Valencia January-February 2019
The new calendar year has arrived and the social networks are flying with clever videos and elaborated messages welcoming 2019. In real terms it is just like the first day´s account in Genesis 1:3 “…And there was evening and there was morning, the first day”, and ever since it has been the same. The night begins the day, and the day ends as the following night approaches. It is a paradox, because in our understanding we register the beginning of the day when the first ray of sun fly over the horizon and lights covers the earth, but it is just half-day gone. The following 12 hours is the time for working – some workers will disagree if they have worked a night shift – but for most of us it is the time in which there is light and hence we must work. Just as the Lord responded to His disciples who questioned Him for wanting to return to Judea: “…Are there not twelve hours in the day?…” John 11:9 The Lord wanted to bring back Lazarus from the dead, and He did. Only He could do it.
However much we worry and work endless hours, at the end it is His work to bring people from spiritual death. What a wonderful sense of comfort and hope all this brings to us, that it is Him, Jesus Christ who can save and give life. We all begin 2019 with expectations, but our focus should be in seeing Him perform real miracles. Let us pray for one another, and encourage one another in serving Him faithfully preaching the Gospel of grace.
At La Parroquia, similar to last year, we are taking January in our stride. We have prepared some material from Proverbs: “Sabiduría: El Arte de Vivir” (Wisdom: The Art of Living) to cover the whole of January, literally its 31 days. Each day, a chapter from Proverbs. The whole congregation together will read and answer searching questions to understand wisdom and apply all that we learn to our lives. Hence, each morning beginning at 6:30am until 9:00am the doors of the church will be open for people to come together for prayer, making time for sharing and reading Proverbs. We need to do the things the Lord asks us to do: to pray; He will do the saving and transforming of lives in dire need of salvation. It is our plan to finish with a day of prayer, most likely, a 12 hour prayer meeting. We trust the Lord will draw near and speak to us, and also guide us into a conviction of totally depending upon Him.
During January, the Evangelical churches also have organized a time for fellowship and prayer under the banner of “Unity in our Diversity”, from Tuesday 15th until Saturday 19th January, when there will be prayer meetings at different locations. The Evangelical Alliance covering Spain and the rest of Europe is promoting unity in all the aspects of the Gospel: Unity in love; unity in Spirit; unity in Faith; unity in Baptism; unity in One Body; unity in Mission; unity in Vision and Unity in Christ. We are looking forward as churches in Valencia to spend time together seeking the Lord and preserve that unity all inclusive in Christ.
As on previous occasions I have been invited again to speak at a Catholic Seminary as an Evangelical Theologian (Friday 18th January). It is a considerable opportunity as I will be preaching to men preparing for the priesthood. I can only preach the only righteousness found in Christ, so I will value your prayers and ask for an unction beyond human abilities that would make the difference.
In the second week of January the final phase (3) begins for distribution of non-perishable food to nearly 180 families. As Asociación Ekklesia Solidaria we are ever so grateful for the opportunity to serve and give practical help to so many people. The food finally will arrive by March, that is how long the whole process last. We present all the documentation for each family and three months later the food parcels come through and is delivered in a special day set apart. Please, pray for each one of the stages and all the logistic for the distribution. Volunteers do give their precious time whenever they can, hence I am asking to join me in petitioning the Lord for people with a generous heart to give up their time to serve others. Pray for harmony, a good spirit and a sense of working as a team. Pray for protection.
We are expecting news from the authorities of the Internment Centre for Foreigners to provide all the accreditation to enter the Centre in Valencia. I have been asked to become the Coordinator to manage the possibility of incorporating volunteers. Pray for all the aspects of training and preparation plus a profitable working relationship within the Centre. There are other groups working there like the Red Cross. Give thanks for this wonderful opportunity.
Continue to pray for us in leadership to have discernment to listen to the Lord’s direction in all our preparation for teaching and preaching. During the Lord’s Days in January we will also be studying Proverbs. Remember also the work among the young people of the church, pray for those who teach in Sunday School and other groups during the week.
Thank you for remembering us as a family. Joel will be having final exams in January and June to conclude his universities studies; pray for discipline and for guidance towards the future. Spain has a high unemployment rate for recent graduates, so pray for peace and patience. Elis also will be finishing his studies in June, so these few months will be important for making the right decisions for the future. As most of you are aware, Brexit is looming in the horizon and we will be directly affected. We trust the Lord is in control of each situation, pray for peace.
Thanks for being there.