Posts Tagged ‘God’s love’

God’s Reassurance
Hannah with Daisy near the flowers that bloom this time of year

Hannah with Daisy in front of the flowers that bloom this time of year near our home

I’ve gone back and forth as to whether I should share my experience via this site or not. I’m finding it hard to express in writing the power and the impact that a recent  encounter with the Lord has had on me. I pray that you find this story uplifting.

Last week the Lord met me in a special way. While Dawn and I were praying with a group of people I felt pressure like a hand on my back. I thought it might be another person, or Dawn. After a while I realized that there wasn’t a person laying their hand on me, so I continued to pray and press in. I asked the Lord what was going on.

I felt the Lord’s presence and comfort. Then he reminded me that not only was he with me at that moment, but he was also there with us when Hannah passed away. He escorted Hannah to heaven, and he came alongside Dawn and me to get us through the horrendous hours that we endured while we came to grips with what happened to our beautiful daughter. I started sobbing as the Lord revealed this too me.

The Peace of Christ
I saw these flowers blooming this week and it reminded me of Hannah and the photo above

I saw these flowers blooming this week and it reminded me of Hannah.

One of the issues I’ve struggled with is that I keep seeing in my mind how Hannah looked when she died. Sometimes I feel like this image haunts me. The Lord impressed upon me that Hannah no longer looks like that. It was a very emotional experience. I felt the Lord pouring his healing power into me, and his waves of his love over me.

We’ve had a number of friends of ours who have seen visions of our daughter in heaven. Those dreams and visions that our friends have shared with us have been a source of inspiration for us. Yet, for some reason we’ve not had any dreams or visions. I feel like there’s a part of me that needs a constant reassurance that my daughter is in heaven. That allows me to grieve, but not like those without hope. Hope is vital. We can’t live without it.

On Saturday during this time of prayer I saw a bright light, and then I saw trees with their green leaves and a beautiful blue sky. I didn’t see Hannah, but I had a sense that she was there, in heaven and in peace. I felt the Lord’s overwhelming peace during this time.

It was an unbelievable experience. On the way home I tried to explain to Dawn what happened, and I just couldn’t. Finally after some time and more tears I was able to share my experience with Dawn. Thank you Jesus for your overwhelming love, your care and your tender mercies.

I hope this story of how Jesus showed up and ministered to me in a deep and profound way will also lift you up. Thank you for joining us on this journey!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Growing Together in the Gospel
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Dave leading a Session on the Gospel, the Cycle of Renewal

God’s deep love for us is beyond comprehension. His grace is indescribable. The more we ponder what Jesus did for us on the cross through his death and resurrection, we find ourselves marveling at such an amazing and sacrificial love. These are all aspects of the gospel.

I’m sure it’s not too hard to believe that even ministers need the gospel. Actually, that’s a key point, the more the pastor understands the work of Jesus on the cross. The more he meditates on the depth of such love, and what it means for us. As he applies it to his own life, he is more effectively able to share it with others.

This was one of the key themes we covered last week during our incubator training. It fell to me to cover explaining how each of us is renewed by the gospel. We talked about the cycle of renewal – the Holy Spirit convicts us of our sin, we respond in repentance, which leads us to faith, which leads us to worship, and in response in faith and adoration we obey.

Some of the simplest points of the gospel are also the hardest to apply. I’m not sure why, but I think one reason is that there’s something in us that thinks we can earn God’s favor. We quickly forget, it’s through grace. That’s why Luther said, “we have to beat the gospel into ourselves,” and that “all of life is repentance.” A number of people have also said that we need to preach the gospel to ourselves.

How Do We Reach Our Neighbor with God’s Love?
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Jorge Aleman leading the group through a discussion on philosophy of ministry

Another theme that we covered was how to develop a philosophy of ministry. Related to that is the importance of considering the seeker, the not yet Christian in all our activities. In other words, when you are planting a church it’s good to keep in mind as you design your activities that there will be seekers there. There will be those who are interested, but don’t yet have faith.

The world is changing and it’s more apparent now than ever that we live in a hostile deeply divided world. The church planter has to keep all these things in mind as he reaches out to the community that the Lord has called him to minister in.

God has given us a wonderful group of guys that are going through the incubator church planting training. It’s always enjoyable to be around this group. I come away enriched from all the interaction.

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Some of our pastors who are going through the incubator training

Prayer and Opposition

Thanks for praying! We experienced our share of attacks, set-backs as we prepared for the training. My phone died for two days. It’s not easy to live without a phone, especially in the middle of a training event. One of our colleagues forgot his passport, which meant we had to change some of our plans for our prep work. I got sick the week of the training event. The Lord led me to a doctor in Mexico that prescribed some medication, and by the second day I was feeling much better.

The latest setback is our van is not running well, and since it has 208,000 miles on it I’m working with our mechanic to see whether it’s worth it fix it. We will see! Still waiting on that. Dawn and I appreciate your ongoing prayer for that need.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

God’s gift of healing during this time of Christmas
David & Dawn with Frank Batista

David & Dawn with Frank Batista

Dawn is gifted in sensing when people are in pain physically or emotionally. She loves to pray for people and minister to them when they are struggling, and God gave us many opportunities to pray for Christians and those that are seeking while we were in Cuba. The Lord heard our prayer, and brought healing to the people. Hannah and Dawn used to minister together to our friends as they both loved encouraging people and to see God touch people.

God’s healing Touch for Rosa
David & Dawn with Oniel, Heidy and Rosa

David & Dawn with Oniel, Heidy and Rosa

The first night we were in Havana, Cuba Dawn noticed that Rosa the 12 year old daughter of Pastor Oniel Rojas and his wife, Heidy, wasn’t feeling well. Dawn asked Rosa and her family what was wrong, and she said her arm was bothering her. Dawn felt the need to pray for Rosa’s shoulder. She couldn’t move her arm and she has experienced a lot of pain over the last two months.

Dawn and Yoli Nuñez, who is our friend and partner in ministry from Tijuana, spent some time in prayer for Rosa with her parents, Oniel & Heidy. Then Dawn called us over to pray with them and we prayed some more. As we prayed Rosa’s pain went down from a 10 to a 6. The next day when we saw her parents they were very excited as they said that Rosa was able sleep through the night for the first time in a long time. She was also able to move her arm and put her cloths on by herself for the first time in a while. Rosa said the pain was gone.

Then Rosa went to the doctor with her mom in the morning. The doctor was surprised that Rosa was no longer experiencing any pain. He took X-Rays and they came out normal. Before she had a growth in her shoulder, but now it was gone. He compared the X-Rays to how she was before and although he was surprised he said they looked completely normal and declared her healed and healthy. Thank you Jesus for hearing our prayer!

Oniel and Heidy were so excited that God brought healing to their daughter.

God Touches Lelois in a Special Way
Dawn praying for Lelois

Dawn praying for Lelois

Then a couple of days later we were with our friend Frank Batista (photo above), who I met last April when I was in Cuba. Frank showed Dawn and me around and we enjoyed spending time with him and his family. On Saturday we went to buy some presents at the market. When we went to buy t-shirts Dawn noticed the woman selling the t-shirts was in pain, Lelois.

Dawn asked her how she was feeling, and she admitted that her stomach was bothering her. Dawn wanted to see if she could pray for her. Lelois said yes, so she began to pray for her. When she prayed Lelois felt the power of God in her body. Both Dawn and Lelois sensed the Spirit rushing through them and touching them. After Dawn prayed for her she asked Lelois how she felt and she said her pain went down from a 10 to a 3. Also because she felt God’s tender touch tears came to her eyes. With tears streaming down her face she felt God’s love.

Then Frank and I prayed for her and she no longer had any pain. It was very encouraging to see the way the Lord used my wife’s boldness. Lelois said she’d like a Bible, and she was interested in learning more about the gospel.

We give thanks to the Lord for his mighty work in Cuba!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Nothing Means Nothing in Ensenada
Dave preaching at Iglesia Nueva Jerusalén (New Jerusalem Church) in Ensenada

Dave preaching at Iglesia Nueva Jerusalén (New Jerusalem Church) in Ensenada

On Sunday Dawn and I had the wonderful opportunity to worship with Iglesia Nueva Jerusalén (The New Jerusalem Church) in Ensenada. I enjoy driving down to Ensenada. It’s a beautiful drive along the Pacific shoreline.

I preached on Romans 8, Nothing Means Nothing. The focus of my sermon was that nothing can separate us from the love of Christ. Paul starts off Romans 8 stating that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” —Romans 8:1 ESV

What a wonderful promise!

The whole chapter is filled with grace and God’s amazing promises.

The Father’s Love – Abba, Father
Some of our friends from the New Jerusalem church in Ensenada

Some of our friends from the New Jerusalem church in Ensenada

Paul emphasizes the nearness of God. That he is our Abba, Father. He is our daddy. O Lord, work in my heart and help me to see you in this way. I pray that I will have a close relationship with you, and that I will grow in that relationship. I pray this will be true for those in my family and those that I’m close to as well.

The close and intimate relationship we can have with God is a demonstration of his great love for us.  Jonathan Edwards says, “Love is not just one of God’s attributes. It is the essence of God. God is love.”

Not only is God love, but Paul assures us that for those that are in Christ, that nothing can separate us from his love.

Where is Your Focus?
Dawn & Dave

Dawn & Dave

We tend to focus on how things are going in our life. The circumstances of life. Those are the barometers we often use to determine if God loves us, and how much he loves us. Yet Paul makes it clear that we will endure hardships in this life, and that none of those things can separate us from God love.

If you are in Christ there no condemnation, you are a co-heir with Christ adopted into his forever family. You are secure in Christ and regardless how bad the circumstances may be there is nothing that can separate you from the love of Christ. Nothing, Zero, Nada!

Rejoice my friend for Christ has overcome the world. There is victory in Jesus. You and I have the privilege of living in this victory with Christ.

Summer Short-term Missions Project in Ensenada
Iglesia Nueva Jerusalén in Ensenada

Iglesia Nueva Jerusalén in Ensenada

My desire was to encourage the church in Ensenada. Many Christians live defeated lives as if there was no hope. Many wallow in the mud, when God has a whole ocean for us to enjoy and experience.

Some friends of ours from a church in Denver, Skyview, will be working with the church in Ensenada in July. We are excited about what God has in store. How the Lord will use that trip to build into the lives of all those that are involved as well minister to those in the community who do not yet know our Savior.

Pray for the Lord’s leading as we plan and organize this project.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

 

Dawn & Dave with the San Diego Harbor in the background

Dawn & Dave – The San Diego Harbor in the background

On Sunday when I was leaving church at Aisquith Presbyterian, just outside of Baltimore, a friend of mine discreetly handed me a crumpled ten-dollar bill. I stuck it in my pocket, and didn’t pull it out until later, because my friend acted like he didn’t want everyone to know about it.

When I got to a place where I could pull it out, and look at it, I saw that it wasn’t a large amount. Yet I felt like the Holy Spirit spoke to me and ministered to me through that gift. He reminded me that He loves me and my family, and that He’s going to take care of us.

You see we’ve got a lot on our plate right now. I’m traveling on the east coast, involved in ministry with World Team this week, and working on fund development on the weekends. Our house is under contract. Sunday morning I received the inspection report before I went to church.

The inspection report was on the discouraging side. It seemed like the buyers were asking for the moon. I had a hard time not thinking about it during the service. It’s hard not to fear that the deal is going to fall through. We are hopeful, looking to the Lord, but we don’t know what’s going to happen.

There are some challenging things going on in our family too. The move has stirred up all kinds of dust. On top of this we are working hard to get the rest of our financial support raised before we move.

In times like this it’s easy to get our eyes off the Lord, and focus on what appears to be a mountain of difficulties. I needed something. I needed the Lord to sweep in and minister to my hurting heart. That’s just what He did!

I don’t know what’s going to happen with our house. I’m hoping and believing that the sale will go through, but we do have some obstacles to overcome. We don’t know how the buyer will respond to our offer.

We do know God loves us, and He cares for our every need. He is more concerned about our family and our ministry on the border than we could ever be.

Psalm 56:3,4 is a great source of comfort in times of need.

“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise , in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?”

Thank the Lord for His enduring love and His faithfulness.

Pray for the Lord’s wisdom and direction as we negotiate with the buyers. We will most likely give them a response later today to the things they’ve asked us to do as a result of the inspection.

Ask the Lord for His provision as we seek the raise up the final funds we need to be fully funded, and freed up to focus on the ministry on the border. If you would like to partner with us financially, you can give online . Just click on the donate button below: 

In His Grip, Dave

P.S. For updates on Petra Anderson go here…

DiasoLifeontheBorder.org