We are praising God for the spiritual renewal in Gerson’s life. Gerson, now twenty years old, is one of the Acosta boys whom we have cared for since 2004. We have seen special qualities in him, like his ability to relate to people and his sincere heart. But his choices have taken him through dark valleys and up rocky mountain slopes. He chose the path of so many that led to addictions, pain, heartache, loneliness and serious illness, until last December when he came to me and said he was done with his life. “I know that I am just a jar that must be emptied so that it can be filled with Christ.” That day he surrendered to Christ and we began to see changes. It hasn’t been all successes but God kept knocking on his door. Then in February he asked to return to Campus to live. I asked him why he wanted to come. “God wants me to be his disciple” he responded, “and I know that God has put you in my life as a disciple maker.” He participated in the Agua Viva water project in March, has been hearing from God and is serving with a joy and light in his eyes. Praise God with us for this fruit. Will you commit to pray specifically for Gerson and his growth as a disciple of Jesus?
Soccer Team Volleyball
Earlier this year I noticed our beach volleyball court in disrepair after it had served us for years as the medium for fun and discipleship with our household and neighborhood kids. I felt led to restore the court to a usable condition so I bought a new net. Just about that time, in March, we had a flood and the river overflowed its banks more than it had in ten years. It covered the volleyball court and almost took the poles and net, but it left a fresh 4 inches of soft sand on the court and covered most of the weeds that had grown up. After the water receded we installed a new yellow rope for a border, put our poles in tires filled with concrete and hung the new net. The court was ready! Some days later the coach of Gerson’s local soccer team asked him “In what condition is the Campus volleyball court?” and “Can I bring the soccer team to play volleyball?” and “Will you give a devotional before we play?” We were delighted! So on Friday afternoons we are hosting the soccer team to play volleyball, a group of 15-20 young men, most of whom are addicted to drugs or alcohol. They are eagerly receiving the Word that we share during the devotional time. Praise God for his leading us to this opportunity and please pray for the salvation of these young men.
La Muralla Water Project
In April we finished the 25x11 foot block building that holds the three plastic tanks and we are now on the ditch-digging phase of our water system. Our group of six will be digging about a mile of trench, two feet deep over rugged, mountainous terrain with picks and shovels. Please pray for “ánimo” to press on to the end, and for unity. One of my jobs has been to be a peacemaker when there are conflicts. Pray that each participant will come to know Jesus through all that takes place.
Francis Julissa Graduates
Also in April, our friend and GO Scholarship recipient Julissa graduated from Unitec, a university located in La Ceiba. Since 2003 Julissa, originally from Las Mangas, came to our youth group, then joined the Discipleship Group, and lived at Campus for a short while. She put her faith in Jesus and has grown through some difficult circumstances. Praise the Lord with us for her faith, her perseverance to reach graduation with a degree in Accounting and her new job as the manager of a business on Roatan Island. Good job Julissa! We love you and are proud of you!
Smoak Family Update
Allison is two and a half months away from completing her last pregnancy marathon. She is doing well through this really hot season, homeschooling the girls, maintaining a home, participating in ministry and finding ways to cool off and rest when needed. The girls are usually eager at school and are excited to be learning to read. Both Eva and Anna are making great progress. Eliya is increasing her vocabulary but still prefers her own language. I might just say, she is as cute as a button, even if I am her dad.
Praise the Lord for:
-Allison's and baby's continued good health
-the Soccer Team Volleyball outreach to the mostly drug-addicted soccer team
-Gerson's continued openness and growth in his pursuit of Christ as he learns and serves with us.
-Francis Julissa’s graduation from Unitec with a degree in Accounting
-Progress on the La Muralla Water System and the opportunity to be a peacemaker
Pray to the Lord for:
-Walter who decided to stop living at Campus with us. Pray he will respond to God and will walk in the light.
-a "guys campout" for Larry, Bayron, Gerson and Jimmy May 15th, for God to help them be open with one another and to ask and answer the hard questions that young guys have
-the ongoing work with the water project in La Muralla, for physical strength and perseverance for Larry, and for unity and humility for all those involved in the project.
-Joel and Deidre Oliver, a couple living in Virginia, who are coming to live and work with us June 22nd. They have committed to two years and are closing out their life in the US and moving down here. Pray for their details and their continued peace in these last weeks.