Archive for the ‘Christianity’ Category

We Began The Trip With Some Fear
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Special Moments with dear friends

Dawn and I felt some apprehension as we returned to Colorado for the first time since Hannah moved to heaven. We saw many dear friends, who love us. Through tears Dawn and I retold the story of how Hannah passed from this life to the next. I would say it wasn’t an easy trip, but God showed up as he always does. He brought healing through our tears.

Maybe what we didn’t expect is as we shared our hearts, and friends empathized with us it strengthened us. We were afraid of being pulled down into the valley of the shadow of death, but rather the Lord lifted us up.

Comforted in Our Grieving
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Thankful for Opportunities to share our story like pictured here at Village 7 

Upon arriving to Colorado Springs we attended a conference for grieving parents. Then the next day, Dawn participated in a workshop of grieving mothers. When she arrived Saturday morning and saw all the pictures that had been made into button to be pinned on their clothes. Photos of all the children that passed away too early from our perspective. When Dawn saw those, she lost it. She wasn’t sure she would be able to make it through the workshop. Yet, the women were very loving and supportive and once she got through that she had a great day.

Overall, it was so good to see our friends. We loved visiting with people who care for us, friends who have been praying for us!

 

We enjoyed speaking in two churches, Cheyenne Mountain and Village Seven. We shared our story with them and many others. We told how our hearts still ache for the loss of our precious Hannah. Yet, that’s not the whole story, because the Lord has been healing and redeeming Hannah’s untimely passing.

Encouraged by All That The Lord is Doing
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Raising Funds for the Hannah Diaso Memorial Church!

It encouraged us as we shared about the changed lives through the church planting work and other ministries on the border, the Baja and Beyond. I think it lifted our spirits, because those who came, and listened were excited with us and for us. Also, we challenged people with getting involved in helping us to raise the funds, $30,000 so we can plant a new church in early 2018 that will be a memorial church. A church to honor Hannah’s memory and her legacy! In doing so we know that it will also bring glory to our loving Father.

Dawn and I realized anew that we can’t do what we do without an army of friends standing with us!

An Exciting Week Lies Ahead of Us

 

It seems like we just got back home in time to catch our breath, as we head out today to Ensenada with Skyview Presbyterian for a week of ministry. Pray for our time there, and that the Lord will use it in a powerful way to extend his kingdom in Baja California.

Yes, we were afraid, but God came through again. He rescued us, and he continues to redeem our pain and our suffering for that we give thanks!

Thank you as well, dear friend! What would we do without your faithful prayers and encouragement?

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Stories of Grace Through the Camera
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Pastor Victor and his wife, Sol with their son, Abraham serving the Lord in Rosarito and Tijuana, Mexico

Last week a film crew came out to take photos and video shots of the ministry on the border and throughout our work in Mexico. It was an exhilarating time as we met with and interviewed our partners and church planters. We started out in Ensenada and we got some beautiful shots of the city and our church planters Petri & Yudy Petrikowski. Then we headed back up to Rosarito and Tijuana to interview Pastor Victor Bravo and his wife, Sol.

 

I wish I could take you with me to meet these wonderful friends. Every time I’m with them I come away encouraged. God fills me up because they are fun to be with, and also because of the way the Lord is transforming lives through their ministry.

God Breaks Through in Rosarito
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Victor and Sol shared with us about a ministry to an orphanage called Nueva Generación (New Generation). They formed a partnership relationship with Luis Salinas, who leads the orphanage a few years ago. The partnership has grown as their church has grown. Now on average 17 orphans attend their church every Sunday.

 

Sol is a psychologist and she has worked with the children and the parents. She ministers the love of Christ to these parents who are caught in addictions, prostitution, and poverty, which has kept them from being able to care for their children. The children experience the love of Christ and hear the good news of the gospel and they are transformed by God’s grace. The goal is also to see their parents break free from their addictions and destructive life style.

Brokenness and Healing
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Raul reunited with his two sons!

We met one of the father’s, his name is Raul. He has an amazing story. Sadly he was caught in a cycle of addiction, which led to poverty and an inability to take care of his children. Raul’s wife left him. Through the work of the orphanage and the love shown to him through Victor and Sol, he came to Christ. He eventually was set free of his addictions and began to work again. It took him more than 10 years to break free, and now he is back in his two boys life.

 

Raul shared through tears about his struggle with alcohol and drugs. He felt sad that he had let his boys down, and not been able to take care of them for so many years. But God broke through! This brought more tears as he reflected on the Lord’s great love and grace.

A life transformed!

A family reunited!

Wow! So good to see God’s grace set the captives free.

When we talk about planting churches we pray for transformed lives and transformed communities as the love of Christ shines brightly in dark places.

Unfortunately, there are many Raul’s in Tijuana and Rosarito. There is much work left to be done! Yet, we are seeing progress as the Lord works in and through the churches and ministries on the border. Thank you, Jesus!

I give thanks for faithful servants like Victor and Sol who are not content just to hold services on Sunday. They desire to see the gospel penetrate and make a difference in the community. My prayer is, our prayer is that the Lord will raise up an army of ministers like Pastor Victor and Sol. He is doing that through ministries like, Ministerios Transformación who have planted 31 churches in 11 years and have a vision to plant many more! Hallelujah!

In His Grip, Dave Diaso

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

 

Cuba Rocks My World
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Havana at night

The main reason Cuba rocks my world is because of the people. They are an amazing  and resilient people. All they’ve suffered through, which is heart breaking, yet God in His grace has used their pain to draw them to himself.

I find it hard to walk through the streets of Havana and see the long lines as the people wait to buy some very basic products for their needs. One particular instance comes to mind as I saw a young man wearing a baseball cap. The hat represented a Major League Baseball team. I wondered where he got the cap in a place where there seems to be so little. I was reminded of the stores in the USA that only sell hats for sports teams. There are wall to wall hats! The contrast of abundance to scarcity hit me.

Hunger & Hope
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Our Cuban friends, Yamil, Yuni, Melissa, Ariadna and Frank with Jim Moon and Dave

It saddens me to think of all that my Cuban friends have suffered through over years. One of them told me, “we all have the same, we share the same misery.” Yet, I see a people who the Lord has made hungry for something more than this life has to offer. That brings me some comfort, since Hannah died I too long for a hope that this world can never provide.

These are some of the reasons I love getting to know my new Cuban friends, and to be able to encourage them and to learn from them. They enrich my life, as I hope I’m able to strengthen their faith and life in Him.

While I was in Cuba I helped train our friends from Los Pinos Nuevos in their coaching skills. I was with many of them last year for coaching training as well, and it was so good to see how much they’ve grown and improved.

God’s Rich Blessings!
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Growing together in coaching

I feel in many ways that even though I go to help them on their journey as they aspire to multiply coaches in Cuba, and ultimately to see the church expand, but I’m the one who comes away having been blessed.

Dawn and I prayed even before our dear, daughter passed away for an increased reach in our ministry. We long to see the expansion of the gospel as we serve the Lord. Since Hannah moved to heaven that desire has only grown.

I give thanks for our amazing Cuban friends. They truly rock my world, and the Lord uses them to strengthen my faith. I can’t say I understand it all, but I want more of whatever the Lord has to give. I want more of Him, and I pray that this desire will overflow and spill over so that many are blessed and the kingdom expands for God’s glory. Give us more Lord! Hallelujah!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

The Gospel is Changing Lives in Cuba
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Dave with Jim Moon Jr., Yamil & Yuneisi Domínguez, Melissa, Ariadna & Frank Batista

Every time I go to Cuba I feel like God rocks my world. I’m both challenged and encouraged by the people and how I see the Lord working in the lives of the people.

I’m planning on writing more about my trip later, but I wanted to share this short video that I put together with the help of my Cuban friends, Frank Batista and Yamil Domínguez. The video focuses on the Gospel Coach training that we are partnering with them on. By the way, Havana is spelled with a b instead of a v in Cuba.

Gospel Coach in Havana (Habana), Cuba

Gospel Coach Habana from David Diaso on Vimeo.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Mexico City Feels Like Home
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Dave and Dawn with special friends, Mario & Silvia Silva, Monse Santiago & Barush Sanchez 

I feel in some ways like every time Dawn and I return to Mexico City it’s like going to our second home. A place where we lived for almost ten years, and both Jonathan and Hannah were born there. We still have many friends that we love and care for that live there. Special friends that we partner with in ministry.

Two of those special friends are Barush Sanchez and Monse Santiago they are the RUF-CUR campus ministers at UNAM one of the world’s largest universities. I always come away encouraged after I’m with them, and learn how the Lord is moving on the campus.

God’s Amazing Grace in Monse’s Life
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Monse Santiago

I asked Monse if she would share her story with us, and she told us how she came from a background where she was involved in a mixture of New Age religions, and she even tried on Marxism. Then while at the campus she joined an English club led by our RUF-CUR workers. At first she didn’t even know that they were Christians, but she was drawn to them. They were friendly and loving people. She went on a retreat with them, and it was there that she heard about grace for the first time. That confused her at first, because she had believed in Karma. You get what you give, and she only understood the works of trying to do good. The idea of receiving something she didn’t earn or work for did not make sense to her.

After about six more months of learning and asking many questions she gave her life to Christ. She said that the campus minister that spent so much time with her was very patient and loving. Monse is a very committed and passionate young woman. She ended up joining staff a few years later.

Monse also told us how she prayed for and shared the gospel with her family. Her sister and mom have also come to Christ. It moved me to tears to hear her tell of how God has begin to work in her family. Her sister is now leading a group on another campus, and her mom is helping with worship by playing the piano for the church.

She asked for prayer for her dad and her other siblings who have not yet come to faith. Her dad especially has been very resistant.

Pray for Monse’s Family and the Campus Ministry

It lifted Dawn and my spirit to hear first hand how the Lord is moving on the campus and in Monse’s family. We enjoyed being able to encourage Monse and Barush as they so faithfully serve.

Reconnecting with a Wonderful Friend
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Dave with Fernando Sanchez

To top off our wonderful time together, Barush’s dad, Fernando joined us. I first met Fernando about 24 years ago. When I was training youth leaders in Mexico. It was a special time to be able to reminisce and remind one another of the Lord’s faithfulness over the years. Fernando has been pastoring a church for the last 18 years, and both of his sons are ministers. He said that Dawn and I had left an imprint on their lives. They have left a huge imprint on our lives as well, which is one of the reasons I love Mexico City.

I pray for a breakthrough in the city. Barush and Monse told us they were going to be participating in an evangelistic campaign the next day with a number of youth and churches from around the city. The goal was to share the gospel with One Million people in one day, which takes a lot of prayer and coordination to pull off. Can’t wait to hear all the stories of how God showed up.

Thank you Jesus for all you are doing in the Big City of Mexico!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

 

Excited to See the Church Grow

 

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Dawn with Pastor Ivan and his wife Rocio

Today Dawn and I are off to Mexico City. Then on Saturday, I will be going to Cuba to minister with our friends from Los Pinos. Before I talk about these trips I’d like to highlight one of the ministries that we work closely with on the border.

 

Just over three years ago, we helped Ministerios Transformación plant a church in Ribera del Bosque, which is a community in Tijuana. Our good friends, Pastor Ivan Casados and his wife, Rocio lead this church. It’s been exciting for us to watch them grow as leaders as the church has grown.

Choice Servants – Ivan and Rocio Casados

 

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Pastor Ivan Casados & Rocio in front of their church

Ivan and Rocio love our family. They were deeply moved when they heard that Hannah had passed away. When I told Ivan he started to cry, which meant a great deal to me, because I knew he loved Hannah and our family.

 

We give thanks to the Lord for such special and dear friends. I remember not long after we helped build Ivan’s church, that he had the vision to see the church grow. He wanted to build a second floor so that they could use the bottom floor for fellowship and outreach to children. Dawn and I visited the church last week, and it filled our hearts to see the realization of Ivan’s dream. They just recently added a second floor.

They are still working towards putting in a kitchen and developing a breakfast program for children in the neighborhood. One of the many things I love about Ivan and Rocio and all my friends at Ministerios Transformación is that they have a deep desire to make a difference in the community. They are always looking for ways to minister to those in need. The church is truly a light in a dark place. Hallelujah!

As Dawn and I visited with Ivan and Rocio they shared about a friend in the church named Aaron. Aaron has a serious injury to his foot, which has partially crippled him. Hannah and Dawn prayed for Aaron over the past two years. They prayed for healing.

Aaron gave a testimony in church recently about how the Lord was healing his foot, and how it felt so much better. He remembered the prayers of Hannah and Dawn and he gave thanks for them. That news filled our hearts. Thank you, Jesus!

Pray With Us!

Continue to pray for Ivan and Rocio as they seek to make a difference in Ribera del Bosque.

 

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Dave with some of our friends that we work with in Cuba: Frank, Ariadna & Melissa

Dawn and I would like to ask prayer for our time in Mexico City, and my time in Cuba. We will be visiting our campus ministers right after we land today. Then I will leave for Cuba on the 17th, and Dawn will stay in Mexico City during that time. I will be working with the leaders in Habana. Many of them are growing as coaches, and I’m ministering with a team to train them further in their coaching skills. It’s always a rich blessing for me to be with our brothers and sisters in Cuba. They have such a warm and loving spirit.

 

I do give thanks to the Lord for all the good things that He has done!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

God is Growing His Church in Mexico
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Guadalajara

Dawn and I are grateful that we are connected to a larger mission that works in many cities in Mexico and beyond. You might remember that we began our ministry with Mission to the World (MTW) in Mexico City back in 1990. That was also the year that our oldest son, David Jr. was born. As we pray and work towards the growth of the church, and for changed lives it’s exciting to be able to visit and encourage our missionaries and to see all the Lord is doing through them. One of the cities we recently visited was Guadalajara.

Precious Servants & Friends

 

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Our good friends, Matt & Esta Jesch with their son, Mateo

Guadalajara is a beautiful city with many needs for the gospel. MTW missionaries have been working in this great city for more than 20 years. It gave Dawn and me great joy to spend some time with Matt and Esta Jesch, who arrived in Guadalajara about three years ago. They are wonderful servants of the Lord, who we’ve grown to love as we’ve gotten to know them. They actually flew out to support us when our daughter, Hannah died.

Matt and Esta have many gifts and they have amazing hearts to work alongside our churches to reach out and come alongside people in need. This includes job training and mercy ministries. We love being with them, they are some of our favorite people.

Church Growth in Acapulco & Guadalajara

 

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Kenton & Adriana Wood with Dawn and Dave in front of Rey de Reyes Church

One of MTW’s missionaries who has had the most success not only in Mexico, but in all of Latin America is Kenton Wood. Kenton’s parents were missionaries when he was a child. They served in the Acapulco area. Unfortunately, when Kenton was still young both of his parents were tragically killed in an airplane accident. Even with this tremendous tragedy, and challenge Kenton’s love for Mexico and the people of Mexico has not waned.

He planted a church in Acapulco in the 80’s. Then in the mid-90’s he moved to Guadalajara to begin his church planting work with his wife, Karen. The church, Rey de Reyes has grown to 900, and they have started four other churches in Guadalajara and other cities in Mexico.

Kenton has experienced some challenges in his life, but he’s been resilient and continued to serve faithfully. Not only did he lose his parents when he was young, but his wife, Karen passed away about 5 years ago. She had cancer. The Lord has sustained Kenton and his family through all these trials.

Dawn and I were so encouraged to share a meal with Kenton and his lovely wife, Adriana who now serves alongside him in the church, Rey de Reyes. God is so good, and takes care of His children. First we visited the church, and saw all the various ministries and how the Lord is using them. It brought us joy to see the vision and creativity for reaching the lost with the good news of Christ.

I give thanks for all that the Lord is doing in Guadalajara. Pray for the church to grow and that even more churches will be started, even more lives will be transformed by the gospel. We pray that we can replicate more churches and healthy churches throughout Mexico and beyond!

In His Loving Grip, Dave

 

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org