February 4, 2018

1 Thessalonians 5:11

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

Ministry Home and First Team Build

The new year started with much anticipation and nerves.We had taken possession of the ministry home in San Luis, Mexico that God had supplied for us.  We were nearing the completion of all the updates needed to house our first team. The first group had some questions that we just could not give answers to. We have never housed a team in Mexico.  It  was going to be a new experience for all of us. I just asked them to come join us and be a part of this next chapter of our journey. Kelly spent numerous hours decorating, preparing the sleeping arrangements, and the menu for the group. They arrived on Sunday and our team from 1st Lutheran Church of Nebraska City, Nebraska made their way to the ministry home. They acted cool and collected, but I think deep inside there was a little bit of uncertainty of where they would be staying.  The week was incredible, to say the least. We had tremendous times of fellowship, times of sharing God’s word, and times of expressing how God was dealing with us throughout the week. The final thoughts from the team were that this was an incredible experience. It could not have been done without the many people who came to help paint, clean, install new windows, and the slew of other things we needed to get done before our first group came. Thank you Jesus for this wonderful home!  May it bring You glory!


The Family

The family we built for had been living in a despicable situation to say the least. They had been swindled into buying a lot that the seller did not own. They were without the money they invested and did not have a lot to build on. We helped them with the down payment for another lot. The house build was so much fun, with some tremendous relationships built. The house was beautiful in the end, but the friendships formed were what became so very precious. Thank you to our friends from 1st Lutheran for coming to build and for our friends from Canada that have become a part of every build. It is so cool to see three countries represented for one cause...sharing the Love of Jesus Christ.

Student Ministry Update

After our Christmas party this year, the students have been in contact with the director of the detention center. She asked if we could come and interview one young man she would like to recommend to be sponsored through our student program.  I felt led to step back and let the students take on this responsibility. Three students volunteered to go and visit with the director and the young man. The director said she has three very intelligent kids that need to be sponsored. If they do not find someone to help, they will be lost in the system. We are working out the logistics of how we can bring these young adults into our family of students. We may have to bus our 20 students to these three students for our group meetings. Please keep us in your prayers as we work through the details. Most important of all, the director asked for help with activities for the kids there. Our students proposed that the accounting students will go help them with their math. Our soccer players are going to hold clinics to help the kids with skills. One of the ladies in the community will be holding art classes for the kids. The Bible studies will begin when we get some teachers in place. The director of the women's prison contacted the students and asked for 60 bibles and devotional for the ladies. They also asked for any spiritual books they could add to their library in the prison. And to think it all started with an idea to hold a Christmas party at the detention center.   Oh my!  God had some grand plans. The students just needed to be obedient to the direction He was leading them.


That is our month in a nutshell.

It is so much fun walking with God as he rolls out His master plan.

Please keep the ministry in your prayers.

Love You,

Curt and Kelly VanEkeren


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