Posts Tagged ‘esl classes’

Worship at Harbor Mid-City

Worship at Harbor Mid-City

I’m so grateful for the wonderful partners in ministry that The Lord has given us. I love our friends at Harbor church, and I count it a privilege to walk beside them and serve with them.

We are not the same, but we serve our Lord and the city together. It pleases The Lord when his people dwell together in unity. Jesus prayed that his church would serve together as one.

A Word of Encouragement from a Key Partner

Pastor Stephen Phelan recently wrote a word of affirmation for our ministry.

MTW‘s San Diego – Tijuana team lead by Dave Diaso is a catalytic partner playing a critical role in empowering us to ignite a church planting movement that so fills the binational city of San Diego/Tijuana with the gospel that it is renewed in ever way–socially, spiritually, and culturally.  The San Diego – Tijuana team has enabled us to reach more Spanish-speakers through spearheading ESL classes and providing seasoned mentoring for young Spanish-speaking pastors and leaders.  Moreover, MTW is fostering relationships with Mexican movement leaders south of the border that is paving the way for more churches to be planted in Tijuana.  I praise God for our partnership with MTW and the Diasos!  We would not be where we are today without MTW’s San Diego-Tijuana team!

Prayer at one of our staff meetings - Thank the Lord for these friends!

Prayer at one of our staff meetings – Thank the Lord for these friends!

We have a mutual respect for Harbor led by pastor Stephen Phelan. It’s so good to be a part of something bigger than ourselves. I love ministering in partnership. I think when we do so it reflects the heart of The Lord.

O Lord, I do pray that you will continue to richly bless our partnerships and those that we serve with. Use the little that we have to offer to bring you honor and glory. Use it to see your kingdom expanded on earth as it is in heaven. Amen!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

ESL, friends, English as a second or foreign language

Some of our friends at the ESL lunch meeting

Sunday afternoon Dawn and I had a wonderful lunch with our friends who are involved in the ESL ministry. It warmed my heart to be with these dear friends. I love the privilege we have to serve with them.

Our New Endeavor

At our meeting we discussed our goals, how to improve, opportunities, needs, etc. One of the things we decided is to start a third ESL class.

I wrote a few weeks ago about how the Lord opened a new door for us at a local elementary school. Now we are ready to walk through that door.

It’s our next new endeavor! An expansion of our ESL ministry.

Seeking to Remove Barriers

This will be the first class that we are not holding on the same campus that a church is on. We believe this will remove what could be a barrier for some people who aren’t quite ready to go to a church, even if it’s just to learn English.

Some of the people we are meeting come from backgrounds that would make it difficult to go to a church, or at least it’s a big barrier for them. For example, one of the people we invited a couple of weeks ago seemed interested, but once we told her that the class was at a church she handed the flyer back to us.

ESL, English as a second or foreign language

One of our Growing ESL classes

We are so excited that we can hold our English class on another campus. This will enable us to reach some new people. Our prayer is that we will be a blessing to the community. The light of the gospel goes forth as we bless the city. The Lord uses this to draw some who are far away to himself.

There are still a few hurdles we have to get over to be able to start the class. I have to fill out some paperwork, and get approved to use a classroom at the school. That is the main hurdle. We also have to promote the class, and pray that people will come.

Thanks so much for standing with us in prayer. When I send out these posts and updates you write back and say you are praying. I know that is a big reason the Lord is blessing. A number of friends are lifting us up in prayer.

Prayer Requests
  1. Pray with our teaching teams as we seek to get more organized and do an even better job teaching English.
  2. We’d like to start up our new class the first week of May.
  3. That the Lord blesses our efforts as we promote the class to get more students.
  4. We could still use at least four more teachers.
  5. We’d like three strong teaching teams.
  6. We need help with childcare, as some of the young mothers come with small children.
  7. Wisdom and direction as to when, who and how we should go about starting up citizenship and GED classes.

We couldn’t do this ministry without a strong team of prayer warriors standing with us!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

ESL, Dave and Vicente

Dave with Vicente taking it to the streets each week

Each week we are walking the streets of City Heights to connect with people, and promote our ESL class. Presence and prayer are so important to our work. As people get to know us they feel better about us.

As we are present in the community those we talk to grow to be more comfortable with us. As we pray in the streets we claim the land for Jesus!

We are on a journey with Jesus. Our desire is to follow Christ who grew to have compassion on the people as he lived among them.

“And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every affliction. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.”

—Matthew 9:35,36 (ESV)

O, that Christ would radically change us, and affect our heart so that we have compassion for those we meet!

The Lord does minister to us as we reach out to others. Our little group grows in camaraderie each week. The Lord gives us more confidence and boldness as we see him open doors. That’s why it is thrilling to take Jesus to the streets!

We are still walking through the door the he opened when we met the principal of the nearby elementary school.

God has blessed our efforts as we’ve had three new students come to our ESL class in the last two weeks. Thanks so much for holding us up in prayer. The Lord hears the prayers of his people!

This last week Vicente and I ventured into a part of the community where there are many Vietnamese. We left flyers in restaurants and grocery stores. Most people seem pleased to find out we are offering free ESL classes.

Continue to stand with us in prayer that the Lord will guide us and continue to open more doors!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Emily with Edgardo Avila pastor of the Spanish church

Emily with Edgardo Avila pastor of the Spanish church

Our intern, Emily Gryder has served with us since July 7th. She will be leaving this coming Friday. The Lord has used her to connect with many of the Hispanics that we are working with. We are so encouraged by how Emily has served.

We started the summer with our first intern, Zach Lutz. Zach did a great job as well, and he opened the door for many of the things that Emily is now doing.

Zach and Emily started up a weekly VBS for neighborhood kids in City Heights. Emily has kept that going with an after school kids club.

Another area where Emily has really helped us is with our English as a Second Language (ESL) classes. She has been our main teacher over the last several months. Oliva, who I wrote about in a recent post, came to Christ through Emily opening the door with ESL classes, and then inviting Oliva to the Spanish service.

Emily has also befriended and discipled, Hilary, one of the youth in the church.

She’s had numerous experiences such as building a home for the homeless, building a church, feeding the poor, etc. You can catch up on more of Emily’s exploits on her blog: Chosen by Grace.

Emily with Oliva and Elizabeth

Emily with Oliva and Elizabeth

I’m amazed that Emily has been able to do so much at her young age. She’s still a teenager herself.

Dawn and I believe in the importance of building into young people, and giving them opportunities to serve in missions. Their time on the border gives them a broad and unique experience.

We do give thanks for Emily, who’s been living with us since mid-September. When Emily first came Ray and Michele Call spent a lot of time with Zach and Emily. We are grateful for all the time and energy they gave to both of our interns. We are also thankful for Tom and Debbie Steller, who provided housing for Emily until we arrived.

Join us in thanking the Lord for Emily, and praying for her as she heads back to her family in North Carolina. Pray also that the Lord raises up more workers as we work to see a renewed San Diego-Tijuana border.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Oliva - God is doing a good work in her life

God is doing a good work in Oliva’s life

The Lord has done a good work through our Friday evening English as a Second Language (ESL) classes. Two woman have come to faith through our ESL ministry. Last spring an international Korean college student, Tesory, came to Christ and was baptized into the church.

Recently, Oliva, a Mexican woman started coming to ESL classes. She learned about the class through a newspaper ad.

As a part of the class, Ray Call leads a devotional time in English to encourage their English and to share the love of Christ with the students. Our intern, Emily Gryder is also involved in ESL. She has been teaching the classes while she’s been with us. Emily took the initiative to invite Oliva to the Spanish service we have on Friday evenings.

While Oliva was at the service she met Edgardo and Elizabeth Avila who lead the Spanish ministry. Elizabeth explained the gospel message to Oliva, and she gave her life to Christ.

Oliva has been faithfully attending Harbor Mid City on Sunday. The Lord is drawing her nearer and she is considering making a deeper commitment to Christ and his church.

It’s so encouraging to see the Lord at work!

A huge need we have now is to build up our teaching team. Emily has done a great job, but she is leaving in about a month, on November 30th. We are talking to some other friends about teaching English. Pray the Lord raises up a good team, and that he continues to use ESL to be a blessing to the City Heights community.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Bob Bjerkaas on the left with his guys in the chicken coop

Bob Bjerkaas on the left with his guys in the chicken coop

This week in the midst of trying to find a place to live, we’ve had a short-term group with us from Calabasas, CA, which is in northern Los Angeles. It’s been great to have them.

Pastor Bob Bjerkaas from Church in the Canyon, in Calabasas has led a group of young people to work with us. Bob’s does an outstanding job relating to and leading the high school kids. It’s encouraging to see how they enjoy and respect him. A number of them are Lacrosse players, and Bob coaches the team. Some of the young people are not involved in the church. The project provides an awesome opportunity to build into their lives as they reach out in the City Heights community.

While they’ve been here among the various projects they’ve accomplished, they built a chicken coop. God has used them to bless the community and some of the families in the Harbor Mid-City Church.

In the afternoons they’ve run a sports camp for children. The camp is held at a park, Colina del Sol, which is right across from the community center where we hold ESL classes and the Spanish service. Fifty kids came to the camp, so it’s been a huge draw.

The kids at the sports camp

The kids at the sports camp

We are thrilled to start our first short-term mission group on such a positive note! Our hope is that this will be the first of many, and that the Lord will use these groups to further His kingdom here on the border.

On the home front we continue looking for a house to reside in and base our ministry out of. Cost and size are factors in this area, so as I mentioned in my last post we are looking to the Lord to provide. Please join us in prayer that the Lord will give us wisdom and lead us to the home He has for us.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeontheBorder.org

A lot of bars on doors and windows in City Heights

A lot of bars on doors and windows in City Heights

Yesterday and today I am walking the streets in City Heights. Jim DeWitt, Ray Call, Zach Lutz and I are taking it to the streets for Jesus. We are praying for the community and inviting the people we meet to come to our ESL classes.

I enjoyed getting out and meeting the people. I saw a lot of fear in their eyes as they live in a tough neighborhood and are trying to make it. Most of the people we met spoke Spanish, so as we interacted with them in Spanish their eyes would light up. They enjoyed chatting with us.

We met two painters, both named Juan. We met Antonio who drives a truck loaded with candy. He sells candy as he drives around the neighborhood. Two young mothers, Blanca and Lizbeth were walking their babies in strollers. They were wary of us at first, but they warmed up to us as we asked about their little ones.

There is some suspicion, some distrust at first. They are wondering what we are up to? What is our angle? But they do warm up when they see we aren’t selling anything, and a number of them have a genuine interest in learning English.

Our prayer is that we will be a light in the community. That the love of Christ will emanate from us. We pray that they will join us for the ESL classes on Fridays, and that they will grow to know and love the Savior.

Pray with us that many respond as we take Jesus to the Streets!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeontheBorder.org