Dear friends.

Happy New Year!!
I am up late finishing up some last details for my workshop tomorrow at a local Bible Institute, so just wanted to send you a quick email to update you and give you some prayer requests for January.  Please pray for us as we get a month that is heavy with Teaching and Training Opportunities.

January 13th,20th, 27th. Maris will be doing short workshops on Biblical Counseling for our core planting team.
January 1st. Kick off for our series on First Principles of the Faith. Preaching on "Good resolutions vs God resolutions"
January 7th. Teaching a workshop at IBCI (Bible Institute) on Servant Leadership.
January 8th. Teaching the kids class (La Fuentecita) and presenting a short "distinctive" on giving.
January 15th. Preaching on Baptism.
January 20nd Seminar and Introduction for the "Truth Project" more on this soon.
January 22th Preaching on Cultivating our Relationships.
January 28th  Officiating the wedding of our great friends Gustavo (Brazil) and Amy (USA)

Discipleship Opportunities. Maris continues to meet with her Wednesday night girls and I am so excited to see how those relationships have been deepening. She has also been approached by a really influential 11th grader and they have been having some great times together. Please continue to pray for those opportunities as well as her relationship with many of our ladies in the church. She is pretty awesome... (non married single bros... marry well!!) ahah. Anyways, on my part I wanted to ask for your prayers as I have started a book study (Don't waste your life) with a group of guys from church. I am hoping that his would become an accountability group (idea that somehow is totally unheard of after 100 years of missionary history in Ecuador) Please pray as this is a group that I have been spending time in the gym and through conversations they seem to have a great desire to pass that superficial level of relationships.

Alliance Academy (Academics). We will be finishing the semester in two weeks. Please pray for more opportunities to love on the kids. Please also pray for the great amount of work (reports, write ups, report cards, observations, testing) that are part of closing a Semester and how to do that with excellence as we manage our various responsabilities.

Alliance Academy (Dorm parents). We got news a few days ago that one of our kids is leaving the country in two weeks. It has been a heavy issue in our hearts as he is a great kid, but is really close to "religion".  He is not a believer and has had a really hard time adapting to the country, the school and his life in Ecuador. We are sad to think that he is leaving and we ask you to join us on continuing to pray for his salvation and God's plan for his life. Please also pray for thoughts of discouragement of "did we do enough?"

Speaking of people leaving the last week has been really hard emotionally. Today was the memorial service for a beloved friend of my Hoffman family (and mine since I met him last year) in the US. We are thankful that he is in glory with the Lord. Our prayers go for his family that has been a great example of putting Christ on display through this hard time.
On the other hand, the Moncayos (Fernando and Dalila) are packing and moving January 20th to the US to reconnect with my sister and brother that have been there for the last 3 years. We were able to have the whole family over and it was a great family celebration. As joyous as it was it was also hard to visit the house were I grew up and think that "our house" will be owned by someone else in a few weeks. The Lord has been so good and is teaching us about putting our treasures in heaven, yet loving in a godly way the blessings that He has given on Earth. I will probably write more about this on the blog but I just wanted to ask for your prayers.

Anyways... through it all... we are so excited to be here in Ecuador. I have been back for 3 years now and I realize that either in the US or Ecuador, we will always be pilgrims and aliens longing for "home". We are thankful for a God that promises for a home that is not in the US, or Ecuador, but with Him in heaven when there will be no more goodbyes, nor tear, nor sorrows... As we start 2012 we could not be more excited to see God's hands leading us so clearly and showing us our part on His big plan here in Ecuador.  There are many needs and decisions that we must make soon. Would you please prayerfully consider joining us and allowing us to continue spreading the name of Jesus in Ecuador? The Lord didn't need to but He has shown us and made us committed to Ecuador as never before. Honestly, it's a beautiful yet scary place to be. There is so much going on and I continue to think of a quote that my friend Geoff Williams shared with me... "it's not if God is doing something but that I don't want to miss it!" Maris and I both feel that way and wanted to say thank you for your love and your desire to keep up with what is going on here in Ecuador. We wouldn't be able to do it without your prayers! This new year has a lot of new challenges and exciting things coming.

Blessings and Strictly Jesus!

Los Moncayos

PS. We are working on a new website and video.. Keep your eye out for that and let us know if you would like to help us :) For now.. here is a trailer I did for an event at church. Enjoy.

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1 comment:

  1. Jota y Maris! We love you guys and love serving our Master with you too. Indeed it's another full month for you guys, but I don't doubt that HIS grace will be more than sufficient and HE will give you glimpses of His greatness and glory to fill your hearts with joy. Thanks for sharing your part in HIS story! This was my first visit to your blog. I hope to see more. Love, Amie