Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Iglesia Bautista Reformada

So the other day I found and contacted one of the elders at the only Reformed Baptist Church in Costa Rica.  We talked for a while and then tonight he came all the way out to where we live on the other side of San José to pick up Tim, Joe and I and take us to their church prayer meeting.  It was so outstanding.  The elders and those that gathered for the prayer meeting were the most kind, humble and gracious people.  They went out of their way to welcome us and they prayed for us.  They have a love for biblical theology and the application of it is reflected in their love for Christ and their diligent pursuit after Him.  Their lives and actions actually reflect their beliefs.  It was so refreshing to find this body of believers.  They are helping us find transportation to their each Sunday, which is difficult because we have large families and live far away, but if we can find the transportation we will make the 45 minute trip each Sunday to get involved in an outstanding biblical church. 

The rather shocking news is that in a country of almost 5 million people there is only 1 Reformed Baptist Church in the entire country and this is it.  They have a goal to plant a Reformed Baptist church in each province in Costa Rica, which there are 7 but they do not have the laborers to even begin to move forward.  Where are the missionaries?  Huge opportunities for those who are willing to uproot themselves from the American Dream and live for Christ.  Check them out. 

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

December 2011 newsletter


My 1st Trimester class
To check out what has been going on with our family lately, read our December Newsletter.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

A few pictures of our barrio

I thought I would share some pictures of the places that we visit on a regular basis to give you a visual on our daily life in Costa Rica.



This is a typical route that we take from our house.  The sidewalks are always broken and torn up and there are usually many gringo traps to avoid.

Gringo trap
This is a typical gringo trap, which is an open sewer hole that ranges from 3 to 7 feet in depth.  Not a good thing to fall into one when running from a car.

Killillay at the Feria
This the big market (Feria) by the bull fighting arena that we buy all of our fruit and vegetables from.  Lately we have been buying everything at a smaller Feria closer to our house but they are basically offer the same thing but the big one is more competitive.  Although food at the Feria is pretty cheap.  I bought a pineapple today for 80 cents.

Lavacar Chiken...so good
So this is the chicken place by our house that we buy chickens from frequently.  It is funny because the place is called "Lava car chiken."  This is a car wash/chicken roaster.  The place is a little hole in the wall but they try to attract gringo's like us by putting their sign in English but they spelled chicken wrong and the fact that it is a car wash as well doesn't help business.  We, however, love the place and they make a great fire roasted chicken.

Our mini "whitehorse inn"
This is the little soda, which is a little neighborhood restaurant that sells casados, that we meet in daily during our break to write our doctrinal statement and other church documents for our future Peruvian church plants.  We have spent many hours drinking coffee and discussing the finer points of doctrine, and we have thoroughly enjoyed every minute.

Casado

This is a typical casado, which is the staple food for Costa Ricans.  It is sold at all the sodas and typically consists of rice, beans, fried plantains, bread and a meat.  They are filling and pretty cheap.  (about $3-4)

Our bread store
This is the bread store that is a few hundred feet from our house.  We buy great bread here all the time.  It is open 24 hours a day for some reason so we always get bread right out of the oven.  They also make the best cinnamon rolls which come out of the oven at exactly 4pm.  Raegan seems to like the giant doughnuts that they make which are the size of her face.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The glory in being crushed by God

I´m learning what God does with everyone, in one way or another, in their first year on the mission field.  Simply what He does is expose everything that is easily hidden in your life in America and then deal with it.  We, like so many of the families down here, have been going through a continued string of various trials.  It seems that God is exposing a great majority of our individual weaknesses, which are crushing, and then teaching us much about us and His character and grace. 

I had one of those milestone moments of being crushed by God today, but in a glorious way.  To start off, God is teaching me of my inability to do anything.  Back in the States I had no problems sharing the gospel with anyone.  Having shared the gospel with enough people on the street that I almost never heard a new argument, I simply knew how to answer almost every question I got on the street with Scripture.  But it is different down here.  The language and cultural barrier are much more enormous than I even imagined.  As my friend Joe and I were sharing the gospel with a man on the street yesterday and the man had some very messed up beliefs that I could easily straighten out in English but not in Spanish.  It is very humbling that I can´t explain simple truths to a man standing in front of me and I then have to leave him on the street with a tract.  Taking comfort in the fact that God is Sovereign is a load off my shoulders but none the less, it is still frustrating that I can´t get all the information in my brain out of my mouth.

Then, through various trials, God revealed yet another weakness in me.  With everything going on, I always am the one in the family that is stable in trials and thinks clearly.  This became expected and as I trusted in my ability to lead my family biblically, raise my kids biblically, handle trials biblically, pray biblically and on and on, I found that I was utterly failing.  Not that I was doing these outward things contrary to the bible but I was depending on my ability to do these things and not God´s ability to change the hearts of others and myself.  The burden that I placed on myself to hold everything together (even though I had an intellectual understanding that God was holding everything together) grew greater and greater until I couldn´t bear it anymore.  This was the point of God crushing me yesterday.  I experienced that I couldn´t hold anything together. 

God opened my eyes to see what I had been doing, I talked with Kim for a long time, which God used Kim in this to bring me comfort.  I repented and gave the heavy burden to my Savior who´s burden is light.  I had such a weight lifted off me and so much joy.  I expeirenced so much through this trial (which I left out a lot of detail) about myself and God, grew spiritually in a giant leap and learned how important, valuable, and indispensible that my wife is to me.  I learned and experienced that Kim and I are both so dependent on God for absolutely sustaining all things and that God made us one flesh to continually bear each others burdens, encourage each other, hold each other accountable and to point each other to Christ and the gospel.

The trials in the last 3 months have been hard but so glorious.  I have never been more dependent on or satisfied with my glorious Savior. 

Christ has regarded my helpless estate and He has shed His own blood for my soul!

Monday, December 5, 2011

At the post office in Costa Rica

I spent over an hour at the post office in Zapote, Costa Rica simply trying to get two care packages that were mailed.  Here is a fine example of how things are done in Costa Rica.  It went like this:

1.  Walk to the post office with my friend Joe who is fluent in Spanish.
2.  Show passport to the guard who stamped my papers that said I had a package waiting.
3.  Wait in line #3 until it was my turn.  Give the slip to the guy; show passport again; sit down and wait for line #1
4.  Wait for 20 minutes for my name to be called, talked with a German who spoke broken English.
5.  Name is called, go to line #1, sign two papers and write down my passport number.
6.  The boxes were then opened and looked through.  Food was found and a glorious bag of Starbucks French roast coffee (2.5 lbs)
7.  This was not acceptable because of the new rule that food is not allowed in the country without special paperwork.  They have been nabbing people for smuggling chocolate into the country lately, you know, because it is so dangerous.
8.  Man tells us that we are to go to downtown San Jose and explain our situation and get a permission slip.
9.  This isn't going to happen with us so Joe elegantly talks with the guys and tells them our story, not quite sobbing but it got the point across.
10.  Guy at line #1 calls his boss over.  Joe gives the same story.  They fell bad and decide that the rules can slide this time.  After all, we are not smuggling bombs into the country, only candy and coffee.
11.  Our boxes are taken away and we fill out more paper work.
12.  Go to the bank in the post office with a slip of paper we were given and pay 7 cents for something.
13.  Bring it back to line #1.  Guy gives us more paper work for line #2.
14.  Go to line #2 and pay 3 dollars.
15.  Wait for my name to be called again for line #1.
16.  Name is called.  Go to line #1 and fill out more paper work and show passport.
17.  Finally given our 2 boxes after 1 1/2 hours. 

Now that is efficiency.  So for all our friends in the States, think about this the next time you complain about waiting in line at the post office. 

I have no idea why these packages got stopped and others did not but for future care packages, we were told that when filling out the customs slip, don't put specific foods.  Just put something more vague.  This whole process, however, was so worth the great care packages.  Thank you so much.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Day 105 - Milestone

Well, we have reached another milestone in our life as we finish our first trimester of language school in Costa Rica.  Spanish is progressing, the school is outstanding, I have learned a lot and above all I have used the Spanish that I know a lot more than I ever could have back home.  In our day to day life, I use Spanish for 4 hours a day at school and with homework and just living and functioning here, I am forced to stretch myself all the time.  I finished the trimester with good grades and am much more comfortable using and listening to the language which is encouraging because I think Spanish is starting to sink in.

We have learned a lot more than Spanish in our 3 1/2 months in Costa Rica.  So much has happened and we have grown so much spiritually through trials, adaptations, culture, language, and new friends.  Life is going by fast and foreign has become familiar.  I have to say that I have never had more joy.  It seems that this is what I was made for and I can't imagine ever doing anything but being a foreign missionary.  I thank God for this enormous privilege.  I was chosen to be one of the chaplains for the language school next trimester, while Killillay will by the vice president of the student council.  Killillay and I as well as a few others were chosen to develop a doctrinal statement that students that participate in chapel will have to agree to.  The second trimester promises more Spanish and more ministry and more of our favorite days in Joel's office discussing theology over a cup of the best coffee Costa Rica has to offer.

We had a great time with Kim's sister Kristin and her husband Tobin.  We are so thankful that they got us out of the city to hang out at the beach with them for several days.  We had good adventures and many memorable experiences.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Spanish and Thanksgiving in Costa Rica

As learning Spanish goes, it seems like you have very good weeks where things are flowing and other weeks where you wonder what language the guy speaking to you is using.  Today was one of the good days.  Kim and I were coming home from the store in a taxi and I got in my first debate in Spanish.  The guy was asking about what we are doing here in Costa Rica and what we would be doing as missionaries in Peru.  I told him and then asked him if he was a Christian.  He said no but he was a Catholic. 

Now you must understand that I wrote out how I take someone through the gospel in Spanish and I had the Spanish on the paper reviewed and corrected.  I can share the gospel with someone and explain sin, the law, man´s depravity, the need for a Savior, the substitutionary atonement of Jesus and faith and repentance and even explain the evidence of a true Christian.  I usually just blast people with this 10 minute, one sided, gospel presentation and then hope they don´t ask questions.

This time was different because the taxi driver was asking the questions and then debating my answers so I couldn´t just use my usual speech, I had to actually think and speak.  I have to say it went better than I thought.  I´m glad I was having a good day in Spanish and not a bad one. 

He said that all the churches in Costa Rica were biblical and that Catholics, Christians, Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses were all the same and all good.  I disagreed and explained that there are huge differences in beliefs between the groups.  He showed me his Gideon bible in Spanish so I turned it to Ephesians 2:8-9 and read it to him and explained that this was one major difference between Christians and Catholics.  We talked about works based salvation and he asked what faith was.  I explained repentance and faith was the only way that he could go to heaven otherwise he would be in Hell.  He said that Hell was on this earth.  I explained what Hell was really like.  We ran out of time when we got to my house.  I was happy with the conversation and so grateful to God that He enabled me to use my bad Spanish to share the gospel with this guy and that God enabled this man to understand my bad Spanish.

Everything is going good with our family down here.  We are feeling a little guilty for living here when we look at the weather back home.  On the way back from the market in my shorts with a backpack full of fresh pineapple and other fruit I thought about Shelby being way below 0 that same day.  We take the good with the bad down here.

Costa Rican's don't celebrate Thanksgiving so all the Ticos are going crazy with Christmas.  My brother Michael would probably go postal when he saw that they started putting Christmas merchandise in stores at beginning of August. 

We are getting ready for a big Thanksgiving dinner at the Killillay's on Thursday.  We are having chicken instead of turkey but we managed to find enough traditional Thanksgiving ingredients around town to have a pretty good meal.  Although it doesn't quiet seem the same since it is 75 degrees.  I miss the big Thanksgiving dinner with family and then hunting for elk in the snow and cold the next day with my dad and brothers and with a couple of turkey sandwiches in my backpack.

But Jesus is so worth missing the little things and we count it all joy give things up for Him and His glory.  We thank God for the opportunity to be His slave in the mission field.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Friday, October 21, 2011

Powerline Fire in our neighborhood

Day 60

We have not had internet for several days because of the following reason:

This morning while getting ready for school I heard an explosion. I looked outside my window and saw smoke and then watched the power lines catch on fire. The wires shorted out and the fuse never blew so as the insulation on the wires melted there were more wires going to ground. The video below show this well. Costa Rica has a shoddy power distribution system, as you will see in the video. They attach as many wires as possible to a pole. Electricity, cable, phone, and internet are woven together like a big spider web. This is bad when there is a fire like today. The firemen that showed up didn't seem to know what to do. They stared for a while then started spraying water on live wires that were on fire. They never killed the power at all but they did run up and down the street squirting the flames.

This was to be a day of testing. As soon as I left for school, Emmy woke up and puked 4 times all over the place. As Kim was cleaning the mess up, she heard our landlord Jorge at our gate shouting. Jorge was here with the termite exterminator to kill the termites that were eating our ceiling and leaving sawdust on us each night. Jorge left the exterminator with Kim. He spoke to her in high speed Spanish, which Kim does not even know any speed Spanish. He proceeded to spray large amounts of a liquid pesticide all over the ceiling, walls, clothes, and beds. He insured Kim not to worry because he said that it was non-toxic.


The combination of these 3 events would have normally caused a major meltdown in my wife, but God is so good. God gave Kim an overwhelming sense of peace in the heat of the battle. She actually was joyful as she cleaned up after a sick little girl and a messy exterminator and continued all day in doing tons of laundry, home-school, more cleaning, and cooking dinner. The funny thing was that Kim was in a great mood when I got home and handled everything unbelievable. This can only be credited to God. This is so encouraging to us because it was like God was saying that He was preparing us for His service but there would be many trials and that He would give us abundant grace to get through each one. Gloria a Dios for His glorious grace and peace that surpasses understanding. 

We are at the 2 month mark and this is the time when many people break down. On this 2 month mark was a crazy day that would make anyone stressed out. Along with 8 days straight of rain there was the potential for depression to kick in but God chose to give so much peace and joy at this point.   

Joy and satisfaction in God while in the midst of trials is what truly glorifies Him. Praise God.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Reformed Missions in Latin America

As we continue to learn Spanish in Costa Rica we have been encouraged by so many other brothers with sound doctrine that God has put in our life.  The other day Killillay and I met up with two such brothers.  Once again through God's wonderful providence I was put in contact with a guy named Nick Lamme who is a reformed pastor in the San Jose area and also works with Bill Green at their publishing company. 

Nick picked up Killillay and I after school and drove us 30 minutes away to the reformed elementary school and publishing company that was started by Bill Green.  The publishing company was outstanding.  They publish theologically solid books from the 16th century to today.  They are translating great works like Calvin's commentaries into Spanish and shipping these books all over Latin America.

It is so great to find like-minded brothers in Christ that are laboring faithfully for Christ in Latin America.  The resources that they offer will be so valuable to the Peruvians who we are going to. We have already gained permission from our language school to have these men come in and present their ministry and explain their book publishing operation.  Hopefully they can use the hundreds of missionaries that go through the language school as a way to distribute reformed books throughout Latin America.
Killillay and I have also agreed to set up a distribution center in Peru at the church that we will start, God willing.   With good theologically books printed in Spanish being rare and expensive in Peru, we hope to make these books readily available to the Peruvians that we will serve. 

More information about the ministry's of Bill Green and Nick Lamme can be found on their web site Reformed Missions in Latin America

On another note, we are so thankful to John Wallace for sending a brother a very important tool for ministry.  Yes, I'm talking about coffee.  Thank you Wallace for the outstanding coffee press and coffee from Bozeman, MT.  As well as the little surprises for the kids and the funny card.  Ridiculous.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Gloria a Dios! Our first package

Everyday I run to the mail box looking for mail, not because we really need anything life or death, but because we do not ever get mail anymore and it is a very exciting thing for us.  I went to the mail box today and saw a slip of paper telling me that I had to go to the post office to pick up a package.  Killillay and I went right after school and there it was....Una caja grande. 

The care package was from Fellowship Baptist Church who does nothing but sacrifice for us, serve us, and support us with everything that God gives them.  Fellowship is a continued encouragement to us and we are extremely humbled by their love for Christ and the advancement of His kingdom.  We are also humbled by their self-sacrificing love for us, we are not at all worthy to have such great people holding the rope for us. 

I waited until we got home so we could open it together.   When we did open it, we found peanut butter!  Also candy and candles, which I'm guessing the candles are not for me.  The kids tore into the candy like it was Christmas.  Everyone was so excited.  Thank you Fellowship Baptist for all that you do.

Just one more funny note about learning Spanish.  Pronunciation in Spanish is so important and if you mis-pronounce a word it can change the whole meaning of a sentence.  For instance here are a few words:

To bake:  hornear (the "h" is silent)
To pee:    orinar

Even though spelled different, these words sound almost exactly the same and they can definately change the meaning of a sentence.  Por ejemplo:

I need to go to the bathroom and bake.   Or...
I am peeing in the oven.

There are so many other examples, por ejemplo:

Mamá -  Mommy
Mama -  Part of the woman´s body they use to feed babies.

papá -  Daddy
Papa - The Catholic Pope
papa - potato

So if you say and pronounce this sentence wrong you could be in a world of hurt,

Estoy horneando una papa para tu papá.  (I´m baking a potato for your dad)
Estoy orinando una papa para tu Papa.  (I´m peeing a potato for your Pope)

Killillay and I are learning many things in Spanish the hard way.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Questions about care packages

Apparently there was a bit of confusion concerning care packages so I will try and help remedy the confusion.  People have asked if they can send care packages to us and the answer is yes. We have found the mail very reliable. Packages take anywhere from 5 to 21 days to get here but they always make it. You can pretty much send anything you want.  Howerver, don't send perishable items like fresh baked cookies. If you send a package to us and don't hear from us for 3 weeks just send us an email and we will check into it. 

People have asked for ideas concerning what to put in care packages so here are a few. We can get a lot of things in Costa Rica but there are some things down here that are hard to find or very expensive. These things may be no big deal to you but a surprise package of these little things totally make our day. Things like pictures, cards, any American food or snacks. We love Jiff peanut butter which was a staple for us but it is hard to find down here and when you do find it, it is very expensive. Sun tan lotion is also a good thing. A small bottle down here costs $18. Even school supplies for the kids is a great thing. Pretty much anything that you think would be fun and surprising. We so appreciate the thought and excitement of receiving a package as much as what is in the box. Did I mention peanut butter?

If you are interested you can send any car packages or cards to:

Costa Rica mailing address:

Scott Doherty
Instituto de Lengua Española
Apartado 100 - 2350
San José, Costa Rica

We once again thank all of you for holding the rope for us.  Your prayers and support are the essential means of God's ordained will.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Day 34 - The daily grind

One of the many homeless that live by us.
It seems natural to only write about the exciting things that we see or experience down here but it may give the wrong impression that all we do is fun and exciting things.  So today I want to tell you a little about our daily struggles and pressures that we must face. 
It seems that it is a common theme among families at the school right now to be facing a spiritual battle within the home.  The enemy uses a combination of the many pressures, adjustments, and trials with our sinful nature to cause divisions in families which could eventually launch a family far away from the mission field. 

On a daily basis we must balance so many things.  We have the pressure to learn a new language and culture upon us all the time which takes up so much of our time and makes my head hurt at the end of the day.  Top this with the business of the city, not being able to get things we need very conveniently (at least it is a lot different than the States and we have no car), language barrier when trying to have simple conversation with people, living in a city far more dangerous than where we came from, the different ways of doing even simple things,the high expenses of everything, the usual challenges for Kim in homeschooling the kids, cooking, the never ending cleaning of the house, and her countless other duties, and the continued challenge of leading the family and being united in Christ.  No more peaceful runs in the solitude of the mountains and hours of peaceful prayer with God because the city is so loud and busy that there is no place to be alone.

Banana tree
For the sake of unity withing the family and peace with God we have the great privelege to get away from everything once and while and as a family just enjoy each other and be with God.  These little breaks are very refreshing to our souls and motivate us to press on toward the goal.

A monkey in the city
These are just a few things that we deal with each day so you can see where the enemy can focus to try and cause division.  Don't get me wrong, we are not complaining at all.  We count all of these things pure joy and have peace and confidence in our Sovereign God.  We are growing through this all and are loving our calling and privilege to be here.  I only wrote this because we know that so many people back in the States are praying for us and this will give you an idea of what to focus on.  We so desperately need your prayers as the enemy of God does not want any of us in his dark territories. 

We are so encouraged how we see God working not only in us but in many other families here.  So we want to confirm to you our joy in being here to serve our might God for His glory and we want to encourage you to pray for us as we advance into new territories that have been taken captive by the devil.  Gracias para orando.  Para la fama de Su nombre.

In the middle of razor wire security on every house, God's glory in His creation can't help but to shout.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Day 26 - La iglesia Católico

I heard about a big Catholic church a mile or so from my house so Killillay and I walked down there tonight to give out tracts and share the gospel.  It was a very large church but not as rich or important as the big one that we went to in downtown San Jose.  The church downtown had relics that were displayed with all their other statutes.  This church had no relics but boasted of three full body idols of Maria. 

Along with the three giant statues of Maria with spotlights on them there was a statue of a dead, limp, powerless Jesus still dead on a cross and another of a little, tiny baby Jesus with no power or glory in the arms of the exalted Maria.  The baby Jesus was weak and fully depended on his exalted mother.

If  you know anything of the Vatican's theology then  you will know why this is set up this way at all Catholic churches.

The official worship of Mary started in 431 AD and prayers to Mary were started in about 600 AD.  Mary is worshiped by Catholics as God.  Some cathedrals have a statue of Mary at the top with God the Father and Jesus below her and offering their crowns to Mary.  People kiss her image, her stature, her picture.  People pray to her continually using the rosary.  Mary is believed to hold the sovereign authority of God.

Catholics believe that as the Queen of Heaven she posses the right to the whole kingdom of her Son.  She can dispense anything in the kingdom to whom she wants.  There are just as many creatures serving Mary as there are serving God.  Mary has dominion and power over all creation.  Jesus is King of justice but Mary is queen of mercy.  Basically they are saying that it is hard to get mercy out of Jesus so you must go to Mary, who will get the mercy from Jesus because apparently Jesus can't resist His mother.  Mary determines who gets mercy, who God saves, and who is helped.

The saint Peter catechism states:

Question:  Did God will to make our redemption and all its consequences depend on the free consent of the blessed virgin Mary?

Answer:  God willed that our redemption and all its consequences should depend on the free consent of the blessed virgin Mary.

This is blasphemy against the nature of God and the character of Christ our compassionate Savior.

So in short, this is why every Catholic church exalts idols of Mary and even saints far greater than the Savior Jesus Christ.

You can read all about the heretical views that the Catholic church holds about Mary at the Vaticans web site here.

So anyway, Killillay and I gave out a whole bunch of tracts at the church and I shared the gospel with a guy who said he had no conscience, was guilty before God and was going to Hell.  He did not want to hear about his only chance of escape through Jesus Christ because he hated Jesus.  People in general were very acceptive of the tracts and they all read them right away.

Though the fields are ripe for the harvest and there are so few laborers we are confident and hope in Christ our Savior that He will gather His bride from every tribe, tongue and nation by His power alone and for His glory.


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Day 22 - Costa Rica Rain


It rains pretty much every day in the afternoon as we come into the rainy season.  The rainy season starts in September and goes through November and sometimes into December.  We are told that this type of rain in the middle of the rainy season continues 24 hours a day for 2 weeks at times.  I kind of like it now but two weeks of it will get old.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Day 20 - Downtown San José

In an attempt to figure out how the bus system in this city works, Killillay and I jumped on a bus to see where it went.  There are five different private bus companies in Costa Rica.  As far as I understand there is one company that just goes around San José, another goes from a central hub area downtown to the outlying areas like where we live in San Fransico de Dos Ríos, another company called the Períferica goes on loop routes around the city and outlying areas, another goes from San José to other cities in Costa Rica and the last bus company goes to Nicaragua and Panama. 

Killillay and I took one that ended up in downtown San José.  It is a very busy part of town with so many people everywhere.  It would be a perfect place to preach if we knew the language good enough.  It is also a place where there is much sin and general wickedness.  Prostitution is legal in Costa Rica and there is a huge problem with child sex trafficing.  Sadly, many Americans come here to find 12 year old boys and girls.  This is the definition of depravity and shows a hint of how wicked the human heart is. 

On the way back, Killillay and I took a taxi and I had the privilege of sharing the gospel with our Catholic driver.  We had a good conversation, my Spanish is improving but I couldn´t argue with the guy when he said things that were wrong because I don´t know the language well enough.  Killillay and I also went to a few of the big Catholic churches downtown and witnessed many people in bondage to the system. 
Our Spanish classes are going good and we have 4 hours of classes a day and about an hour of homework so we study for 5 hours a day and then we are in the culture communicating with people and actually using what we learn.  This is very helpful. 

Kim and the kids are adjusting well and they have made a nice home for us here.  They also seem to catch some strange animal or bug every week.  They have caught geckos, some weird black worm looking thing, and a giant beetle that was as big as a coffee cup in length and girth.

We are learning a lot of other things as well that are not related to Spanish.  Every day we realize more that God is utterly sustaining us in every way, from protecting us from wicked men to upholding us in the Spiritual battles we go through here to holding our family together.  All the glory can only go to our merciful God.  Gloria a Dios.  We thank God for allowing us this privilege and we thank you for being obedient to God in holding the rope for us in prayer and support.  Muchas Gracias.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Market day

We went to the small feria by our house on Saturday and got some good stuff but I went early this morning before church with Tim, Jason, Joe and Trevor to the huge feria by the bull fighting arena this morning.  They had a much bigger selection and much better quality fruits and vegetables and it was cheaper.  We bought cucumbers, pineapples, bears, nectarines, peppers, bananas, watermellon, mangos, carrots, avacodos, tomatoes, grapes, potatoes, corn, and a few other things.



The food down here has been excellent and if you buy at the markets, cook at home or eat at the little soda's then you can you good for a decent price.  I have never had better fruit anywhere.  Everything is so ripe and perfect.

We found out another different thing about San Jose.  So last time I discussed the sewer issues and now we find out that all the gray water in the house just runs into the street.  So in front of every house there are pvc pipes coming out of the sidewalk and whenever you run the washer or shower all the water comes out into the street and then runs into the storm drains and then into the river.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Day 14 - Our Neighborhood


So this is our little neighborhood.  You can see our house, the school and the Killillays house.  Everything has been going very well.  School is great and we are learning a lot.  Being forced to interact with the culture and language daily has been a big help in improving our Spanish. 

Found out something different about this country again.  This may be kind of gross but it turns out that most people in the city don't flush toilet paper because it will clog the sewer.  They put the used toliet paper in the bathroom garbage.  Killillay's found this out the hard way as they clogged up the sewer already.  How were we to know?  Fortunatly our house is on a little hill and the sewer pipe runs down a steep slop into the main line so we don't have any problems and we plan on flushing everything we can as long as we don't have problems.  The Killillay's on the other hand may be taking out the garbage a lot. 

Speaking of sewer problems, Killillay's son Andrew fell into a gringo trap.  A gringo trap is an open sewer with the man hole lid missing.  It is missing because people steal them for various purposes.  So you as you are walking around town you will see a big open whole that is 5-6 feet deep and if your not paying attention you will fell into it.  Apparently only gringos fall into them, hence the name.  So Andrew, being a gringo like us, wasn't paying attention and fell into it.  He is not hurt so we can joke about it now.

Now that we are in Costa Rica my computer knows it and has changed everything to Spanish, which means my spell checker for blogger is now spell checking in Spanish so it says that I spelled every word wrong.  So I appologize if I did spell any words wrong.  Well, have a good day.  We are heading to the Feria in the morning to get fruit and vegetables. 

I planted some peppers, tomatos and corn several days ago and my corn has already come up.  I hope to get a good crop before winter.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Day 5 living in Costa Rica

(Wednesday August 24rd, 2011)

As I tried to study my bible in the morning I was constantly distracted by the usual 6:30am neighborhood dog fight and then by the 25 or 30 men rifling through my garbage. Saturday and Wednesday are garbage days so you put out your garbage in bags on the street. You can't use a garbage can because people will steel them so bags only. After you put out the garbage put before the actual garbage man comes, the people from around town show up with their carts and go through your garbage and take everything that they want. These are very poor people and it's probably Costa Ricas way of recycling. The people are usually pretty good and taking stuff out of your garbage bag without tearing things apart but nevertheless there is still a mess to clean up after that many people go through it.

We had orientation today which went good. There are about 40-50 new students from all over the states. Most of them are not going to be planting churches though. Only Killillay and I as well as one or two others in the group of new students are church planters.

To get student visas for the year we will be here is a long process and requires so much red tape. We found out we had to go to the police station to get the whole family's fingerprints taken. This was a process and took several hours, which was fast for them. Jason Maynard took us and interpreted for us, which was absolutely necessary.

After the police station we picked up a few supplies and headed home. I went back out with Jason to get groceries and the day was over. Days are going by so fast and it seems like it takes a whole day to do anything.

August newsletter. Finally in Costa Rica!

Click here to read our August newsletter.


Feria (Farmers market)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Day 4 living in Costa Rica

(Tuesday August 23rd, 2011)

I usually wake up early because it is light out about 5:30am. The sun goes down each day at the same time around 7:00pm and it has been down-pouring rain every day about 1:30 so if you don't get up early then you can't get much done. After I study I have been taking a walk or run around town to try and figure out where different stores that we can buy what we need are as well as meet people in the neighborhood so I can practice my Spanish and share the gospel.

I am starting to get a feel for a mile or so around our house. I met a man named Victor yesterday who has a daughter in the States. He said that if I stopped by each day, he would help me with my Spanish. This is a great way to learn the language and share the gospel. Everything is very expensive here so finding the best places to buy things is key. I found a hardware store and to buy a standard shop vac it was anywhere from $160-$400. We don't need one but it gives you and idea of how highly priced things are.

After lunch I went over to Killillay's with Emmy. They arrived last night late. Jason Maynard, who a student at the school and has been here for about 8 months, took us shopping for supplies. I found Kim liquid creamer for her coffee, which you normally can't find anywhere in the city, so she was very happy.

Kim is getting the house cleaned up and turning it into a home and she is doing a great job at it. She is adjusting very well to the culture and conditions. The kids are also adjusting well. For some reason we have free cable TV, which is mostly Spanish speaking channels but there are a few English channels. Guess which one's the kids pick. Although I think Emmy watched Strawberry shortcake in Spanish the other day.

We walk everywhere, which I like a lot. You can take a taxi or bus but I haven't figured out the bus system yet and my Spanish is too shaky to direct a taxi to our house with no address. It takes a lot of time to get things done here. Here is a comparison with life in Costa Rica vs. the States as far as something simple like getting supplies.

The States:

Leave the house in your car to run your errands. Stop by a store and load up your supplies. Drive to the next store and do the same for the next 6 stores. Stop at a convenient drive through coffee shop to get a coffee to sustain you. Complain about the little traffic and the cost of your many options of stores and supplies. Drive home in peace as you look at the beautiful scenery of Montana where there are more cows than people.

Costa Rica:

Leave the house early by foot before the torrential down-pours come in the afternoon. Go to the grocery store where you can only get food and usually in a brand that you never heard of. Only buy what you can carry back to your house. Try to calculate how much you would be paying in dollars rather than colones to see if you are getting ripped off. When you realize that you just paid $7 for a small bag of potato chips, you learn that you did actually get ripped off. Walk back to your house while dodging fast cars who don't mind if they run you over, open man-hole covers to the sewers, people, and many other obstacles. Get through your bolted security gate with two locks and razor wire with your few bags of groceries. It's about time for lunch now so you stop and eat. After lunch you must walk to the bank to get more cash from the ATM and then on to the next store. Walk a mile to the hardware store or the store where you can buy a shower curtain (which is not easy to find one), buy your supplies and then walk back to your house. As you are walking home the 1:30 torrential down-pour hits and you realize you forgot the umbrella so you seek shelter. You then realize that the rain is not going to stop for a while so you just run through the rain to your house. Get through the security gate and you arrive home just in time for dinner at sundown. You wonder where the day went.

That is just a funny example but despite the many adjustments to life, we love it here because we are in the center of God's will and are very privileged to be serving Him for His glory and the advancement of the Kingdom of Christ. I did get to share the gospel with a guy selling lottery tickets on the street and the girl who was billing us for the internet we are supposed to be getting.

All is going great. Thank you all for your prayers and support. If anyone would like to come visit us just let us know and we can arrange it.

Para la fama de Su nombre

Monday, August 29, 2011

Day 3 living in Costa Rica


(Monday August 22)

I got up early today and studied and then went on a run. Running here is very difficult but not because of the climate but because of the obstacles. I spend most of my time dodging traffic on the busy streets or dodging gringo traps in the road or the many tore up sidewalks. I ran down about a mile and found a park so I ran up to a little lookout and found some guy up there. We got to talking (I say talking loosely because my Spanish is bad) and it turns out that he wants to learn English and I want to learn Spanish. I followed him to his house and it turns out that he owns a beauty salon which is weird. The guy is a little fruity but he is an agnostic and he needs to understand the gospel. I met his sister who is a “Christian” that goes to the Nazarene church in my neighborhood. We are going to meet every Wednesday at the park to teach each other. I will just keep on explaining the gospel to him until God saves him or he leaves.

The whole family walked a mile or so to McDonald’s today. They have a coffee shop in it and also WiFi so we brought our ipods so we could check in with folks back home for the first time. Like everything else, McDonald’s is also very expensive but it tastes the same as back home with a few twists and specialties. We walked back up the street towards our house and stopped by the supermercado to get a few groceries and then walked home.

The weather around here is pretty predictable so far. It is always sunny in the morning and then becomes a little windy in the afternoon and then about 1 or 2 it pours down buckets for a while and then stops. Walking around here I see that they can grow anything here so I am going to buy a few pots and dirt and grow some tomatoes. I don't like to eat them but my wife does and I like to grow them.

I spent the rest of the evening trying to seal up the termites in our ceiling. We continue to fight ants and more cockroaches.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

A few funny things in Latin America

Costa Rica is very different than America but similar to many Latin American countries. A few funny things that we have noticed are:

The shower: The shower in our house is not connected to the hot water tank. Instead, it has a water heater built into the shower head. What powers the shower head is a couple wires at 240 volts. So you are standing in flowing and splashing water with 220 volts a few inches from your head.

Man holes: So for some reason people steal the man hole covers around town. So you are walking around and there will be a big open man hole that if you are not paying attention you will drop about 5 feet into the sewer. They call them gringo traps and you can figure out why.

Street Addresses: There are none. I had to call and get internet and the way that you have to tell them how to get to your house is to say: Go to San Francisco de dos Rios then take a left at the school and follow the street to the green house with the tree in front that is not there anymore, then look behind the house and you will see a blue house and that is mine. That is my address.

Paying bills: Your bills (Electric, water, sewer, phone, internet, etc) sometimes come in the mail and sometimes they don't make it because there is no addresses which confuses the bill guys, who are not mail men but work for the company that is billing you. If they don't make it and you don't pay the bill then they shut off their service to you instantly. Many people get there water shut off without notice. If you get the bill then you go to the supermarket to pay all of your bills. You hand the bill to the clerk at the check out counter, he looks it up and tells you what you owe, you pay in colones and your bill is paid.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Arriving in Costa Rica

Arriving in Costa Rica
(Saturday August 20th, 2011)

We still don't have internet so I'm borrowing Killillays.

The travel from Denver to Costa Rica went very well. We had no problems with overweight luggage or anything else. We got on the plane and had good flights with a good lay-over. I shared the gospel with the girl that sat next to Chase and I on the flight to from Huston to Costa Rica. She was a pagan but we had her pinned in by the window and she couldn't escape. She did actually say that it made a lot of sense the way I explained it. We arrived in Costa Rica about 9pm. We went through immigration and they never asked for our ticket out of the country. You can't have a one way ticket into Costa Rica so you have to have proof that you will leave in 90 days. We had bus tickets to Panama but don't intend on using them. We will get student visas while we are here. After immigration we went to baggage and actually got all of our bags. We then moved through customs and sent 15 bags through and they actually never even checked on of them. This is great because they could have opened and went through all of our bags and made us pay a tax on items we brought in. 
Our “Big Brother,” Mike had a van waiting to pick us up at the airport. The blast of humidity and heat when we hit outside was unexpected. They took us to our house and dropped us off. The house needed to be heavily cleaned but we were very tired so we just crashed. We basically had nothing in the house so we just slept on top of the beds with a few covers.
I woke up in the morning to a pile of stuff that looked like yeast on my side of the bed. Kim was certain that a bug of some sort laid a whole bunch of eggs on our bed and on me during the night. It was actually the termites that were eating the ceiling and spitting out saw dust on us. 
We also discovered that it is standard here to have little ants that take over parts of your house. We have a friendly community of ants in our pantry and kitchen and just about everywhere else. If you leave food out on the counter for more than a few minutes, they move in and devour it. Apparently this is just something you deal with.
Kim also found a huge cockroach in the laundry room. We are from Montana and have never seen a cockroach so we were grossed out. Those things are huge down here. For our fellow Montanan's, they are like the biggest pine beetle that you ever saw. Apparently a cockroach every once and a while is not a cockroach problems. I guess the people before us had them by the hundreds when they moved in. 

Because we moved into a house that pretty much had nothing, we had to go buy everything like bedding, pillows, towels, bathroom and kitchen supplies, pans, a coffee pot (which was the most important, we went without coffee the first day and started going through withdrawals), cleaning supplies, laundry supplies, and everything else that you can think of. Mike took us to a Wallmart which was great but it is opposite of the States as far as price. We go to Wallmart in the States because it is cheap but down here it is very expensive. Anything that is plastic, electronic, or American is twice as much as we are used to. There was a standard Rubber made garbage can there for $80. I never bought it but I did buy the cheapest coffee pot there and it was $40. I did buy Emmy a blow up swimming pool so she can play and cool off and she was very excited about it and plays in it everyday. We spend about $550 and got nothing. We also found a supermarket at our house but food is also very expensive. Money does not go far down here and I can see that we are going to have to be very thrifty to survive.
I tried to share the gospel with a guy on the street but I found out he was drunk so I gave him a tract and told him to read it tomorrow. I am running out of tracts and I need more very bad so if anyone can send me some I will let you know which ones and where to send them. Gracias.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Goodbye USA, friends, family, and great churches

I thought I would give a quick update before we fly to Costa Rica tomorrow.  We may not have access to communication for a while once we get there.  We need to get Internet and phones when we get there and I have no idea how long that will take.  So if you don't here from us for a while you will know why.  We will update our contact information on this blog under the "contact" tab when we get it. 

We said all of our goodbye's and and left my parents house at 5am with our heavily loaded car to drive to Denver, which is where we fly out of.  We had a great trip.  We stopped at John Wallace's church/coffee shop to get a boost.  John and his family met us there at 7:30am to buy us breakfast and coffee, visit and pray one more time.  It was a great morning.  We had a minor detour when we never turned of the interstate and ended up in Gillette.  We had to take a secondary highway for 150 miles to get back on track.  It never wasted too much time and we got to see a new part of Wyoming, which looked like the rest of Wyoming:  flat, windy, dry and sagebrush. 

We got into Denver late and met Mr. Killillay who guided us through the city.  If it was not for Killillay we would probably still be looking for the hotel.  Killillay is an excellent driver in a big city and I am going to insist that Killillay gets his Peruvian drivers license right away so he can shuttle us around the country. 

We have a day to get organized and relax before we leave our great country on Saturday at noon.  We thank God for this privilege and for all of you that are staying home and holding the rope for us.  The thought of leaving our country to live forever in countries that are so different, with a different language and culture, where we are now the foreigners, is a humbling thought.  We are first comforted and enabled to do this by our Sovereign God who ordained all of this.  We are upheld by Jesus Christ every second and are ensured that He will never leave us or forsake us.  Finally we are encouraged and take comfort knowing that we have so many good people that are also sacrificing, praying and supporting us back home.  Thanks everyone.  Que Dios te bendiga.

Levi, Carol, Craig, Emmy, Chase, Raegan
Kim's Grandparents:  Betty and Dale
Levi, baby Lauren, Corbin, Emmy, Lindsay, Raegan, Chase
My Parents:  Lynn and Dennis

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

A few more days to Costa Rica

A few more days of travel and we will be in Costa Rica!  We have been saying some sad goodbye's lately but Jesus is worth it.  We are going to miss so many people.  We thank God for the great family and friends that He put in our life.  We thank so many of you individuals and churches that are holding the rope for us so that we can go down into the well. 
Many people have been asking about our new mailing address and how you can send us things in Costa Rica so here is some information. 


Costa Rica mailing address:

Scott Doherty
Instituto de Lengua Española
Apartado 100 - 2350
San José, Costa Rica

Sending things by mail to Costa Rica:

Everything mailed to Cost Rica, except books, is subject to duty. Getting packages can be a time consuming process if they are stopped by customs officials. Sometimes packages arrive without a problem, other times I will have to go to the post office and pay a customs charge. In general, it would be OK to send small, inexpensive items, but not electronics or other high priced items. (Also, clothes, even used, are often charged a high duty)

***PACKAGES: We recommend that you not send packages via Fed Ex. it is very expensive for you to send, and it is expensive and time consuming for me to receive the package here in Costa Rica. They are requiring students to go through a lot of "red tap" in order to receive the item, and I will have to pay extra handling fees on this end. It is much better to send it through normal postal services.

Some of you have asked about how to send the kids money or presents on their birthday's and Christmas.  We can't really accumulate anything in Costa Rica because we will still have to get all our stuff to Peru and there is luggage restrictions for the airplane.  It would be better to give money to them if you must give them something.  The best way to do this is to contact me by email and then I will give you our account number at Wells Fargo and you can deposit it at any branch.  I can then take out the money here in Costa Rica with my ATM card.

If anyone has any questions just let me know.  Thanks everyone.  May Jesus Christ be the center of our lives and we live in a way pleasing to Him for His glory.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

July Newsletter

Unless there is the element of extreme risk in our exploits for God, there is no need for faith.”
Hudson Taylor, 1832-1905, China


First of all, thank you all for holding the rope for us, you know who you are. Thank you for your sacrifice so we can give our lives for the advancement of the kingdom of Christ in Peru. As we spend our last few weeks in the United States we realize how fast things are coming, how much we will miss our family and friends and yet we are so excited to move to Costa Rica for language school. We want to thank all of you that God has raised up for His glory to supply our needs physically and prayerfully.
We started this month by getting our house reserved in Costa Rica that we will rent while at school. It is a simple house and will be very good for our family, at least we think from the pictures. It is very blue and we should be able to see it from at least a mile away. This will help the kids from getting lost. 
I'm loving that my job in the world is done, although I loved it, because working full time for God in the ministry is an undeserved blessing that I have received. I spend my days during the week at the church studying the Scriptures, reading, learning Spanish, praying, visiting people in the community, preparing for sermons, sharing the gospel and keeping up on correspondence. What a privilege to spend my day serving my Master.
We took a bunch of kids up in the wilderness to teach them about Christ during our annual wilderness trip for our church. I started this ministry in 2007 and have loved every trip. I look forward to doing something similar in Peru if possible. 
I preached on July 10th in Shelby, MT at pastor Paul Lackey's church. We drove up on Saturday and had some great fellowship with Paul's family. It is so great that God has put such great men of God and churches in our path to support, pray for, and encourage us. 
We thank God for our Health. Kim had been sick for over a month and when she finally went to the doctor we found out that she needed her gal bladder removed. We thank God that He revealed this before we left the country. She had here gal bladder removed on July 13th with no problems. This was an answer to prayer because we needed to get it done while we still had insurance, before we left the country, and laproscopically so she could recover quick. God answered all our prayers specifically and all the glory goes to Him. God has confirmed our calling to Peru in so many ways, from removing insurmountable obstacles like they were nothing to opening so many doors that we could not have imagined, to providing for all of our spiritual, physical and financial needs. Our God is so mighty and Sovereign and He still answers prayers. Step out in faith and trust Him for everything and He will show you His glory!
On July 17th, we traveled to Big Timber, MT to preach at John Wallace's church/coffee shop. It was such a joy to preach to a great flock. I spent the next day with John and we had great conversations, drank too much coffee, were able to share the gospel with different people, even a guy from Ecuador, and were able to encourage others that God put in our path.
I drove to Sidney, MT on the 19th to meet up with Jordan Hall and his outstanding church. It was such a pleasure to be around so many that actually get it and are living for Christ. God is working in so many amazing ways here that it is almost unheard of. God is building His church in Sidney. God is using Fellowship Baptist church to minister to the people in Sidney, plant new churches in North Dakota, and support missionaries like us and others to the ends of the earth. The more this church selflessly pursues Christ and the advancement of His Kingdom, the more God blesses them almost to the point where Jordan is fearful.
In the week that I was in Sidney, I saw God work in such a powerful way. You could say that a literal revival is being poured out by God. The lives of several people were radically changed as they burned all of their worldly pursuits and turned to pursue Christ and His Kingdom with everything they have. I saw a biblical church be brought together and built by God, apart from means, in one week. God brought several families from all parts of the country to an oil field in North Dakota who are already reformed, discipled and mature believers that have sound doctrine for the purpose of advancing the Kingdom of Christ. I saw a young man and woman change all of their plans and make arrangements to move to Costa Rica to go to language school in January for the purpose of learning Spanish to come back to their church in Sidney to start a Spanish ministry to the many Spanish people arriving to the oil field. I saw a man trust in God and give his entire business to Him. God pressed it upon him to use all the money from his company to send missionaries into the field and advance the Kingdom of Christ. He turned in radical obedience and has never had more joy in his life. I saw many Mexican workers being broken and convicted over sin and develop a thirst for knowing who God is. These events were things that I have only read about. I sit in amazement.
I preached on July 24th in Circle, MT at Mike Bartelson's church. It went very well and I met a great group of people there. I also saw God raise up one man to supply almost all of my friend and partner, Tim Killillay. God is so glorious in provision and does it in a way that He alone can get glory.
We are ready to leave now and we don't have any material things left besides the stuff we are taking with us. We mailed some of the kid's school books to a guy in Costa Rica. It cost a lot just to send three small boxes. They got held in customs and they wouldn't let them out until we paid a large fee.

The month of August starts language school and a new routine. While at Costa Rica I'm resolved to:

  1. Resolved to learn the language
  2. Resolved to do street evangelism
  3. Resolved to interact with the culture daily
  4. Resolved to work with churches in the ministry, teaching, preaching or evangelism
  5. Resolved to work with a church that is 45 minutes from the school who print and distribute reformed literature in Spanish throughout Latin America
  6. Resolved to write and translate our church documents.
  7. Resolved to translate a catechism that we will use in our Peruvian churches
  8. Resolved not to get caught up in recreation or tourist activities, but to advance the Kingdom of Jesus Christ through the preaching of the gospel.
  9. Resolved to be alone with God.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Revival in Sidney

I was in Sidney, MT for a week, working with the great men at Fellowship Baptist.  I saw a literal revival being poured out.  Without being there and experiencing the presence of God, you can't begin to grasp it but I will try to put it in words.  So many things happened and there is so much detail that it makes it impossible to cover it all so I will give some highlights.

During the week, I saw God work in such a powerful and providential way that the credit and glory can only go to God because we basically just watched everything happen apart from means.  One of the first bazaar things that I found was that Jordan has a weekly radio program that plays Paul Washer clips and clips of Jordan preaching the gospel.  The odd thing is that this is on the Rock channel.  1000's of lost people in the oil field are listening to Paul Washer preach on the rock channel and then coming to church. 

Unlike the rest of the churches and business in town who will not let the oil field workers park their trucks on their property, Fellowship Baptist not only allows them free parking but gives them free food, showers and they started a boarding house for the workers in the church and they use the money to send missionaries like me to the ends of the earth.  God is using this ministry to save many souls.

This week I shared the gospel in Spanish with many Mexicans that are flooding the oil field.  One night a guy named Frank, who can speak Spanish, gathered up a whole bunch of these men, some of which he lets live at his house, so that we could share the gospel with them.  Languages and bad translations were flying everywhere as we got into deep discussions about the things of God for a long time.  Conviction was very heavy on one Catholic.  Fellowship is now starting a Spanish bible study on Thursdays and God will fill it up. 

We travelled many miles, which is routine for Jordan, across Montana and North Dakota to proclaim the gospel.  We went to the Mandaree Indian reservation to proclaim Christ.  I did a magic trick for a kid and told him to gather his friends, which he did and in a short time we had a small crowd.  I shared the gospel with them, which is something they never even heard before in their lives.  I had to start at the beginning with these kids because it was all foreign to them.

I saw people radically stop their entire lives and pursue after Christ with everything.  One guy who was struggling with his girl friend and falling into the wrong things with her, stopped the relationship and radically changed his whole life to pursue God.  Another guy named Daniel was burdened so much by what we had seen with all of the Mexicans that he signed up for Language school in Costa Rica for the January trimester for the purpose of learning Spanish so he can come back and start a full Spanish ministry at Fellowship.  Another girl in the church may be doing the same thing.

I saw a biblical church be built in a week.  Fellowship has been trying to start a church in Watford City, ND to reach oil field workers.  God brought in 5 families from around the country by His providence that are already discipled, reformed, like-minded on everything and solid out fro Christ.  The church will have almost 30 people in it to start and they are all so solid and want to serve and reach the oil field for Christ.  On night we met another man named Paul at a restaurant in Watford.  We were all eating and saw that his teenage girl was reading a bible so I went over to them and we started talking and soon found this was a work of God that He was revealing to us.  Paul told us about another family that was moving up here to help with a project he was working on and they also were like minded and were coming to minister to the the oil field.  All of these families that were independently brought to Watford from around the country for the purpose of serving Christ were brought together in God's time to start a biblical church.  The presence of God upon us that night in Watford was so powerful that we thought God would save everyone in the town that night.  Brandon almost stood up on a chair in the restaurant and preached the gospel.  We wanted to just run to people and proclaim the gospel to them because God was moving so powerfully.  We did grab an oil field worker in a gas station and shared the gospel with him as the whole store listened.  He almost ran out of there without hearing the good news.  I ran after him to tell him as Brandon was yelling across the store that there was good news (We only took him through the law at this point).  Everyone may have thought we were crazy but God was there and we were confident that He would save men that night.  This may sound crazy and I'm not at all charismatic but the presence of God was felt so powerfully this night that nothing in the world mattered but the Christ. 

I also saw a great man transformed and get direction in a very clear way.  This guy has a very successful trucking company and he just bought his dream ranch and although he was a Christian and already serving Christ, he was becoming very discontent with his business and felt if he did not doing something for God full time, he would die.  He got such a passion for missions during the week that he made up his mind to go.  But first God revealed to him what to do with His business.  He is giving it to God.  He is going to build up his business and turn his ranch into a man camp for the oil field or use it in same was to provide income and then give all his money from his business to advance the kingdom of Christ.  He wants to start sending missionaries to the ends of the earth single-handedly and then get his pilot's licence and then go to the mission field, possible Peru, and fly around the country proclaiming Christ.  He is already going to learn Spanish. 

This is only something that, until now, I have read about.  What is God doing?  What does the future hold for Sidney, Watford, and Peru?  What is God doing among the oil field workers?  I sit in awe and amazement as God advances His Kingdom and allows us to watch it happen.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Apostle Paul's rejection letter from the Foreign Mission Board

This is a letter that could have been written to the Apostle Paul had he applied for missionary service under some of today’s modern missionary boards:

Rev. Saul (Apostle) Paul
Independent Missionary
Corinth, Greece


Dear Mr. Paul:

We recently received an application from you for service under our Board. It is our policy to be as frank and open-minded as possible with all of our applicants. We have made an exhaustive survey of your case. To be plain, we are surprised that you have been able to “pass” as a bona fide missionary. We are told that you are afflicted with a severe eye trouble. This is certain to be an insuperable handicap to an effective ministry. We require 20–20 vision.

Do you think it seemly for a missionary to do part-time secular work? We heard that you are making tents on the side. In a letter to the Church at Philippi you admitted that they were the only church supporting you. We wonder why?

Is it true that you have a jail record? Certain brethren report that you did two years’ time at Caesarea, and were imprisoned at Rome.

You made so much trouble for the businessmen at Ephesus that they refer to you as “the man who turned the world upside down.” Sensationalism has no place in missions! We also deplore the lurid over-the-wall episode at Damascus. We are appalled at your obvious lack of conciliatory behavior. Diplomatic men are not stoned and dragged out of the city gate, or assaulted by furious mobs. Have you ever suspected that gentler words might gain you more friends? I enclose a copy of Dalius Carnagus’ book, “How to Win Jews and Influence Greeks.”

In one of your letters you refer to yourself as Paul the Aged. Our new mission policies do not anticipate a surplus of elderly recipients. We understand, too, that you are given to fantasies and dreams. At Troas, you saw, “A man of Macedonia” and at another time you were “caught up into the third heaven” and even claimed that “the Lord stood by” you. We reckon that more realistic and practical minds are needed in the task of world evangelism.

You have written many letters to churches where you have formerly been pastor. In one of these letters, you accused a church member of living with his father’s wife, and you caused the whole church to feel badly and the poor fellow was expelled.

Your ministry has been far too flighty to be successful. First Asia Minor, then Macedonia, then Greece, then Italy, and now you are talking about a wild-goose chase to Spain. Concentration is more important than dissipation of one’s powers. You cannot win the whole world by yourself! You are just one little Paul. In a recent sermon you said, “God forbid that I should glory in anything save the Cross of Christ.” It seems to us that you also ought to glory in our heritage, our denominational program, the unified budget.

Your sermons are much too long for the time. At one place you talked until after midnight and a young man was so sleepy that he fell out of the window and broke his neck. Nobody is saved after the first 20 minutes. “Stand up, speak up, and shut up,” is our advice.

Dr. Luke reports that you are a thin little man, bald, frequently sick, and always so agitated over your churches that you sleep very poorly. He reports that you pad around the house, praying half the night. A healthy mind in a robust body is our ideal for all applicants. A good night’s sleep will give you zest and zip so that you wake up full of zing!

You wrote recently to Timothy that you had “fought a good fight.” Fighting is hardly a recommendation for a missionary. No fight is a good fight. Jesus came not to bring a sword, but peace. You boast that “I fought with wild beasts of Ephesus.” What on earth do you mean?

It hurts me to tell you this, brother Paul, but in all of the 25 years of my experience, I have never met a man so opposite to the requirements of the FMB. If we accepted you, we would break every rule of modern missionary practice.

Most Sincerely yours,
J. Flavius Fluffyhead, Sec.
Internation Mission Board

JFF: hmh
Dr. Hendon M. Harris