Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Gentle Shepherd, Lead On ...

I drove down the hill towards the post office, thoroughly overtaken by the setting sun and thought to myself…this may be the last one I’ll see so distinctly here in the town of Aguadilla. I had not seen the waves this high nor this assembling of surfers before. I was not lulled; it is a broken world with so many hurting, not necessarily from rebellion, but from the body slams of religion, yet at the end of the day God is still speaking, still reaching out. We are anticipating that our move to Cabo Rojo will begin this week.

Each town has its distinction and the fading glory of a time gone by; some marked by great arches and edifices of architectural mastery. Among some of the ruins lay lives still attempting to know His name. Somewhere beyond the bruises of liberalism and the open wounds of the pounding mandates of legalism there is an untapped capacity to know Grace. There is more to Him than yesterday’s troubled, confusing experiences have told. Their patience is virtuous.

Seeing this, I can surely say, Isaiah 40:1-6 is not some historical/prophetical utterance of hope and deliverance for Jews of old going through captivity; every Word is profitable…today:

Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. Speak ye

Comfortably to Jerusalem (Puerto Rico), and cry unto her, that

her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for

she hath received of the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.

The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the

Way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our


Every valley shall be exalted and every mountain and hill shall

be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight and the

rough places plain: and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed,

and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the Lord

hath spoken it.

I could not imagine being here, in this work, without the message of God’s Grace; the Finished Work of Christ, knowing then that every lesson, every sermon has to reveal the Character and Nature of God. This is what sustains, this is what keeps us, this is what hails and beckons the unbeliever. The bulls of religion have broken enough; only two things could be done by the lives that are still available, either stone the bearers of harsh sayings or receive the restorative, reconciliatory Word of His love, mercy and payment of past debt. We are Greater Grace of Puerto Rico; gateway to the Caribbean!

It was cup overflowing to have Pastor Moses and his wife, Cindy of Clearwater, Florida here with us at the ending of October. With words of encouragement and thoughts for going forward with the work, we looked at a building to have our Church services, extension classes and other gatherings in. Suggestions for correcting issues at our soon-to-be rental house were given to the property owner too. What a time! There were twenty-five of us at Dr. Phil and Evelyn Ark’s home on Sunday (13 children and 12 adults). Pastor Moses, guitar in hand, strumming…we sang, heard the Word, and fellowshipped into the afternoon. Kathy, fruit from Pastor Dan Foster (now in Lake Worth, FL) and Pastor Love’s teen ministry, and her husband Carlos, dedicated their baby Isaac, also.

We are acutely aware of the God’s presence in the Work and know that we are being carried by the prayers, support and encouragement of the Body. With this Body-of-Christ testimony, it is no wonder that we have been asked to stay in Aguadilla by the pastor in whose guest home we stayed. They, the house and our neighborhood friends have been the faithful, providing hand of God for us too.

Many a sun will set and be seen from the innumerable shores here but greater and enduring is this: the Son is risen; high and lifted up here and His throne lasts forever. Thanks to each of you for making it Corporate, a Psalms 133 expression: Body of Christ.

Announcements/Events: Puerto Rico Winter Harvest,

Tentative Dates: December 12-15, 2007

Special Guest Pastor: TBA

Prayer Requests:

Team Members: Short & Long Term (senior Bible College students with practicum requirement also encouraged)

Church building/lease agreement; repair and set-up costs

Continued grace-filled evangelism

Home schooling of children/home school outreach