Posts Tagged ‘Stephen Phelan’

Lord, Lead Us & Guide Us!
Worship with Our Hispanic Group on Friday nights

Worship with Our Hispanic Group on Friday nights

The Lord is working on both sides of the border. There are needs everywhere we turn. One of my constant prayers is for the Lord to direct and lead us to the best, and most important things that we should focus on.

It’s not easy working on the border, there are so many opportunities. Yet as I often tell my kids, keep your eyes on Jesus and take one day at a time. That’s what we try to do.

God’s Work Through ESL
Lauren Howard leading some of our ESL students

Lauren Howard leading some of our ESL students

At the end of last year we lost one of our faithful ESL teachers, and he has been hard to replace. The Lord has heard our cry for help, for more teachers!

God is faithful, and he provided two excellent teachers for our Wednesday night class. Two young women, Lauren Howard and Berkeley Bagwell, who speak Spanish and have served the Lord in Spanish-speaking countries. They both have a heart to serve in foreign missions again in the future.

I’m thankful for all the energy and the new ideas they bring to our ESL class. They are great at loving on the students and reaching out to them.

Our Friday class which had been strong is making a comeback. We have two other new teachers for that class, and they are beginning to get things moving in a positive direction.

A New Class at the YMCA
Berkley Bagwell our other ESL teacher on Wednesday nights with Antonia & Yemali

Berkeley Bagwell our other ESL teacher on Wednesday nights with Antonia & Yamile

We are working on starting up a new class at the YMCA. Pastor Stephen Phelan met one of the leaders at the local ‘Y’ and he asked Stephen if we could provide ESL for them.

We are praising the Lord about this, because it opens up a completely new audience for us!

Almost every week we see people giving their lives to Christ. It’s wonderful to be in an environment where the Lord’s Spirit is moving in the hearts of men and women. Many of those that are deciding to follow Jesus are from our Hispanic group.

The Lord has used community outreach activities like ESL to make a difference in people’s lives. It meets a need as they desire to learn. Frequently, they come away with more! New life In Christ. Hallelujah!! Praise the Lord with us.

Praise & Prayer

Praise the Lord with us, and please pray with us. We look to Jesus to give us wisdom where to focus. We pray that God will strengthen our ESL program, and that more students will attend. Also that the Lord will raise up someone to direct our ESL program for me. O Lord, that many will come to Christ as we bless the community through teaching English.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

There is Hope
David, Hannah & Jon with Daisy having some fun

David, Hannah & Jon with Daisy having some fun

It’s been hard to write about ministry happenings while we’ve been going through this trial. I’ve found it hard to focus, and believe it our not, it’s emotionally draining.

The good news is that things are getting better. We are not out of the woods yet, but there is greater hope! Thank you Jesus for your faithfulness.

Encouragement from Our Friends

I met with my good friend and the lead pastor of Harbor Mid-City church, Stephen Phelan today. The time we spent together was a real encouragement to me. I’m finding as I travel this road that knowing that he and many others are concerned for us and praying for us lifts me up.

The day before I saw Stephen I spent some time with one of my close friends, Tom Steller. Thank you Lord for the special friends who help bear our burdens and walk on this journey with us.

When I was with Stephen I shared with him that we’ve seen the Lord bless us more and bring us more fruit in ministry this last year than we’ve experienced in a while. On the other hand, we’ve also had some huge trials in our family over the last several months.

The Battle & Greater Perspective

It shouldn’t be a surprise that we are in a battle. Our enemy doesn’t play fair. It is also true that we live in a broken sin filled world.

Another friend sent us a couple of inspiring verses that go a long ways in giving us a greater and more positive perspective.

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. —Deuteronomy 31:6

I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world. —John 16:33

Dave, Hannah and Dawn

Dave, Hannah and Dawn

One of the things I like about Jesus’ words in John is that the trials aren’t a surprise to Jesus. He says we will experience tribulation. It’s just a part of life, but he doesn’t leave it there. There is hope, because Christ overcame the world.

Jesus gives us hope. When you feel pummeled by the trials that come your way remember the risen savior. Look to Jesus.

Lord, whenever I am afraid I will trust in you (Psalm 56:3).

God is building his church, and things are looking brighter.

My family and I are grateful for all the support and prayers we’ve received. We definitely do need others. Thank the Lord for the great friends he has given us.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Worship at Harbor Mid-City

Worship at Harbor Mid-City

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

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

A Word of Encouragement from a Key Partner

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

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

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

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

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

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

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Moses show God changed his life with Harbor and pastors Stephen Phelan and Edgardo Avila

Moses (standing between pastors Stephen Phelan and Edgardo Avila) sharing how God changed his life

Almost every week we are seeing people come to Christ at Harbor Mid-City! It’s wonderful to hear the testimony of how God’s Spirit is moving in the heart of men and women to bring about changed lives.

Just this past Sunday, our new friend, Moses shared how the Lord reached into his life and saved him. He spoke of how he tried to do everything on his own. He isolated himself from others. God broke through, and Moses started coming to church. When he heard the gospel message he recognized his need for salvation. His need to be connected with a body of believers. His need to be committed to Christ and his church.

Moses’ testimony and the work God is doing in his life is heart warming!

Thank you Jesus, we pray that you will break through in the lives of many more and draw them to yourself as we seek to make a difference on the San Diego-Tijuana border. We pray that Moses and other new believers in the church will grow in their faith, and their lives will be truly transformed by the gospel of grace. Build your church, for your honor and glory! Amen.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Worship with Harbor Mid City

Worship with Harbor Mid City

Now that we’ve moved to the border each week we look forward with much anticipation to worshipping with our good friends at Harbor Mid City Church. It’s a wonderful multicultural, bilingual time of worship each Sunday morning.

We sense the Lord’s presence in a very real way during the service. God is both immanent or present and transcendent.

Pastor Stephen Phelan has assembled a great team to minister alongside of him. Stephen is the lead pastor at Harbor Mid City, and Edgardo Avila leads the Spanish-speaking congregation.

Even though we worship in two languages, we are able to start and end each service together. It’s a beautiful sign of the diversity in the church. We conclude most Sunday mornings with communion, The Lord’s Supper, which reminds us of the death of Christ, and that he is coming again. It’s also an equally beautiful display of our unity in Christ.

I wanted to highlight the church this week, because we just launched an upgraded and new looking website. It’s an awesome upgrade, so I figured you’d want to check it out. Here is the website with the weblink: http://www.harbormidcity.org

Pray for the ministry of the church as we reach out to the various cultures represented in City Heights and beyond.  The following two Saturdays we will go down to Tijuana with those from the other Harbor sites to build a church for a new church plant in east TJ.

Our prayer along with Harbor is that the bi-national city of San Diego – Tijuana will be transformed in every way socially, spiritually and culturally by the gospel.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Pastor Stephen Phelan leading worship

Pastor Stephen Phelan leading worship

When Dawn and I were in San Diego a week ago, our friend, pastor Stephen Phelan, pastor of Harbor Mid-city, the main church we are partnering with, shared this story. Part of the vision of the church is to bridge together people from different cultures, economic and social backgrounds. In one of the Bible studies Stephen is leading they have an affluent atheist, and a struggling Mexican immigrant. Bringing people together from such huge different backgrounds is done by design.

During one of their times together the atheist openly shared that he didn’t believe in God. Carlos couldn’t believe his ears. His jaw dropped. He said to the atheist, “let me tell you about my life. I was in a gang, and I ended up in prison. While in prison I found Christ. God told me he wanted me to stop using my weapon, my shank.” Carlos said to God, “how will I defend myself?” God responded, “you are in a new ‘gang’ now, the family of God, and I will protect you.”

That’s exactly what happened God protected Carlos, and because he stopped carrying around a weapon to protect himself, it gave him the opportunity to share his faith with other gang members. They wondered why he wasn’t trying to fight and defend himself anymore? If you saw Carlos today you would never know that he had been in a gang. The atheist was awestruck by this story. He told Carlos, “you need to tell that story to everyone.”

What an example of the power of the gospel to transform lives! This is the good news we carry to the border.

Join us in prayer for the San Diego-Tijuana border, and that we can move there in August. Our house is under contract. It’s set to close on August 9th. We are praying that we don’t encounter any snags and we will turn over the keys at closing.

We look forward to being able to relocate and serve Christ on the border.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeontheBorder.org

Worship at the Men's Retreat

Worship at the Men’s Retreat

Enjoyed a great time at The Oaks Camp in Lake Hughes, CA this weekend. A group of men from Harbor Mid-City attended the men’s retreat hosted by World Impact.

World Impact’s mission is to evangelize and disciple the urban poor. It was quite an experience being with men, many of whom had come from some very difficult backgrounds. Yet Christ reached in and saved them. We are all on a journey with Jesus, just at different places on the journey.

I loved seeing the grace given, and seeing some tough dudes who are now sold out for the savior.

Stephen Phelan, pastor of Harbor Mid-City thought this would be a great opportunity for the men of Harbor from both the Spanish and English church to come together for this retreat. These men are in training to be leaders at the church. The church will not grow if it doesn’t have strong, godly men to lead it.

We sang in Spanish and English, as it was a bilingual conference. The main speaker, Don Davis spoke about the warfare we are in from Ephesians 6:10-20. Our battle is not against flesh and blood. Therefore our armor must be different. God does protect us. He does gives us armor. We would be hopeless without it. We march forward in God’s armor.

Pray that the men of Harbor would grow in faith and practice. That daily they would put on the armor of the Lord, and be true warriors for Christ.

I’d also appreciate your prayer as we go out to share the love of Christ with Pastor Leo and his team in Rosarito, Mexico today. We are going to share in the neighborhood where the church is located.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeontheBorder.org