Help me see with eyes of faith. Give me strength to run this race. i will go Lord, where Your glory is unknown, i will live for You alone. i will go because my life is not my own. i will go...

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Over the last three weeks we have had the joy of watching 7 new believers baptized! What an awesome time! One of the one's not pictured is a sweet young girl who's 8 months pregnant! What an exciting time in her life...and what bravery to slide down the muddy slope to get into that murky pool of water! Yikes! But for them, when they are asked to step out in obedience to's worth it!

These pictures are from one of our Bible Study groups. They live, literally, in the middle of no where! We drive out to their "farm" each week and have been meeting with them for about 6 months now. They live in such poverty and have access to nothing. To get into town they either ride the donkey, or walk. And believe's a LONG walk! It's been a blessing to be part of their community and start to build friendships with them.

We have had at least 6 people from within our other Bible Studies accept Christ since then, so I'm sure we'll have more "dunkin" to do in the near future! :) Please pray for these new believers, that they would keep strong in their new faith and turn to the Lord for all their needs!

Some of the sweet and crazy girls we love on each week!
They keep us on our toes!

When the Son sets you are free in deed!

Brian & Pedro with 4 new baptized believers!
Showing us her new certificate of baptism.
This is a huge deal to them and they cherish every memento!
"Moti" and Jorge with J's baby donkey...haha...he loves his animals!

Family....aren't they cute!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Faithful Prayer Warriors.....

I just wanted to share this picture with ya'll. This is Pastor Rick. He's pointing to my prayer card, which is up on his office wall. My Grandma Bobbie sent me this picture to remind me that I am prayed for...even by people whom I have never met!

What a BLESSING!!!!

I can't tell you how encouraged I am by all of you! I often hear stories from my family and friends about people they know (who I don't personally know) who are praying for me, asking about me and the ministry, and interested in what the Lord is doing here in Colombia.

This is what it means to be part of the Body of Christ!

What a vivid example! Each member of the body has a different function: some work in the secular world, but live out a testimony to their co-workers, some are musicians, some are plumbers, others are students, some are professional hunting guides :), others are in vocational ministry, some are hard-working stay at home moms...the list could go on.....but they are all a vital part of the body of Christ!

We are all called to be part of the Great Commission, telling others about the freedom that comes in knowing Jesus Christ! Thank you for playing a VITAL role in my ministry here through your prayers!

By HIS Grace, Sarah

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Just because you go to church...

Just because you go to church...doesn't mean you're a Christian.

This may seem like the most obvious statement in the world to you...but it seems to be VERY hard to get through the heads of some of our church members! Our evangelism outings have given us the opportunity to meet new people in the neighboring streets, and have often given us an open door to share Truth from God's word with them....

Many times we enter and house and hear a variation of these words, "Oh yes, I'm part of 'such and such' church in this barrio..." or, "Well, I'm not in church right now, but I was part of this Baptist church down the road for many years." Sadly, all too often my Colombian ministry partners (whoever happens to be witnessing with me at the moment) will hear these words and joyfully proclaim, "Oh that's just great! Well then we're happy to meet a fellow believer!"...and leave it at that! They are halfway out the door before I can even ask if this person we've just met actually has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ!

Shall I repeat it again? Just because you go to church....doesn't mean you're a Christian!

I think this is a good reminder for some of our church "members" in the States. I think we are often too afraid to ask the questions or we are afraid we will offend someone if we question their "status" with Christ. Listen up friends...we can not afford to assume that someone is saved! Be bold and step out in faith...but remember, we can be bold AND speak the truth in Love...all at the same time. :)

Lord, help us to be bold witnesses for you! Help us to find ways to share your truth with those around us, so that they too can have the assurance of Salvation that we hold so dear.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Growth (An Update on Yolima)

Time has been too long since I've last updated! Great things have been happening! :) First of all, to update you on my friend Yolima (the lady I'm discipling). Three stories about answered prayers!!

  1. Three weeks ago, Yolima told me that in times past, she had no reason to trust "evangelicals" because they had never before proved trustworthy. But then she went on to explain to me what the Lord had shown her while she was in the hospital, waiting to have her cesection....She told me that as she waited there, many of the women beside her (all waiting in wheel chairs for hours upon end to have their surgeries) were really anxious and nervous, but she was not. She had prayed that God would give her peace, and she knew that I was outside waiting for her, praying with a fellow Colombian believer, Lucy. Lucy had only met Yolima once before, yet she waited for 16 hours at the hospital, to show her support. Yolima said she had such a peace knowing that others were praying for her, and she knew everything was going to be ok. The Kicker: Yolima said that now she knows that there are true believers in the church, who really do care for her, and said she knows she can trust them as friends. What a praise! I had been praying that even if I didn't have the right words to say, that the Lord would use the time I spent with Yolima to build trust and that through my friendship, the Lord would show her how much HE cares for her!
  2. All you moms out there know how hard it is to get your kids ready for church....imagine getting 3 kids, ages 3 and under, ready for church on your own! It's not an easy task! I've been trying to get to the barrio early enough to help Yolima make it "on time" to church, haha...what a foreign concept in Colombia! Her first week back to church they did the infamous "roll call" that I described to yall last your name, if you memorized a bible verse, how many chapters did you read in your bible...etc. Yolima was a little flustered and said, "Sarah, what am I supposed to say when they call my name!?" I told her, "Just tell the truth!" One week later, I'm sitting next to Yolima as her name is called....and she busts out with a verse she has memorized and says it in front of the whole church! She even read 10 chapters on her own! The congregation did a great job encouraging her, but then said, "Wow, you've got a great teacher!" (referring to me) But I quickly told them that I had done nothing! This was all her! I was so proud of her! I may not like the tradition of "roll call" but boy was I thankful for the growth it had spurred in Yolima! Praise the Lord for her desire to read God's Word and hide it in her heart! :) He promises us it will not return void!
  3. Our house church has begun to go out to evangelize the neighboring streets after church services on Sundays. Last week Yolima asked me if I was going to go out after church, and I told her yes. She then said, "I used to wonder why people from the church would go out every week and "bother" people who didn't want to come to church in the first place. I thought, 'If they want to come to church, they'll leave them alone!' But then I was one of those people who was invited to come to church, time and time again...and now I'm part of the church...and I have so much JOY in my heart!" Now she understands...Praise the Lord for His faithfulness!

Thank you for your continued prayers for this sweet friend of mine! The Lord is FAITHFUL!!!The Lord is doing awesome things in Yolima's life! I just taught a class on how to decorate flip-flops to her and several of her friends, in hopes that they will sell them to earn an income for themselves. Please pray that the Lord would give them motivation to start and the wisdom in how to proceed!

Monday, October 6, 2008

The Lord's Supper & Baby Dedication

The Lord's Supper

We enjoyed a special Sunday service this week as we celebrated the Lord's Supper together as a church. It was a unique time for our church members, to be reminded exactly what the Lord's Supper represents. They have been taught for so long by the Catholic church that they are eating and drinking the actual physical body of Christ. Most of our members, having been Christians for more than a year, understand that the Lord's Supper is something we do in remembrance of what Christ did for us, but others are still confused by many years of listening to false doctrine. It was a great service and I think Alejandro (interim preacher & my ministry partner at this church) did a great job of walking us through the Word and explaining things clearly. Sadly, we had several regular attenders who purposely did not attend church yesterday. Knowing that only baptized believers would be able to participate in the supper, I think they felt uncomfortable coming and not being able to partake with the rest of the church.

Getting ready for Evangelism

That's when visitation can be so helpful! We spent 2 hours after church walking the streets of this neighborhood, sharing the gospel and visiting members who were absent. This is such an important part of growth in the church. We need to be encouraging our brothers and sisters, taking the time to visit with them, letting them know they were missed and prayed for. I saw some great growth in our members after yesterday's experience. It was really an encouragement to me, and something I've been praying for, for a long time.

Cherry's dress was huge on her, but she looked so cute!

There are a few things I just can't seem to get used to. 1) They take "roll call" every week, asking you how many chapters in your bible you read (hm...I can't at all see how this might pressure people to exaggerate!), how many visitors you brought (which, annoyingly to me, they count their kids as visitors, even though they are there every week!) and then ask if you brought your bible. This is a DEEPLY rooted tradition for them, so I guess I'll have to learn to live with it, and pray the Lord will open their hearts to change. 2) When we go out to share the gospel they walk up to someone and say, "We are here to EVANGELIZE you" (oh sinner!...I added this part)...but I feel like we're walking in and knocking them upside the head...and then expecting them to give us a moment of their time, haha. I pray..."Father, help them to hear what YOU want them to hear, and not the words coming out of our mouths." Thankfully...we are called to be obedient to share God's word...and He's the one who takes care of the results!

Alejo w/ baby Caleb, Yolima & big brother Sebastian ("Gordito")

On a happy note, I arrived early enough to help Yolima get all 3 kids bathed and ready for church. Caleb Andres was introduced to the church, and they were asked to commit to pray for him as he grows. We prayed that he would grow up hearing the Word of God and that one day he would make the decision to follow Christ and serve Him. His name means "Loyal/Faithful Warrior" so we prayed that he would be a faithful warrior for the cause of Christ. I took their first family photos...and they turned out adorable, given the circumstances! I was rushing to take the pictures, so they're not the best lighting or framing. Cherry was screaming the whole time, so I bribed her with candy! haha...what can I say!

The "bribery photo" after I told her I had candy...can't you see it in her eyes! lol!
Every time I come over to visit Gordito says to me, "He's MY brother, he's mine!" and I just laugh and remind him that I know! I'm just here to visit!

Thank you all for your continued love and prayers! Have a wonderful week! ~Sarah :)

Saturday, October 4, 2008

"I want to bring you a gift..."

I receive a phone call this week from the mother of one of my Colombian friends. Her son married one of our missionaries this summer and they now live in Texas. The mother, who lives here in CO, called me to see if she could come by my apt. this week. I assumed she wanted to use my Vonage phone to call her son in the States, but she said no, that she wanted to bring me a "gift." Surprised I said, "Is this gift alive?" (The kitten I now have was originally a gift from her brother and I thought she might want to give me another kitten) She just laughed. I wasn't sure if she had misunderstood me or if she just didn't want to spoil the surprise...

Since when does "I want to bring you a gift" imply that "I want to bring a strange man over to your house to introduce you"....??????? gift was A PERSON!!!

Supposedly I had met this man at my friend's wedding. He began to explain to me that he had been having dreams and that I was in them. I was surrounded by lots of kids, but they were really angels, and that we were going up to the top of a rainbow. At the top of the rainbow was a door. I told him that I could go through the door, but that he could not, because not every soul can go through the door. He went on to explain to me that he didn't understand the dream but that he knew that it had something to do with God, and that I was the person who was going to explain it to him and teach him about God and His Word.


Ok, so I was trying to be as serious as I could about this, but I couldn't help but think that this was the most elaborate scheme to pick up a "gringo girl" that I had ever encountered!...and then was wondering what in the world my friend's mom was thinking in bringing him to my house! haha!

(Please keep in mind, this is all happening in Spanish!)

I talked to him and found out that he is not a believer, so I talk to him about what it means to be a Christian, we read Eph. 2:8-10 and talked about how salvation comes by Faith and not through works.....but in the end He was still thinking I was the person who could enlighten him to the Word of God. I explained to him that if he was genuinely serious about learning about the Lord and understanding more about the Bible that I would talk to my boss about discipling him..but that I could not help him with that....because we encourage men to be discipled by other men!

So please PRAY....1) Because this could be completely true and the Lord really could be speaking to him through one way it actually kind of makes sense to me (Matt. 7:21 immediately came to my mind, "Not everyone who says to me 'Lord, Lord' will enter the Kingdom of Heaven...) 2) Please pray for this man, that if the Lord is speaking to him, that he would genuinely seek to know more about the Father 3) Please pray that I would be taken out of the equation and that he would be open to being discipled by a man on our team. :)

To make the night even more interesting...we went to a friend's birthday party later that night...and I got hit on AGAIN!....When a guy starts out a conversation saying "I heard you were single" and "I hear it's easier to get a visa to the US if a church invites to you come" he kind of blows all his chances at ever having a normal friendship with me, haha.

Do I have a sign on top of my head with flashing lights that says "Green Card Magnet" ?????

(I once had a guy at the movie theater (also here in Colombia) try to pick me up...He said, "Hello, I love your green eyes," and then went right in to say he'd like to have my number so he could start a relationship with me! I actually laughed out loud, regained composure, and then kindly told him no.... then hurried away to find my friends, haha!)

One day....Mr Right will come knocking on my door....but for right now I guess I'm just dodging bullets! :) little kitten has grown!

Here are some pictures of my little kitten who is now a big beautiful cat! Her name is Eva, based on the word Evangelico, which means Gospel.

The first night I had her...she cried all night!

Now she's almost fully grown!

Here's she's about to jump up to play with the camera....

She's annoyed with the flash and is trying to push the camera out of her face, haha!