Hey Everyone —
I know I thank you for your prayers in all my emails but this time I REALLY MEAN IT! more than ever!! We are at the end of a very hard long road and God has shown Himself so true and faithful and I know that he is working because of so many prayers for us at Destino.
I feel free to share with you a little about Carlos and Wendy’s problems because the battle is OVER!! For about 2 years we have been in a constant battle here for their marriage. The war between them was so horrible and I never wanted to share with anyone about how much pain we were all in. You may have suspected it by reading between the lines in some of my emails but I never felt the freedom to share just how awful it has been. There have been many battles and accusations and Carlos has tried to leave Destino in his discouragement many times. During those battles I was so fearful and instead of just turning to God and determining to move on, no matter what, I gave in to fear and discouragement. God is a BIG God and has been moving in incredible ways. First, he has been changing me to just trust him and no man. He is teaching me to submit to him no matter what is falling apart around me. I praise Him for the lessons he has taught me and the strength he has brought to my faith. BUT, he did not stop there. In the midst of one of the worst battles that they have ever had — I started praying over Wendy like never before and I talked (really the Spirit talked through me) to her about looking at her own heart instead of blaming and accusing Carlos. We had an incredible time in that moment and after I finished praying over her and fighting all of hell to rescue her from herself, she started praying and asked Jesus Christ to enter her life and be her savior and to forgive her. It was amazing!!! She has been in a Christian church all her life and married to a pastor for over 10 years and she never truly had given her life to Jesus Christ. It was on March 2nd and Wendy is (in Carlos’ words) 100% different. She has joy now and a peace even shows up in her countenance. Well, the battle was half fought in that moment, and now that Wendy was a new person, Carlos could only deal with God and not put blame on the problems with his wife or in his household. He has had horrible headaches and backaches for several years. We started studying in our discipleship class about bitterness and resentment. The night we were to start studying that, we had to rush him to a medical clinic. I thought he was having a stroke — he was faint and cold and he had no feelings in his left side but mostly he was in HORRIFIC pain in his head. It was so scary. The doctor did some x-rays and exams and concluded that he just had migraines. I had been praying that God would reveal to him what was wrong in his own life with his anger and horrible explosions, etc. I had given him a book called “Emotions that Kill” by a doctor and he had started reading it. All of his physical symptoms were based in unforgiveness and anger and bitterness. I (gently) reminded him of that that night as we were leaving the clinic. He admitted that he knew that was what was wrong in his heart. So he came back and led the discipleship class that night on bitterness and admitted to everyone that this was a huge problem in his life. The next Monday, the 12th, he had an incredible encounter with God and God revealed to him what was wrong in his heart. He gave up his battle to the Lord that morning and God healed his headaches and backaches and he felt like a new man. But Carlos has had a root of bitterness that goes back to his very young years — he had never forgiven anyone and the Bible warns us that we cannot have fellowship with God if we do not choose forgiveness for every offense. That bitter root had grown for so long and out of it was coming anger and hatred and things that were just not the REAL Carlos. Our next lesson in discipleship class was to be on forgiveness and how to do it and Carlos had read the study sheet that I had prepared and knew he needed to take those steps to get real freedom from his battles, but he put off getting with God and choosing forgiveness for over a week. That week we had a group here and things were just not right at Destino in many ways. The group was wonderful and helped us but things were not right in us and the kids were having nightmares and it seemed like we were under more attack than ever before. I finally had the liberty from the Spirit to speak to Carlos about it yesterday and told him that I had a vision of us at Destino — Carlos was the leader and was in front of us all in a big battle to protect us and lead us (his family, us at Destino, the church, and school — all of us). But he had this big root of bitterness in the middle of his body and it was making a hole that was allowing the enemy to get through and attack all of us. He agreed that was from the Spirit and TODAY HE RELEASED FORGIVENESS TO EVERYONE — God has set him free and he will never be the same. We have such hope and excitement about what all God is going to do at Destino. God called Carlos and Wendy and me too knowing that we had so many things wrong that needed His healing but he called us anyway and now is in the process of fixing us to lead this ministry for His glory. I am still amazed that he even bothered to call people like us that needed SO much work but it is HIM that calls and He does it all. What a powerful precious loving and forgiving father we have in Him. There is nothing too hard for Him.
I cannot tell you how much joy I have today and how I KNOW that all the blessings of God will start flowing over Destino like never before because of the obedience of Carlos and his heart for the Father and for reaching the lost and training up leaders here. Please don’t stop praying now. Satan is REALLY MAD at all of us but he has been defeated at the cross and is just a big liar so we will keep putting him back in his place and moving on in the strength and victory that is in the name of Jesus Christ.
God is so good to convict all of us and let us just turn around immediately with repentance and then tells us to not look back at former things (Isaiah) but he is doing a NEW THING — so claim that with us for Destino and for me and for Carlos personally and in his marriage. We are anticipating great and mighty things from a powerful God. God thought of Destino del Reino — not me– and He will do it perfectly and powerfully and fulfill all of his purposes in this place — even if he has to move mountains of bitterness, resentment, self-sufficiency, pride, etc. in all of us.
Well, that is my biggest news and I praise God for His patience and lovingkindness and mercies that are new every morning. Things are going well at the school and we still need more prayer for wisdom there for the next school year. We would still like to get one more school teacher from the US, so spread the word please.
Carlitos prayed to receive Jesus Christ has his savior two weeks ago too and I know many of you have prayed for him since he came here at 2 years old. He is such a sweet little guy and was so sure of his need for salvation.
We are so excited about Thursday night discipleship class. There are about 15 in there but they are absolutely transparent and want to change their lives for the glory of God. Pray for tomorrow night as Carlos teaches the lesson on Forgiveness. He can now give a personal testimony about the need for releasing forgiveness and the damage it does to a person spiritually, emotionally and even physically when they don’t choose to forgive. One big thing that the Spirit taught me is that God does not get overly concerned about our “feelings” — he puts weight on our words and our choices. In other words, I can declare forgiveness for someone and still not feel great about tha person and God still gives me the freedom and honors my choice made against my feelings. As you know, we have had an on-going angry silence among our neighbors and some of each household are in the discipleship class so we are praying for a huge victory this week as they CHOOSE with their wills to release forgiveness to the others. The blessings of God will flow in our church once this forgiveness is released and the unity is restored. Please pray with us for this to happen immediately.
I think God has something wonderful up his sleeve for Destino (again). I was in the grocery store about 3 weeks ago and I met a young American woman with her little girl. I asked her if she was a missionary and she said that she was married to a Honduran man and they were trying to reach some villages for Christ but not really officially with any organization or anything. I came home and mentioned to Carlos that I wondered if we were supposed to help them somehow to find some direction for their desire to serve God and reach villages. About 3 days later, I met another American woman and her Honduran husband. They had just moved here and didn’t know what God wantedfor them but they knew they are to help groups and be the connection in helping people in the US to reach the Honduran people for Christ. They didn’t have any real direction either. Well, I came home and told Carlos that I had this “feeling” about these two couples and wondered if God wasn’t going to use us to plug them in somehow and strategize with them to reach more people. Carlos and I cannot do it all. One week later after telling that to Carlos, the second woman called me (Melissa) and she said they couldn’t quit thinking of me and had been on the web site and were so touched by the ministry and really wanted tocome that day to see us. She said she would be here in an hour. About 40 minutes later, someone knocked on my office door and I was expecting it to be Melissa — but it was Jennifer (the other young American woman). Then Melissa and Cilos, her husband, showed up. They all showed up within 10 minutes of each other and I didn’t even remember telling Jennifer where we lived. We walked around and I told them about the ministry and they met Carlos. We were all standing in a circle and I just told them what I thought God showed me that we were to pray for direction as to how to work together and accomplish so much more than just being individuals out there doing our little thing — we can really use our gifts together and see what God has for us. THey all agreed and then Jennifer offered to teach my English class for me and started that week. This took a huge burden off of me and she had been praying for a place for God to use her. Her little girl stays at Destino and plays while she teaches class. Cilos and Melissa found out we were having a group on Sunday (this was Thursday) and they offered to be our translators since I had not found any yet. They came with the group and us every single day all week long and we loved them. They are so humble and ready tobe used of God. They are incredible with groups because they are so approachable and loving. I have had long prayer sessions with them several times this week and see their hearts for God. They feel called to work with us at Destino and lead our groups and do whatever they are needed to do. They have already signed up though to be in Argentina for 6 months (starting next week) for discipleship training with YWAM missions. THey will not be YWAM missionaries but want to be trained in discipleship. As many of you know, our biggest needs for help are for discipling the new believers in several villages that we have reached with the gospel and also for group leaders because Carlos and I have a heavy schedule every day even without a group being here. We feel like God is revealing some wonderful things to all of us and we are waiting on him. Please pray for the confirmation we need from the Spirit during the next 6 months and when they return we can start working together if that is what God shows to us. I am so excited to have them in our lives though. Cilos had been praying for a Christian man to have fellowship with and you know we have been praying for a Christian man in Carlos’ life too — God is so amazing. The other couple is Jennifer and Osmani. Osmani knows all of Honduras and where the needs are the greatest and he is wanting to use Carlos’ evangelism team in some areas. We are not sure how all of this is going to work together but I sure feel like something is bubbling up under the surface. Thanks for praying for clear direction for all of us and that we will not move ahead of the Lord in any of this but will also be open to all the new people he may be bringing to Destino to help us further the kingdom work.
Well, this has been long but my heart is full and I want you to rejoice with us and yet continue to pray and fight for the victories we still need to win here. I love everyone of you and praise God for giving us such prayer warriors to help fight for the ministry at Destino del Reino. In the next generation, there will be missionaries all over the world that have been trained at Destino and because of your love and prayers will be prepared for battle against the enemy to declare the salvation of Jesus Christ around the world.
Love in His INCREDIBLE grace,