Honduras Missions Archive

Honduras Missions The Ritchie Family missionaries to Choluteca Honduras....

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Great Blessings always seem to come with Great Trials

After several weeks of preparation work, we had our first evangelistic outreach with the bounce houses, games etc, partway into the mountains, to a village called Linaca. There is a pastor up there that Carlos knew and had asked us to help. We explained 5 weeks ago, what we would do and how to do a promotion to allow the children to “earn” tickets by saying verses, inviting friends and parents to church and so on. We knew something was wrong when the pastor arrived to help load equipment and I found his only prep work was inviting the entire village to the event… Uh, oh. Then, five minutes before leaving, Jeny decided after 3 weeks of wonderful behavior, now was the time to steal, lie about it and act up. So we left her home with Sasha, who was glad not to go because she broke her tail bone riding in the back of the truck a week ago and is very sore. It worked out for the better and Jeny had a change of heart when we returned…Amen.

We arrived in Linaca to the open space used for a soccer field. Our first real hint the day was going to very difficult was the huge crowd already there waiting. It didn’t help seeing a Pepsi truck unloading nearby for a little store and had security guards armed with shot guns like a Brinks Bank truck …uh,oh. Unabashed in our efforts, I took our rope and sectioned off an area to set up in. With several workers, but very little help, 2+ hours later in 100 degree heat, all was ready. Everyone came under the tent except a few groups of distant onlookers; men in the so called road and a couple of groups of teen boys watching afar off in the field. After preaching, so many raised their hands for salvation I could not count them, It was wonderful as 50-75 adults, teens and children, asked for forgiveness for sin, help to live pleasing to God and a plea to Christ Jesus to save them. AMEN! and amen. If it was not for salvations, we would have quit doing this along time ago, because as many of you know who helped with events in the USA, it’s a lot of work

Here the difficulty of the work is multiplied. Near the end of the event, with everyone near exhaustion, the teens in the distance saw their chance, became bold, and flooded into the event stealing whatever they could. I caught one 3 times and emptied his pockets. To make matters worse instead of helping correct the problem, some adult church workers started stealing themselves, with a your rich, you can afford it attitude…. ok, time to shut it down. One teen who had been watching, started fighting with Lisa when she would not let him steal…When you hear your wife scream your name in panic… Uh, oh …civility goes out the window. I grabbed him and pinned him on the ground and said I was taking him to the police…the police do not come to you here. His uncle came red in the face mad and ready to fight me. I am glad he did not have a machete or he might not have been as scared of me. While all eyes were on me, the other teens started rolling the go-kart away, Lisa and Barry Jr. ran them down. Then another took the basketballs and Barry Jr. ran him down…it was a madhouse for a while. No one was willing to confront or stop them, not even the pastor. The uncle returned a while later and I had the chance to actually talk to him and calmed the situation. I ended up letting the boy go. We lost about $500 in supplies and equipment. To top it off, while loading the last piece of equipment I was bit by a stray dog…thankfully he did not break the skin.

It is an understatement to say we were glad to get home and see Jeny’s beaming smile greet us. All I can figure is our LORD allowed us to really hit the panic button of spiritual wickedness in high places…in my book, that makes it a good day AMEN! We did learn some things though, like the next event we do of this scale…we need to have a place to lock things up and hire a policeman to come with us, its cheaper in the long run. You won’t lose things, patience or testimony.

Carlos is gone. We allowed him to do some translating work for missionary doctors in the northern part of the country this week. It seemed a good time to let Pastor Enemensio preach. His back is acting up so he has been struggling riding a horse to Los Terrerros. He goes on the days when his back will let him. Just the fact this 60+ year old man walks or rides a horse up the mountain is amazing. So today we let him sit and preach here in La Cruz Baptist Church. Before services a slightly drunk man came in and begged for salvation. Enemensio and I looked at each other with a question mark kinda look. Do we kick him out or witness….I would rather err on the witness side. So he did and led them man through the entire plane of salvation and prayer….Through the fog of his mind if the light came on then AMEN! If not God will use it for Judgment later, either way God is glorified. Later,half way through Enemensio was standing and preaching hard and everyone listening intently. Our baby Christians desire and need much milk. I pray the desire does not wax dull.
Lisa taught about the Tower of Babel today and had me cut up building blocks from the wood used to let down the container. The children had a blast and all went home full of popcorn that Amish Country Popcorn donated while we were in the USA.
Please pray for Jeny she has been infested with worms since arriving, now Barry Jr. may even have them but were are not sure yet. We need to get more medication as funds allow. We have numerous needs, church building and property, car, safety, We may be getting more abused children from the government. And the list goes on....
Thank You ALL!! We covet your prayers.
Unworthy Servants to a Worthy Saviour