Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Mexican Bible Study

So we've been down here in Tlaxiaco going to Missions Training School for about 5 months now. We sit in class for about half of the day 5 days a week and then try to go apply what we're learning in class when we hit the town for the second half of the day. Up until now we haven't seen a lot of fruit from that. I mean we've made a lot of good relationships with people, but haven't really got into conversations that did more than scratch the surface. This past Sunday, though, we had our first Bible study with some people from here in Tlaxiaco. We've been talking a lot about what an indigineous church should look like in class and in theory. This past Sunday we got to put some of that learning to the test. I think what I took away from it most is that no matter how much planning or "theory" goes into a Bible study or indigenous church, if the Holy Spirit isn't the true leader of what's going on then you might as well be shooting in the dark. That's not to say that no one is getting anything out of it. We know that God's Word is useful for many things when we study it, but we also know that only God can change the hearts of men. This meeting was no exception to the rule. About an hour before the people were supposed to arrive, about four of us got together and just gave the whole thing over to God and thanked Him for the opportunity to be involved in the work going on down here in Mexico. Romans 8:26&27.

The people that came were a family, Bulramo (the Dad), Valerosa (the Mom), and Crystal (their daughter), along with her daughter who's name is Ximena. Some of the people down here in school with me have been talking to this family for about as long as we've been down here. They own a couple of shops in town. We also went and played basketball with Bulramo on Wednesday of last week. I think he's in his mid-fifties, but runs around like he's 25. They decided a couple of weeks ago that they would like to get together with some of us to study the Bible and this past Sunday was the result of that. Another guy that came is named Javier, and he's 18.

The family is Christian and from hearing their testimonies on Sunday they're really seeking God. Javier is still trying to figure things out, but is definitely interested and seems enthusiastic about getting into the Word and learning more. We looked at John Chapter 3 and butchered our way through some praise songs in Spanish. The ultimate goal of this study/church is for us (the white people) to be there only for a little while and then indigineous people to completely take it over and make up the group. Everybody that was there said that they wanted to meet up this coming weekend at the same time, and the family has already volunteered to host future meetings in their house. So praise God for the things that have happened up until this point, and we're looking for even more exciting things to come in the future.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Back to Mexico

Well I just made it back down to Mexico on Monday morning at about 6 a.m. after a car ride that started around 11 p.m. on Saturday night from Houston, TX to here. The car ride wasn't as bad as I thought it would be and it was a lot cheaper than flying. It was good to be able to get back home and celebrate Christmas and New Years with family and friends, but it's nice to be back here now. It's kind of weird to have a little bit of culture shock when you go back to the country where you spent almost 23 years of your life, after living in another place for only about 6 months. The amount wealth and just the differences in living and comfort take a little time to get re-adjusted to. Not to mention being able to go to a restaurant and ask for what you want in English.
After only being back here for about a day we had a kind of party last night to celebrate "Dia de Reyes." I haven't really been able to get a clear answer about what it actually is, but from what I have been told it's got something to do with celebrating the Wisemen bringing gifts to Jesus when he was born. Apparently Dia de Reyes is a bigger deal than Christmas for the kids down here because it's when they get the majority of their presents. For some reason only the Catholics will celebrate the holiday and the majority of people down here that are Evangelical Christians don't recognize it (that's the way it seems to go with almost all 0f the holidays down here-including Easter for some reason). We recognized it anyway and we had about 100 or more Mexicans along with all of us that watched the movie Narnia (in Spanish) and ate 500 tamales that were delicious. I wish that we had more occasions to eat tamales, but after seeing all the work that goes into them I hope I don't ever have to make them. But I did tell Epifania our cook that anytime she needed somebody to make sure her food tasted alright; I'm her man.
I guess that's about all for now, but I'm going to try and do a lot better in the three months that I have left down here at posting blogs more frequently. So until next time- Happy New Year.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

From Pig Pen to a House

About a month ago we started helping a local pastor and a few other guys build a house for a lady in their congregation. Apparently she's been through a lot and is struggling to take care of her three kids on a basically non-existent income. Her husband died about three months ago, and as soon as he was on his was out, his first wife came in a swooped up anything that was of value. This left his second wife with nothing and to top everything off, shortly after her husband died, their house fell over. These kinds of things have become apparent as a sad reality of the Mixtec region here in Mexico.

We went out originally to take the materials from her old house to make her a new one on the tiny piece of property that she got when her husband died. Come to find out though, that she didn't have enough materials to make a proper house so she had to go and rip apart some of her pig pen so she could have a roof on the house. I can't even imagine having to do something like this and it was a pretty heart breaking thing to witness. Here are some pictures of the pig pen and the house under construction. Unfortunately I don't have any pictures of the completed house, but it did get finished about two weeks ago. If you want to pray for her and her family her name is Yolanda and I'm sure that she could use it.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


I've never blogged before, I'm going to try and get the hang of it so that hopefully those of you who read this will get a better idea of what's going on down here in Mexico. To start out with I'll just give a little back-ground information to catch everybody up. I've been down here in Tlaxiaco, Oaxaca, Mexico for a little over four months in total now. I originally came down here this summer to participate in a two month internship helping out the full-time missionaries with short term trip participants. These participants ranged from high schooler's all the way up to grandmothers bringing down their grand kids on their first missions trip. I enjoyed this experience so much that I decided to stay down here for the eight month school that is offered. The school's main focus is to train people in how to present the gospel to unreached peoples in all different kinds of cultures and countries around the world with the end goal of planting self-sustaining churches. We've just started our third month of the school and so far it's been an awesome experience and one that I would recommend to anyone-even to those who aren't thinking about doing missions long-term.

Just to sum up what I've been doing so far, my days consist of class in the mornings and then the afternoons are dedicated to learning the language and just making new friends with locals. We've been doing this by playing basketball, working on building projects, and various other community developement projects. So far it's been good. (I wrote this about a month or two ago and never posted it but I'm about to write a new one so don't worry).