Dude, The Rocks Cried Out!

Calvary School of Missions 2020 — Week 3

Property at San Vicente (Saturday’s outreach).

It’s Rachel again! I have been so excited to sit down each week and communicate to you what the Lord has been doing at the School of Missions! I am so thankful for your fellowship in the gospel, praying for you and your families, and thanking God for your partnership that made coming here possible. Every day the Lord is faithful to remind me that He has me here for a specific purpose– thank you for playing a part in that!

This week we focused on the importance of culture and discipleship– and these things are more closely related than I initially expected. Discipleship is wholly based on developing relationships. When a missionary goes to a foreign nation to make disciples of Jesus, he or she must become acclimated to the culture in order to be effective. This is so that the missionary can build effective relationships with the nationals, or natives. As we read in Ministering Cross-Culturally, this is a huge exercise of humility. A missionary must enter a country and learn the language, social cues, and ways of life– everything from the beginning, like a child. 

“The keys for successful personal relationships in ministry are obedience to the commands of Scripture and accepting that others have a viewpoint that is as worthy of consideration as our own.” 

Sherwood G. Lingenfelter, Ministering Cross-Culturally 

Missions is almost never what we expect, especially in the beginning. We may go into a foreign country with all these lofty ideals of what God’s going to do, just to find out that we have to spend 1-2 years simply learning the language and culture. And a lot of this culture may be the opposite of our own culture, which can cause frustration and confusion. But, when we face these challenges, we need to look at our greatest Example. Jesus, God Almighty, left His throne to become like one of us. He was totally immersed in the Jewish culture for 30 years before He began His official ministry. We see time and time again how He leveraged the culture to make relationships with the people and reach them with the gospel. What humility! He set aside His “rights” as God, set aside His glory to become the adopted Son of a poor carpenter, all to reach humanity in a very personal way. What does this say about us when we gear up to go to another nation? It requires us to put down parts of our culture (as much of it as we can), and take up as much of the other culture that is required to forge relationships. 

This teaching was so timely for us because Saturday’s outreach in San Vicente was nothing like we expected. We were expecting for this outreach to be similar to the others, where some of us would share a few testimonies while others would work with the youth and the kids. We had a skit for the kids, crafts, and more planned… a two-hour drive later we had to throw all our plans out the window! The need in this particular church fellowship was manual labor on a property they were preparing for a women’s halfway house ministry. So we took up shovels, pickaxes, and post-hole diggers and got to work! 

Splitting rocks to fill a cement fence structure.

As we idealize missions, it is easy for us to get caught up in the outreach, and programs, and ministry tasks. But sometimes, what the community needs is for you to come alongside them and break rocks with them! What greater way to serve and create relationships than to meet the people where they are at? As we were chipping rocks away from the mountain and piling them up by the fence, it was like the Lord was using the rocks to speak to my heart… It’s not about the plans. It’s about the people. 

Nancy (far left) was the local who showed us all how splitting rocks was done. She is such a hardworking and encouraging young woman!

Is it worth it to lay down some of our cultural comforts and operations in order to be a vessel for the love of God to reach His children? Is He worth giving up our plans, and taking up the task of learning in order to reach or encourage His people? Is He worth it? I would certainly say so, and pray that He would help me to make my life look like I believe it. 

I was helping split rocks for a little while, but somewhere along the way, I made a little friend! Her name is Grace, and she is the pastor’s daughter. We were glued together for pretty much the rest of the day playing games, eating dinner, and acting goofy.

Thank you again to those who have been supporting me in your prayers and financially! It means so much that you have decided to be a part of what God is doing in Rosarito and in my life! Prayer requests are below if you would like to pray for our team, and if you would like to partner with me financially, you can click the link below. The Lord has been teaching me so much, and speaking to my heart about serving as a long-term missionary– I can’t wait to continue pressing in!

In Christ,


Praise Reports:

  • The Lord has blessed us with amazing teachers and leaders! 
  • We are already such a tight-knit family!
  • We made it to and from San Vicente safely.
  • The Lord is keeping us safe and teaching us flexibility as plans change due to pandemic precautions and other factors. 

Prayer Requests:

  • That the Lord would strengthen us all (students and staff) as we pass the halfway mark, and that we would not grow weary.
  • That the Lord would continue binding us together in unity.
  • That the Lord would give each of us a heart and a vision for a specific people group or nation.

Power in Surrender

Calvary School of Missions 2020: Week 2


First, I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for partnering with me in the gospel! We’re only two weeks in, and I see the Lord answering prayers and moving in powerful ways. 

For those of you who may not know, I am in Mexico at Calvary School of Missions getting trained up to be a long-term missionary. We started with the basics of the grace of God to prepare us for the field, and in those basics, we find the heart of God, His love for the lost and forgotten, His heart to reach all nations with His gospel, and His grace that He would invite us– the Church– to be a part of the work He is doing! This week we focused on the power of surrendering to the work of the Holy Spirit who works in us as well as through us. 

Class with Pastor Mike Vincent

“The will of the creature is nothing but an empty vessel in which the power of God is to be made manifest.”

Andrew Murray, Absolute Surrender

What a glorious honor! To be filled with the Holy Spirit so that His power might be on display and souls might be turned to the Father. We gleaned a lot from Pastor Trent’s teaching on the work of the Holy Spirit in the book of Acts. The gospel was preached to the people in the largest cities and from there, spread to the entire country. We were blessed to have Pastor Mike Vincent visit us to teach and share on how the Lord has done a similar work through his church. He is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Rosarito, a church that has planted 25 successful church fellowships in Mexico within the last 18 years. Incredible! It’s amazing to see the Lord display His power through men and women surrendered to His purposes. I pray that the Lord would cultivate that surrendered heart in us. I know I have such a long way to go, but I trust that God guides His children. 

We accompanied a pastor from Calvary Chapel Rosarito on an outreach to bring COVID relief packages and the love of Christ to an impoverished community called Colonia San Fernando. One of the residents was so kind to open up her yard as a place to gather to share about the Lord, pray for the neighbors, and minister to the kids. I was able to share my testimony with those who attended. It was kind of spontaneous, and I had to have my friend Maribel translate, so there were a lot of things that were unfamiliar, and out of my control. The Lord taught me about surrender in that moment. I had to make myself available to what He wanted to say through me, that the people might be stirred by His power. I pray that they were.

Sharing my testimony at the outreach.

I also got to serve with the kids! We taught a lesson on the fruit of the Spirit, played water games (see the first photo), and did face painting! 

Face painting with this little niña!

As soon as we walked into this community we could sense the spiritual darkness, but the Lord showed up and there was joy, freedom, and hope. I was so encouraged to witness the impact that Jesus had on this small group of people. It reminded me of the verse, “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; Those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them a light has shined” (Isaiah 9:2). This Light, of course, had nothing to do with us and everything to do with the Lord Jesus. If it were not for His Spirit guiding us, all we would have had to offer was some food for their bellies. But since the Lord was leading us, He was able to offer Himself as the Bread of Life that sustains their souls. 

I am so grateful that you’ve decided to be a part of what God is doing in my life to train me up for His global purpose. Thank you for partnering with me in prayer, encouragement, and finances; the Lord is using it! Praise reports and prayer requests are below, and also a link for financial partnership if the Lord leads you! Thank you again, and I pray the Lord would continue to make the power of His gospel real in your life! 

In Christ, 


Praise Reports:

  • The Lord is taking us out of our comfort zones and helping us grow in boldness for sharing the gospel. 
  • God is continuing to unify us in His Spirit and forge deep friendships. 
  • The Lord has blessed us with awesome leaders to disciple us. 

Prayer Requests: 

  • That God would give the leaders an extra measure of grace to navigate the school in the midst of often-changing situations.
  • That God would give each of us students a heart and a vision for a country or people group. 
  • That we would not grow weary as we near the half-way mark of our time in Mexico.

For the Joy

“… let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” 

Hebrews 12:1b-2

Hello, family!

I made it to Mexico for the Calvary School of Missions! It’s so encouraging to see God still at work during times of such uncertainty. I’m excited to share what the Lord has been doing this week, and I hope you are encouraged as well. Thank you for your partnership in the gospel!

Pastor Trent Douglass is teaching us so much in class– we are opening the Word of God and finding the call to missions on every single page! From Genesis to Revelation, we see that the heart of God is to reach every nation, tribe, and tongue with the gospel of Jesus Christ. 

Worship and Intercession for the nations

It is so clear that the very heart of God is to reach man with redemption. Just look at Jesus; He left His heavenly throne to become one of us and die to give us eternal life. Now, when I say, “I want to look more like Jesus” I am usually talking about His compassion or patience… but wasn’t His entire mission, His very sustenance (John 4:34), to reach the world with the gospel, no matter the cost? 

The Lord is nudging me to face this reality as I see the need in the areas of Mexico we are doing ministry in. This past weekend we visited a community called Home X. There is a brand new church there that is just beginning to take root and our team came alongside the pastor to put on their first gathering since the COVID-19 closures; a family picnic with worship, fellowship and fun activities for the kids.

My friend Maribel and I teaching the kids the story of Jonás (Jonah).

It took a long time to get there. Most of the route was a bumpy dirt road. Not the most comfortable of rides. It was hot. Not to mention they spoke a different language than me! These, and a billion other little things, made the outreach difficult for me, but I could hear the Lord speaking to my heart, “People remain unreached by My gospel because man finds them difficult to reach, but take courage, the harvest is ripe.” 

Many of the kids, and a few of their parents, gave their lives to the Lord that day! I praise His name for His grace that brought each and every one of those souls to that picnic to get the chance to respond to the gospel. Better yet, we were able to direct these families to the Home X church plant so they could go on to be discipled in their relationship with God, and equipped to reach their community. Precious souls were won to the kingdom of God. Suddenly the cost did not seem so great. 

Some of the kids eating lunch!

Jesus went way out of His way to bring us eternal life. His tears in Gethsemane tell me that it was noteasy. But He still came. He came because He knew of the joy that was set before Him; the joy to which the “light afflictions” He endured were not worthy to be compared. May we do the same. We know of the joy of eternal life, and we have such an opportunity to leverage our lives to make this gospel known among the people on this earth who are forgotten! Isn’t that what He did for us, after all?

I wake up every morning so grateful to be here, and I am deeply thankful and encouraged through your prayers and partnership. Thank you so much! I pray that the Lord would cause you to abound in love and grace, and allow your life to echo the mercy you’ve been shown!

Prayer Requests:

  • That the Lord will continue to give the leaders wisdom and discernment to navigate the school during these uncertain times
  • That the Lord will give each of us students vision for a specific country or calling while we seek His face and guidance. 
  • That God will unify our group by His Spirit and continue to knit us together as one body. 
In Christ,
Rachel Martinez