~ Separated to the work in Ecuador, South America ~
We wanted to give you all a quick update on what is going on down here and trust you will share this with the various congregations there in Oregon and Wyoming.
It has been a super exciting time, because about two weeks ago now God added to the Church two new members!!! I know some of you have heard all about this, but I will tell the story anyway, because it is such a great story.
Rudi and I have been getting together with Jesse and Tess as couples to talk over the work here and pray together about once a week. Well, we got together on a Friday afternoon and at this visit, Jesse expressed that he was looking for the people that God would bring, those that would be hungry for the Gospel and a changed life. He didn’t want to waste his time on those that just wanted to play around or pretend. (That is in my words, what he said, not a direct quote!) Anyway, the following Sunday morning, as Jesse headed out into Shell for a prayer walk, just one block from the gate to our homes, God brought him a young man that was hungry for the Gospel and a changed life. An older couple waved Jesse over to where they were looking at a young man partly lying under the dumpster on the corner. They thought he was dead, but didn’t have the courage to confirm it. He had blood all over the side of his face. Jesse went over and shook him awake. The fella was pretty groggy, as he was hungover and beat up. Quite a crowd had gathered and some suggested calling the police, but Jesse assured them that wasn’t necessary and told the fella he would get his truck and take him home. The fella remembered having had a fight with his girlfriend and smashing her TV (good riddance!). He didn’t and doesn’t remember where he got the bump to his head. When Jesse had him in the truck, the fella said he wasn’t ready to go home where he lived with his girlfriend. Jesse took him home and let him get cleaned up and fed him some breakfast. Then he and Tess shared the Gospel with him. The fella said he didn’t like his name, so Jesse named him Simon and that is the name he goes by now. Simon told Jesse and Tess that he had never felt such peace, as when he was in their home. They told him it was the Holy Spirit. He was super soft and told them that a few nights before he had seen a shooting star or some kind of amazing thing in the heavens and he told God, “Please change my life.” Well, the Lord heard his prayer and sent Jesse to him or him to Jesse!
The following Sunday, Jesse and Tess had Simon and Ani (pronounced Ah nee), his girlfriend, over for lunch. They wanted spiritual food much more than they wanted physical and after lunch asked to hear more from the word of God. When they understood the way to salvation they both prayed to receive the Lord. It was a beautiful time! Both Simon and Ani are eager to learn and grow. Jesse and Tess have had many more times of fellowship with them and are taking them to the Indigenous church on Sundays. Simon has been mowing the lawns here on the compound and though he has never worked before, really enjoys it. Rudi and I have met them. but haven’t been able to get together with them, as we have been making trips to Quito for our paperwork stuff and are busy with our own tribe of disciples. We are hoping to jump in and get to know them better.
Here is where the prayer requests come in:
- Simon and Ani are living together and we need to speak with them about this. We need solutions to where they can live apart from each other before getting married.
- Simon for sure, but probably Ani too, doesn’t have his cedula(national identity card, think Soc. Sec. Number) this means that he cannot find steady employment, nor can he/they get a marriage licence. We plan to help him/them get this, so he can work and provide. Jesse is paying him for the mowing, but he could find better, more stable work if he has his cedula.
- Simon and Ani both need to be baptized. Pray that Jesse and Tess and we will have good communication and understanding about when this should happen. Or that Simon and Ani will request to be baptized and that will end the bit of confusion about this.
- That we will hear from the Holy Spirit about how to disciple and teach them. We don’t want to make them into “North American Christians” with our rules of conduct, but have them truly be following Jesus and Him only.
So I know this is getting long, but there is more to pray about…
Please continue to pray for Nanki, the young man that came to Christ and is like a son to Jesse and Tess. That he would grow in the Lord.
Jesse and Tess have also taken in an unwed mother from the Woarani tribe, her name is Lida (pronounced Lee dah). She is 17 and just recently had her second child, about three or four weeks ago. She hasn’t professed Christ and Rudi told me that this is actually the second time she has ever come out of the jungle to Shell in her life!!! That she would come and live with Jesse and Tess shows that she knows they care for her. Please pray that she would receive the Lord and be saved.
Please pray that we would be a faithful family in Christ to these new believers and those who are seeking. Some days it feels like we are running a Christian Day care for new or very young believers, what with our children and these newly saved ones!
Please pray for good communication between Jesse and Tess and us, as this is one area where we can visibly see the attack from the enemy, as our communication styles are so different. We also need to communicate often, so pray that that will happen, as well. We have been having such sweet talks together and are really growing in unity, but it is always under attack!!
And yet another thing, Rudi went yesterday and told the folks with the shop where we were hoping to rent/buy that we won’t be doing that. They were super sweet and understanding and even insisted on giving our money back that we had put down in good faith that we would purchase the business. We didn’t have peace about moving forward and feel like we didn’t really hear from the Lord about this decision. Moving forward we want to allow God to bring us our “work” and wait on him for what that is. Right now we have our hand full with the souls he has put in our path and we want to be busy about “soul work!”
I will sign off for now. Thank you all so much for praying.
Rejoicing in the Lord,
Carla for the Ecuador Barnard and Booher Team