God Works Through Relationships
Pastor Daniel Nuñez with the mic leading us in prayer at the pastors meeting for Lo Mejor del Trigo

Pastor Daniel Nuñez with the mic leading us in prayer at the pastors meeting for Lo Mejor del Trigo

I feel the longer we are here the deeper our relationships grow, and the wider the ministry reaches. We’ve often prayed that the Lord would enlarge our borders. The journey has been much more crooked and with more lows than we could have ever imagined, but still God is on the move.

One of our believes is that ministry flows out of relationship. God’s Spirit seems to be unleashed as kingdom minded ministries work together.

The Lord brought this point home to me as I participated in a meeting with the pastors from Lo Mejor del Trigo (LMT) last week. It warmed my heart to rub shoulders with such wonderful servants of the Lord. Pastor Daniel Nuñez leads the group, and he and his family are special friends.

The Spirit Enlarges Our Borders – Praise Him!
Dave Preaching at Lo Mejor del Trigo - Terrazas

Thankful for opportunities to share the Word with my friends from LMT

Later in the week I had the chance to preach at El Niño, the mother church for Lo Mejor del Trigo. Pastor Daniel was the pastor of this church, and he recently handed over the reins to his son, Pastor Turi Nuñez.

Dawn, Hannah and I also spent some time with some friends in Ensenada and San Antonio de las Minas, which is near Ensenada. God is opening up some doors for us in these places as well.

We rejoice in the breath of the Spirit. He moves in a powerful way. It’s so easy for relationships to go awry. We’ve seen some of that as well. Another motive for prayer.

Join Us In Prayer!

Pray with us that Jesus will continue to deepen, strengthen and widen these relationships. We have some important ministry opportunities taking place over the summer.

This coming Sunday we will celebrate with Lo Mejor del Trigo in the inauguration of their 25th church. Half way there, in their goal to plant 50 churches! Rejoice with us!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Ty & Terri’s Incredible Influence
Terri & Ty Schenzel

Terri & Ty Schenzel

This week as I’ve been grieving the loss of my friends, Ty & Terri Schenzel a couple of things have happened. One is as I followed the news and their memorial page on Facebook, I learned what a huge impact they made in Omaha. They touched literally thousands. More than 3,000 attended their funeral, and an estimated 13,000 watched via the internet.

I knew they were amazing people, but the impact they made, the influence they had was incredible.

The memorial service was held on Wednesday, August 26th. You can read more about the service on their lives and the service here…

They Shared An Extraordinary Marriage
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Ty & Terri shared an extraordinary love for one another

Dawn directed me to an article written about Ty and Terri’s marriage. A young woman, Melissa Joy Kong traveled around the United States and interviewed 100 couples that had extraordinary marriages. Ty & Terri were one of the couples, and Melissa said they stood out from the others, because of their warmth and the obvious love they shred for one another.

You can find the article here, which includes an audio interview.

Ty & Terri Finished Well

As I reflect on their lives I feel proud of what my friends accomplished. I’m so Glad to have known them. I regret not having more contact with them since we left seminary.

They lived well and they finished well. The apostle Paul exhorted the church to tun in such a way that we receive the prize. “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it.” (1 Corinthians 9:24) Then later at the end of his life he tells Timothy, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” (2 Timothy 4:7)

In reflecting on the wonderful legacy that Ty and Terri left, it causes me to consider what kind of legacy am I building? What influence and impact does my life have? Those are good questions to consider.

One of our seminary professors, Dr. William Iverson used to talk to us about outliving and out dying our generation. Ty and Terri accomplished that, may we follow their example and do the same.

Grieving & Reconnecting
Students from ISOT in the Core Module - led by Dr. William Iverson

Students from ISOT in the Core Module – led by Dr. William Iverson

As part of my grieving process last week I started to contact all my old friends from seminary. Friends who knew Ty and Terri and we shared a common bond.

I found the reconnection to be refreshing, and to bring me a level of comfort and healing. One of the classmates I connected with was Dieter Zander. As we chatted I learned of the amazing journey he’s been on over the last several years. I asked him if it would be okay to share his story with others, and he said yes, so next week I hope to write about his life and the redeeming work that God is doing.

“Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.” Psalm 116:15

I’m so thankful that we have a loving God who makes sense of this crazy world that we live in. He brings order out of the chaos. He gives us hope when it seems hopeless.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Ty & Terri Schenzel

Ty & Terri Schenzel

Mourning the Loss of My Friends

On Friday I was checking out some Facebook posts, and I noticed the picture of my friends, Ty & Terri Schenzel. Then when I explored further I was shocked to learn they had been involved in a fatal car accident on Thursday, August 20th.

Ty and Terri led exemplary lives and their reach in Omaha, Nebraska went far. It’s sad to see such wonderful people leave this earth. Heaven is richer for it as we mourn their loss.

See video news report and article click here…. The news report does a great job at capturing the significant impact that Ty and Terri made in their community.

It Began at Seminary in Arrowhead Springs
Ty Schenzel is second from the right with seminary roommates from left to right, Dave Diaso, Craig Collie, Ralph Elliott, Ty Schenzel and Dale Goodman

Ty Schenzel is second from the right with seminary roommates from left to right, Dave Diaso, Craig Collie, Ralph Elliott, Ty Schenzel and Dale Goodman

I first met Ty and Terri while I was attending seminary in Arrowhead Springs, San Bernardino, California at the International School of Theology (ISOT). Ty and I became friends right away as we prepared for the ministry. Our first year at school we were involved in the Core Module, led by Dr. William Iverson. The Core Module wed theology with practical ministry.

It was a great place to practice theology with skin on, as Dr. Iverson liked to call it. I have many fond memories of our time together at ISOT as those were some of the best years of my life.

Ty also met Terri at ISOT. They fell in love, and they were married while in seminary. God blessed them with a loving marriage that few couples are able to match. I admire them for that as much or more than I do for all their amazing accomplishments in ministry.

Students from ISOT in the Core Module - led by Dr. William Iverson

Students from ISOT in the Core Module – led by Dr. William Iverson

I remember that Ty knew from the beginning what he wanted to do. After he graduated from seminary his goal was to return to Omaha, Nebraska and to work with youth.

His fun-loving, energetic passionate personality made him a huge success with all the kids he ministered to.

As Ty and Terri ministered together they were a loving ball of energy that wanted to be spent pouring their lives out for Christ. I think they accomplished their goal. They lived well, and served faithfully.

God Used Them in a Powerful Way

Ty and Terri went on to accomplish many things in ministry. They touched thousands with the gospel. Their hallmark was the founding of Hope Center for at risk youth. The Lord used Ty with Terri at his side to bring hope to a place that was without hope.

I’m deeply saddened to see them depart this earth earlier than I would have liked, but what a legacy they left. Their life is an encouragement and a challenge to all of us to be ready when the Lord calls us home. It’s a reminder to make use of each moment the Lord has given us.

This picture of Ty (on the left) with Dick Elwell was taken in Mexico City on a month long summer missions project in the back of a Volkswagen Van, our main mode of transportation.

This picture of Ty (on the left) with Dick Elwell was taken in Mexico City on a month-long summer missions project in the back of a Volkswagen Van, our main mode of transportation.

My heart aches at their loss. My prayers go out to their children, and their family. They will be missed. They are leaving a big hole that someone else must step in and fill.

With Ty and Terri’s wonderful sense of humor, I’m sure that heaven is filled with more laughter. While we mourn for them, we can rejoice in their life well lived. I pray that we might follow their example to live life to the fullest, and to love the Lord our God with all of our heart, mind, and soul.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Vision & Strategy for the Border & the Baja

imagesLately I’ve been revisiting the vision and strategy for our team as we seek to make an impact for the kingdom on border and the Baja. God has given me some wonderful coaches to guide me through the process.

Part of my desire is that our strategy would be clearer. Today we had a team meeting and we talked about the draft I came up with, and it was obvious that it’s not clear enough yet.

One of the men coaching me said that he liked our team’s mission and vision, but that our strategy was a little hazy. How are we going to accomplish our vision? That question needs to be answered with a degree of clarity.

It’s not that we don’t have a strategy, but I haven’t articulated it in a way that is easy to grasp.

As I’ve spent time in prayer and sought to answer this question,d God has me dreaming. I love to dream about what God might do! I look forward to what he will do.

Pray with Us!

images-1Please join me in prayer as I look to the Lord for a God sized kingdom work. I’m thinking through what is the best way for us to carry out the vision the Lord has given us. Ideas come to mind, and much of this is already in process which is exciting. It’s not a complete overhaul, but more of a refining process.

God has brought to mind this passage from Ephesians, “Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20, ESV). This passage challenges me, and it leads me to cry out, O Lord, that there would be explosive growth of your church on the border and the Baja. Help us to catch the wave of what you are doing here. We want this work to be Spirit led and Spirit empowered. O Lord, hear my cry, hear our cry.

This gets me pumped up, because Paul says in this passage that it’s not just more than we ask or think, but abundantly more. God is a God of abundance, not a God of scarcity. He tells us to ask, and we will receive. So Lord, I do ask that you would surprise us, and do something magnificent here, and let us be a part of that.

Dave & Dawn

Dave & Dawn

Dawn and I appreciate you as you join us in prayer. We need prayer for clarity of vision and for the strategies that we are working on. We truly want to keep in step with the Spirit as we plan and strategize. This is our hearts desire – join us as we seek direction from our Lord and King eternal.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

 

I Hate Saying Good-bye
The Diaso Family at the border - with the U.S./Mexico border fence in the background

The Diaso Family at the border – with the U.S./Mexico border fence in the background

One of the most difficult things about being a missionary is saying good-bye to family and all the people we love. It’s something that Dawn and I have been doing for more than 25 years, but it never gets easier.

I can remember weeping when I first said good-bye to my grandparents, my parents, my brothers and my friends those many years ago.

Good-bye Jonny Boy
Dave with Jonathan

Dave with Jonathan

Today (Sunday) my second born son, Jonathan got on a plane and flew back to Colorado. I like to call him Jonny Boy.

The Lord gave us a wonderful visit!

I am thankful that we do have such a close and loving family. We aren’t perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but we do love and care for each other.

All three of our children, David Jr., Jonathan and Hannah get along very well. It’s a real gift from the Lord to see them together.

Having some fun!

Having some fun on the border!

Dawn and I give thanks that our kids are as close as they are. Thank you Jesus for each member in our family.

While Jonathan was here we were able to spend a couple of days in Fresno visiting my parents and one of my brother’s and his family. It was a special time as we aren’t all able to get together very frequently.

It Could be Worse!

When I think about the sadness that we experience in saying good-bye to our family, I recognize that some missionaries live much further away from their children and other family members. Many have it much harder than we do, so I must give thanks for that. On the other hand, I’m not sure that takes away from the ache of saying good-bye.

Dawn and I are very proud of all three of our children. We feel that they are true gifts from the Lord, and it’s always special when we can all be together.

Thanks for Joining Us In Prayer

We appreciate your prayers, and your love and encouragement for us as we continue on this journey. God has called us here. He has a purpose in all of this, and he is doing a good work on the border and the Baja. His purpose is for our whole family not just for Dawn and me. We lean on Him and we trust in Him.

We give thanks for the Lord’s good work, and for his call!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

 

Feed My Shepherds
Pastor Daniel Nuñez with the mic leading us in prayer at the pastors meeting for Lo Mejor del Trigo

Pastor Daniel Nuñez with the mic leading us in prayer at the pastors meeting for Lo Mejor del Trigo

One of the favorite things I enjoy about the work the Lord has called us to is connecting with and encouraging the church planters. A big part of our ministry is loving on, pastoring, coaching the pastors and their wives. It’s an incredible privilege!

Dawn and I grow to love these amazing servants of the Lord!

Last week I was able to meet with a number of the church planters and leaders from Lo Mejor del Trigo.

The stories they tell about how God is working through them energizes me!

God’s Grace on Pastor Victor Bravo & Sol
Pastor Victor, Sol & Abraham with Dave, Dawn and Hannah

Pastor Victor, Sol & Abraham with Dave, Dawn and Hannah

Victor Bravo and his wife, Sol just started their church in April of this year. Their church is just four months old.

Last week they did their first VBS, and 30 children attended. This is outstanding for the size of their church.

Pastor Victor said that most of the people in the church are new, and they are still very young in their faith. They are very open with Victor and Sol. As Victor and Sol are sharing with them and loving on them most of the couple’s have shared with them that they are not married. They are living together, but they have not entered into the covenant of marriage.

This gives Victor and Sol a tremendous opportunity to disciple them and teach them about the the importance of making the commitment before God in marriage. The people are so open, so hungry to learn, but they are in process. God is working in their hearts. He is changing them.

God’s Provision
Dave with Pastor Victor in front of the church

Dave with Pastor Victor in front of the church

Recently someone broke into the church and stole the sound equipment. Victor was discouraged, but the Lord lifted up his spirit and he was able to tell the people that he trusted that in faith the Lord will provide. Victor said he was going to give towards the needed repairs. Then the other families began to volunteer, and most if not all of the families decided to chip in to repair the damage done to the church.

God is so good!

After my meeting with Pastor Victor and Sol I left feeling lifted up. It encouraged my spirit to see how God was and continues to work among them.

Keep praying, dear friends, for the advance of the gospel on the border. God does hear our cry. He responds to our prayers and petitions.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

God’s Incredible Blessings!
Phases of Church building

Phases of Church building in Tijuana – Lo Mejor del Trigo Pipila

It’s hard to believe that three years ago this month we said a tearful goodbye to friends and family in Colorado and headed for the border. It’s been quite a journey. Many highlights with some dips in the road on the way.

God has blessed in many ways, and in some ways more than we thought possible.

We’ve partnered with a church planting movement on the border to help plant two churches in Tijuana and two in Rosarito. Lo Mejor del Trigo has planted 25 churches in 9 years.

We are thrilled to have such a close relationship with them and to coach, train and encourage many of the pastors in this multiplying movement!

Advance on the Border & the Baja
Pastor Victor Gonzalez on the left with Peter Boling and the core group for the new church

Pastor Victor Gonzalez on the left with Peter Boling and the core group for the new church in La Paz, Baja California

This May we’ve partnered with the National Presbyterian Church of Mexico (NPCM) to launch a new church planting project in La Paz, Baja California. Pastor Victor Gonzalez is leading this work and MTW team members Peter and Jenny Boling are supporting this new project.

In November of this year we will be holding our first church planting assessment center in partnership with the NPCM.

We are looking for solid church planting candidates to help launch more new churches in Ensenada, Mexicali, Tijuana and beyond.

Connections on Both Sides of the Border
Pastor Stephen Phelan leading worship

Pastor Stephen Phelan leading worship at Bridge Church

The Lord has also blessed us with a strong and growing partnership with Bridge Church, which is a bi-lingual multicultural church in San Diego. We are grateful for the vision of this church to reach San Diego and Tijuana with gospel-centered churches.

God continues to surprise us with new opportunities. He continues to open doors.

Dawn and I feel honored that Jesus has shown up, and connected us with such wonderful servants of the Lord. People who truly love God and want to see his kingdom expanded.

There are more churches and pastors that Jesus has connected us with than I have space to mention here. Thank you Lord for your answer to many prayers!

We Pray For & Look to the Future
Dave & Dawn

Dave & Dawn

As we look forward to the future we can’t wait to see what God will do over the next three years. We pray that the church will continue to grow in number and in influence on the border and the Baja. That many more lives will be changed.

One big request Dawn and I have is that the Lord would bring us more workers. Like-minded people who love Jesus and have a heart to serve. As the ministry expands we need people to help us. Jesus told his disciples to pray for workers, because the harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few (Matthew 9:37, 38).

Thank you so much for praying with us and joining us on this journey. To God be the Glory!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

God’s Amazing Work!
Dave preaching at Monte Sion

Dave preaching at Monte Sion

The Lord gave us an incredible time on Sunday in Tijuana at Monte Sion with pastor Jaime Avila and his wife, Claudia. Pastor Jaime is just beginning to come into the Lo Mejor del Trigo network of churches. We’ve gotten to know each other through the training on life transformation that I’ve taken Jaime and some of the other LMT pastors to.

God keeps taking us and the pastors deeper, which is exciting!

Dawn, Hannah, David, our nephew Tyler, our friend Polly and I all went to pastor Jaime’s church. What a marvelous time of fellowship it was!

The Lord gave us an invigorating time praying for the people in the church after my sermon. It ministered to our spirit to see the Lord touch the people. There was much brokenness and healing as they confessed their sins, and asked God to meet them in their place of need.

There are a number of things that I enjoy about the work that God has called us to. One of my favorites is visiting the churches of the pastors we are working with, and having the opportunity to exhort and encourage the people.

As we’ve ministered in this way we’ve found it to be a tremendous encouragement to the pastors, the members of their church and to us. The Lord is using us in new ways as we learn more about prayer and addressing root issues.

Glory be to God!

A Testimony of God’s Saving & Healing Work!
From the outside looking in to the Monte Sion Church in Tijuana - they are praying for a bigger and better facility

From the outside looking in to the Monte Sion Church in Tijuana – they are praying for a bigger and better facility

After the service we had the opportunity to get to know Jaime and Claudia better.

Jaime has an unbelievable testimony. He was caught in a life of addiction for 15 years before God broke through and redeemed him. During that time he lost everything – his wife, his job, his family and his dignity then he cried out to God for help.

God heard his cry. He found a church and he came to Christ!

The Lord took away his desire for the drugs and he came back to his family. He invited his wife, Claudia to visit the church and she gave her life to Christ a month later.

Claudia had epilepsy. She suffered from epileptic seizures for 13 years. She was told that she would have epilepsy for the rest of her life.

Then Jaime saw someone healed of epilepsy at the church he was going to, and he told Claudia about it. She decided to go the church. They prayed for her and she was gloriously healed of her epilepsy. She has not had a seizure for 20 years, and she doesn’t have to take medicine. What an amazing God we serve!

Join Us In Prayer!

Pray with us for Jaime and Claudia as they seek to reach their community and grow the church. The church has been through some recent trials, but God is bringing about healing and wholeness as they minister. The Lord is also doing a healing work in their family.

We see so much brokenness, so much need, but God is greater still than all our sin and sorrow. He brings restoration, and meets us in our place of need.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org