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July 14, 2020 True Confessions

July 14, 2020 - 7:49 pm - Posted by Brenda Matthews

Sunsets 5 15I was going to just add “Part 2” or “Continued” to the title of the last communication because time continues to fly by, but as I reflected on what’s changed, I realized that I have a confession to make.

I think the Bible teaches a principle of rest.  I totally rest in the finished work of Christ for my salvation, spoken of in Genesis 2:2-3 and Hebrews, so there’s no issue there, but I think that Genesis also speaks about resting from our work and Jesus says to His disciples: “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”  (Mark 6:31)  I confess that I was not following that principle, and I have repented of that.

In my last report, I mentioned that I was working way too long hours, which meant I wasn’t getting the sleep I need, I was eating sporadically, and I wasn’t taking much time in the way of a break.  I have no one to blame but myself.  I saw so much that could or should be done that no one was doing for the church in COVID mode (the video production was just one piece), so I took it on and all of that wore me out.  Fortunately, I recognized the negative changes in me before getting to the end of my rope.  I am grateful for the support, love and concern expressed by the leaders I confessed to, and I’m happy to report that good has come out of it.

On the level of TEAM missionaries/supervisors and a supporting church, we are talking about our role and what needs to be done so that we have a healthy relationship with El Faro and what we should do to help El Faro be the healthy church we all desire it to be.  This will lead to a more detailed job description for me (elaborating more on what I should NOT be doing).  This will be helpful and healthy for me.

As far as the video production, I had to “put my foot down”, so for the last twoMovie April Services weeks, Ps. Rafa and Saúl sent their parts of the video early.  Ps. Rafa is a very gracious man.  We started taping the sermons on Fridays.  When he knew that sometimes I was working through the night to get the video done an hour or two before broadcasting it, he voluntarily started taping on Thursdays.  But when I wasn’t receiving them until Friday afternoon (apparently due to bad internet), he voluntarily started taping on Tuesdays.  Sometimes I don’t receive the sermon video until Thursday morning or noon, but most of the time I have it by Wednesday night.  This hugely relieves the stress I was under.  Please pray that they (and the other person) will continue to send all their parts on time or early because it’ll make for a very bare-bones video if deadlines are missed… and that would break my heart.  Clicking on the icon will take you to the playlist of the 15 Sunday service videos I’ve done.

Balandra GB 25With the parts coming in on time, I’ve been able to get back to a more normal devotional, eating and sleep schedule — and I’m a much better person for it!   Another major correction is to guard some time off.  I was off to a great start because they opened the beaches, so that’s where I was Wednesday mornings.  Skin diving and snorkeling are therapy for me.  When I’m in the water, it’s a time of worship and problems/concerns/issues/etc. are not even on the radar.  I do pray for my safety, but I apply Ps. 37:5 and Phil. 4:6-7 and spend the time in awe of God and His creation. Balandra SE 25On the way back from Tecolote beach, I’ve stopped for lunch facing Balandra beach (which you can’t actually see) and enjoyed these views while the birds provided live music.  With COVID cases increasing, they closed the beaches after only 3 weeks, so last week I worked on making some videos.  Clicking on either collage will take you to that playlist.  I had done the sea turtle one before coming up with the idea of a mini-series.  Enjoy.

Sunsets 2 15I mentioned before that I go up to the roof for exercise.  I’ve been much more faithful about that as well.  The heat has arrived, so I go up in the evenings and have seen some beautiful sunsets.

The plan was to explain about my birthday celebration back in April…then May…then June…  I had never before ever mentioned anything about my birthday to anyone or ever made my own cake, but, with the quarantine, I’ve been looking for ways to connect people and thought this would be a great opportunity.  I planned 5 zoom calls (only in Spanish) throughout the day with different purposes – one for conversation, three for two different games and one for prayer.  It was a fun day with lots of connections all over North and South America (and, if I had seen my email in time, maybe even Spain).  I had planned breaks between calls, but we were having so much fun that they extended.  The only time I had was to prepare lunch and frost the cake, but that’s when I burned my right index finger bad and that slowed everything down.  I had pre-determined to split the cake between whoever was on the most calls and whoever won the competitive version of the Jeopardy game, so I did that after the last call and also picked up some meds, getting home about 10 pm which meant I could finally eat my lunch and then check my email.  Everyone had a great time and it even inspired others to try similar things.  And thanks for your prayers for the healing of my finger and my health.

Phil 4 6 80Please pray for all of us involved in El Faro – missionaries and Mexican leadership – that we’d have divine wisdom in decision-making and effective ministries discipling believers and reaching the lost.  COVID has caused stress on many levels for the people here, but I’ve been encouraged to learn of people spending more time in the Word and prayer.  Seeing God answer prayers providing employment, giving wisdom, healing sicknesses, etc. has also encouraged all of us.

Grateful for your prayers and support,

Brenda

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