The Church

We have seen a great example of the church body working together as a sending hub here in Rosarito. Pastor Mike Vincent also spoke into our lives about how God uses the local church to equip the people to share the gospel and establish churches as the Holy Spirit sends them. It has been such a blessing to come alongside them and help the ministries that branched from the hearts of the people in the congregation. This week we were able to go to a community where the poverty was very evident along with the sense of hopelessness in the eyes of the people. But as we walked around Colonia San Fernando (a neighborhood) we were able to invite them to a “sanctuary” in the front yard of one of their neighbors’ houses. It was amazing to see how the expressions of their faces changed as soon as they entered. Sharing the word of God and the joy and peace that comes from following Jesus was literally changing the oppressive atmosphere that was surrounding us. I had the privilege of praying and just hanging out with many of the ladies at the outreach and it was such a great encouragement to see God working in their hearts.  Another blessing was we were able to give them large bags of food that are needed through these difficult times of job loss.

Abide in Me and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me and I in him bears much fruit; for without me you can do nothing.

John 15:4-5

Nothing

When I think back on all that we have been learning and the outreaches we have done, I feel eternally grateful to be a part of God’s work. Along with having class we also have a book that we are reading on a weekly basis. This week we read the book “Absolute Surrender” by Andrew Murray which absolutely rocked me to the core. The title alone gives you an idea of what adventure we were taken on. Here is one quote from the book, “My Lord Jesus wants me to take the blessed as a worker, and morning by morning and day by day and hour by hour and the simple utter helplessness of one who knows nothing, and is nothing and can do nothing.” Even as I read that my mind already was fighting the thought that “I am nothing.” Growing up in a culture that is continuously asserting that “you need to believe in yourself” this idea of being “nothing” is counter-intuitive. Our Lord tells us in Matthew 10:38-30: “And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.

Abide in Him

It is such a wonderful thought that the Lord does not leave us high and dry. This leads me to John 15:4-5 where Jesus tells us, “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.”

What an amazing promise! I have read this verse many times and have been moved but only to get back in the rut of routine and complacency. What I often forget is that I must have a continual dependence on Him and not just a momentary feeling that fades. God is so gracious, and He gives us the promise of the Holy Spirit so we can be filled continuously to glorify God in all we do. In John 15:26 the Lord reassures us with this promise, “But when the [c]Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me.” Being continuously filled with the Holy Spirit enables us to be bold witnesses for Jesus and without Him, we can do nothing.

Holy Spirit power

Another work of the Holy Spirit is to guide us to do the work of the ministry. We see this in Acts 13:1-4 where Paul and Barnabas are fasting and praying, and the Holy Spirit sets them apart and sends them while the church also fasts and confirms the calling. This is the model of Biblical missions and it has been so encouraging to see how this model is what God intended for His church so that it would prevail. All of Paul’s missionary journeys were to share the Gospel and establish a church that would be equipped to stand in the power of the Holy Spirit. With this foundation of Biblical missions, I look forward to being a part of a team that can help establish church plants in various parts of the world. There is so much more I would like to share but it would take various pages to fully explain the beauty of God’s model from Biblical missions. Please feel free to email so we can discuss this further.

I pray that God has ministered to you and stirred your heart to pray for His Spirit to continue to move through this world. Words cannot express how grateful I am for you coming alongside me in this incredible journey the Lord has me on. I look forward to hearing from you and in God’s timing to also have a cup of tea or coffee with you (or maybe two:)

Praise Reports:

  • Learning so much about Biblical missions
  • Having time to seek God’s will for my life
  • Seeing God’s Spirit move in powerful ways
  • Only needing $300 to pay off tuition (due August 1st)

Prayer requests:

  • To absorb all the Lord is teaching me
  • Stand on a theological conviction of God’s model for missions
  • To be a vessel filled with the Holy Spirit to further God’s kingdom
  • Confirmation and guidance as to where God would lead me in the mission field

With love,

Maribel Blanco

Mari.wfg11@gmail.com

We are having a group discussion about God’s Biblical model for missions
Sharing the Gospel in a park in Rosarito and making crafts with the kiddos
Spending time with Erika and listening to how we can pray for her