Key Verse: 1Corinthians 2: 12, 13 "Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches, but which the Holy Spirit teaches, explaining spiritual things with Spirit-taught words.“
We started the year 2016 with great enthusiasm, wanting to serve the Lord and giving him the best of us, but like every year, we had to fight against human wisdom teaching by many religious leaders in this country.
We studied the book of Luke and Matthew. Fishing at the university, it has been somewhat difficult: First, ID was required only to students for 2 years. This is used to open an electric gate, and this card is carried only by students. Second, throughout this year, M. Edith so far only got a faithful 1: 1 sheep, who is called Johana Business Administration student, but her boyfriend and church where she assists pulled her a lot. But she has struggled to attend 1:1 Bible study; the other sheep already went to another church and above all they did not like the cross of Jesus and repentance of sins, and at this point they no longer wanted to study the Bible.
The wife of my elder brother also receives the word of God by studying the Bible with M. Edith through WhatsApp. She likes studying a lot so she does 2 or 3 times a week. It needs patience and the shepherd’s heart for her.
Shepherdess Mary and Shepherdess Ruth tried to fish every Thursday, but they are very timid and could not get faithful sheep. However, Shepherdess Ruth taught 1:1 Bible studies to her sisters Gabriela, Nursing Student and Gloria at Clinical Laboratory. Ruth works, and is in the process of her thesis, only missing details. On the other hand, she has been very sick throughout the year due to pneumonia and hypothyroidism, but she has fought so hard to save her heart for the Lord.
Shepherd José and Shepherdess Mary have been excellent collaborators in a history of God, so they are an Abraham and Sara of faith in El Salvador. Shepherd José is concluding his thesis and this year he struggled very well trying to invite his friends. He brought Eleazar, who for a time studied 1:1 with him, but suddenly, at the end of the year he has not come. Shepherdess Mary memorized and shared Christmas message. We thank God for such a beautiful life of these future owners of the history of El Salvador.
Missionary Raúl is also a very hard-working man, who comes with great joy to the meeting of prayer although he is very tired of his work. He has found great comfort in God in spite of his lives with 4 very conflicting women, his mother-in-law, a sister of his mother-in-law, his sister-in-law and his wife, 4 against 1. There was news that made his wife jump for joy; Shepherdess Seneyda got a good job as head of distance learning at the University of El Salvador (UES) in Chalatenango (a state of El Salvador). Now they are looking for a home to serve God’s work, in that State.
Besides, throughout this year we had the prayer meeting from Monday to Friday with all the collaborators; little by little shepherds were amazed at how God responded to our requests with his great power. For example, we prayed to pioneer a new chapter after a few years, but Shepherdess Seneyda received an answer of those prayers in just one month, so she was surprised. We also prayed for thesis of S. José. He was very negative; even he thought he could not pass the first test, but incredibly he defended his thesis with congrats. He was also surprised with and thanked for our prayers.
Also, M. Raúl’s son, Josué, had an accident with hot water, he burned his head, part of his face and his body, but he recovered perfectly. Thanks God! Our son Isaac got his diploma as a Technical Bilingual Assistant and as a high school student, now he has to prepare for college. Although he was aiming to study for a music career, it would have to be outside of El Salvador. By the way, God guided him and gave him another option, which was to study Bachelor of Science Communications, so he agreed to choose this second one.
At first we considered two universities; one of them is Matías Delgado University, that offered him a scholarship, under conditions of joining the university orchestra. They would give him full scholarship; this was excellent news for him, however, that was on condition that he had to rehearse every Sunday, which would make him miss the Sunday worship.
And the other university where he was applying was the Central American University (UCA); this university was already in the process of registration, waiting to submit the admission examination, which had informed us that very few passed the exam. So we prayed a lot to God to give him wisdom for the test. And wonderfully God allowed him to pass the exam. Although he did not get a scholarship here, but he accepted that the word of God is more important than the material. We praise God that allows us to experience His great power.
On the other hand, we also thank the Lord because 27 adults and 4 small children attended to our Christmas party. Although we ended this year with losses and failures, each and every one asked God's forgiveness, due to Lord Jesus precious blood, and we give thanks to God that he has kept us until now, and helped us to keep the few shepherds and sheep who have trusted us. It is not easy to be patient; we pray to God to teach us how to have a shepherd heart not only for the sheep, but also for the shepherds.
For Missionary Edith and for me, our strongest struggle has been to have to care for the collaborators because they are sometimes rebellious, muted, negative, indifferent; it is like starting from scratch every time. We do not mean we are tired of enduring the sheep or the collaborators because God has not gotten tired of us either although we also may fail.
Thank you Lord for bearing my sins of laziness, lack of vision, disbelief, discouragement. Help me to be faithful to the point of death. In front of God, I confess "But as for me and my house, we will always serve the Lord”; this is why we are willing to do what God wants with all our lives; we are grateful for a love and mercy of Jesus Christ, who has saved and used us for the world mission despite of our indignity(M. Isidro P. Perez).
One word: Living with what the Spirit teaches!