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Day 12 – March 17, 2019

I slept very well last night.  It was quiet and comfortable, especially after taking a warm shower.  That felt really good.  Awoke this morning and got around for the day.  I then went into the guesthouse dining area and met another man who was here working for HCJB.  He comes from Toronto and will be here for a couple weeks.  Also there was a team of people from Orlando here to do some mission work.  They had arrived yesterday, I believe and will be here for another week.  Breakfast was very good giving me a good start for the day.  I now am waiting on Jane to text me when she is coming to pick me up.  We plan to go to the artisans market here in downtown Quito to browse and shop some.  When I come on these trips I shop for gifts to take back to the family.  

I started my day reading a passage in Deuteronomy that talks about dealing with fear.  When we face uncertainty and even eminent danger the most common reaction is fear.  Fear can control us suddenly and completely if we let it.  It seems to be a natural response.  To master fear and replace it with peace and determination to face the issues before us takes strength and courage.  And that comes through faith.  As we walk with God, He assures us of His presence and often assists us as we serve Him and carry out His work in our world.  The more we sense His presence, the stronger our faith becomes.  This pushes away any fear that might creep into our minds when God asks us to do something that takes us out of our comfort zone.

In Genesis chapter 5 we read about a man named Enoch.  We don’t learn much about this man other than what he walked with God.  In fact, this is mentioned twice.  “…Enoch walked faithfully with God 300 years and had other sons and daughters.  Altogether Enoch lived a total of 365 years.  Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.”  That’s all we know about Enoch but the legacy he leaves is incredible.  What better role for us than to walk faithfully with God?  That mission is the foundation of our lives.  God invites us to walk with Him and to do that requires the word faithfully.  We step out in faith and allow God through Jesus to lead us and guide us and empower us to carry out His will and help build His kingdom.  Believe me, there is nothing more satisfying and encouraging than walking with Him.

In Deuteronomy 31 we read about Moses coming to the end of his life of walking faithfully with God and speaking to the Israelites as they were facing a faith walk into the Promised Land.  Moses encouraged the people to step out in faith and follow God courageously and without fear.  He encouraged them to trust God and obey Him fully.  And he said the Lord will deliver them.  What they need to do at this point was to “be strong and courageous.”  He said, “Do not be afraid or terrified of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you or forsake you.”  Then Moses said the same words to their new leader, Joshua.  And he says the same words to us when we walk with God and the route He is taking us on is clearly outside our comfort zone.  Ahead the path is dark and foggy.  It is like driving a car at night.  All you can see is what the headlights illuminate.  What is beyond that light is invisible.  Yet, God can see clearly the entire path.  He asks us not to trust in ourselves but to trust Him and He promises us that if we do, if we walk faithfully with Him, He will never leave us or forsake us.  

Leaving the comforts of home and routines of daily life and traveling to another country and then into a dangerous area takes faith and trust in the One who is inviting me to come along with Him to reach out to the people He loves and died for.  He tells me He loves the people of San Lorenzo as much as He loves me.  And He gives me the opportunity to share that love with these people, some of whom may have never heard about that love.  And when I clearly see that God is leading me this direction, I also hear in my head the words, “Be strong and courageous.  I will never leave you or forsake you.”  

Father, the past several days have been another incredible experience for me as You invited me to walk with you to San Lorenzo and to reach out and touch several people with Your grace and mercy and healing power.  Thank You, Lord, for this invitation.  Thank You, Lord, for infusing Jane and me and the others on her team with Your unfailing love and assurance.  Thank You, Lord, for giving me the opportunity to be Jesus to people I would never have the opportunity to meet otherwise.  Father, I pray for those people.  I pray for Jane, Damarys, Loida, Angelita, Maria Luisa, Carmen, Piedad, and Gonzalo who are Your instruments of love and healing to the people there.  I pray also for Phyllis who is back home and missing me terribly.  Please comfort her today and surround her with Your love.  Thank You, Lord!  Amen.

While waiting on Jane to come I was able to go online and attend our church in Ft. Wayne by live stream.  I felt like I was sitting in the congregation.  So far away from Ft. Wayne, IN, yet so close all because of technology and the Internet!  Jane came around 10 am to pick me up and we then went to the market to stroll and shop.  Jane picked up some things for the chili supper and I got a few gifts to take home.  We enjoyed just walking and looking.  Then we went to a restaurant not far away called the Sports Planet.  We have eaten there before and the food is good.  After lunch, Jane brought me back to the guesthouse where I finished packing for travel tomorrow and got some reading accomplished.  I even took a nap which felt good.  

Jane and I decided to have a light dinner and she would pick me up about 7 pm to go to the mall where the Sports Planet is and eat at another place there.  We went to a pizza place and enjoyed sharing a Hawaiian pizza.  After dinner I returned to the guesthouse and took another hot shower, which feels really good, and then finished packing my clothes from today.  Everything is now ready to travel.  

Before leaving for dinner I spent some time talking with Phyllis via FaceTime.  Again technology allows us to stay close and in visual contact with each other.  We had not done this before but this time we have utilized FaceTime several times while in San Lorenzo and Quito.  I am eager to be back home and be able to hold her close again.  

Father, thank You for this relaxing day.  Thank You for the opportunity for me to attend my home church while sitting here in Quito, thousands of miles away.  Thank You for Jane and the work she is doing on Your behalf here in Ecuador.  You have blessed her so much and through her blessed so many people in San Lorenzo.  I worship You, Lord.  It is such a privilege to be used by You to further Your work and build Your kingdom.  Thank You for equipping me to be able to serve You in this way by helping Jane.  Lord, I pray for Phyllis tonight.  Thank You for allowing us to have a rich marriage of 52 years so far.  I love her so much and am so thankful You brought us together.  I pray that she will sense Your presence with her in a special way tonight, Lord.  I pray for a good night’s sleep for both of us.  Thank You, Father.  Amen. 

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