Back to Cuba
This is my 14th trip in 7 years and I cannot be more excited about what has happened on this trip. I was joined by two lifelong friends, Mark Clark and Buddy Reed, from Johnson University days. I traveled with both in school music groups and now 45 years later we were together again.
Yes, the three amigos invaded Cuba and it will never be the same. But what we saw, heard and said was life changing for us and the Cubans we served. Hundreds of churches are now committed to or being trained in the Disciple Making system.
Man’s Plan Verses God
I bought 300 reading glasses to take to Cuba to use as a tool for a local church in a community outreach project. divided up the glasses between the three of us and prayed we would be able to get all of them into the country and to clear customs. After a 4-hour delay in customs, we came away with 100 of the 300. We were all depressed that we were not going to have the reading glasses for our first trip to Fomento. The preacher had advertised the event and was concerned, so he said, “I will be embarrassed in front of the people.” Mark asked me, “Did you bring the 100 glasses?” I said, “No, we need all 300 glasses because some of the magnification strengths were missing, but I did bring one pair.” We thought about it and decided to go ahead and get the people’s magnification strengths needed with the one pair. (Our original plan was to test them and then give them glasses.)
Our new plan is for the preacher and our director Yiosbel to now bring the glasses back and visit each new contact in their home. This opportunity to visit them in their home and give them my evangelistic book would not have happened if my first plan had worked. Who knew but God? WOW. We had over 70 people come to test for the reading glasses. The church when we got there had been down to 8 people because of the lack of space in their old meeting place. Now there are plenty of prospects for growth.
Tear Down That Wall!
Last year I raised money to help buy and construct a new church building. Thanks to all those who gave to this project. There is a saying in Cuba when things do not go as you planned you say, “It is Cuba.” Things are always changing back and forth, and you never know what to expect from one trip to another. We were not able to buy the place we were going to buy because of paperwork and because the land would have belonged to the government. The original place of worship was in a small home and could only hold 11 people. The new place has a building now and is totally dedicated as a church building. The first night we met it could hold 30 people. I looked at the place and the wall that divided the two rooms, and said, ‘Tear down that wall”. And we did. Now it will hold close to 70 people. In the future there is another wall to be torn down and then it will accommodate over 100 people. If you look closely you will see one of the two little mallets we used to tear down the wall. Bit by bit, and the wall came down to accommodate even more.
After the glasses campaign and the wall came down we had 40 of the 70 new people come to hear me preach the gospel. Now pray that the church will grow in this new environment. Pray for the preacher Riveron and his leaders to work and make new disciples. Again, thanks to all those who gave for this project.
Prayer Calendar for the Rest of the Year
INDIA TRIP The plans for this year is to make my first trip to India to work with John Dongervi, a native of India, but I still need someone to go with me on the trip. I have the material translated and ready to distribute, thanks again to Phil Casey and LATM, and 100 preachers are waiting to be trained. There is still some funding needed for the trip, but even with the funds I have I will not go alone. Please pray for someone who has been to India to come along with me on this trip. The plan is to go the last of August or first of September. Contact me at [email protected].