“Daughters of the King”
The ninth youth girls’ meeting, known as “Daughters of the King,” was held at the farm in Sumpango, Sacatepequez, the first weekend of January. Sisters Corina de Lopez, Sara Breneman, and Mary Cristal, who formed the planning committee, worked hard to organize and carry out a very encouraging, harmonious, and unifying activity among the youth girls.
Youth girls from Mixcolaja, San Bartolomé, San Cristóbal, Lirio de los Valles, Pasaco, Zaragoza, El Chal, and Oratorio met to enjoy this girls’ retreat. It was filled with times of spiritual nurture, of singing, praying, and various other activities. Above all, the focus was to learn together for the glory of the Lord.
At the beginning of the event, groups were formed with the names of Peace, Love, Joy, and Faith. Each group took turns taking charge of the time of praise, worship, and meditation. Each group showed creativity and dedication in the different activities throughout the retreat.
On this occasion we had the honor of hearing the word of our Father, the King, through Sisters Beulah Hursh, Elba Monzón, Judith Lehman, and Priscila Alpirez with the following topics: “Sarah, Hoping Against All Hope,” “Rahab, A Horrible Life Redeemed,” “Hannah, Portrayal of Feminine Grace,” and “Jezebel, Life and Consequences of Her Bad Example.”
The sisters gave these topics in a touching way, with applications to our lives today. The topics were a great blessing, and at the same time, a challenge. As a summary of the topics, here are some points that each of the girls present will remember: God keeps His promises, even when it seems to take a long time. God redeems our lives, even when it feels like we no longer deserve it. Above all, it’s time to change, time to put forth effort, and time to take up the spiritual challenge. The consequences of sin bring destruction, and surrender is the only road to salvation.
The organizing committee also gave workshops. The first was on making bread and Jell-O, by Sister Laresa. The second was about first aid. There was also a visit to an old people’s home in Antigua, Guatemala, and an offering was lifted to buy food and supplies, as well as a donation of medicine and materials for the care of the elderly. Sunday morning we were divided into two groups; one attended Lirio de los Valles in Guatemala City, while the other attended Emanuel, the church in San Cristóbal. Each group shared the new hymns taught by Sister Sara Breneman.
The last night was the closing ceremony, which started with a special supper organized by the committee, followed by a devotional time and a topic. The evening concluded with the presentation of diplomas and thanking those who had a part.
I thank God for this retreat, because His Spirit was present and many lives were touched. Let’s pray for the girls that attended who aren’t Christians, that the seed sown could sprout and bear fruit. Also for each one of the rest who now face new challenges, that they could be prepared to fight and overcome, grasped by the hand of the King; and come what may, as true daughters of the King, not let go of His hand, desiring to one day enjoy that special supper and all that He has promised in His Word. That is my prayer.
Until the next meeting of the “Daughters of the King”!
~ Priscila Muñoz
A Faith That Moves Mountains
The Lord openeth the eyes of the blind (Psalm 146:8).
With a sigh, the little old lady sat on the edge of her bed. It was no use. The doctors had said there was no way to recuperate her sight, and the headaches kept getting worse.
That night she tried to sleep, but sleep wouldn’t come. But her headache kept getting worse. So she started to pray.
The pain in her head kept increasing till she thought she couldn’t bear it any longer. Everyone else was sleeping, so she kept quiet and kept praying. Suddenly, as if she were dreaming, she saw herself sitting on the edge of her bed. A hand came down and opened her head, just as if someone were cutting a potato in two. The hand then gently took her head and pointed out what looked like holes behind her eyes and forehead where the headache pain had been coming from. Then the hand gently filled the holes with a clear blue paste and closed her head again. Then she fell into a deep sleep.
When she awoke, it was late at night, and her back was sore from being in a sitting position so long. She did, however, notice that her headache was gone as she lay down to sleep.
In the morning when she woke, she immediately noticed that her headache was gone. She remembered her vision from the night before, and as she began her daily duties, she noticed that not only was her headache gone, but her sight had returned! Before, she could hardly see well enough to walk; now she could see the neighbor’s house. As the sun came up, she could see all the way to the edge of town! Before, she could hardly do any housework because of her headaches; now she could go about her daily duties normally!
The Lord had heard this lady’s plea in the night. What the doctors had called incurable, the Lord had taken care of in a matter of minutes.
No, I’m not paraphrasing a Bible story or reprinting something I read in a storybook about an experience somebody had years ago. I’m talking about an illiterate widow who lives in a humble house in the foothills of the Guatemalan mountains that has something that many rich, famous, mighty, and well-studied men and professing Christians don’t have much of.
A faith that leads her to encourage others facing circumstances that look impossible, because she believes that all things are possible for the Lord.
A childlike faith that simply trusts in the Lord.
A faith that believes that the God we serve today is the same who sent ravens to feed Elijah, who preserved Jonah with a fish, who protected the three Hebrews in the fire. He is the same God who worked miracles, provided food and water, and preserved the Israelites’ clothing while they wandered in the desert.
When Jesus healed the sick during His ministry, He often asked if they had faith in Him. One such account is found in Matthew 9, when Jesus restored sight to two blind men. The blind men came to him: and Jesus saith unto them, Believe ye that I am able to do this? They said unto him, Yea, Lord. Then touched he their eyes, saying, According to your faith be it unto you. And their eyes were opened.
My friend, I don’t know about you, but sometimes I wonder if I would have enough faith to be healed if I were blind and faith was all I needed to be healed. Is my faith strong enough?
I believe the answer to that question lies in how we live our daily lives. Hebrews 11:6 says, But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
Does the way I go about my day show that I believe in God?
Does the frequency and amount of time I spend studying His Word show that I believe I’ll be blessed by it?
When I pray, do I really believe that the Lord hears me and will answer my prayers, or do I pray halfheartedly? Do I do what the Bible commands because I truly believe I will be rewarded, or do I only obey when others are around?
Have I ever felt my conscience prodding me to witness to somebody, and followed up on it?
It is easy to say we have enough faith that the Lord could work miracles in our lives. But really, if we don’t exercise a living, working faith today in matters of obedience, we probably won’t have one tomorrow either, although the circumstances might be dire.
Many times when I have felt weak in faith, it has been of great encouragement to read Hebrews 11 and ponder not only the faith of those mentioned, but also how they applied it to their lives. It was a faith that changed not only their lives but the course of history. It was faith that made Noah believe destruction was coming and compelled him to build the ark. Faith told Abraham it was worth leaving home and inheritance to follow the Lord’s leading. Faith led Moses, as a young man, to decide it was worth denying the riches and pleasures of Pharoah’s court and instead suffer with the people of God.
Sometimes when I think of the Bible’s many promises concerning the future—promises of eternal rest, eternal condemnation, and the judgment, in which the Lord will reveal our destination according to our works—I think about a question Jesus asked His disciples: When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? Luke 18:8.
The widow whose story I told has a faith that has done great things in her life; I don’t doubt that if the Lord would come today, He would find faith there. But what about you and me? Would the Lord find faith in our lives?
~ Norman Nolt
He Told Me to Give Up
“He told me to just quit coming to church. Just to give up,” she told us with tears streaming down her cheeks. “But I decided that I’d made the decision to follow Christ, and I won’t give up.”
We had gotten a call around eight o’clock that Saturday morning and had learned that Sister Reina was moving. Work is scarce this time of year, and her husband had gotten a job offer at a farm fifteen minutes away the night before. Suddenly, the family was moving once again. They had already moved everything out of their house and stacked it by the “road,” and were waiting for the pickup that would take them to their new home when we arrived twenty minutes later.
We found Reina at her mom’s house. Reina is a new Christian with ten children. Seven of them live at home, and her youngest is ten months old. Her husband drinks. She struggles with anxiety.
We were planning to tell her that we’d be willing to pick her up for church services, but before we got that far, she told us how her husband had discouraged her; she had decided not to give up, but would bus to church at least Sunday mornings. We were happy to hear her commitment and assured her that we would be willing to pick her up on Sunday mornings.
After dropping by to chat with a few more of the church folks, we headed back to the main trail by the church. The two-wheel-drive pickup that had come to move their things was loaded to the max and ready to begin the journey to the farm.
We looked doubtfully at the pickup and its load, seriously questioning how it would make it up the hills to the main road. They headed out, and we started after them on foot. Our pickup was parked by the main road. As we rounded a bend in the trail, we caught a glimpse of the pickup again… at the bottom of a hill not moving forward an inch, even with a bunch of young guys pushing. It was a hopeless situation. Due to a big load, a steep hill, not enough power, and too many attempts to climb the hill, they burned the clutch out. Ropes appeared from somewhere, and we used our four-wheel-drive pickup to pull them to the top, then all the way to the farm, about five miles away.
We bumped our way along a narrow lane between cane fields and past occasional livestock. About fifteen minutes later we arrived at a cattle corral. They opened the gate and motioned for us to drive on through and out the other side. We pulled up to a tiny run-down shack and stopped. This was to be their new home. The men and boys began unloading the pickup, and we women walked toward the house.
Reina said, “This is the same house we lived in years ago when my husband worked here before. But then we only had two children…”
She was so brave. My heart hurt for her. I felt so helpless and wondered how I would cope in such a situation.
Pray for her that she would be faithful through these difficult times!
~ Wendy Hursh
Dear fellow citizens of the kingdom and supporters of His work in Guatemala,
First, we want to thank you for your support of God’s work in the “Land of Eternal Spring.” Your prayers, monetary offerings, and support through the sending of personnel have been essential in the ongoing effort of sharing the truth and love of God. We rejoice that there are now children and grandchildren in Guatemala who have had the privilege to grow up in a Christian environment because of the faith of their parents. And although there are some well-established congregations, there are still others that need the support and teaching of other Christians who are willing to live among them.
Because of the ongoing work, there are some opportunities for service as follows:
– Single fellows to work beside native ministry; two in June and two in September of this year.
– Two families/couples in 2019 to help with church leadership.
If you have interest or know someone who does, please contact Jeff Weaver at email@example.com, 717-324-3818, or 87 N. Ridge Rd. Thomasville, PA 17364.
Thank you and God bless you as you consider these needs.
Wesley and Alice King
Wesley and Alice King’s involvement in MAM did not start with their arrival in Guatemala in January 2019. They first served for four years in the 1990s, mainly in the church in Joya Grande. Wesley then served on the MAM board for many years, actively seeking personnel and processing applications.
In 2018, the Beth-el congregation released him to return to Guatemala for another time of service.
Wesley and Alice are living near the mission headquarters in Guatemala City, where he assists with administrative work. He is also investing much of his time assisting the national bishops with their church work.
Kayla is living in Oratorio, helping with the new clinic work there.
Wayne just turned 21 and is doing good work helping with projects around Headquarters.
As a board, we are extremely grateful to Wesley and Alice for allowing God to use them again in Guatemala, and to their home church for blessing them in this work.
Larry Martin Commissioning
Nearly every Sunday for the last two years, Larry Martin has traveled from Guatemala City to Pital to hold services. On January 30, 2019, he was commissioned as pastor of the Pital congregation. It was a blessing to have all the MAM bishops present for the commissioning.
Larry’s work with the church in Pital won’t change much, but his personal life is set for a major adjustment. After serving together at Headquarters for several years, Larry and Laresa Good plan to be married on April 13, 2019. They plan to return to Guatemala later this summer and continue working in Pital… together.