Posts Tagged ‘Evangelism and Disciple Making’

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

 

A Successful Launch!
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Pastor Daniel Nuñez Commissioning Pastor Arturo Torres 

We are excited to announce the latest church to launch with Ministerios Transformación (MT) in Tijuana. Church number 28, Cielos Abiertos just celebrated their inaugural service on Sunday! Hallelujah.

We weren’t able to be there because, Dawn, Hannah and I are in Colorado for some friends’ weddings. We are also visiting ministry partners and friends. It’s a great opportunity for us, although even while we travel part of us is still in TJ!

Exciting news all around!
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Ministerios Transformación church #28 Cielos Abiertos

We give thanks to the Lord for Pastor Arturo Torres as he leads this new work. This is church number 28 for Ministerios Transformación. The church is called, Cielos Abiertos, which means Open Heavens.

I first got to know Arturo and his wife at the Discovery Center for church planters that MT held in February. Arturo is also a part of our incubator church planting training. I’ve enjoyed getting to know him. He’s a humble man, who loves Jesus and has a heart for Tijuana. He wants to be a light for Christ in the community they are serving in.

The Lord fills me up as he ministers to my spirit through all my friends with MT. I love their vision to plant churches and to make a difference in the communities that these churches minister in.

Pastor Daniel Nuñez and his team of ministers have been such an encouragement to my family and me. They have become wonderful friends, and we are so grateful for such amazing ministry partners.

We look forward to seeing all that God will do through Pastor Arturo and this new church. Many lives will be changed forever as they receive new life in Christ.

Now that church #28 is officially launched we look forward to helping them build and launch their 29th church plant in October in Rosarito. Dawn and I have been meeting with Obed and his wife, Cesiah. They will be leading the next new church. They have tremendous gifts, and it’s a real joy to minister with them!

Wow! we continue to be blown away by God’s grace.

Join Us In Prayer!

Pray for the ministry of MT as they continue to plant churches and help reach Tijuana and Rosarito for Christ. Also pray for Dawn, Hannah and me while we meet with churches and friends and share with them about our work on the border and in the Baja and beyond. We need a strong team standing with us in order for us to be effective and fruitful in ministry.

Thanks for the vital part you play!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

We Still Need More Workers!
Dave preaching at Grace Renewal Church

Dave preaching at Grace Renewal Church

Today (Sunday) I preached on Matthew 9:35-38, which contains the passage that says, “the harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few.” It’s one of my favorite passages. I think often about how we could use more workers to reach more people, to plant more churches.

Even this week I was speaking to the leader of Mission to the World’s mobilization department, Kendra Jeffreys. We discussed ideas on ways I could improve on what I am presently doing to attract more workers. Kendra said, “you are doing a lot of well, so I want to encourage you to have a  team of people who will pray with you for more workers.”

You are part of that team! That is one of the reasons I post, so that our friends will know how to pray for us.

Of course, Jesus didn’t just say the laborers are few, he also said to, “pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers in his harvest.” Matthew 9:38

It is one of the blazing truths of Christianity that Jesus needs men and women to reap the harvest.

I usually get a little keyed up when I’m going to preach, but when the moment comes I enjoy it. I loved being with Grace Renewal Church in Chula Vista and being able to exhort them to be involved in fulfilling the Great Commission. We are to start where we are at, in our Jerusalem. That’s were we begin, but it’s not where we end. The gospel is to go to the ends of the earth.

God is a Fountain of Sending Love

I love this quote from David Bosch,

There is church because there is mission, not vice versa. To participate in mission to participate in the movement of God’s love toward people, since God is a fountain of sending love.” (Transforming Mission: Paradigm Shifts in Theology of Mission, p. 390)

It’s a wonderful privilege for us to participate on mission with God!

Thank you for joining us on this journey. We need you to join us in prayer for more workers. Lord do provide!

In His Grip, Dave Diaso

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

The Good News of the Gospel
Jesus Loves City Heights - One of the ways we reach out in the community

Jesus Loves City Heights – One of the ways we reach out in the community

I love sharing my faith. I supposed it’s one of the reasons the Lord called me to be a missionary. It goes back some to those that influenced me when I was a new believer and being trained for the ministry. Dr. Bill Iverson, who I’ve written about in previous posts mentored and trained me in evangelism and discipleship.

Christmas and Easter are times of the year when I find people to be more open. There are more opportunities for me to share the good news of the gospel. Over the last month I’ve been able to lead six people to Christ.

What a thrill it is to see a new birth in Christ!

Pray for Good Soil that Produces Fruit

I must admit though that not all those that pray to receive Christ with me continue in the church. That’s the frustrating part. It’s like the parable of the sower and the seed. Some seed is received immediately, but the birds eat it, or the thorns choke it out and it doesn’t give fruit.

It is a battle to see people come to faith, and then for them to get plugged in and grow.

Jesus & Tacos
My friend, Martin at the taco stand

My friend, Martin at the taco stand

Over the last month Dawn and I have gotten to know one of the guys that cooks our tacos for us in Tijuana. He’s a real friendly guy named Martin. Dawn started talking to him, which opened up the door for us to share the gospel with him and leave him a gospel tract.

Last week I went back to the taco stand, and I shared some more with Martin while I was eating my tacos. I told him about the greatest gift, the gift of eternal life through Christ.

He said he wanted to receive the gift of life in Christ, and I was able to lead him in prayer to place in faith in Jesus work on the cross for his sins.

Grow in the Family
Baptism - the Lord's sign and seal is an element of being part of the family of God!

Baptism – the Lord’s sign and seal is an element of being part of the family of God!

I encouraged him that now he is part of a bigger family, and he needs to stay connected to the family to grow in his faith. I get concerned, because too often I see people who say they want to place their faith in Christ. They want the gift of life everlasting, but then they don’t follow through. So I’m concerned for Martin, and the others that I’ve led to Christ that they will get connected to a church and grow in their faith.

When I was leaving the taco stand. The security guy, who watches our cars while we enjoy our tacos asked me if he could have a gospel tract. I gave him one, and asked him if he had ever placed his faith in Christ. He said he was a believer.

I was thrilled to find out that he was a believer. We talked some and I told him about Martin. How Martin had just come to Christ. I encouraged him to keep talking to Martin and encourage him to grow in his faith. He told me he would follow through with that.

I left the taco stand that day feeling like I was walking in the clouds. O Lord, bring many more to yourself and cause them to grow and produce much fruit for your glory!

Join Us In Prayer!

Pray with us that Martin and the others that have recently come to Christ will get connected and grow in their faith.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

God is on the Move
The fascinating country of Cambodia

The fascinating country of Cambodia

I feel very encouraged about how I see God working around the world and that he is using Mission to the World (MTW) among other missions organizations to advance the kingdom of God. I’m in Cambodia for MTW’s worldwide leadership conference. It’s so good to be with so many missionaries who are serving all over the world.

The Importance of a Humility

Earlier today, Dr. Lloyd Kim the new coordinator for MTW spoke on Matthew 6:5-9. In this passage Jesus warns his disciples not to pray like the hypocrites. Dr. Kim warned us of the dangers of being in professional ministry. It’s easy to become cynical and to just go through the motions. God calls us to be humble and to be broken before him.

This is the way of the cross and the way of the gospel.

It was a helpful reminder for me and all my colleagues. We are about a great task, taking the gospel to the nations.

Striking Contrasts between Japan and Cambodia
Some of the foreign gods of Cambodia

Some of the foreign gods of Cambodia

I just left Japan which is the 2nd largest unreached nation in the world. Now I’m in Cambodia a world with many foreign gods. There are reminders all around the hotel we are staying at. Even though there is much work to be done in this nation it is one of the places where the gospel is growing fastest in the world.

What a contrast! I don’t understand fully understand the great why one country is so responsive and another is so cold to the gospel of Christ!

Our Hope!

We are not without hope, because the message we proclaim is a hope filled message. Our job is to sow the seed. We need to learn how to sow it more effectively, but it must be done.

When I’m around so many talented and gifted leaders I often feel different emotions. If I compare myself to them I begin to feel insecure. I don’t stack up! I must remind myself of Christ, and that my worth is in him.

I also feel humbled when I sit around the table with these choice men and women and hear their stories. Dedicate servants who have given their lives to serving the Lord.

Of course as Lloyd Kim reminded us in the morning we are broken people. We all need the gospel and we need it daily.

My Prayer

O Lord, use me in spite of my own brokenness and weaknesses. Use me along with all the saints that serve you in missions. I do pray that Jesus will be preached with power and that many will come to a saving faith and be discipled in that faith. O Lord, hear my prayer!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Dave sharing the gospel in Mexico City with Isabel Cisneros

Dave sharing the gospel in Mexico City with Isabel Cisneros (circa 1987)

Jesus shared the parable of the sower and the seed. The seed that fell on fertile soil bore fruit.

Part of our work is sowing the seed. Sometimes the seed falls on infertile soil. Yet, it’s so wonderful when the seed does produce. We rejoice with the angels when there is a new birth.

Fruit From the Summer of 1987

This week a friend of mine from Mexico City told me they met a woman who I shared the gospel with in the summer of 1987. This woman came to Christ through our seed sowing, and she is now a leader in the church.

In the summer of 1987 I was doing an internship while I was in seminary. God used that summer internship to confirm my call to serve in Mexico. I was going out with a small team almost every day in an impoverished area east of Mexico City. We were visiting people, sharing the gospel and praying for the sick.

God used that summer to grow me. I’m grateful that he also used it make a difference in people’s lives. It warms my heart to hear how someone we shared the gospel with those many years ago is continuing to be a faithful member and leader of the church.

God Makes it Grow
Sowing, 1495

Sowing, 1495 (Photo credit: Marcel Douwe Dekker)

I realize that I only played a small part. Our team planted the seed, but others watered and God caused the increase.

Paul says in relationship to his sowing of the gospel,

I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. (1 Corinthians 3:6,7 ESV)

This is a reminder to me that we must continue to be faithful to sow the seed of the Word of God. We may not always be around to see the fruit, but some of the seed will fall on good soil. God uses different people in his kingdom to produce fruit. He ultimately is the one who has to make it grow.

Thank you Lord, that you do work through us. Sometimes our efforts are feeble, but you still work through them.

Thanks to our faithful friends for standing with us, as we sow the seed. Continue to pray with us that God will cause much growth as we serve him on the border.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

We are praying for the Lord to bring the missing pieces!

On my last post, Lord, Build Our Team I shared about our time in Atlanta meeting new people who have an interest in missions. Dawn and I are trying to encourage them to take a look at the border ministry. Obviously, the Lord is the one that has to work in their hearts to call them. Yet we must play our part. We our beating the drum and calling out so that people will be aware of the tremendous needs we have on the San Diego – Tijuana border.

We believe the Lord will raise up workers to join us and serve with us. The hard part is waiting, and I know that it’s dangerous to pray for patience. 🙂 I will stick to praying for more laborers.

This morning during our staff meeting with our friends from Harbor and Campus Outreach I shared about our trip, and our attempt to mobilize new workers to join us. I admitted that I felt some pressure to do a good job in describing the crying need here. I definitely still need the gospel in my life each day.

One of our friends at the meeting, Mark, asked, “What are the needs you have? What type of people are you recruiting?” That was a marvelous question. It made me think about who we need, so that we will be a more effective productive team.

It made me think, “I need to get the word out about what we are looking for. This will enable people to pray for us, and it could even help stir up some interest.”

So here I am late at night, writing on my blog. I do want to list here the type of needs we have. Please do pray with and for the Lord to hear our cry for workers. After all, he did command to pray for more laborers in Matthew 9:37 & 38,

“Then he said to his disciples, The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers in his harvest.”

Our needs for the San Diego – Tijuana border:

  1. Church planters and church planting facilitator – Both Mexicans or Latinos and Americans
  2. People with a heart for and gifted in evangelism and disciple making
  3. Someone to coordinate community development/mercy ministries:
    1. Facilitate and teach English as a Second Language (ESL)
    2. Homeless, orphans, sex-trafficking
    3. Construction
    4. Medical Missions
    5. Coordinate short-term mission teams
    6. Business as Mission (BAM) initiatives – businesses to support pastors and help the community.
  4. Administrative gifts
  5. Teaching/Training/Education
  6. An Intern coordinator – someone to minister to, recruit for and direct our internship program

Dawn & Davev

I hope that gives you a better idea of what our needs are, and how you can pray for us. “O Lord, Build Our Team!”

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org