"if you pour yourself out for the hungry
and satisfy the desire of the afflicted,
then shall your light rise in the darkness
and your gloom be as the noonday."
As October comes to a close, our La Fuente programs are entering their final weeks. Most of our LF students will begin "their" summer breaks in just a few weeks. Please be praying for our students to finish the year strong, many are feeling the pressure to maintain their grades to move on to their next year of studies. We have officially ended the 2023 group season, we were blessed to have 12 teams come and serve alongside us. Pray that the staff will be filled with the energy needed to finish this year strong as we enter our "office season" toward the end of November.
We began a staff book study on the book "When Helping Hurts" a few weeks ago. Many staff members feel challenged to work together to apply the valuable principles from the book. "When Helping Hurts" encourages ministries to consider how they can effectively aid and serve people with various needs around them effectively. The verse above encourages us to consider what it means to truly "pour ourselves out". If you're reading this, you're likely living in some form of Western civilization, with well above average means of living compared to the world's definition of material poverty. It is often tempting for us when we see a need to simply throw money or resources toward the "issue", but is that solving the issue?
The book is encouraging us to see that most people's poverty has a deeper meaning than a lack of food/shelter. These issues often stem from generational brokenness in relationships. It could be broken relationships with others, with social systems around such a person, or their relationship with themself. Praise God we have a relational Father. We were created by God for relationships with Him, with others, and with his creation around us. How can we aid in recovering these broken relationships many in poverty struggle with? The answer is found in the title of this blog. We pour ourselves out, we empty our cups on behalf of the afflicted. The solution is not simply to give money or send material things. What people around the world need are faithful followers of Jesus to pour themselves out into relationships with the afflicted to show that they have value, that they are capable of accomplishing things, and that God has provided wonderful "systems" designed to help individuals rise above the cycles they were born into. (such as LF). To do this well, it takes time, it takes emotional and physical energy, and it takes intentionality.
How can you adopt these principles, and pour yourself out?
Prayerfully consider serving as an intern with Envision. GO! Put in the time to learn a language, make local friendships, and serve those in the communities around you (we are also looking for more interns).
It is never too late to serve, if you're older, you too can pursue international roles with the Alliance. Remember, the harvest is PLENTIFUL, but the workers are FEW. Follow this link: https://called2serve.smapply.io/prog/called2serve/
Consider how you can develop relationships with those close to where you live, don't just give some material items, eat dinner with them, include these people in your lives. How can they experience a healthy relationship with Jesus if they've never experienced a single healthy earthly relationship in their lifetime?
These steps may seem uncomfortable or like a large commitment. Did Jesus ever tell us as His followers it would ever be comfortable? Jesus said the opposite, He said it would require denial of self, and picking up His cross daily. Please pray for guidance on how you can pour yourself out. When we start to pour ourselves out, God assures us in this verse that it is then that the desire of the afflicted is satisfied.
Each week our two La Fuente programs in Apopa and San Salvador have continued to run. A few weeks ago, we celebrated a special day called "El Dia Del Nino". This translates to the day of the child. Many of our students do not have healthy relationships with adults, sadly many actually have abusive or toxic relationships with adults. We had a joint program with Apopa and San Salv. to remind these kids we love them, and so does their Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ. Please pray for a strong finish to the 2023 La Fuente year.
La Fuente FC (soccer team):
Two weeks ago the LF FC scrapped out a 3-3 tie against “Apopa Nivel 6”. The guys had a great performance overall and came from behind to get the tie. More than the result, we were proud of the guy's character and conduct on the field, despite the pressure and tension, they represented the values of Envision El Salvador well. The team continues to train 3 times a week in Apopa, thanks to the leadership of our coach, Stanley. On Nov.4, the CMA church in Apopa and Envision are partnering to host a tournament for local youth teams, pray for this event that it will be used to strengthen community relations in Apopa.
The Guest House Project:
The construction of our soon-to-be "intern/guest/team/rooms for rent house" continues. Over the last 2 months, significant progress has been made on the second story of the house. The exterior walls are in, basic electrical aspects have been added, and the plumbing is beginning. Significant funding is still needed in order for us to reach our goal of completion, on December 31, 2023. Please pray that the project will continue smoothly.
Interns & The Residency Program:
This year we were blessed to have 4 interns serve with us, 3 have safely returned home, and our 4th, Nick Myer, will serve his last full month here in November. Nick will have served 11 months with us upon completion. Please pray for Nick as he transitions home and has to help work on his family's farm right away. Pray that the Lord will guide his next steps after his internship, and for open doors for Nick to continue serving where the Lord leads.
Sam Andersen is our current resident, who is about 10 months into his 2-year commitment with Envison El Salvador. Please pray for him as he is seeking to start schooling to help prepare himself to be ready to continue serving with the CMA in a full-time missional role.
We are always looking for more interns, please feel free to reach out to us to learn more!
Short Term Teams:
As stated above, the 2023 team season has successfully come to an end. Spots for the 2024 summer group season are already filling quickly. We would LOVE for your church to come and serve with us he in El Salvasdor. Pray for us as a staff as we are working together through our book study to develop strategies to partner with short-term teams to ensure our " helping more effectively" doesn't turn to "hurting".
The Escalante Family:
Tony and his family are currently waiting for a special permit that is required for them to continue to live in El Salvador without the risk of damaging their USA residency process. Time is running out on their current visas in the US, please pray for a miracle. Pray that in the next 2 weeks, the needed permit is granted for the Escalante family.
Pray for the La Fuente students as they are almost finished with their academic school year.
Pray for the Envision ES staff to finish the year strong.
Pray for the health of the staff both spiritually and physically.
Pray for the LF FC team, and for the tournament they're hosting in early November.
Pray for the LF FC coach Stanley as he has not started working for LF FC full-time.
Pray for the funds and resources to continue and complete the Envision guest house.
Pray that the guest house can be completed by December 31, 2023.
Pray for new interns to come in 2024
Pray for Nick as he is nearing the end of his internship, and pray that he senses the Lord's direction on the next steps.
Pray for Sam as he starts schooling to continue serving with the CMA full-time.
Pray for the short-term mission teams that will come in 2024.
Pray for the staff to be able to apply principles from "When Helping Hurts" well in order to best empower/enable our students.
Pray for a miracle for the Escalante family in regards to the special permit they need.