I want to start by apologizing for running out of time to send out a prayer request, but was very grateful that Ivonne was able to help me with that. This past week I had the opportunity to go on a vision trip with Cary Butler from Quitman Texas to a place called Benito Juarez, Chiapas. We were informed the last time we were in Chiapas that there were a couple communities in the jungle that were without evangelical influence, and feeling that the Lord has set me apart to proclaim the glories of His name to the unreached places in the world, I was convicted that we at least had to make an effort to seek the Lords guidance for this place.
We left in a bus from here on Monday the 30th of November and our goal was a place called Comitan. On this vision trip we wanted to seek out the best way, and most efficient way to get people to this area that we would be good stewards of God’s time and finances. I was informed of some cheap bus tickets from here to Comitan, which ended up being a mistake and costing a lot more money than I expected for or planned for, but I guess on a vision trip, as Mr. Butler informed me many times this past week, that those mistakes will be made. After arriving to Comitan we took a small jet to Benito Juarez, a small community of about 150 people. When we arrived we were met by two young men, one of them with a machete asking us why we were there. I responded by telling them that we were missionaries and were here to tell them of the Good News, and teach them from the Bible. They were a very closed people, and on our arrival to the town we were told that it would cost us to land that plane on their ground, another expense that we had to learn though. After talking with the authorities there they decided to have a town meeting with the men to see if we would be able to sleep there, and how much it would cost us to go see their lake, another unexpected expense. At this town meeting I was given the opportunity to preach the Good News! I spoke of the beauty of nature and how it proclaims the glory of Christ, and that we as creation were created for that same purpose. I felt that this sermon was met by the Holy Spirit and that some were affected by the words of God. We were able to meet a guy named Amadeo, who was a commander in the Zapatistas (If you are not familiar with this group I encourage you to look them up on the internet, they play a huge role in Chiapas. They are a group of rebels that take whatever means are necessary to get what they want.), but now just works in the town there. He has great leadership skills, and seemed somewhat affected by the Word of God. I had dunk all my water and asked if there was a place that I would be able to buy water, and was told “no” to just drink out of the faucet, that the water would be clean through the mountains. After giving thanks to my Father I drank freely! This week we were unable to get clean water, so we drank from rivers and a lake, but through grace up to this point have not been affected. That night we were serenaded to sleep by the monkeys screaming at one another. I will have to admit that I loved to sounds of the jungle at night! The next day we went to their lake which I posted some photos of here, and got to see some remains of old Indian worship that some believe has not totally died off from this place. They are known for sacrificing their children to the worship of water. When we arrived back in Benito Juarez that evening a group of people were gathered at the church building there to have their worship service. I sat back and watched for a few moments as six women sat in a circle with fire in the middle of them. After chanting for awhile they began to pass a little girl around over the fire. This is such a needy place! Please pray for the people of Benito Juarez!
Then next day we set out on a journey that would first lead us to another community called Chumzero. We walked through the jungle on a muddy path for right around 4 miles; I had my backpack that weighed probably 50 pounds!! It was tiring! When we arrived there we were able to take a swim in a river, and it was very refreshing! We then entered Chumzero and the men from Sabanilla that were with us were so afraid because these people are known for killing anyone that they have a problem with. God is so good, and we entered this town and were accepted so kindly, and the people there were so grateful to receive a gospel of John!! This is a community of about 60 people, if that, and there are no roads leading to this place. These people have never heard of the love of Christ, nor of His salvific work. We were received by an elderly man named Manuel, and he told us that we were welcome in his house anytime. We did not spend much time here because we still had a long journey ahead of us to arrive in Sabanilla before dark. After we left this town we walked another 5 and a half miles through the jungle on a muddy path and arrived in Sabanilla right at dark. The next day we woke at three A.M. to take a bus to Comitan, which was five hours on a rough dirt road only to take another bus to San Cristobal, just to get on a bus that would take us thirteen hours back to Mexico City! It was a long day!!
Having had the opportunity to spend time in prayer, through walking 9.5 miles through the jungle, I feel that the Lord is leading Sing For Joy Missions to be involved in proclaiming the truths of God to the people of Benito Juarez and Chumzero. They are two small communities, and it is costly to get there, but the Lord has commanded us to preach “not where Christ has already been named” and these two towns are exactly that. On this vision trip I felt that I also I made some mistakes, that were costly, but that will help as we plan our next trip into this jungle. It looks like we will leave Monday January 25th with seven Mexicans to make the next journey to these people! It was my desire on arriving here in Mexico that I would disciple men, and get them involved in ministry, and this is taking place! These seven young men and women will be from my discipleship groups that I am leading right now, and will go with hearts consumed by the fire of God. I ask that you as the church do not forget about this work and our ministry. That you will commit to praying for these people in the jungles of Chiapas, and about how you can hold the rope as we go! We will also be planning a trip to take to these places from the states in the future. Please, please, please begin to intercede on behalf of these people!!! Hold the rope!!