From LAX, to Guatemala, to Ecuador... much flying and much weariness. After a nap in the Swissotel and a dip in the pool, we´re refreshed and ready for the ride to Ambato tomorrow where we´ll be sharing and performing the gospel and helping build up the church body there.
We have a short break this evening so I wanted to update you on how things have been going here in Ecuador before we finish up the week.
With e3 Partners ministries, about 40-50 total missionaries have come here to Ambato to be used by 13 local churches. We have been assigned to assist a small rural church evangelize and bring in new members, as well as personally disciple new believers with Bible lessons. At night, Jessica and I visit other churches to perform karate demonstrations tied in with a gospel message.
Door-to-door evangelism has had its ups and downs so far. Some people turn away, some make us pause until the entire family can hear. There have been as many as 10-20 confessions of faith per day so far in our team alone. Today, our karate demonstration in an urban sports park produced at least 30 new believers of all ages with God's power and goodness.
Besides us, some teams are working in civil projects, such as building a well so people can have physical water as well as God's living water. Other teams are ministering to prison guards and the inmates.
We have had a lot of challenges but we're excited to say that these 2 days have been pretty successful. Please continue to pray for us, in these ways:
- That the translators would have energy to continue to stand in the middle of the gospel message and help us connect with the people.
- That sickness would either be short-lived or non-existant.
- That we and the local churches would be unified and seek God's direction rather than rely on opinions and cultural norms.
- That people are faithful to their schedules so time could be spend wisely.
Thanks everyone for your help. We are still working hard, but we also can´t wait to come home and share stories.
On our final day at the Word of Life church in Ambato, we gathered together all our contacts from door-to-door visits and prayed over the leadership of the church. Before we left, we had a powerful time of prayer for the neighborhood and thanked God for the work He was able to do through us down on Via Terremoto.
Later at night, we had a final debriefing with E3 Partners and all 50 or so missionaries from around the nation. Over all, we shared stories from the amazing results of our trip:
- 12 new churches planted
- Over 800 professions of faith
- Over 250 discipleship lessons completed
A humbling realization we had is that God didn't really need any of us to spread His message. God is mighty, and He is constantly bringing people to Himself. But, God is gracious enough and loving enough towards us that he allows us to witness His power first-hand. Sharing Christ's gospel with others has been a privilege because we got to share what He's done in our lives as part of a dynamic and continuing story of Jesus' love for His children.
Updated May 22, 2020.