Firewood from Smiles
“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” Phillipians 4:19
Kuwait is one of the communities on the other side of the Amazon River, in Peru. It’s just 15 minutes from us by boat. This last August we had the opportunity of spending some time there while the men went into the jungle to cut wood for construction. The first day I went with Katherin to cook.
When we arrived, Don Luis (the mayor of the village) took us to the house they offered for us to cook in. We soon realized that there wasn’t any firewood, so Ruan helped us gather some sticks from the ground before he hurried off to where the other guys were waiting for him. Katherin kept searching for firewood, when she noticed some curious children standing at the edge of the soccer field next to the house watching her timidly. She greeted them and asked if they could help her search for sticks and dry leaves, they gladly helped her. The children stayed with us all morning, which gave us the opportunity to spend time with them and teach them some Christian songs. It was a beautiful experience.
When we arrived the following day to cook, we found them waiting for us. We were very excited and wanted to start looking for firewood again, when one the children told us to wait just a second. A moment later another of the children came walking into the house with a bag full of firewood. Wonderful! They had cut it and brought it for us. How great and wonderful is our God, his promises are true and real.
Each of these little ones are used by God as instruments of his blessing to us on a daily basis. This was just one of the many blessings that God has brought us through them.
Decide today to trust in Him
“And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.” Matthew 21:22
It was about 6 in the morning when a boy arrived and asked if we could massage his mom. “Massage her?” I asked, then I thought that maybe she fell and hurt her leg or her hips. So I asked the boy: “What’s wrong with your mommy?” He responded that she was about to have the baby.
Massage her? A baby? I felt confused. I immediately asked God for wisdom. I told everyone in the house and we got together to pray and ask for divine direction and protection for this lady and her baby. Johanna, Jessika, and I prepared ourselves and left for the community. We talked about the possibility that they baby may not be in position. This filled us with worry and fear. The boy had run off to school without giving us directions to his house, but with the help of some neighbors we were able to find it. We found them waiting for us. While leading us to the room where the mother was, the father explained to us that the baby was not in position. We entered the room and found her sitting on a sheet on the floor with her feet up against the wall. I checked her and found that the baby was in a horizontal position and that her water had broken. “Oh Lord!” I thought, “What can we do?” I had never been in a situation like this, and though I knew what one should do, I had never done a massage to guide a baby into position. We looked for the community’s midwives, but none of them could be found. One had gone to Leticia, and the others were working in their fields far away. Then God brought Matthew 21:22 to mind:”And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.” So, Johanna, Jessika, and I, along with everyone in the house, including the children, knelt down to ask God to please guide the baby into position since none of us know how to do it. Then I made some phone calls to ask for advice.
Everyone told me that the only options are to perform the massage or to just keep waiting. So I prayed again and told God that we didn’t know how to perform this type of massage, that the baby ran the risk of being asphyxiated by the umbilical cord if we didn’t do it right, that He needed to do it, our give us the wisdom to do it right. So, while the three of us kept praying silently, I placed my hands on her stomach and started rubbing it lightly. To my surprise, I felt the baby move almost immediately. It continued to move until it was in position, ready to be born. How wonderful is our God! He really hears our prayers, and worked this miracle! To his glory a beautiful and healthy boy was born. We all knelt down again to thank God for hearing us and showing us his power.
How amazing it is to know that no matter our circumstances, we have the opportunity to call out to God in prayer, He is always willing to hear us and help us. The LORD hath heard my supplication; the LORD will receive my prayer. Psalm 6:9
Katherin Ortiz Parra
The Work of the Holy Spirit in the Life of Cataco
By Roger Ortiz
When we arrived 2 years ago, one of the the things I noticed most, was that we always needed to watch our stuff because the local people were constantly looking what they could steal, and many times they did steal our stuff. If they didn’t come around to see what they could steal, they were coming over to see what other economical benefit they could gain from us.
One of these people is Crusildo. One of the men of the community. “Cataco”, as we all know him, has lived here all of his life along with his wife and 8 kids. (4 boys and 4 girls) Now after 2 years of work in the community, we can start to see the work that God is doing in the hearts of everyone, and especially in the heart of Cataco.
The other day, we left one of the cell phones out in the only spot where you can get cell service. A little bit later it started raining. Cataco came over, picked up the phone and brought it to us because he noticed that it was getting wet in the rain. This is a small evidence of the work that God is doing in his heart. He has gone from wanting to steal our stuff to wanting to take care of it. This was not the only time that he has taken care of our stuff without us asking him to. One time I forgot the battery (think car battery) in our boat along the river bank. He noticed that some children were over there playing with it, so he sent one of his daughters to our house to inform us.
One Sabbath evening we were having vespers, and during prayer time we prayed for him and his family. When we opened our eyes, Cataco was standing right outside the house listening. How exciting to see him there! We invited him into the house. He told us that he liked the hymns we sing and also when we share with him about God. He said that he wanted to know more, and that he would like it if we could have worship over at his house. So last week we came together at his house to sing and praise God. When we finished he invited us to come again.
Now we can trust Cataco. We have even asked him to keep an eye over our stuff when we have had to leave for various days. The work of God is growing in the hearts of the community members and the Holy Spirit is touching their hearts. In the life of this man we can see a little bit of what He can do in the lives of the whole community as He gives us strength to continue His work. Marantha! The Lord is coming soon!
The World Ends When One Dies
My sister and I went to visit a man in the community that had questions about the Sabbath, but when we arrived at his house only his son, Jimmy, was there. A few weeks ago, I had given him a bible and told him to read it. I now asked if he had been reading it, and he said, “Yes”. When I asked him what he had been reading he responded that he had been reading Revelation. I asked him why he had been reading Revelation and he told me that he was intrigued by it because he had heard that the end of the world was close.
“I am reading Revelation but I don’t understand much about the end of the world,” said Jimmy, “What I think is that the world ends when one dies.”
Without debating his statement, I explained that God loves us. That is why he left us this book. And prophecy helps us understand the time in which we live and how to escape Satan’s delusions in these final days. I also explained that it is easier to understand revelation if one studies it along with Daniel.
“I want to learn about prophecy”, said Jimmy. “Would you like it if we studied the bible right now?” I asked. “Yes”, he answered with a smile. And so, after prayer we studied from the book of Daniel.
Jimmy is only one example of the hundreds of thousands of people who are concerned about the end of the world, but have misunderstandings about it. Who will be a laborer with God to take the light and banish darkness? Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? That is God’s question. What is your answer?