Posts Tagged ‘Jonathan Diaso’

A guest post by Jonathan Diaso
Jonathan with his papa, Dave

This is a guest post written by my son, Jonathan Diaso. He wrote this in memory of his sister, Hannah Elizabeth Diaso. Last Friday, October 18th was the 3rd year anniversary of when Hannah moved to heaven.

I love how Jonathan shares his journey and how the Lord used his sister in his life. I asked Jonathan if it would be okay to share it with you on my blog, and he agreed!


I used to be a Christian – How I left the Church and Finally Found Jesus
Hannah and Jonathan

I still wonder to this day how I was churched since I was born, but never actually knew Jesus on a personal level. Some of you may have a similar experience and some of you may think the idea of “knowing Jesus” is crazy. You might also be wondering how leaving the church led me to Jesus. God has put this on my heart to share with those who have been to church and never really encountered Jesus, those who have never been to church and also those who have a negative perspective on the word Church or Christianity. While I love Jesus there are concerns I have regarding the word “Christian”. What makes a person a Christian anyhow? 

You may have been told that if you do all the right things then Jesus will love you. Whether this emphasis was intended by the church or not I often felt this way. Jesus opened my eyes by showing me that I am welcome “As is”. I do not have to earn his love as he loved me before I was even born. I do good things, because I am loved by God not so that God will love me back. I believe we have a hard time rationalizing this as how many of your friends would love you back if you did not show them affection? “The Christian does not believe that God will love us because we are good rather that he will make us good because he loves us” (C.S. Lewis). God loves you as you are and not as you should be. 

My Christian friends and I would meet up years ago and discuss which biblical laws we were or were not following, we tried to be good people. C.S. Lewis explains this very well, “No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good”. The Bible talks about the law of works or what I call the do good things gospel and this type of Christianity does not work. While this method seeks to fix the side effects of how we should behave, this process forgets the purpose as to why we do these things. I once heard the statement, “Some people have just enough Jesus to be miserable”. 

I am a Christian, I go to church (in-fact I love my church family), but being a Christian far exceeds attending Church. My Church reads this card every service, “If you are a… Saint, Sinner, Loser, Gambler, Lost, Fearful, ADHD, Liar, Hypocrite, Bastard, Lover, Cutter, Tweaker, Alcoholic, Adopted, Abandoned, Leftover, Divorced, LGBT, Alone, Old, Young, Driven, Cheater, Success, Infected, Rejected, Pierced and Tatted or Just a Misfit… YOU ARE WELCOME HERE” (The Sanctuary Church). I believe that all are welcome in God’s house and are loved where they are at. In other words you come in a mess and God says, “I am going to make your mess a message.” 

Why do I bring this all up today? Three years ago my sister Hannah moved to heaven. Hannah accepted everyone and brought the gospel to outcasts. At Hannah’s prayer vigil I heard many stories of how Hannah had impacted those around her. One of them shared by her friend Jake stood out to me, “No one loved those around her more than Hannah, she knew how to love the margins. When we were out doing ministry Hannah felt God speak to her and she knew she needed to go pray for a man sitting nearby. The man that stood out to Hannah was covered in tattoos (even a tear tattoo next to his eye, commonly a prison tattoo). Plainly put, this man was someone that people often try to avoid. Hannah Did not care what he looked like, what his background was, whether he did good things with his life, how he dressed etc. Hannah knew that God’s love transcended social status and she knew how to bring the message of the Gospel to people of all colors, races and social statuses. When Hannah prayed for this stranger he began to cry, he could not understand why my sister cared about him. He likely knew he did not earn or deserve her love that day. Hannah went up to him without fear of how he would react, she knew that Jesus would do the rest.” Jake did share with me that he would not let her go by herself, which was still a smart call. Jake was amazed by the passion and love that this young woman carried. 

Jonathan gave Hannah this Bible, and as you can see in the text she loved it!

Hannah was highly influential in my life as I attribute much of who I am today to her example over the years. Hannah reminded me later in life that it is not enough to be a Christian and to try to be good people so that we can make it to heaven. We were put on this earth for a reason and God wants to use you and me to love those around us and yes this means loving people before they earn it. I spent many years of my life trying to be a good Christian, hiding my issues in attempt to be accepted and loved by other Christians. I now know that, God does not need to use guilt and shame, because love and grace do a damn good job. There is a famous song that goes, “I’ll never know how much it cost to see my sin upon that cross”. While this is a powerful line used to thank Jesus for what he did, we actually have a need to know how much it cost for him to die on that cross. When you and I realize how much it cost we also realize our value. Before you and I did anything to earn his love, God sent his son to die for you and me. “Christ proved God’s passionate love for us by dying in our place while we were still lost and ungodly!” (Romans 5:8, TPT). While I left the church years ago, I encountered Jesus in various ways since. While I am still in process and in pursuit of a deeper relationship with our Heavenly Father, God is still molding me daily to be more like Christ. Christianity is no longer a religion for me. This is the story of how one woman in her short life impacted her older brother and many others around her in an incredible way. If you want to know Jesus on a more personal level send me a message. This could change your life.

Hannah, I love you!

The Newlyweds – Mr. & Mrs. David Anthony Diaso

The Newlyweds – David & Emily by emoorephotography

We celebrated the marriage of our son, David jr. to Emily (Tenison) Diaso this past weekend. It was an amazing experience in many ways. The Lord blessed us with many family members and friends joining us for the grand event. My dad, Ron, who is almost 84 years young flew out to celebrate with us. My mom can’t travel, because of her health, and we missed her, although I know she was praying for us from California.

It’s a miracle that Grandpa Diaso was able to join us for this wedding, and he also came out for Jonathan’s wedding last December. Two and a half years ago my dad was told that he had mesothelioma, which is cancer in the lungs caused by asbestos. The doctor at the time said that he only had six months to a year to live. We began to pray, and the Lord healed my dad, Grandpa Diaso. Thank Jesus, for giving Grandpa strength and healing him!

Thankful to have Grandpa Diaso with us to celebrate David & Emily’s wedding

Dawn’s mom, Alice, who is 81 traveled with Dawn and me for the wedding. The Lord came through in a big way regarding grandma Alice. The night before we were supposed to fly out for the wedding we had to take Alice to the emergency room, because of some health concerns related to her neck and back. We spent the whole night in the hospital and we didn’t get home until almost 3 AM. For a while Dawn and I were wondering whether Dawn’s mom would be able to fly out with us. Unfortunately, we did miss our flight, and we had to reschedule for the next day, but we finally made it to Pennsylvania and Alice is feeling better now.

Yay God!

Grandma Alice is all smiles as she’s escorted by Grant Currey and Jonathan Diaso

The Lord also blessed us with the weather. The forecast was for potential rain the afternoon of the wedding. It actually did rain just about the time we were ready to start the wedding, but it was only a short downpour. Once the storm passed through, the sun came out, as if God were smiling down upon us, and we had blue skies for a beautiful outdoor wedding.

Believe it or not I officiated the wedding, which I did for Jonathan and Hannah’s wedding as well. It was a wonderful privilege that I’ll never forget and it made the ceremony more personal.

A Wonderful Day of Celebration

It was fun to see Emily’s excitement!

One of the highlights for me of this extra special day was seeing how excited Emily was. She was literally bouncing with excitement as I performed the ceremony. She could not hold in her excitement, which was refreshing to see my son marrying someone who loves him so much. David was more composed, but I could tell he was trying to hold back the tears. This was especially true when he saw Emily for the first time walking down the aisle. It was a tender moment, and it made me feel sentimental as well.

I’m believing for and praying for a marriage and a family that will be a vibrant testimony of the love of Christ. This is my hope for both of my sons and their families. Our churches and our communities desperately need families that exhibit Christ’s love. I trust the Lord is going to raise up a generation that is going to be used to transform the world!

The Lord Has Blessed David & Jonathan and Our Family

Hannah sent this picture to me and said, “The faces we made when we realize we get to marry Diaso men ❤️”. We are truly blessed to have Hannah & Emily join our family!!!

I believe that the Lord is using the gift of Hannah and Emily to bring joy and healing to our family. While we realize that no one can ever replace our daughter, Hannah, yet our Papa is kind and he redeems our pain and our loss. That’s what our Father does he loves to bring healing to his children. He is a God of redemption.

I also wonder at times about the thin veil between heaven and earth. Our daughter, Hannah may be more involved than we realized. Those are some of the pleasant mysteries of life.

David walking Dawn down the aisle as we began the wedding ceremony

Thank you Lord for bringing Emily into our son, David’s life and for the great gift that she is to him and to our family. Thank you as well for bringing Hannah into Jonathan’s life. What a huge blessing and gift, each of these young beautiful women are to our boys and to our family. Thank you, Jesus! Hallelujah!!!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Our Trip to Colorado

Our growing family - Jonathan & Hannah's wedding. David & Emily's wedding shower

Our growing family – Jonathan & Hannah’s wedding. David & Emily’s wedding shower

Last week Dawn and I were in Colorado to visit our growing family. Jonathan married Hannah on December 1st of last year, and David is soon to be married to Emily Tenison on May 26th. We had a couples wedding shower for David and Emily which was a lot of fun, and we met Emily’s mom, Libby, for the first time.

Our trip to Colorado was packed full, so although we saw a few friends we didn’t see everybody we would have liked to see. One thing we did do that was super encouraging was we met with a small group of prayer warriors. They are gifted in prayer. We spent about an hour and a half with them as they prayed for us and spoke words of encouragement over us.

Colorado Dreaming!

I find that when I’m around people that have a close walk with the Lord that it seems to spark something in me. Both Dawn and I just love when we feel in a strong way the Lord’s presence. It ministers to our soul.

After our time of prayer, I had a dream that night about some missionaries. I didn’t know one of the missionaries, but I heard his name in the dream, so I had to do a little searching to figure out who he was. Since this particular dream was so clear I felt like the Lord wanted to communicate something to me. So when we got back home I began to pray, and the Lord opened my eyes and helped me to see.

Affirmation of the Father’s Love

Warrior Angel at the prayer center at Every Home for Christ in Colorado Springs

Warrior Angel at the prayer center in Every Home for Christ in Colorado Springs

I decided to send the missionaries a note just letting them know how I sensed the Lord wanted to encourage them. I felt like it was a risk to share with them, especially with the guy who I didn’t know. They responded to my message after a few days, and one of them told me, “you hit the nail on the head.” That strengthens my faith, and it lifted my spirit.

I prayed some more and as I prayed especially for one of the missionaries I felt the overwhelming love of the Father. The sense I felt was so strong that I almost started crying while I was walking my dog, Daisy and praying in the park. After that experience, I decided that I should share more with my missionary friend. The Lord used that to build my faith.

Encouragement Multiplied

Then on the next day, while I was praying for a number of pastors and leaders in Cuba, Mexico and Colombia that we partner with I decided this message would be encouraging for them as well. I sent the note of encouragement to them, and a number of them responded and told me how the Lord had used it to encourage them in some amazing ways!

Yesterday I started thinking I should write about this and post it so more friends can read it and be blessed by it. This is part of what I said in the message I sent out:

After I received your message I was able to go on a walk to think and pray. While walking I had this overwhelming sense of the Father’s love. I sensed that the Father wants you to know how deeply he loves you. He wants you to grow in that love, to bask in it. His love is not based on you being a missionary or based on your success. He just loves you and he wants you to know and experience his love in a deeper and fuller way.

If you are able listen to Good Good Father by Chris Tomlin I think it will minster to you.

I pray that the Lord might encourage you today through these words of comfort. Learn to bask in the Father’s love. This reminds me of Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians in chapter 3 starting in verse 16.

“that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”

‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭3:16-19‬ ‭ESV‬‬

The Lord does hear our prayers and he desires a deep relationship with us. I pray that you might be encouraged by this message and that you might experience the Father’s love in a new and fresh way as he ministers to you!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Looking back on God’s good work

When I think back on 2018 I give thanks for all that the Lord did this last year. The highlights this year were building a new church plant in our daughter, Hannah’s memory. That was a huge event and all that went into it. I’m so thankful to the Lord for allowing us to honor Hannah’s memory in this way. Dawn and I are thankful for the pastor that is leading the church plant. Pastor Mere and his wife, Edna have become like family to us, and we’ve grown to love them.

The church in near Mexicali. Pastor Mere & Edna during the inaugural service with Pastor Daniel Nuñez who leads Ministerios Transformación.
The church is near Mexicali. Pastor Mere & Edna during the inaugural service on May 6, with Pastor Daniel Nuñez who leads Ministerios Transformación.

We love their passion to reach the lost for Christ and to see the community transformed by the gospel. Dawn and I have enjoyed getting to know them, and being able to coach and encourage them in their ministry.

Cheering on from Heaven
One of our goals for 2018 is to build a church in memory of our daughter, Hannah.
Our daughter, Hannah Elizabeth Diaso. Thankful to be able to build a church honoring her life & memory

There’s so much mystery surrounding heaven and the interaction between heaven and earth. Hebrews speaks of a cloud of witnesses in Hebrews 12.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Hebrews‬ ‭12:1-2‬ ‭ESV

We believe if there is any way possible Hannah is in heaven cheering on the work of this church, and even interceding on behalf of Mere and Edna as they serve in Mexicali.

One thing we do know is that Hannah loved Mexico, and she loved the people we work with in Mexico. She was born in Mexico City, and just two weeks before she moved to heaven she told us how she’d love to live in Mexico.

Jonathan & David working hard on the church
Jonathan & David working hard helping to build the church

We miss Hannah so much, our heart aches for her, but we are thankful that our grief is not without hope. Our whole family, David jr., Jonathan, Dawn and I give thanks for all the people that gave towards this project and participated in building the church.

Dawn and I are encouraged by the progress that Pastor Mere and Edna have made as they reach out into the community. We also look forward to seeing all that the Lord has in store for them and this special church.

Celebrating Jonathan & Hannah’s Marriage
Excited for this young couple, Jonathan & Hannah as they start their lives together!
Excited for this young couple, Jonathan & Hannah as they start their lives together!

The other special highlight for us in 2018 just happened the first day of December when our son, Jonathan married Hannah Blanco. Now they are Mr. & Mrs. Jonthan Diaso. Both of them love Jesus, and they desire to serve the Lord and to be involved in ministry. They have tremendous gifts, and as they come together we know that the Lord is going to do a great work through them. We are so excited for them and cheering them on as they start their lives together.

I wrote more about their wedding and marriage in my last post.

Looking forward to 2019
Hannah & Jonathan with David & Emily
Hannah & Jonathan with David & Emily

We already know that 2019 holds something special for us as well. We know this because of God’s promises in Jeremiah 29:11 that his plans for us are for good and not for evil. We also know this, because our son David just got engaged to Emily Tenison and they are planning on getting married in May of 2019. The Lord continues to redeem and expand our family and ministry!

Thanks so much for praying for us and encouraging us through this past year. We know that we would not have been as effective or successful without a team of faithful friends standing with us. People who pray for us, encourage us and who give financially to support the ministry. Thank you, Jesus! Thank you for your goodness and that all of your promises are yes and amen in Christ!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

P.S. If you’d like to give a year-end gift you can give to the ministry online through this link:

Click to make a donation

Wedding Bells for Jonathan and Hannah

Jonathan & Hannah Diaso

In my last post I mentioned two momentous events that took place on December 1. Our son, Jonathan’s wedding, uniting Jonathan to Hannah Blanco and the inauguration of the president of Mexico, Andres Manual Obrador Lopez (AMLO). Jonathan was born in Mexico so it was fitting that these two events occurred on the same day. Today I’d like to focus on the more significant event in our immediate world, our son’s marriage.

The Joy of Marriage!

Grandpa Ron Diaso, David Diaso, Dawn Diaso, Grandma Alice Moore, Hannah and Jonathan, and David Diaso, Jr.

After two years of grieving our daughter, Hannah’s move to heaven the Lord gave us a glorious event to celebrate. The Lord gifted us with another daughter named, Hannah. I believe this is not mere coincidence, but it’s part of the Lord’s redeeming work in the life of our family. I must admit it takes some getting used to seeing the name Hannah Diaso again. I do believe that Hannah is not only a gift to Jonathan, but to our whole family.

I thank the Lord for his love and graciousness to our family! Great is Thy faithfulness.

For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning. Psalms 30:5 ESV

One of the many things that excites me about Jonathan and Hannah’s marriage is that they both love Jesus and they have a desire to serve him. The Lord has gifted them, and together they make a great team that the Lord will use to see lives transformed for his glory.

After the ceremony many of our friends encouraged us and told us that it was the most enjoyable wedding they had been to, and that it was deeply spiritual. Thank you, Jesus, because we prayed for the Lord’s presence and he heard and answered our prayers. It was a great privilege for me to officiate the wedding ceremony for my son and his bride.

I must admit it was an emotional day for me, seeing my son get married and officiating the wedding. There were times during the service where I had to hold back the tears. It was a joyous and sentimental day. Right before we began the wedding ceremony Hannah called me up to where she and the other women had been getting ready and she gave me a gift. She gave me a tie clip that said, “Father of the Groom,” and she gave me a picture of Jonathan and me fishing from a few years back. Hannah wrote some beautiful words on the back the picture frame. When she gave me the gifts and I saw the picture I lost it, and I couldn’t talk for a little bit while I cried. After I gathered myself I told her how much I loved her. I think that special moment prepared me for the service!

Join us in Prayer!

David giving an awesome speech for his brother and new sister

Join us in praying for Jonathan and Hannah as they start their lives together. We are so excited for them! Hannah comes from a wonderful family and we’ve grown to love them as well. We look forward to getting to know them better.

The Lord is so good to love us and to continue to redeem and restore what was taken.

Thank you friends for cheering for my family and me. It makes it all the more special to have friends who love us and share this journey with us, both the good and the bad. Keep rooting for us, and pleading to the Heavenly Father on our behalf.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Celebrating Multiplication in Uruguay

Red de Multiplicación conference in Montevideo, Uruguay

Red de Multiplicación conference in Montevideo, Uruguay

Dawn and I were so encouraged when we were in Montevideo, Uruguay at the Red de Multiplicación conference. One of the highlights of the conference was to learn about the results of the combined efforts of all the churches involved in the “Red de Multiplicación,” which means Multiplication Network. The gospel was shared with 1 million people and 384,244 people came to Christ. Wow! The angels are rejoicing over the Lord’s bountiful harvest. There are also 16,619 church planters involved with Red de Multiplicación throughout Latin America.

These churches represent transformation in the various communities in most of the countries in Latin America. God is on the move!

I love seeing how the Lord works as His church comes together for kingdom expansion.

After our time in Montevideo Dawn and I flew to Bogotá, Colombia. We are visiting some of our missionary colleagues who are ministering here. It’s been a wonderful time!

Exciting Family News!

Jonathan & Hannah

Jonathan & Hannah

On another note, we have some very exciting family news!

On Saturday night our son, Jonathan asked Hannah Blanco to be his wife, and she said yes. After the tremendously difficult time we’ve been through over the last year and a half since our daughter, Hannah moved to heaven, it’s so good to have something to celebrate.

We love Hannah, our soon to be daughter-in-law! She’s an awesome young woman who loves Jesus, and she is a great match for Jonathan. We are thrilled for them!

We posted the news on Facebook on Monday and a number of friends congratulated us and many told us how they have been praying for us, and for a wife for our son! All the love and support does make us feel very encouraged. Thank you, friends!

Here is a video taken from when Jonathan proposed to Hannah at the Garden of the God’s in Colorado Springs.

 

We rejoice in God’s faithfulness and His goodness!

In His Loving Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

An Amazing Day!

The Hannah Diaso Memorial Church just outside of Mexicali, Mexico

The Hannah Diaso Memorial Church just outside of Mexicali, Mexico

I find it next to impossible to fully express our experience in building the memorial church for our daughter, Hannah. It was wonderful, but it also brought a wide range of emotions.

I felt sad and happy, I felt sorrow and joy, I felt grief and hopeful. On top of all those emotions, I also felt a sense of pride that we could build the church in a community just outside of Mexicali, Mexico. I felt very loved by all those who participated. The Lord gave us about 60 in all counting those that came from both sides of the border.

So Much Love!

Many participated in building the church on a hot day just outside of Mexicali, Mexico

Many participated in building the church on a hot day just outside of Mexicali, Mexico

At the end of the first day, I told one of our Mexican friends, Sol Carrola how much it meant to me that she came all the way from Tijuana to help us build the church. We helped Sol and her husband, Victor to build a now thriving church in Rosarito three years ago. I’m going to be preaching at their three-year anniversary celebration service this Sunday.

I told Sol that I felt very loved that she was helping out, and as I expressed my gratitude I started to cry. She told me that they did love us, and wanted my family and me to feel loved. I started crying even more. God is so good to us!

Thankful for All Who Joined Us!

Jonathan & David working hard on the church

Jonathan & David working hard on the church

Both David and Jonathan, our two boys were able to fly out to be with us and help us build the church. Also David’s girlfriend, Emily and Jonathan’s girlfriend, Hannah joined in the fun. Chivis, our close friend from Mexico City, who was one of Hannah’s closest friends flew out to join us. Jim DeWitt a close friend, and also a colleague with Mission to the World made the trip from Michigan to show his love and support. Marissa, who Hannah knew from Colorado came from St. Louis.

My 82-year-old dad got on a plane and came down from Fresno. When my dad told me he was coming I about started crying. When I told Dawn and the boys that grandpa was coming they cried as well. It’s a miracle that my dad could be with us. Last year on March 1 or thereabouts I received a phone call from my mom telling that the doctor said that my dad only had 6 months to a year to live. God has healed my dad! One of the last doctor’s reports he received, the doctor said that the cancer was regressing. The doctor went on to say that it must be divine intervention because it wasn’t because of anything he had done! God is so good!

Elissa and Dawn along with other friends and family

Elissa and Dawn along with Stephany, Kim, Jonathan, Hannah, and Emily with some of the local children

There were also other close friends that joined us locally. Two of Hannah’s friends from her IMPACT 195 discipleship came, Elissa and Stephany. Some of my best friends from Mexico also joined us.

The Impact and Legacy of Hannah’s Life

Praying for Pastor Mere and his wife, Edna as we gave them the keys to the church!

Praying for Pastor Mere and his wife, Edna as we gave them the keys to the church!

As we shared at the end of the time and reflected some on Hannah’s life, one of the things that was mentioned over and over was how loving and welcoming Hannah was. Our prayer is that this new church will bring life to the community and that all who come will feel welcome!

Both of my boys have expressed that they would much rather visit this church and remember Hannah than to go out to the cemetery to remember her.

We believe that this is going to be a life-giving church. Our family and those that joined us enjoyed getting to know Pastor Mere and his wife Edna. God is going to use them in a powerful way as they plant this church. Join us in praying for them. The inauguration service for the church will be on Sunday, May 6th.

On behalf of my family, I want to thank all who prayed for us as we prepared for this big project. I want to thank all who gave, and there were many. We give thanks for you, and we give thanks to the Lord!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

 

A New Church is Being Born!

Jonathan and Dave with Pastor Mere Godinez at the new church site near Mexicali, Mexico

Jonathan and Dave with Pastor Mere Godinez at the new church site near Mexicali, Mexico

It’s hard to believe that it is really happening. After more than a year of praying and working towards this goal. This weekend we will be taking down a group of 33 people to build a church in memory of our daughter, Hannah. Apart from the 33 people, we will be bringing from the US, there will be another 40 of our Mexican friends joining us.

Tonight, my 82-year-old dad arrived, because he wants to be involved. He wants to show his love and support by being present for this important event in the life of my family and in the life of the church in Mexico.

I’m blown away by all the love and support we have received!

Confident of God’s Good Work Through This Church!

One of our goals for 2018 is to build a church in memory of our daughter, Hannah.

Our daughter, Hannah Elizabeth Diaso. Thankful to be able to build a church honoring her memory

This is the 6th church that we’ve helped start with our friends from Ministerios Transformación. The last one we built was finished and inaugurated just one day before Hannah moved to heaven. The pain of our loss put a damper on the joy of seeing a new church started. Unfortunately, that church has struggled, but there is a renewed effort to reach the surrounding community for Christ, so we pray for many open doors.

The other churches that we built we usually only had two or three donors that would give towards the project, but this time we must have had over 50! We’ve had some large gifts, and we’ve just been overwhelmed by the generosity and support we’ve received. I just met with Pastor Daniel Nuñez today, and he told me that the majority of churches in their network of churches gave about $60 USD towards the project, and they gave a total of $1,000 USD. That is a sizeable and sacrificial gift for these churches to make.

We are excited about Pastor Mere Godinez and his wife, Edna as they plant this church. God is going to use them in a significant way to impact the community for Christ.

Cristina with her three children - she prayed for 3 years for this church!

Cristina with her three children – she prayed for 3 years for this church! God is answering her prayers. Hallelujah!

Jonathan and I felt so lifted up after visiting the church site in February and meeting some of the people involved. One of the people we met was Cristina, who lives next door to the church. It was so encouraging to hear her story, and learn how she had been praying for three years for a church. God is answering her prayer in a big way!

Join Us in Prayer!

Please do pray and join us in prayer as we bring together the final details for this new church. Pray for us as we build the church, and pray for Pastor Mere and Edna as they begin to minister in the community and to show the love of Christ!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Mixed Emotions on This Day

One of our goals for 2018 is to build a church in memory of our daughter, Hannah.

Our daughter, Hannah Elizabeth Diaso

Today is a special day in the life of our family. Under normal circumstances, this would be a day of celebration. You see, on this day, April 9 my daughter, Hannah would have turned 24. The key phrase there is “would have,” but Hannah moved to heaven on October 18, 2016.

Now it is a day with mixed emotions!

Sorrow & Hope!

Hannah #AHannahPercent

Hannah We love you #AHannahPercent

Dawn and I along with our boys, David and Jonathan continue to give thanks for Hannah. We are grateful she was born. We give thanks for all she has meant to us, and the gift she is and was to us. Yet, there is also sadness and sorrow, because she is no longer here. As much as we wish we could, we can not change the fact that she has gone on ahead of us to be with the Lord.

For believers mourning is strange, in that, on the one hand, we have hope. All is not lost. We will see Hannah again! Hallelujah! Hannah is experiencing the greatest celebration possible today! Yet, because we love her so dearly we miss her. Each of my family members wishes we could take her out for a meal today, buy her a birthday cake and watch her joyfully blow out the candles. We would love to buy a gift for her and watch her open it.

Rather we are forced to wait. It’s not easy to wait. We do grieve, we do mourn, but not as those without hope.

The strange thing is on these days that should be days of celebration they become days of reflection. Days to remember what once was, and even what we dreamt for together.

Don’t get me wrong there are many good memories when I think about my daughter’s short life. These good memories are mingled in with some painful moments as well. It’s a mixed bag.

Tough Questions

Our last picture as a family together before Hannah moved to heaven

Our last picture as a family together before Hannah moved to heaven

I find that from time to time I want to ask, “Why?” “Why, Lord?” Why did this happen?” “Where were you in the midst of it all?”

I realize although these questions are inevitable, they are not good questions to focus on. The Lord was definitely with us in the midst of it all, even though it didn’t always seem like it. He has assured me of that, and he has said that he will never leave me nor forsake me. I believe those words are true.

The why questions are harder.

I’m not sure if the Lord will ever fully answer that question this side of heaven. We live in a broken world marred by sin. All of creation groans until the day of redemption. We are not the only ones who are crying out to the Lord as we grieve. We groan and we wait for the redemption as Romans 8:22-23 states.

Good Memories, Longing for More

On these days I find it harder to reflect on the good memories of Hannah. I’m not sure why? As I write this, I’m processing and in a sense thinking out loud. There are many good memories, but I think I just miss her so much, so even the good memories cause an ache of sorts.

My son, David wrote a wonderful reflection about his sister today. He shares many positive memories he has of Hannah. Although I cried as I read it, I found it encouraging. It’s worth checking out, My Little Sister.

I often think of King David after his young son died. David said he will not return to me, but one day I will go to him. That’s my hope to see my savior face to face and to see my daughter again one day.

The Lord is My Rock!

Dave with Hannah - My beautiful daughter that I love

Dave with Hannah – My beautiful daughter that I love. We had a special relationship. I do miss her so much.

Thank you, Lord, that you are near the broken hearted. You are with my family and me in our pain. You are carrying us through the valley of the shadow of death. You have a purpose, and it is a good purpose even if I don’t understand it.

When I reflect and think about our life and our grief it always comes back to our rock. He’s the rock of our salvation!

For some reason, this reminds me that a dear friend today, who I love encouraged me to be strong. In some instances, it could be hurtful to say something like that, but as I read those words I felt loved. I started to cry as I read those words, because I know the friend that wrote them loves Dawn and me, and that they look up to us. They want to encourage us.

Also, I realize that being strong doesn’t mean that I don’t cry, or that I don’t get sad or mourn. It means that even though “my world” may be falling apart around me that I keep my eyes on Jesus. He’s my rock. He lifts me up. He says that when I am weak then I am strong! I rejoice in my refuge in whom I run to in times of need.

Thank you, Jesus, for loving me, for loving my family in the midst of all the pain, and what at times even seems like hell on earth. Yet, this is temporary. It will soon pass!

“For this momentary affliction is peparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparision, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:17,18 ESV)

Dawn, David Jr., Jonathan and I thank you for going on this journey with us. It’s not an easy one, so thank you for staying with us through all the ups and downs. God is good! So Good!!

The Hannah Diaso Memorial Church

We are excited to build the church in Hannah’s memory this week. Please pray for us as we make the final preparations and work with our friends at Ministerios Transformación to see this new church bring the light of Christ into a community filled with many needs.

In His Loving Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

 

Giving Thanks for God’s Good Gifts!

Jonathan, Pastor Mere and Dave

Jonathan, Pastor Mere and Dave

This last Friday I experienced one of the best days I’ve had in a long time. Even though this last year has been hard as my family and I have been mourning Hannah’s moving to heaven, the Lord has blessed us with some exceptional experiences, especially lately.

What made Friday so special?

Two main reasons. First, I spent the whole day with one of my son’s, Jonathan. It’s always a special time when I can be with David and Jonathan. We enjoyed driving out to Mexicali and having wonderful interaction along the way. It encourages me so much to see how Jonathan has grown in his love for Christ since his sister moved to heaven. He could have become bitter and angry at God. Instead he’s pushed into Christ and grown tremendously. This is one of the legacies I feel that Hannah has left. The impact she left on both of her brothers. Thank you, Lord for redeeming the pain of Hannah’s early homegoing!

The Foundation is being Laid

The foundation for the new church in Mexicali, Mexico

The foundation for the new church in Mexicali, Mexico

The second reason is we went to Mexicali to see the foundation being poured for the new church that we are building to honor Hannah. It filled me up to overflowing to see this dream becoming a reality. Thank you, Jesus!

I also enjoyed spending some time with the church planter and his wife. Pastor Mere Godinez and his wife, Edna. Mere and his father-in-law, Rafael were working hard laying the foundation for the church.

Some of the neighbors who are interested in seeing the church built were also there. The church actually is right next to Alfonso and Cristina’s house. They used to live in Tijuana and they attended one of the Ministerios Transformación churches in TJ. That’s what brought about the connection. Alfonso and Cristina moved back to Mexicali and they started praying that the Lord would raise up a church in their community.

Years of Prayer for This New Church

Cristina with her three children - she prayed for 3 years for this church!

Cristina with her three children – she prayed for 3 years for this church!

Cristina told me that she prayed for three years that the Lord would bring a church to the community that they live in, which is just outside of Mexicali. The church is close to an hour from the Mexicali – El Centro border crossing.

I loved learning about how the Lord is already working in this community preparing the people to receive the Word of Life. Cristina said that her mom even felt a number of years ago that the Lord was going to build a church on the land right next to the house. Even though they’ve only lived in the house the last few years, they’ve owned the property for a number of years.

The last church we helped Ministerios Transformación start in Rosarito was built and inaugurated the day before Hannah moved to heaven. That church has struggled some to get going. There have been a number of obstacles, and we’ve felt much opposition there. We know as we move into new communities we are bringing the light into dark places. There is a battle that rages on. We are still praying and hopeful that the church in Rosarito will experience breakthrough and make a difference in the community.

Light in the Darkness

This church in Mexicali represents new hope as Christ shines in a place where there is much need. Pray with us as we work with Pastor Mere, his wife Edna and the ministry of Ministerios Transformación to build this church on the weekend of April 14 and 15.

There is still time to help us build this church. We’ve been given a matching fund as we continue to raise funds for this project. You can give online here.

click to give online

click to give online

Thanks so much for standing with us in prayer. Our battle is not against flesh and blood! We give thanks for your love and support you’ve shown us in a number ways as we move forward and continue serving the Lord!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org