Archive for March, 2017

Dear Friends,

This morning I attended a Hispanic Pastors Conference hosted by Bethel University. I was invited to attend with Reverend and Evangelist Sammy Wanyonyi, founder of Shine in the World Ministries. Sammy is the person who invited me to go with his team to Kigali, Rwanda, last August on my very first mission trip. He was invited to speak to the group of Hispanic Pastors today for a few minutes about a new initiative, a movement that God has put in his heart called Merge Twin Cities. The purpose of Merge is to unite the Twin Cities by bringing the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the almost one million immigrants that live here. Of those, 90% are unchurched.

There are over $220 thousand Hispanics in the Twin Cities and I was invited because I now serve on the Board of Shine as well as Chair of the Merge movement to represent the Hispanic population. I feel very inadequate serving in this position but Sammy asked me and I said yes in faith. All of us Board members are believing together that God will move right here in our own Twin Cities and will bring churches together for the same purpose—to bring the message of Christ to the immigrants. So my next mission trip may be right in my back yard!

This morning we were only able to attend the first class that was part of the conference. Dr. Juan, who taught the class, is an excellent teacher of the Word. I learned today so much about the four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John). I learned that each Gospel was written with a purpose and that God instructed the writers of each Gospel to use facts, stories, history, parables, teachings, theology, and deep explanations of certain parts of the Gospels so we (all of us today) could learn—learn everything we could from the Scriptures without making the Scriptures (the Bible in itself) an idol.

Each Gospel is different and even though Matthew, Mark, and Luke cover some of the same stories, they are each unique in the way they are written and in the order of which some stories are told. Also, some books have more chapters than others (Matthew has 28 versus Mark that has only 16) but it’s for a reason. Matthew and Luke, for example, include Jesus’ genealogy and talk about His family while the others don’t. The Gospel of John, for example, is the only one who describes Jesus as the “Lamb of God” right away in Chapter 1. Everything I learned today sparked the learner in me and now I want to start studying the Bible in a more serious way, not just read a passage here and there as I usually do.

I encourage you today to dig deeper into the Scriptures and learn, learn—learn all you can about the life of Jesus. Get to know Him as a person. It’s a never ending journey of learning and the deeper you get, the more you find out how much there is to learn about the things of God. The more you learn about the person of God, the more you will fall in love with Him and the more you will feel His amazing, abundant love for you!

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Dear Friends,

Today I was meditating on the Scripture in James 4: 2 that says, “…And yet the reason you don’t have what you want is that you don’t ask God for it.” I have suffered from headaches and migraines for over thirty years now. Through those years I have believed that God can heal me and as the years passed, I stopped believing. Not that I don’t believe that God can heal others. I know He can and does. But the question is, will He heal me? Why hasn’t He healed me yet? What do I have to do to be healed?

Two years ago I started my quest to discover all my triggers—everything and anything that triggers my body to react by having a headache, which most times turns into migraines. In fact, one of the books I’m writing right now will be called “My Life as a Migraineur – My Life Living with Pain when No One Knew.” In this book, I share my stories throughout my life since I started suffering from headaches at age eighteen. The purpose of this book is to encourage others to discover their own triggers sooner than I did.

As of today, I have discovered 25 triggers that affect me. Many of those triggers such as being in a place that is too bright or too noisy, or not eating on time, not sleeping enough hours, and event my worst one—all preservatives, food additives, and artificial sweeteners, I have learned to control somewhat. However, there are other triggers like hormones and the barometric pressure changes in Minnesota that I absolutely cannot control.

After studying and researching all these triggers I have come to the realization that “It’s in my DNA” like a mean doctor once told me (which is, by the way, what inspired me to write the book). There is no more triggers to discover. I have learn to accept that “it is what it is.” I refuse to go on preventative medications because they all have terrible side effects that, in my opinion, are worse than enduring the pain of a migraine. Therefore, I only have one last thing to pursue in my quest for healing—believe in God’s healing again!

Even though I have asked God to heal me many times in the past thirty years, I have decided to renew my faith and to start the faith journey again in this area of my life. This is my prayer I wrote today in my personal journal that I will share with you so you can believe with me:

Lord, I have asked you to heal me and you haven’t. I’ve had faith and have lost it. Now I want to believe in your healing power again—your healing power to heal ME! Not just other people. I know you heal others, maybe not everyone who asks or who believes but those you choose to heal. How can I be one of those special people you choose to heal, Lord?

You say in James 4:2 “You do not have because you do not ask.” Well, I’m asking you again to heal me from headaches and migraines—forever. I want to share my testimony of healing with the world. I want to inspire people to believe again, to have faith in you again. I want to be a walking testimony of your love and healing power.

There is nothing else to discover, no more triggers to find out. It is in my DNA, like that mean doctor said. It is what it is. But you can change that reality, Lord. You are God. You created me. I’m not going to ask you anymore why you won’t heal me. I will simply believe. I choose to believe in your healing power.

For now, I will wait on you for the rest of my days until I receive my healing. I will not give up believing.

This is my prayer and I ask you that you believe with me. If there is something you are waiting on God to do for you, start by believing again. Have faith. And then wait on the Lord. We will wait together.

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Dear Friends,

I recently read an article on the topic of “Waiting on God” that resonated with me. It seems like most of us are waiting for something in our lives. And it seems to me that most of us also struggle in similar ways during the wait. Why is it so hard to wait on God? I think because our timing is not the same as His. It is also hard because sometimes we are asking God for something that we are not ready to receive in some way. Because we cannot see the future like God sees it, we don’t understand why He makes us wait so long—what seems to be often an eternity.

Other times we may be asking God for something that, if we were to receive it, may destroy our lives. We don’t know that, of course, but God does and that’s why He will not give us those particular requests. That’s when trusting God comes in. I believe in God and that He loves me. But trusting God with every aspect of my life is difficult. Some areas are easier to give up to God than others. For example, right now I’m believing God to increase my business. In the meantime, I continue to prepare, learn, educate myself, and network—sowing the seeds. But when I continue to plant and plant and the harvest takes what seems forever to come, I sometimes get discouraged. The reality is that businesses take a while to grow and I must be patient—a virtue I don’t possess. So when I ask God to teach me patience, He makes me wait. And many times I don’t recognize it that I’m in a waiting mode precisely because I asked God to teach me patience. It seems I have not learned yet!

Sometimes though when I reflect on my current prayer of increasing my business, I don’t realize the precious gift I currently have of having extra time. If God is giving me this extra time to pursue the rest of my calling in my life, then I must take this opportunity to do so. I need to continue sowing the seeds and simply wait until the right time comes when I can handle the increased business.

I love the fact that right now I can pursue my calling and do the three things I love—work with small community banks, speak about leadership and share God wherever I can, and also write my books. I’m writing three books right now but it’s not the pressure people think it is. I simply write on each book as I’m inspired.

I also have learned to ask God to put in my heart the desires He wants me to desire so when I want something, I know it’s from Him and He will grant me those desires—in His timing. I have learned to be content but need to continue to learn to wait for God to grant my prayers at the right time. I hope you will also work on waiting on God. Think of the areas where God is still working in your heart and also the other things you can do or take care of while you wait. Doing these things will help you wait until your prayers are answered or until you realize that God has other plans that are different than your prayers. Then you’ll need to accept His plan over yours and be content.

The point is for us to learn to be content with God’s plans for our lives and also to trust Him with every area of our lives. In the meantime, as you wait, know that almost every person is waiting for something. You are not alone.

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