After my last update, Amy and I received a ton of remarks from people concerning my comment about praying for God’s will whether He would have us move to Jordan or not. I mentioned it casually, as we are ALWAYS trying to remain open to what God has for us, but I realize that I should have been more clear that we have received no direction from the Lord about leaving the states full-time. I just know that God moves hearts on short-term trips, especially ones where we are praying specifically about a new work God is doing, so I wanted to make sure I didn’t bring any presuppositions into Jordan that would have kept me from clearly hearing God’s voice. But, for now, at least, God still has us here ministering to His church in SoCal and supporting ministry all over the world through my work with SGWM.
We had an amazing time in Israel! It was a very fast-paced trip, but because of the small size of our group there, we got just about as much done in 6 days as most groups do in 10+. I’m still digesting everything I saw and learned there, but I’m already noticing how it has affected the way I read, study, and teach Scripture.
Our time in Jordan required a huge mindset switch, as our group grew in size and the pace slowed significantly. While we did do some ministry (leading worship, refugee visits, and I got to teach at a church-planting conference we put on), our real mission was to slow down and listen to what God would speak to us about the ministry He’s laid on our hearts for that country, and who He may be calling to go live there.
The Jordan leg of the trip took on a unique flavor, as Pastor Trent and I were given the opportunity to give our young team a taste of what it’s like to minister in a culture so foreign to our own. We could tell that there was a big adjustment for some of our team there realizing that we cannot simply bring American discipleship tactics to that area of the world; we must contextualize our methods to reach people with the Gospel in a way that they can digest it. So our “vision tour” doubled as an on-the-ground training. The Lord had amazing things in mind that we never would have imagined, and I was honored to be a part of leading it.
Thank you all so much for your prayers over me and my family during this trip, and for all of you who brought meals and supported Amy and the kids in my absence! Please keep us in prayer as we continue day-to-day life and ministry, and as I have an upcoming trip leading youth to Nepal this Summer, and prayerfully a trip to Africa to minister to our missionaries there in the Fall.
Please pray for our financial needs as we live largely off of financial support just like our international missionaries, and we are praying for the Lord to provide more financially to cover some increased costs of living. Please pray that the Lord may provide for us in His will, whatever amount of support He deems sufficient (Proverbs 30:7-9). If you feel led to partner with us financially, instructions are below.
If you would like to support us financially either on an ongoing basis or through a one-time donation, you can do so by clicking the “Become A Financial Partner” button below, OR you can mail a check written out to Saving Grace World Missions with “Joel Garcia support” in the memo section to Saving Grace World Missions, 17451 Bastanchury Rd., Suite 203, Yorba Linda, CA 92886-1873.
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Love in Christ,
Joel, Amy, Maggie, Harrison, Jude, and Clara Garcia