Monday Evening finds us with a few moments to reflect on the past sever days in Nicaragua. Tommy Walker and I flew into Managua last Wednesday night and then Flew on Thursday across the country to the Atlantic Coast Community of Puerto Cabezas. Tommy and I met Cairo Fariñas (long time interpreter and friend) as well as John Fornelli (our contact for the Pastor’s in Puerto Cabezas) and Phil Ogilvie (a younf pastor from Fellowship Dallas where my friend Gary Brandenberg is the pastor). The one and a half hour flight was uneventful and we landed in a very interesting place where about half of the houses are build on stilts to keep them out of the water in bad weather.
What we found in PC was absolutely amazing. We met Pastor Santiago (James) who is a significant leader among the pastor’s in the area and whose story of running –as a deserter – from the Sandinista army is thrilling and has the fingerprint of God all over it. I will just say that we were standing in a small store with Santiago when a man walked in and greeted him and they talked at length. We later found out that this man was the Colonel of the army who had signed the warrant for Santiago’s death after he escaped from prison. Now Santiago is that man’s pastor. He lauhed and laughed as he told us the full story which includes the line, “I left and I only had one shoe.”
Santiago, Joseph, Carlos and Eliseo are all pastors who are very anxious for us to come and add to their training. Santiago told us that when he started pastoring his bible started somewhere in Exodus. These men love the Lord, love their people and blew us away with their passion to not only get the training in the Bible Institute but to share it with the pastors who are working with the Misquito Peoples who live up the Coco River.
Tommy and I returned Saturday in time to meet the rest of the team (Chris, Jim A. Senior, Robert Burks and Toadd and Adlee Watkins). After a good night of rest we made our way through Nica Masaya on on to Rivas. The Bible Institute has started with a bang. We had over 100 in attendance the first day (a new Monday record) and had a great interaction. Chris, Tommy and I are teaching on The Docrtrine of the Chruch and the Pastor’s Role. Far and away the highlight of the day for me was the last session which was taught by Melvin Loza (one of our Nica Translators). I have absolutely no idea what Melvin actually said but I do know for certain that he had the entire crowd in the palm of his hand for 50 minutes at the end of a day in 90 degree heat. He was awesome and Iw as so proud to see the young boy I met in Corinto in the Winter of 2003 standing up there as a powerful teacher for his own people. God is really at work in his life (not to mention that he is engaged to a sweet girl named Darlene.
The work at the Feeding Center has gotten off to a great start as well. A roof leak has been diagnosed and repaired. A drainage canal has been expanded and reinforced and plans being made to construct a used tire playground. All of this while both minor and major soccer games are being played and Todd and Adlee are defending themselves from the attacks of the little boys. And they all think Robert Burks is Santa Claus. Maybe he is!
For the Only Cause that Matters
Ken, for the Team