Concerning international travel, I wanted to give an update about one of the needs we have going on right now. Over the past years of traveling to Central America one of the largest expenses has surrounded a transportation and a vehicle. Literally every year nearly 50 to 60% of our missions budget goes toward this and we have been shown a way to bring the cost down considerably.
Owning a vehicle negates the need for the special insurance required by the government for foreigners. Buying a vehicle and putting it under the name of another full time missionaries ministry bypasses the excessive insurance rates by Central America. Owning vehicles also gives me liberty to cross over country borders without switching vehicles which was required in the past. We have prayed much about the decision and have peace that this is the direction the Lord would have us to go. The vehicle pictured cost (including taxes and registration) is $6000 dollars. We have a relationship with previous owners and have complete confidence the vehicle will be suitable and reliable for our needs. Please pray with us about this truck and also to our supporting churches, we also ask you to consider assisting in the purchase of this vehicle. We have told the owner, please hold it for us by faith, praying and seeking that God will use whatever necessary to provide.
PLEASE REJOICE WITH US!! THIS NEED HAS BEEN TAKEN CARE OF IN FULL BY ONE OF OUR GENEROUS SUPPORTING CHURCHES! PRAISE GOD FROM WHOM ALL BLESSINGS FLOW!!
Dear Prayer Partners,
A simple letter will never encapsulate the power packed international trip in which our family had the opportunity to serve. Whether we were investing in pastors at the “Cumple Tu Ministerio” Conference or preaching the gospel over the TV broadcast in Honduras, we were blessed to experience International Evangelism at its finest.
A birds eye view of our trip includes the following:
-The Pastors Conference in Puerto Cortez
-The Spiritual Emphasis Weekend at an orphanage of troubled teens in Lejamini
-The partnering with Medical Missions Outreach. (They specialize in medicine as a tool to preach the Gospel, in that week alone there were over 150 professions of faith.)
-The week long crusade in La Esperanza at the very first place I preached in Honduras nearly 5 years ago.
My family was with me every step of the way, as we experienced the poverty of Honduras, the challenges of international travel, and the the power of God exhibited in people’s lives.
Our monthly support is directly tied to the length of time we spend overseas. After this trip a veteran missionary advised us of many areas in which we could save major money which would then in turn allow us to extend our time in overseas ministry. He addressed housing and other needs, but we concluded that to make our price of living drop significantly we would need to purchase a vehicle in Honduras. At this point, renting a car in the country consumes 30% to 40% of our yearly international budget. In the past 2 years, my rental car fees have almost equated to the purchase of a vehicle. Since there is no insurance needed to maintain a vehicle; logistically, I could purchase a vehicle and have a veteran missionary care and maintain the vehicle in my absence and use it whenever we travel to Central America. A quality vehicle that has 4-wheel drive and can dependably carry our family hovers around the neighborhood of $10,000. Please pray about this need that I believe would help us advance the cause of Christ.
The obvious question is why is there a picture of cookie monster on your newsletter? The picture is my encouragement in the Spanish language. Currently in Spanish my grammar and word choices resemble Cookie Monster, “Me want cookie!” This can be understood most times and can get a point across. However, I believe it is fine to be like Cookie Monster during these learning days, but I do not want to stay this way in the acquisition of the Spanish language. My prayer next year is to invest in one ministry in Honduras. As I invest there, it will serve as a base for me to leave the “Cookie Monster” speech by preaching weekly to the same congregation as well as going on visitation in more familiar neighborhoods. This will serve as an opportunity to become more fluent in Spanish thereby preparing me for more of a lasting future in Central America. This process may take a while for which I am well aware, but as I strive to be transparent with our supporters, I want them to know that I take this step for the purpose of putting roots down deep to have a longer and more in depth influence in the Spanish community. Please keep us in fervent prayer as I prepare/plan to preach my first full message in 2020.
As of February our evangelism schedule is back in full swing. God has given a great in road with teenagers and we have seen great fruit in this specific area of ministry in the last few months. Our travels takes us from chilly Michigan and Indiana to much warmer Florida and everywhere in between. Please pray for our safety as we travel many miles for the glory of God.
For years our family has fervently prayed for the relocation of our home church. I privately spoke with pastors and other mentors about the large decision. We desired to be around a higher Latino population as well as a major airport to expedite our travel and provide opportunity to be home more.
After much prayer and deliberation we are thrilled to announce that we have joined Beacon Baptist Church of Raleigh, NC under the leadership of Pastor Tim Rabon.
Being in evangelism for 10 years, our family can easily spot “obligatory kindness” Pastor and Mrs. Rabon have shown such genuine love and concern for our family that it truly seems our relationship has been much longer than the 6 months we have been discussing this decision. We are thrilled to also interact with Iglesia Bautista El Faro which meets in the same facility as Beacon Baptist Church.
Please continue to pray for the ministry of International Evangelism. Our mission is still the same, we have just changed the church we are working under. We look forward to MANY MANY years of fruitful ministry together.
#10- Love and Curiosity are 2 of the greatest enemies of prejudice.
Unfortunately in 10 years I have found much prejudice behind the doors of churches and pulpits. Some churches have a cloud of racism so thick that it can be cut with a knife however Love and Curiosity have broken down many walls. I met a woman whose son had been murdered by a black man. In a town with few black people, one could understand her apprehension to interact with me. Through loving one another and curiosity (to see and understand how did she get to that place) made all the difference in both our perspectives.
#9- The Devil is the Master of making us care about things that don’t matter
We criticize teens playing hours of video games then I watch adults, waste hours on their phone. Kicking aside their kids aside they run out every Saturday to a boat, then look at me when there teens are summer camp and say to me "straighten my kid out" We have had the opportunity we just have not seized it because we do not see it as important!
#8- People are different but actually they are the same
We all dream, we all have ambition, passion and desire. We may live in different parts of the world but really at the end of the day, we all are sinners needing Christ. Some are "good looking" sinners, some are rich sinners, but sinners nevertheless!
#7- Give your wife her own spending money!
Pretty self explanatory and seriously important. Find your wife's love language and SPEAK IT LOUD AND CONSTANTLY!
#6- Contentment ends when Comparison begins
Every preacher wants to be influential/popular! However we can become discontented with our race God has called us to, by comparing our race to someone else's race. I love Craig Groschel as he said the 'fastest way to ruin something special is to compare it' Love what God has called us to do and do it!
#5- My closest friend are the ones who love the God they serve, not just loving serving.
I have friends who LOVE to preach, though thats not bad, they are not my closet friends. My closest friends are the ones that love the One they are preaching about MORE!
#4- If at first you don't succeed, find out why
Evaluate, evaluate, every year I ask God, what do I need to improve? where do I need to change? We are always growing therefore we are always going to be changing.
#3- At the end of the day, I am a DAD and Husband
Sometimes meetings do not go well. Sometimes I become very ambitious after a great meeting of how to capitalize on this etc. But I must remember that at the end of the day, I have a calling to my family, to be the Spirit filled leader they need.
#2- The Gospel is EVERYTHING
We can get creative and fancy but at the end of the day, the GOSPEL is what is going to change lives!! The GOSPEL's Power must be shared and lived through His people!!
#1- Genuinely walking with God passionately is my Primary Objective
It's hard to sum up my primary objective, but this is it. My focus is walk in the Spirit every single day! When it comes to more sermon prep or walk with God, WALK WITH GOD wins, when my walk with God is challenged by ANYTHING, everything else must come second. If I walk with God i'll be the Husband, Father, & Evangelist, God has called me to be.
Many questions arise on what our ministry in Nicaragua entails.
Adrian are you an Evangelist or a Missionary??
Why not BOTH...a "Missionary Evangelist"
This picture shows how our schedule is broken down in percentages of times in a given calendar year. The reason for "Missionary Evangelist" is because we are supported similar to a missionary during the yellow 25% time frame while overseas. Currently we are around 60% of that goal, and that is why in the fall we preach and present in Missions Conferences.
While we are overseas we do what we do in the states, strive to see people saved and exhort churches to godliness. Our prayer is that we might have enter a new level of effectiveness by learning Spanish but in the mean time, I still preach and teach through translators till we reach that point of preaching in the native tongue.
To answer some questions out there, we are not permanently here in Nicaragua its the open door God has told us to minister to and hone our Spanish. Every year may be different or could be the same, I simply am a free agent before the Lord. In the United States we do not solicit or ask for meetings, we pray that God has the pastors that believe that we can help contact us. They do and its not man pushed but God ordained. The exact same is true for international ministry. We have open hearts and God directs our steps to individuals or ministries that we can help. Every year is different because we are the free agents and God is the owner. We live by faith, and we thank God he has directed our steps for the past 10 years. Psalm 84:11
During these beginning days of the transition, we by faith make overseas moves and we have seen God provide. Thank everyone for their prayers!
Merry Christmas to so many friends across the nation. God bless each of you, and we do truly hope and pray that you have a blessed Christmas. 🎄
In our last letter we sent out a definite plea for God’s people to pray and consider of what they could do to help us with a very specific need of housing while in Managua. We understood not every church and individual could help, but we prayed the ones God spoke directly to would get involved, and praise the Lord, He provided through His people. Well before November 27th, I was able to message our contact in Nicaragua to tell him that he can expect our family from Jan-Mar of next year. What a blessing!!
Faith is the currency God responds to, and when by faith we act upon what He asks us to do, it's wonderful to have a front row seat of God showing Himself as Jehovah-Jireh. We know you all pray and give for God’s glory, but we do not take for granted that your giving is benefiting our family directly.
While overseas our family lives off the monthly support that is given by churches. Recently we just received news that Savannah River Baptist Church of Savannah, GA has taken us on for support bringing our monthly support up to around 60% Our family still goes overseas no matter the level of our monthly support, but monthly support enables longer stays during our international travel. During the spring and fall, we would love to present at your church our heart for international evangelism as a missionary arm of your church.
During the holiday season, I had some time to prayerfully reflect on the mission and goal of Burden Ministries. I wanted it to be clearly stated for all of those who want to know the heart and focus of the ministry. In our current day, people typically identify me as an evangelist or missionary evangelist. Labels do not bother me in the least, but I do deem it necessary to be clear about what our overall aim is. It can be summarized as follows:
Burden ministries exists to glorify God though the clear, passionate, worldwide proclamation of the gospel for the purpose of evangelizing the lost, edifying the saints and equipping the body of Christ.
Thats our heart in a nutshell. Whether we are stateside or overseas this is our focus and drive. Please pray that we will passionately obey our Savior in season and out of season.
Please enjoy the new prayer card, and if you need more for your church just send me an email.
Though communication has been somewhat silent, the last month has been incredibly eventful in relation to our truck and trailer. A couple of weeks ago our family was trying to climb a hill and literally got stuck with wheels spinning and heading back down the VERY steep hill. Frozen at the wheel, I had every brake engaged and literally could not move without the truck and trailer rolling back down the hill into a ditch along the side of the road. My poor wife had to be the one who had to chock the wheels so I could at least release the brakes enough for my leg not to remain strained on the brake.
To shorten the story, God used a guy to help us get out of the terrible predicament. Somewhat before and since then unfortunately our truck has had some issues, including possible transmission trouble. We are having a very hard time diagnosing whats going on with the truck because it only fires codes when under a load or under a very specific strain. For now we have just switched out vehicles and praying that we can get it sorted out soon.
Thankfully our trailer was able to be picked up by my father in law who parked it in Wilson, NC at Tabernacle Baptist. They have agreed to let us use their RV hookup till we can get it back home.
Please pray that after we finish up our fall schedule that we will know what we need to do concerning the transportation of our trailer and the repairing of our truck. We are not in a huge hurry since Lord willing we will be living in Nicaragua soon however it would be wonderful to know its ready to go when we get back to the states.
Just an update, and thanks for all those who regularly pray for our family.