Posts Tagged ‘faith’

Our Familia in Cuba Needs Our Prayers!
Mario & Yani with their team of church planters

Our familia – Mario & Yani with their team of church planters. From the top left moving clockwise: Junior & Kendra with Mario & Yany; Jorge & Rachel with Dave; Mario & Yany with Dave; Dave next to Yoiset & Osmeiki

Yesterday (Sunday), Cuba held an election to legalize gay marriage. The results of the election are to be released today. I decided to write about this because it is affecting many of my friends, our familia in Cuba.

Some of the pastors in Cuba are undergoing persecution because the church is opposing the legalization of gay marriage. While I was with my friends a couple of weeks ago, they told me what was going on, and it concerns me. We need to be praying for our brothers and the church in Cuba.

The Challenges of Dealing with the LGBT Agenda
Luis & May with their children Zuri & David

Pastor Luis & May with their children Zuri & David

Unfortunately, we’ve seen the gay LGBT agenda making headway around the world. I’m willing to admit that the church has done a poor job of showing love to the LGBT community. We’ve struggled to figure out how to lovingly show that we do not agree with the LGBT lifestyle. I mean the Bible calls it sin, yet there are many other sins the Bible refers to, and in those cases, we seem to more effectively show love and grace to the person without agreeing with what he or she is doing. This is something the church has to do a better job addressing.

I don’t want to focus so much on the overall problem of the church and the LGBT community in this post. My focus here is what’s going on in Cuba and how we can pray for our brothers and sisters there.

While I was in Cuba I learned that the government allowed the gay community to hold a march and to also hold a huge rally in a stadium supporting their cause. When the church asked for the same privilege they were denied.

The church sent a letter to the governing officials stating their case and asking for the opportunity to represent for their view in public. They wanted to present their side of the argument, but they were denied. They were not allowed to organize a march and they were not allowed to hold a rally.

It’s interesting that in 1960 when things shifted dramatically in Cuba that pastors, Catholic clergy and homosexuals were imprisoned. This left the church without their main leaders for a number of years. Most families didn’t even know where these pastors were for three years or more. We can also see the cultural shift here, at one point the government saw the homosexual community as a threat to their society. Now there has been this huge swing, and they are actually promoting the LGBT agenda. They have denied the right of the church to promote what the Bible teaches about the family.

Our Battle is Spiritual
Prayer in Camaguey. These people are warriors!

Prayer in Camaguey. These people are warriors!

I think that in large part this is the agenda of the god of this world. He is the enemy of the church and the enemy of our soul. The Apostle Paul says in Ephesians 6 that our struggle, our battle is not with flesh and blood, but against powers and principalities.

Our friends many of whom refer to us as part of their family have come under oppression during these days because they have refused to support the LGBT lifestyle.

I must admit barring a miracle this new law allowing gay marriage is going to pass. Of course, our God is a God of miracles so he can do the impossible.

Great Sacrifices Made for the Gospel
Some of the wonderful friends the Lord has given us that have become family

Some of our wonderful friends that the Lord has given us who have become family. What a precious gift they are!

My heart goes out to our family on this small island. They’ve suffered so much for the sake of the gospel. They’ve made sacrifices so that the gospel might be proclaimed. Sacrifices that most of us can’t even conceive of. Dawn and I admire their commitment to Christ and his church. I feel that it challenges our faith in a good way.

The church in Cuba is growing in large part, because of their willingness to serve and minister despite the huge costs. Christ paid the ultimate price so that we might have life. They are following in Christ’s footsteps so that others might hear the good news and come to faith. I give thanks to the Lord for their example and their amazing faith and commitment to follow Jesus.

Join us in Prayer!
Pastor Ivan praying for church planters Osmeiki and Yosiet

Pastor Ivan praying for church planters Osmeiki and Yosiet

Join us in praying for our Cuban familia, made up of many pastors and leaders and those under their care. Pray that the church continues to grow despite the opposition and that the Lord sustains the pastors, especially those who are experiencing persecution. We live in this crazy mixed up world, where men wear beautiful gowns (see Oscars Ceremony Sunday night) and people call wrong right and right wrong.

Our hope is that Jesus is on the throne. He rules! Jesus promised us in this world we would have many trials, but he also said cheer up, because I have overcome the world! (John 16:33) Thank you, Jesus!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Making a Difference in Plan Libertador
Sol seated on the right with some of the children she is working with.

Sol seated on the right with some of the children she is working with.

Dawn and I are truly enriched to have such wonderful friends and partners that we minister alongside. Pastor Victor Bravo and his wife, Sol have blessed us in so many ways! We continually give thanks for them and lift them up in prayer.

Four years ago the Lord brought us together, and we helped Victor and Sol build and start their new church. The Lord has been working through them and the ministry of the church as they seek to make a difference in the community. Both of them have a lot of energy and they possess many gifts.

One of the ways the church is seeking to make a difference in the community of Plan Libertador is they are tutoring students after school. Sol is a trained psychologist and has worked for many years with children in the school system in Tijuana. Since they planted the church she’s wanted to give more time to outreach in the community. She is truly making a difference in the lives of these students and their families.

Dawn and I were able to visit Sol this week, and it filled our hearts to see the bright smiles on the face of each young person there.

Victor also is meeting with and working with the community leaders, so that the church has an active voice and influence in Plan Libertador. He just met with these leaders this week and planned to pray with them as they met. I love Victor and Sol’s boldness and enthusiasm for the gospel.

The Power of Prayer
Dawn with Miroslava and her daughter, Mitchell

Dawn with Miroslava and her daughter, Mitchell

There’s also the powerful presence of the Lord in their church and those that they are ministering to. Some of the families in their church are going through some real tough trials. I’ve mentioned before 15-year-old Mitchell, who is battling with leukemia.

Mitchell has great faith for a young person going through such a trial. Every time we go to visit her in the hospital to pray with her, she has a beautiful smile on her face. Mitchell says that our visits and our prayers encourage her, and give her peace, but Dawn and I always leave astonished and strengthened by her faith. We are believing the Lord for her healing. We’ve seen the Lord work in her life and bring a measure of healing, but we are looking to Jesus for complete and total healing.

Mitchell was in the hospital in February when we first met her family. We prayed for her, and in a miraculous fashion, in just a few days she was able to leave the hospital. The doctor told Mitchell’s, parents, Miroslava and Salvador that they thought she was going to die in a few days. That was back in February. We were so encouraged when the Lord answered our prayers, and brought her a measure of healing, but battle rages on.

Join Us in Prayer!
Pastor Victor & Sol with their son, Abraham

Pastor Victor & Sol with their son, Abraham

Join Mitchell’s parents, along with Victor and Sol and the church as we lift up Mitchell and her family in prayer. Mitchell is in the hospital again receiving treatment for her leukemia. We cry out to the Lord from whom our help comes from. He is our healer, our deliverer, and our strong tower!

Pray for Victor and Sol as they minister to those in their church, and as they love on and reach out in their community.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Mountain Moving Faith!

Posted: March 30, 2016 in Christianity, Ministry, Prayer
Tags: ,

 

Whatever You Ask in Prayer…

Jesus says that if we have faith in prayer, even a little faith we can move mountains. I think we tend to dismiss Jesus’ words as hyperbole.

happiness“And Jesus answered them, “Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen. And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.””

Matthew 21:21-22 ESV (emphasis mine)

Do we really believe him?

I’d like to say, yes! At least I’m praying that I will have that mustard seed of faith, and see the Lord do amazing things as I pray.

Dave & Dawn

Dave & Dawn

What about you?

Dawn and I have some important meetings on Wednesday and Thursday, and we’d like to ask you to join us in prayer. Trust God as you pray that he will answer your prayers. Even better, let’s join hands and trust him together!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Taken from Sunset Cliffs in San Diego

Taken from Sunset Cliffs in San Diego

Give Thanks!

“Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say, Rejoice.” —Philippians 4:4

One of my goals for this year is to practice Philippians 4:8. In this passage Paul exhorts the church to think on good and even excellent things. Too often my thoughts are toxic, so this is an excellent reminder for me.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. (Philippians 4:8, emphasis mine)
One of the ways to think on things of excellence, and things that are praiseworthy is to remember the good things that the Lord gives us each day. I realize that too often I pray for something, and the Lord answers and rather than focusing on his goodness and his faithfulness to provide I start to think about the next mountain I have to climb. Jesus does want us to stop to give thanks for all that he is doing in our lives.
The Lord’s Answer! Amazing!
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

Dawn and I were working for and praying for a strong year-end in 2015. December is always an important month for us as the Lord provides through his people, and we catch up financially from some of our slower months. A strong December means a solid start to the new year in January.

This last year Dawn and I prayed and looked at our budget and we felt that we needed $35,000 to finish the year strong. A few days before the end of the year we were at about 80% of our goal. We continued to pray as the year drew to a close. It takes a week or more after December 31st for us to know for sure how much comes in.
When I checked it last week it was at $33,000, and Dawn and I were praising the Lord that we came so close to reaching our goal. Then I checked again this week, and another gift came in at the last moment of $2,000, which put us over $35,000.
More Abundantly Than All That We Ask or Think
The Lord even exceeded what we asked for! Thank you Jesus!
Another passage that the Lord has had me meditating on is Ephesians 3:20,21.
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:20, 21 ESV, emphasis mine)
Rejoice with us and Pray with us
We appreciate your continued prayers

We appreciate your continued prayers

I felt like it was important to share this good news, because I asked you to pray. I asked you to give so that we could reach this goal. The Lord used many friends to make this possible. We give thanks to the Lord for his good work, and for his people.

I would like to encourage you to think about the excellent and praiseworthy things each day. Thank you for joining us on this journey!
In His Grip, Dave
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

The Simple Truths
Hannah & Dawn enjoying a tea party

Hannah & Dawn enjoying a tea party

Today as I was praying for Hannah, my family and life in general, God met me. He reminded me of some simple things. Truth he had given me before. Much of it I’ve already shared through my scribbling on these posts.

The Lord reminded me that I shouldn’t doubt in the dark, what he has already shown me in the light. When I go through deep valleys, and experience pain God meets me there, but sometimes I doubt. I wonder why? Why Lord?

God doesn’t always respond as I’d like, but if I truly seek him I will find him. He is there with me as I pass through the night.

God Will Not Forget You

This past summer as I was praying for my children the Lord reminded me of a passage of scripture in Isaiah 49.

“Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you. Behold, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me. (‭Isaiah‬ ‭49‬:‭15,16‬ ESV)

This passage reminded me of the Lord’s care for us. He will not forget his children. He will not forget my children. They are tattooed to his hand. I can trust him for that, even in these troublesome days.

Update on Hannah & Prayer

On a positive note, Hannah’s doctor told us that she might be able to come home in a couple of days! We pray for the Lord’s intervening work to bring healing to Hannah. Continue to stand with us in prayer and to storm heaven for Hannah!

In His Grip, Dave

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