We have been praying for a miracle for my friend David Lara. Husband, a Father of 11 children, brother in Christ, business man and all around great guy. David went to be with our Lord this morning after a long fought battle with cancer. My prayers the last 24 hours consisted of a prayer of deliverance from this present suffering. Take him home or heal him is what I asked, and God in his sovereignty choose to take him home. Death has been swallowed up in victory for David and yet to see these precious little kids and his agonizing wife, I can't help but wonder what God is doing!! But thankfully I'm not God and He holds everything together and promises to work it all out together for good, so stay tuned, Gods not finished with them yet.
   We all need to pray for the family, Angie, Amaris, Zach, Moriah, Jaden, Karise,Mckenna, Shilo, Creed, Jirah, Sabre and baby Bristol. Gods word says we need to take care of orphans and widows, so if any one wants to help and send money, they can go to www. gofundme.com  Lara Family Expenses or make checks out to Angie Lara and send them to Bruce and Paula Hepburn c/o Angie  P.O. BOX 68 San Juan Texas 78589. There has been $ 1700.00 donated already today and the goal is $150,000.00 to help with medical bills, moving expenses, and basic family needs. Be Blessed as you become a blessing to others. Paula and I have committed to paying for the rental truck and driving it, to move them back to South Carolina to live with Angies parents in Greenville.


It is such an honor to work along side of other missionaries that have the same passion and assignment from God. Roy and Rebecca Busby had a team that wanted to spend a week in the colonia, but because of limited funds, they could not build a house. Well because of the grace of God working through a businessman back in the Chicago area, the funds were available to build a house, but we didn't have team. So Roys group built the house that came from one of our generous donors. They had the house built in two days in spite of 100 plus temperatures. Paula and Ruth put together some things to decorate the house and I ordered 4 new beds for the family. While they were busy decorating, we were joining in some praise and worship songs.Before we handed over the keys, Winchester shared with the family about how this house is a miracle from God and the people that built it, give all glory to Jesus. Doris has two teenage daughters Rebbeca and Reyna. Reyna gave here heart to Jesus the day before yesterday, and today her older sister Rebbeca melted into a pool of tears as we shared the good news of the Gospel with her. All forty of us knelt on the ground as the girls prayed to receive everlasting life through faith in Jesus Christ.
   That afternoon, the two girls came by Roy and Rebbecas place and told them of their desire to start a new way of life following Jesus. They confessed the way of life they had been leading, being sex slaves to some very unsavory people and they were going to go and tell them that they would no longer be offering their bodies up to them. This could very well mean that they could be placing themselves in harms way, but they feel led to do it. Oh how we need to pray for their protection for their bold stance!!!
    As many of you have read on our blog and are aware of our friend David Laras cancer battle, he is home and in a coma and unresponsive, but we still pray that Gods voice would pierce the darkness and touch him in a way that only God can. We are helping Angie with all of the loose ends of their business that is coming to an end, without David running it. Please continue to pray for them as we try to move forward with all that needs to be done. I almost feel like we are not walking in faith as we prepare for Davids home going, while he still lives. It's so hard to watch this unfold and we cry out for Gods Mercy everyday.
     Gabe, Roy , Andrew and me went and help load Dawn and her two kids belongings into my trailer as they prepare to move to Waco TX. Nothing more enjoyable than loading furniture when it's 104 degrees outside and 120 in the trailer. It almost all fit, and Dawns brother will come and take the trailer to Waco in a day or two. I almost decided to take it up myself, but we have to much to do in Mexico the next few days.


The fact that we get to invite everyone in the colonia to come for the food that God provides every month is truly Favor, flowing from the heart of God to meet the needs of the poor. Six years of provision to buy the food, oil, sugar, soup mix, beans and rice to meet the needs every month is a miracle. God told us years ago to listen and obey to the instructions He would give us and the windows of heaven would be open. The peopled that gathered yesterday witnessed 8 miracles when 7 men and one woman gave their hearts and their lives to Jesus Christ. It's not about the food or the clothes we give or about all the houses we build, but it's about being able to present the gospel to some people that are spiritually dead. 150 families came for food that will run out, but 8 people walked away with the Bread of Life (Jesus) that will never run out!
    The people loved the roof we installed over the entire area where the people sit, shade for everyone. David , Luzma, and two of their kids came and led us in worship and Pastor Jose preached to the adults and Pastor Victor and Jessa took all the kids to His Church to share with them. Another great day. We had a few beds in the warehouse and Johnny told us about a family of five sleeping on one bed and the floor, so we took them two new double beds and their smiles were seen from a distance when they saw the beds coming down the road.
    Carmelo and the boys finished one foundation last week in the blazing heat. They installed a sun shade tarp over the foundation so the concrete would not dry so fast. They should have thought about that while we were building the foundation three days ago! Another missionary has a group this week that will build the house. We had money from a donor that gave enough for a house and they have a team with no money to build a house, so thank you Lord for the connection.


I am quite familiar with the story in the bible when a man paralyzed from birth had some friends take him to where Jesus was teaching and healing the sick. They tried to get in the door but could not, tried the back door and a few windows bit still could not get in. The crowd was just to big and nobody would give up their spot in line to see Jesus. Have you ever been there? In the store with only 1 or 2 items and the person in front of you with a full cart wouldn't even make eye contact with you, knowing that they just might have to do the "right thing" and let you go ahead of them. Well this guys friends were not going to give up that easy. They walked a long way carrying this guy and they were not going to leave without the healing they came for. So what did they do? They handed the whole stretcher with the guy on it up onto the roof. They dragged it up to the top, just above where Jesus was inside. They started peeling the thatched roof away making a hole big enough to lower this guy, stretcher and all down past the people in front and plop! There he was, face to face with Jesus, all full of debris from the roof I imagine, and the people yea think about the people that were getting pummeled by debris as they tore the roof apart falling on their heads and making them run for cover. Well let me tell you, the extra effort, and labor of love that got this guy to Jesus paid off, HE GOT HIS HEALING!!!!!
     I say all of this and reflect on Gods power to heal because we just got a call from Angie Lara, Davids wife. There is nothing that medical science can do to heal David of this foul cancer. They have given him two weeks and are sending him home to die. Now as sad as I am at the prospect of loosing David, I look at all the love that has been poured out on him and his family. I look at all the prayers that were offered up on his behalf, I look at the efforts that people have gone to to help him and his family. Well we did all that we could, and now it's face to face time with Jesus. Yep, David and Jesus. Its where God wants us all to be anyhow isn't it? Totally dependent on Jesus. IF GOD HEALS HIM, HE WINS!!!!! IF GOD DOES NOT HEAL HIM.  HE WINS!!!! We loose a great man, husband, father, brother son,and we think we loose so much, but in reality TO LIVE IS CHRIST, AND TO DIE IS GREAT GAIN. THATS THE HOPE WE HAVE IN CHRIST JESUS. SO COME ON GOD, HEAL HIM, BUT NEVER THE LESS, NOT MY, BUT THY WILL BE DONE!!!!
Yesterday, the guys, and girls, finished shoveling three truck loads of caliche' into the foundation for Enrique and his family. The heat is really starting to get to everyone. It was probably 105 yesterday and very little wind. But the team got everything done and it is ready for the concrete today. Gabe is here from Chicago for 10 days and has been helping get the things done, we need to do. Tommy has been helping Carmelo for the last week or so and is one of the guys getting married next month. Well Praise the Lord, yesterday Tommy wanted us to pray with Him as he surrendered his life to Christ. We have shared with him over the years and when Dave and Lonnie and us built him a house a few years back, he was humbled a little bit then, but not to the point of repentance. But The Holy Spirit has been working on Tommy since then and yesterday became the day of salvation for him.
   We are still coveting prayers for David Lara as he lays in a hospital bed in Houston, waiting for the miracle we all have been praying for and expecting. I was reading in Psalms this morning about waiting expectantly for the Lord to show up and do great things and so I also am waiting expectantly for God to heal David. His wife Angie drove back from Houston yesterday and Paula told me that she is taking all 11 children back up with her today, to see their Dad.


Have you ever asked yourself that? Or better yet, have you ever actually railed against the MOST HIGH GOD, not only asking why something is happening, but also asking , why don't you do something? After all, you are the God of the universe, You hold everything together by the power of YOUR WORD and everything in all creation, both in heaven and on earth is subject to YOU. You said that if we ask anything according to YOUR will, it would be done for us. YOU paid the penalty for all of our sins ( which is death by the way, not out of fellowship with God). YOU took all our infirmities and healed all of our diseases. YOU made a way to reconcile the world to yourself and not count our sins against us. YOU gave us YOUR HOLY SPIRIT to live in us, so that YOU could live YOUR life through us. YOU said that you would would work ALL things out together for good to those that love YOU and are called according to YOUR purpose. YOU hold the keys to the kingdom, YOU walk along side of us, YOU love us with an everlasting love. YOU call us YOUR children, and YOUR people. YOU pray for us unending. YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU. YOU ARE THE ONE THAT WE LOVE, YOU ARE THE ONE WE ADORE, YOU ARE THE ONE OUR HEARTS LONG TO HAVE RETURN AND SET UP YOUR KINGDOM. IT'S ALL ABOUT YOU JESUS, AS IF WE SHOULD HAVE THINGS OUR WAY!!!!
    So, I started out wanting to rail and bitch about my friend laying in a hospital, loaded with cancer, while God seemingly does nothing to heal this man. A wife and 11 children not knowing what the future holds for them. Scared and yet hopeful,trusting and yet worrying, believing and yet doubting, praying and yet wondering what good does it do. So for the last few moments, as tears roll down my face and I wish that I was the one with this foul cancer and my friend David, could raise his family, and walk his girls down the aisle on their wedding day, teach the boys how to build stuff like their dad and just be normal again, I JUST WANT TO PRAISE HIM, FOR ALL THAT HE IS, FOR ALL HE HAS DONE. AND FOR ALL HE'S GOING TO DO. NEVER THE LESS MY LORD, NOT MINE BUT THY WILL BE DONE, YOUR GOD AND WE'RE NOT. stayed tuned and behold the power of God!!!!!


Can you imagine raising your four children in this house? Can you imagine having to dry out your clothes, your bed and your belongings every time it rains? Enrique and Dorith have been doing just that for several years as they waited and prayed for a home, fit to raise their family in. Every time we have set out to find families that need houses, we seldom have to look to hard. Even though we have built 140 houses and our other missionary friends have built more than that, it's not to hard to find someone in need of a house, a new roof, a new bed, or even just a hug. They are everywhere! Maybe even right next door to you. Everyone has some kind of a need. Maybe physical, but most likely spiritual. The greatest way that we have found to reach them spiritually with the hope found in a relationship with Jesus Christ, is to meet a physical need first and that always opens the door to the more important spiritual needs they have. So Enrique, Dorith and their four kids Rebecca 18, Reyna 14, Carmen 12, and Enrique Jr 8 will spend the next few weeks wondering what it will be like the day they move into their new home. We also met Diego and his wife Elvia. They have 3 kids, Juanna Maria, Jesus, and Diego Jr. They live just a few doors down from the trade school, and have one of the oldest homes in the colonia. It doesn't look bad from the outside, but 1 inch gaps around the windows and doors, coupled with a leaky roof make living during inclement weather rather nasty. They too will be getting a house, when Moraine Valley Church in Palos Heights Il entrusts us with their youth groups annual missions trip. They will spend the week ministering to the needs of this family and most likely several others, as they give themselves to the work of the Lord helping the poor.
  As I had mentioned in my previous post, Tommy and Blanca, along with Zacharias and Carmela will both be getting married on Aug 30th at the Community Center. Paula posted these pictures of them, as they vowed to enter into the covenant of marriage.We are hoping for many more couples to join them in August and affirm their love for each other and a blessed life doing it Gods way.


As the school year came to an end last week, the meetings needed for getting ready for classes in the late summer, have kept Paula and I over in Mexico until 9 or 10 pm for the last few days. Now we don't have anything to do with the daily operations of the schools, but many of you sponsor children with your financial gifts to the ministry. So we feel responsible to make sure that the money you invest in their lives is getting them a good education, and a hopeful future. A little power struggle has been going on for the control of the school operations and some have even stated that they didn't want any help from the "Americans". We just wanted them to know that we are all for them funding the education of their own kids and applaud their desire to do so. Even though 25 students were sponsored by you this last year, we will continue to sponsor the kids that need the help, and ask for it. Higher education is becoming a priority with us because many that graduate grade school, seldom go to high school because of the higher costs, and travel expenses. But God has an answer to any argument we may present in life. The foundation that currently runs the grade school is starting a high school this fall, in the colonia, at no charge to the families. We are hoping to enroll many of the teenagers in the new school. There are 15 so far. PRAISE THE LORD!!!!
    Yesterday afternoon we had two couples get engaged at the Community Center. Tommy asked Blanca to be his wife and Zacharias asked Carmela to be his. We have been talking to many unmarried couple lately and Pastor Victor and his wife Erika will meet with the couples for the next several weeks before the joint August 30th wedding. Carmela will wear Ruthies wedding dress and Blanca will wear a dress that Georgia Gilligan gave us a few years back for Blanca. Were hoping for several more couples to tie the knot that day and have one heck of a party. We could use a few more dresses ladies so blow the dust off of them and send em down. I'll have them cleaned and returned to you. We will be accepting special donations, specifically for the weddings, so mark your checks in the memo and we'll use it for the food, cake, and 5 string quartet, no just kidding, I'll spin a few CDS.


Yesterday afternoon, scores of children, many of whom our partners sponsor got their diplomas moving them to the next grade of their education process. We were so proud of the kids and their accomplishment and their smiles filled their faces as they walked up onto the makeshift stage to receive their diploma. We missed last Fridays ceremony at the other school in the colonia, as we hunkered down in another colonia at a graduation ceremony when a big storm trapped us there for quite a while. The kids were all dressed up for the event and a few were awarded bicycles when their number was selected  from a random drawing. Paula and Ruthy had prepared enough gift bags so that each student went home with a diploma and a gift. Graduation balloons and gift filled baskets were also given by some proud parents.
   As far as the mountain top experience goes, have you ever really been there? Has there been a time when you just basked in the good things of God and never wanted things to change? You wanted to stay on the mountain top didn't you? Well I have to ask, how long did it last? How long were you allowed to stay there before some fiery trail  came your way? I heard some one speaking about the mountain top. Have you ever been lets say on Pikes Peak in Colorado? What was it like? I remember the spectacular views of life below the mountain top. It was green and alive the further down you looked, the prettier it was. But on top, it was cold, you could even say freezing. There was no vegetation around, it was barren of any significant life, I found myself not being able to breath because of the thin air. I could only enjoy it for a little while and then I needed, no, I wanted to go back down. Back down where life is, with all it's trails, and challenges, and air, oh I how loved to take a deep breath when I came down. There were flowers, and trees and animals.
    We can't survive on the mountain, and neither could Moses. We have to go back down where the people are. Those lost and hurting people that only you and I can reach. They have spent their whole life in the deep valleys of life and they need to have that once in a lifetime mountain top experience with God and we are the tour guides. We had a tour guide on the train as we climbed Pike Peak. He pointed out certain things of interest along the way, but when we got to the top, He was now where to be found. He just cut us loose to enjoy our own personal experience on the mountain top, and when we boarded the train to head back down he was there again talking us through the decent to the valley. That's the discipleship we need to engage in. We need to talk to people about the life changing experience that Jesus Christ can bring, take them to the mountain top and then walk through life with them, showing them the great things of God along the way.


Well, I was right,  Carmelo, Tommy and Zacharias had the roof on the Community Center by the time we arrived.  It is awesome and will provide shade for everyone at our outreaches. We went to Mimis ceremony at school and a huge storm rolled in right after Mimi got her diploma.We all ran into the classroom and had to wait about an hour.


For the last several years, we had taken our annual sabbatical in July, to visit family, friends, churches and to get a little break from the summer heat in Texas and Mexico. We had celebrated the fourth of July with the Wells', Shongs and Elizandos at the Elizandos annual fourth of July picnic and awesome fireworks display. Well this year we will miss the party and miss our friends as well and will spend the day over in Mexico because today many of the children you sponsor for school are graduating, and we want to be there.
   I planned on going to Mexico early this morning to put the metal roofing on the Community Center, but we slept in, so we texted Carmelo and asked to wait to put the roof on until next week. Well any of you that know Carmelo, know that he loves to serve and said that they already had it half done by the time we contacted him. I can't wait to see and experience the cool shade that this will supply for our outreaches. I wanted to wait because my old legs and knees are hurting from building the porch the last few days, but a brother came for rice and beans last night and we prayed for strength and healing for all of us in ministry, that are getting a little old and this stinking flesh gets weary and aches and pains fill our joints. I feel great today and the knees don't hurt, and Paulas' pain in her back is better as well.
   In closing, HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY to all and don't forget to remember those that gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom and independence. The best and really all sufficient sacrifice was Jesus Christ and the freedom He gives is much more liberating, so PRAISE HIM!!!!