Saturday, August 29, 2009


Club Highlights:

-Friends Gary and Marielos Kurtz visited from Jaco and volunteered their time with the kids. Marielos brought the craft of pop can tops and ribbons for bracelets. Though a little complicated, the kids loved it!

-Jon met a sixteen-year-old teenager named Michelle who was bringing her four-year-old sister, Amanda, to the park. She is a young believer and excited about the weekly activities for the kids.

-Jon has decided to teach through the Roman’s Road before getting into the life of Christ. Today’s verse was 6:23
“For the wages of sin is death,
but the free gift of God is eternal life
through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

-During our game time in the field, a police car arrived and made a drug bust at the edge of the cement lot. The young men were selling marijuana, but only the drugs were taken and no arrests made because CR law says they have to have five offenses before jail time. On an upper-note, one of the female officers was the mother and aunt of two of the kids at club! I spoke to her and thanked her for their protection. God is good!

-Before club Jon lead another devotional before the boys soccer class and met one of the mothers. Marta is apparently a believer and is very active in the community wanting to see the park where we hold club become a safer environment (see previous highlight). Perhaps she will be a great support for Club de Ninos and RO4Y! Keep praying for divine appointments!

Prayer Requests:
  • Exam week went well. Only 3 months left until vacations! (Sorry to rub-it in your State-side “back-to-school” faces! Hah)!
  • Continue to pray for direction with the Club de Ninos and Rancho Oasis for Youth!
  • Pray for Jon’s parents as they arrive next Wednesday to spend a week with their granddaughters. Tabitha completes her first year of life on Tuesday, the first of September, and Naomi her third year, Friday, the fourth.

  • We are praying about attending the Calvary Chapel Missions conference in Janauary 2010. It would great opportunity to connect with some of our supporters in California and the Seattle area. Pray for God's direction concerning the trip.
  • Mare and I have been reading through 1 Corinthians and were reminded of the race and training that we take-on as believers. Pray for strength for us and yourselves in this spiritual training:
“Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.” -1 Corinthians 9:24-27

Naomi and Amanda

Saturday, August 22, 2009

La Guerra de Globos

Today we held our second Club de Niños! It was a blast.
(Check out the previous post if you missed last week’s details).

Prior to Club, Jon gave a short devotional at Douglas’s soccer class located at a nearby artificial-turf soccer field. There were roughly twelve boys averaging the age of 10 years-old. It was a simple message based on the first verse of the Roman’s Road: “As the Scriptures say, “No one is righteous— not even one” and the 10 commandments. I brought a small mirror and asked the kids to imagine God’s law as the only mirror they use to view themselves, rather than comparing themselves to others. Prayerfully, the image will stick! Or reflect!

Jon returned to the park to join Brooke, Marillyn and friends to begin the festivities. We began with some fun kids songs and proceeded with a balloon toss. After some drinks, the kids sat down for the devotional. Pray for wisdom for Jon for communicating God’s truth in Spanish; praise the Lord we have some English speaking Tico-friends who are more than willing to lend a hand with translation.
We ended our time together with watermelon and a HUGE water-balloon war! It was… wet!

This photo of some Club de Nino girls, was taken by Naomi,
who stands at roughly 36 inches

Prayer Requests:
  • PRAY: Continue to pray for “Club de Niños” our weekly outreach for the Los Parques neighborhood; ultimately the salvation of the children and families.
  • PRAISE: Jon’s computer has been restored! His co-worker Vinicio installed a new internal hard drive and ordered a new external disk drive for 135,000 colones, roughly $230. “The old-gal runs like she used to” and Vini blessed me with his collection of Spanish Christian Worship music.

  • PRAY & PRAISE: Jon made it through the first week of exams and has one more week left. Pray for wisdom and speed to prepare his remaining two exams and complete the grades. Please pray for endurance to finish the year strong (3 months left). Jon is struggling with some students, particularly his 9th grade class. However, the 10th graders helped Jon to bust a gut with their new versions of Grimm’s Fairy Tales written to the tunes of The Adam’s Family, Sponge Bob and “My Heart Will Go On” (theme song from the movie Titanic). Unfortunately, these performances were not recorded!
  • PRAY: We are working at establishing a stronger foundation with our devotional life individually and as a couple. Pray that God continues to give us a passion for Him!
  • PRAY: For our support team, that’s you guys. That God would put reminders on your hearts to pray and give financially!
“Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that abounds to your account. Indeed I have all and abound. I am full, having received from Epaphroditus the things sent from you, a sweet-smelling aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well pleasing to God. And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Now to our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen.” Philippians 4:17 - 20

Neighbor, friend, translator and sister-in-Christ,
Gily (in the cap) laughs along with a few girls from club.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Vamos a Club!

Today was a very exciting day as we started our first youth outreach to our neighborhood. So begins “Club de Niños” / Kids Club, and prayerfully the beginnings of Rancho Oasis for Youth!

Jon and Brooke headed up the team of family and friends from our home fellowship for a Saturday morning filled with games, children’s worship songs, Bible stories and futbol! Even though it was Mother’s Day here in Costa Rica, several families and children responded to the near 200 flyers that we passed out Friday afternoon.

We met several parents who were very excited and appreciative of the activities that we had planned for their children. One father is a soccer teacher and works with several of the young boys in the neighborhood on Saturday mornings. He cancelled practice because of Mother’s Day and brought his own children to “Club”. Douglas is a widower after cancer took his wife three years ago. Despite having soccer practice the same time as “Club” next Saturday, he invited me to come a half-hour before and give a Bible lesson to his 24 students. Praise the Lord!

Thank you for your prayers during our preparation for “Club de Ninos”; we are excited to see how relationships with the families in our neighborhood will develop.

We also were blessed to have our first missions team come and support our family and ministry. Mike and John arrived July 31st and spent roughly 10 days fellowshipping with us and exploring the country. Mike and I are long time friends and classmates from High School and John was introduced to the RO4Y families for the first time. I had the pleasure of bring both to class with me at Colegio Bilingue to share music and have a Q & A session with my students. The boys also constructed a small compost shelter/shed with Wayne for our shepherd friends here on the property. The rest of their time was spent reading books to Naomi!

Prayer Requests:

  • Praise for the strong turn-out and support for “Club de Niños”
  • Prayer: Club de Niños, Saturdays 10 – noon in our neighborhood park
  • The salvation and physical / spiritual well-being of the children and families of “Los Parques”, our immediate neighborhood and a much poorer neighborhood just North of us in a valley called “Progresso”
  • Prayer: Jon’s Dell Laptop died last week. My coworker and computer teacher runs a computer repair business on the side and is working on installing a new hard drive. Prayerfully he will be able to retrieve all of my files on the old drive.
  • Praise: While coming home from an IBS seminar with the Goransons and our friends in the north-pacific state of Guanacaste last weekend, my power-steering blew! We cut the belt to prevent the pump from getting any damage and drove home with a specialized fore-arm workout! Thankfully, it was only about $50 to get a new hose and belt.
  • Praise: Jon worked his way through the Costa Rican health care system and had an appointment with an eye-specialist last Thursday. He was following up the diagnosis back in July of a Corneal Ulcer. Praise the Lord – the ulcer is gone!
  • Praise: I’ve been able to stream line my classes at school and spend less time preparing. However, We are finishing out the 2nd trimester over the next two weeks, so I’ll be busy preparing exams, grading papers and prepping grades.
  • Prayer: To manage time with personal devotion, our marriage, the girls, the extended family, work and ministry. Oh, yeah, we need a lot of grace!
  • Prayer: San Ramon hosts “San Ramon Days” the end of August and we are praying about doing some outreach.
  • Prayer: Continue to pray for God’s timing on property and horses.