reunited with mom. Dad died just 3 days after he prayed to receive Christ with John. This reminds me of the death and resurrection of Christ – Jesus Christ rose on the third day! The Lord wants to encourage us in that!

We wish dad would have passed away in a more peaceful way. He moved to heaven while taking a shower.

I think it helps to remember that as dad took his last breath here, his next breath he was in heaven. There Jesus was with the angels to ready to receive him – he received him with a smile. Can you imagine what that must have been like?!?

Also there is a lot of symbolism in water, and I think the Lord wants to encourage us with that as a sign and confirmation of the Lord’s work in dad’s heart.

Water represents a washing and cleansing of our sins. We use water in baptism which is rich in symbolism and as a sign and seal of the Lord’s inner workings in our hearts.

Jesus offers living water and says, “Whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again, The Water that I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

John 4:14 (ESV)

The river or spring of water refers to the Holy Spirit – there is an outpouring and an overflowing (see John 7:37-39). Our house was flooded some, because of the way dad passed away. I believe that the Lord wants to encourage us with the promise of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on our family (natural and spiritual).

The Lord is so good and loving to encourage us in this way!

GRIEVE BUT NOT AS THOSE WITHOUT HOPE
Mom and Dad in their early 20’s – they may look more like this now in heaven!

In 1 Thessalonians 4:13 Paul says, “We do not want you to be uniformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others who have no hope.

1 Thessalonians 4:13 ESV, emphasis mine

It’s good and right to grieve, to be sad and in sorrow. There is a separation now – we miss dad – death is not a good thing. God created the world without death. Death entered into the world when Adam sinned. Paul says in your sorrow remain hopeful, because this is not the end. Then he goes on to say for since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.

Jesus comforts us with these words,

“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.”

John 14:1,2 (NKJV)

Dad is no longer suffering – he is in glory!

He is probably fishing with St. Peter and camping with John the Baptist. And I’m sure he’s enjoying playing and watching baseball and football with his dad and all his favorites. He’s in glory with mom and Hannah and our grandparents and one day soon we will all be reunited with him!

Our grief and sadness is momentary in light of eternity!

The Lord promises to comfort us as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death.

Our Cuban Daughter, May’s Encouragement
Dave & Dawn with Pastor Luis and his wife, May

One of Dawn and my good Cuban friends who’s become like family to us, like a daughter, wrote a note of encouragement to dad, that I read to him the last time we were together and it encouraged dad so much that he cried through the whole thing.

May wrote:
“I would like you to know that I heard about you traveling to support your son, David when they built the church in memory of Hannah. I’m sure you went on that trip because of your love for your son and also that you knew that it was important for David to build that church in honor of Hannah.”

“When I realized how old you were and the miles that you traveled I started to cry, because of your love for David and your family is so big and it showed through your willingness to go on that long trip. You wanted to be alongside those you love to help them finish building the church. Since then I have admired you and prayed for you every day.”

“You are a fortunate and blessed man who knew how to build up and how to care for your beautiful family. We may never get a chance to meet on this earth, but one day we will meet in heaven where I can tell you, ‘Your actions speak louder than your words, and I admire you.’”

Everyone one of us in our family and some of our friends have stories like that of how dad expressed his love to us by being there, by showing up.

DAD FINISHED THE RACE
Dad is reunited with Hannah. He always had a special relationship with Hannah. They are together again.

Dad was determined to be here as long as he could. He told us he wanted to be here for his family and we all benefited from his love, his commitment and his determination.

Dad finished the race, and it was time for him to go home. As much as it pains us to say goodbye we can be assured that dad is no longer suffering. There is no mesothelioma in heaven, there are no breathing problems or heart illnesses – no more tears. Mom and dad are reunited with Hannah, our grandparents and all our dearly departed who are in Christ.

Most likely as dad is now part of the cloud of witnesses that Hebrews tells of – that he is cheering us on from above.

In as sense it falls on us now to carry on mom and dad’s legacy of love, prayer and commitment to our family – we are to carry the torch that they’ve passed on to us. So as we close be comforted that the good shepherd, our loving Heavenly Father promises to be with us as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death. Jesus tells us not to let our hearts be troubled, but to believe in God and to believe also in Christ. He is going ahead of us and preparing our mansion as we believe and place our trust in Christ.

God is not the God of the dead, but of the living!

Jesus said to Martha, Lazarus’ brother,

“I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”

John 11:25, 26 (ESV)

Thank you for standing with us and praying for us as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death.

We will be having a combined Memorial Service for dad and mom on June 27 at 11 AM PDT at Riverpark Church in Fresno, California.

You can make a donation in memory of my dad and mom to Beyond Borders by clicking the button below.

click to give online

Or you can make a check out to:

  • Beyond Borders
  • Mail to: 665 Crescent Dr. Chula Vista, CA 91911

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org