Archive for July, 2012


Jul 13

Praying for Muslims During Ramadan

2012 | by Clint | Category: Church Planting,North Africa (SNAP)

As we look forward to the day when our first SNAP family heads for the field (Lord Willing in early 2014), we are calling for a renewed commitment within the body of Christ here at DSC for both prayer and financial support for this work to plant churches among the unreached of North Africa.

Our SNAP couple writes:

Will you join us in 30 Days of Prayer for the Muslim World?  Starting July 20th all Muslims around the world will participate in the month of Ramadan.  Fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam and this is a crucial time in the hearts of Muslims as they are seeking God’s face and are more open to spiritual realities than any other time of the year. 30 Days Prayer Network is a global prayer effort that allows Christians in a coordinated, focused, and concentrated manner to pray for Muslims during this 30-Day period.  This is their 21st edition and they have seen powerful things happening in the specific cities that people are praying for on a given day and stories of many coming to faith during this time.

As we start to pray during Ramadan together, let us remember the very real battle for the lost. Let us pray that blind eyes will be opened and that many will experience a true and lasting salvation.  Pray that many would have dreams and visions of Jesus and that Muslims will have a full revelation of the true God and His loving character. We also challenge those who can, to fast occasionally during this time to remind ourselves of the work at hand.

You can pick up your 30 Days of Prayer for the Muslim World this Sunday at a information center in the foyer.  We will also be passing out a “Just for Kids” prayer guide to the elementary age children in their classes on July 15th that families can go through together.  It is an awesome and interactive way for kids and parents to read about Muslims around the world, learn about Islam, know how to pray, and do a fun activity together.  You can also follow along on the 30 Days website or have e-mails sent to you daily.  Sign up at http://www.30-days.net/.  We are excited to see how God is going to use this prayer movement to further his kingdom and renown!

Jul 12

Maltiox (Thank You) from Hector Hernandez, our Achi Brother in Christ

2012 | by Clint | Category: Field Updates,Global,Rabinal Achi,Trips

Desert Springs has supported the ministry of OR4 through Hector Hernandez since 2004.  OR4 exists to unite evangelical churches as well as reach the Rabinal Achi youth for Christ.  It has been such a blessing to see God grow and use Hector and other young Achis to make disciples among their own people with an eye toward going to the ends of the earth themselves.  Below is a letter Hector wrote to DSC expressing his thankfulness for our partnership with the Rabinal Achi in general, and this latest trip specifically.

Hector writes:

Dear friends and brothers and sisters of DSC,

I want to start this note praising the Lord who is worthy of all praise  and adoration, and with gratitude for his goodness, grace and faithfulness!   I am pleased to be able to write to you again after so much time. My  computer broke down again, and I don’t like very much to go to the  Internet cages.  I have only been able to communicate with my friends  through Facebook, because I have a telephone plan that includes using social  networks. But as if it weren’t enough that my computer broke down, my  cell phone also broke down recently.

The Coalition DSC, The Well and OR4  

I am extremely grateful, content and satisfied with the time during  which the ministries of DSC as sending church of the Well and OR4 shared  the month of June to glorify God and serve our Achí people. I am happy  because we were able to unify forces, being from different countries and  cultures, in the same work and for the same purpose.  I don’t want to go  on with this note without mentioning the support of the ministry of JUCUM in San Miguel, Dr. Jacobo and Janeth, the Barreras, Tania from Mexico, and the team from Atlanta–several ministries working together as the Body of Christ  that we are.

Personally I am pleased and satisfied with the great and extraordinary  events that happen as we do the work of God.  However, also of great  worth and importance are the little things, that to some might seem  insignificant, that we don’t pay much attention to, but they have an  impact and make a difference in the lives of many people, either  bringing them to Christ or helping them draw nearer to him and  motivating people to become more like Christ.  One example of this is  the testimony of the life of Marvin Gibson, who even without having to  speak in Spanish or Achí, made us realize there was something different  in him.

Marvin Gibson, alias Marvelous, the grandfather of the Well group is  officially proclaimed the grandfather of OR4.  We admire his patience,  his willingness to serve, his humor, his youthful spirit, love and  service.  He put up with his fellow Americans and even more than that,  with the Achí young people (ha ha.)  Everyone in OR4 talks of this.   This is what I am referring to: actions, but also attitudes that can  impact, motivate and change the lives of others without even realizing it.

Also the support of Sophia, Rachel and Brian was significant, in spite  of language barriers.  They did a great job in benefit of OR4 and our  Achí people, and I don’t doubt that they also learned from us, our  culture, as we also learned from them.

Objectives Reached  

At the beginning of the time with the Well and OR4 we declared that of  of our objectives was to strengthen the relationships with the churches  of different town, and that was accomplished.  Some pastors expressed to  us their satisfaction for the work realized and their support for future  activities with OR4 and of course with the Well when they are again with us.   Thanks to DSC   In the name of OR4 I want to express my most sincere and deep gratitude  for your support during all this time.  I refer to moral, spiritual and  economic support.

In the love of Christ, Your brother Hector Hernandez of OR4

Translate by Carol Barrera

Jul 9

Making Holidays Missional…

2012 | by Clint | Category: Local

Any time the calendar calls you to remember and honor a historical event, group, or person, do you flock to be with like minded Christians? only Christians? Every time?

I think most of us would admit that when it comes to ‘holidays’ we long to be refreshed and renewed by fellowship, not taxed and exhausted by spiritual warfare.  That’s not in and of itself wrong, but perhaps if its all you’ve ever known, you may be open to considering the following.

Have you ever taken the opportunity afforded by our culture’s willingness to let their hair down on national holidays and have you over or come to your place for some good food, drink, play and most importantly, conversation?  If not, consider the next time you have an extra day off (or even a weekend) as an opportunity to really dive into a relationship with a non-believing co-worker, family member, or neighbor.

Here is a testimony of God’s work in one DSC family’s life from this most recent holiday:

“We are bad at planning ahead for the fourth of July.  This year we had a unique opportunity to spend time with our neighbors.  After considering a few different opportunities we had with folks we cherish here at DSC, we decided to move away from comfort this once and spend some extra time getting to know our neighbors. For me (husband/father) the kicker was the recent SNAP survey trip.  We are asking these families to leave a land and church full of relational comfort and familiarity for the sake of spreading gospel truth in a dark place.  And as we do this, we want to taste it more and more as we try to (and fail mostly) at embracing the missional call of living here in Albuquerque.

It can be difficult sometimes getting to know non-believers on a deep level.  This is especially true if they don’t have the same parenting philosophy as you, don’t have any of the same theological underpinnings as you, and in fact, and may even seem to have ‘moved on’ from anything religious that might have had an influence on them in their younger years.  To our wonderful suprise, we were able to discuss deep life issues including the existence of man, world views, Biblical truth, and how that affects parenting, marriage, and even sexuality.

We really feel like our relationship with this family deepened this weekend. We can tell we are learning much about them and their hearts, and lots about their world view (which isn’t as far off from ours as we’d thought);  things we hadn’t considered before, but that still fit within a Biblical framework, and are part of God’s common grace (education, philosophy, sciences, etc.).  We are praying for more opportunities to talk, more opportunities to learn, and more opportunities to introduce them to the Jesus we know and love from the Scriptures.  And we know that God alone can draw them, so please pray for us, and for them.  You may not know our or their names, but God does.  And we pray He is after them.”

It’s likely that we all struggle with this a bit, namely, the balance between our desire to be in community with God’s people, where we feel comfortable and comforted, and the desire to get to know the lost in order to speak the truth into their lives.  Each of us needs to ask God to make us more like Christ, who did indeed retreat to small group of close followers often, but also ventured into uncharted relational waters for the sake of the gospel.  No wonder his disciples did the same, even unto death, after Jesus rose from the dead.

If thinking in these terms of investment in the lost around you feels odd or new to you (and even if it doesn’t), please make seeing and hearing Jerram Barrs on Augst 4-5 here at DSC a priority.  This Saturday Seminar entitled “Barriers and Bridges:  Loving Others to Christ” promises to be a time of wonderful teaching from a wonderfully faithful man, who longs to see more and more people come to the saving knowledge of Christ.  The seminar will take place at DSC from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM. The cost is free.  Click here for more details about the weekend and about Jerram.