Saturday, September 29, 2012

Don´t Ignore Or Lose Your Freedoms

I would speculate that there isn´t another country in the entire world that has the abundant freedoms that we do in the United States of America.

What is pictured here is a protest handbill, I found it yesterday on a wall in Ensenada, BCN, Mexico. It depicts the fact that freedom of speech or expression, as it indicates on the flyer, is often limited, or at least restricted and at times, even illegal in Mexico.

Let me talk about an area I am well aware of, that is radio programming in Mexico. We can talk analytically about Protestants, Lutherans, Baptists and nearly every other denomination, religion, church or religious leader in a broadcast and not face any reprisal at all. But if we, in country, talk or express a questioning opinion, or publish or promote anything about this certain other belief, we can be fined, have our program canceled and even lose our license to be on the air.

The fact is that back in July of 1993, freedom of speech and of religion finally came to Mexico, its obvious that it is still in it´s infant stages. The truth is that in many regions of Mexico, ones that are steeped in this certain religion´s teachings, people of any other faith are often persecuted, ridiculed and even ostracized in public and in private. Matthew 5:11, ¨Blessed are you, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.¨

I thank God that in the north part of the Baja Peninsula, where Rancho Santa Fe Mexico Mission is located, in the ´free zone,´ we have much more freedom than do other areas of the country. At the mission base and at the church as in our services to outlying areas, we do sing, preach and teach the Gospel of Christ, not mixed with any human trappings, colors or confusion. As we train in the truth here, the hearers are taking what they learned here and going back to their homelands in other parts of Mexico carrying with them the clear and valid truth of God. John 8:36, ¨If the Son therefore shall make you free, you shall be free indeed.¨

 Thank you for being an important part of this ministry, where the truth of God reigns supreme and is the focal point of all that is said and done by Rancho Santa Fe Mexico Mission and the base´s church, El Camino Agape De San Vicente, A. R. This is not a one-person ministry, it takes team work, consistency and continuance to make strong, permanent and life-changing inroads in to what might other wise be closed and unreachable avenues to the human heart and soul. Before being given even limited levels of freedom of speech, the people here were encouraged to believe in formalism, tradition and to follow the commandments of men and to obey the history of unsaid church and to trust in these things as being more important that the Scriptures, the actual and very Word of God. Matthew 15:9, ¨ But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

God Bless You All.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Looking For Hidden Areas To Share The Good News

Even though I go to a lot of different places and see a large variety of distinctive peoples and share the Gospel under some very tough circumstances, I am limited as to what I can photograph and share with my friends in the north. As a missionary, according to the national government, I am restricted as to what I can utilize to show you what it is that I do and where it is I go and how the places are when I find them. Even though I don´t see myself as doing any heroic acts or find myself as having adventurous acts of daring-do, I get out to areas that other pastors, missionaries and Christian groups just don´t go. Nevertheless, I have to be careful about ill-use or misuse of the people I find in these hidden or forgotten areas. I can not exploit the inhabitants, neither the adults nor the children that I come across in these outlying areas. So, I try hard not to do anything that would come over as questionable or against the government´s wishes. Hebrews 13:17, ¨Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.¨
I have been asked, ´how do you find these villages, work camps or these hidden villages?´ Part of the answer is easy, I look for dirt roads that show a lot of tire tracks, that have electricity poles going down them and often I just hear from other camp workers that tell me I need to go out to here or there to speak with the persons that I´ll find working there. It seems to me that there are more areas like these than one would ever think. Luke 14:23, "And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled." Some times it takes a day or two to get from San Vicente to a camp. Other times it can all be done in a day. But, I do believe that all people should be reached and I try to make sure that I do as much as one person can. I understand that God is not willing that any should perish. 2 Peter 3:9, ¨The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.¨
I mostly travel alone and part of that reason is financial. If I take a group of national pastors or Bible students or local friends, I am the one that has to pay for the trip. So I find that it´s just cheaper for one to go than for many to go. Plus, I sleep in my truck and I don´t have room for anybody but me to sleep in the bed of my vehicle. Plus, when I am ready to go, there is only room for one. My guitar, Bibles, television and VHS/DVD player, bedroll, water and food and small gas stove pretty much leaves me little room to sleep in. Some times, when I know it´s not going to be a lengthy trip, I bring one of my dogs along. I enjoy sharing the Gospel and am willing to be spent for the furtherance of the Good News. So, I ask that people pray for my physical health. And, that I should always Spanish-language Bibles to share and Christian movies to show in the camps. Also, that I have an angel or two to follow me on my travels. Philippians 4:19, ¨But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.¨
God Bless All of You! Together, we are making a difference in the hearts, minds and souls of many people that would otherwise, not have access to the truth about God´s Love in Christ! Romans 5:5, ¨And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.¨ (On this day, the sand was so hot and intense that it melted the glue on my shoe and I actually walked the sole off of my shoe. I changed shoes and sat down on a rock and took a photo of myself while I rested and waited for the sun to go down a bit.)