One week ago the Carpenters Crew started arriving in South Texas. I think 40 people all toll. They have been bathing this missions trip in prayer and fasting. They came ready to serve God, the poor, the church in Mexico, the orphanages, the children in the colonia,build two families a new house, and bless me and Paula. When God gives you that big of a vision, prayer and fasting is a natural response.
Supper together Saturday, Sunday school and Church Service Sunday, Monday morning it rained so the group went to Progresso and then came and bagged beans and rice and helped with some yard work. Tuesday and Wednesday they built the two houses, Thursday we dedicated the housesame, and then met all the kids coming out of school with hot dogs, juice boxes, chips, followed by ice cream, gift boxes and soccer balls for everyone.
A truck driver passing through the colonia with a load of dirt stopped to see what was going on. He was clearly intoxicated, but interested. Ryan felt led to pray with him, and before long, we had a circle around him as he prayed to recipe Christ. Yeah!! We fed him and prayed for safety for obvious reasons.
Yesterday the group visited 2 Orphanages and also delivered new bicycles to 5 children that touched the groups heart. A super busy and exciting week as we said our goodbyes last night. Today they all headed back to Illinois leaving a whole lot of love and blessings behind. Some of the team has made the trip down here three times this year. Unbelievable servants, sacrifices for an unbelievable God.
You would think that we would rest a day after all that we did this week, despite temperatures topping 100 a couple of days, but today was our monthly food outreach Saturday, so we headed back to Mexico at 730. We were greeted by over 100 people already there. By the time we started to sing a few songs, there were over 300 people there. Pastor Jaime led us in worship, and Pastor Antonio gave the message from the book of Joshua. Gator brought 8 people that were visiting the orphanage to be part of the food outreach. One man named Nordolpho came forward and asked how to be saved from the coming destruction that God promised is coming. What an honor to lead him into the arms of our Everlasting Savior.


Is it one or the other? I believe that it's both, working hand in hand. If you choose to sacrifice your life, for the life Christ has for you, it will undoubtedly result in service. Service to God and service to others. What that looks like in your life will depend on how you respond to the instructions you follow. God is always giving us instructions, but following the instructions is what sets the course for service.
Last week's instructions for us was to sacrifice a day and serve a Pastor that the Power Ministry built a church for, but couldn't get the roof installed. I thought I would wait until this week's team from Illinois came and have them install the metal roof, but God instructed me to do it before they came. I took 4 guys from the Colonia and Pastor Jaime came and helped as well. It only took a few hours to get it done, and it really blessed Pastor Benjamin and his congregation.
Buying the food for this month's outreach ,is so much easier at Sams Club in Mexico. One hour, in and out. We managed to get it done while waiting on a power steering hose to get made for my truck.
We also celebrated Valentines day with four other couples that serve in Mexico. The Carters from Big Heart Orphanage, the Mayorga s from Melody Orphanage, the Garcia that serve in the colonia, and the Escalantes that serve with us and other ministries. It was a great and refreshing evening.
Today the group of 40 or so will meet us at church and we will meet tonight to discuss the details of this week's schedule of building two houses and community out reaches in Mexico.


After years serving the people in Mexico,and hosting groups to do the same, we are trying to carve out some family time. Lea's first birthday party Saturday was a no Brainerd. We flew in to Chicago on Thursday,Paula and I both fighting off the flu. I spent all day Friday in bed,because Saturday was the big, and I mean big,party.
Kristin and Larry rented the Jump Zone indoor bounce park for 3 hours to host the event. The girls made all kinds of "bug" snacks, veggie trays and desserts. Pizza, beef, and chicken were delivered and about 80 people came to celebrate. It was a great day!
Lea, even though she didn't know what was all the fuss about had the best time enjoying her cake. Truly the highlight of the day.
Now we're home, the truck is loaded with siding, and we're getting ready for the new group coming over the weekend to build two houses.


Over the last 4 weeks, we have been late with many different things. Missed church and Sunday School two weeks in a row, while attending Church in Mexico. I failed to get a prayer request in to our Home Church so they can pray for us, missed a payment on a credit card, and for What? SPENDING OURSELVES ON BEHALF OF THE POOR.
3 groups from Illinois and Iowa have come, a team from the ministry that houses deported men and women in Mexico helped us build a house, plus the Power Ministry came last Sunday for devotions at the Community Center. It's been the busiest January ever, and we have loved every minute.