Tragedy & Transformation

Tragedy & Transformation

A young man’s life is changed when God’s grace reaches him through tragedy.

Froilan grew up in La Zona, a small mountain village in Honduras. As a young boy, he came to church every once in a while, but he never seemed serious about following the Lord. When he became a teenager, Froilan started drinking, and later on began using illicit drugs. Soon indulging his addictions became a daily routine. Somehow, though, Froilan managed to hold down a job. He met a nice young lady and they settled down together, but substance abuse marred their relationship.

Whenever I saw Froilan, I would pray for him and greet him warmly. No matter what their lives might be like, we must learn to look at people the way God does, not seeing who they are so much as who they can become through His grace. God’s grace worked in Froilan’s life through tragedy. He lost his firstborn son at birth, and in his sorrow began to call on God. We took the opportunity to be a support for Froilan and his girlfriend, Ocelis, visiting them and encouraging them.

Later, God blessed Froilan and Ocelis with a little girl, Marian, whom they loved dearly. Even with this new little incentive, however, Froilan still could not quit his vices. During one of h

is drinking binges, Froilan broke his leg in a motorcycle accident, which left him incapacitated for weeks. This was God’s opportunity. While he was laid up, we visited him regularly, offering him help with a juicing cleanse and Bible studies.

Once healed of his injuries, Froilan began attending church. “I always knew that the Seventh-day Adventist Church had the truth,” he remarked. Froilan didn’t miss a church service. He listened attentively to every message, gleaning important truths and applying them to his life. One by one, he became convicted of changes he needed to make, like marrying Ocelis and keeping the Sabbath. One of Froilan’s hardest decisions was giving up his job of eight years so that he could keep the Sabbath. Friends and family thought he was crazy, but he stood firm. Step by step, he learned to trust God and be obedient to His call.

About this time, an evangelistic series was announced for the nearby town of Santa Barbara. I was so excited that I began planning how to get the whole village down to Santa Barbara to hear God’s present truth. The invitations went out, and all the members of the La Zona and Piedra Hancha congregations made plans to attend. Families from the nearby village of San Manuel, where we are giving Bible studies, left their homes for a week in order to attend the meetings. The response was so great that we had to rent a bus and four pickup trucks to transport all the people!

After each meeting, as we drove back to our mountain village, we would sing songs of praise and thanksgiving to the Lord. As the villagers debarked and walked slowly up the mountain road to their homes, some continued to sing softly, others discussed newly learned Bible truths, and others simply meditated on the many blessings received.

As the crusade ended, we kept busy with visitations and Bible studies—and we began to see the results of the accumulated efforts. A special joy came from watching Froilan, Ocelis and even little Marian growing in grace and making changes. At the end of the crusade, Froilan and Ocelis were baptized. I know that Heaven rejoiced, because a soul had been rescued from the chains of sin!


Location
Honduras

Author
Joseph Willis is the director of Maranatha Relief Organization, which helps provide medical help for the poor and the outcast in Honduras.

How You Can Help
Pray for Froilan and Ocelis to continue to do the will of the Lord and stand firm in their faith.

Donate. Funds are needed to enable Maranatha Relief Organization to continue ministering to the people in Honduras. Contributions can be sent via PayPal to missionarytraveler@yahoo.com, or mailed to:

Maranatha Relief Organization
12433 Dessau Rd. # 4109
Austin, TX 78754

Thank you!
MRO thanks you in advance for your prayers and support!


Back on the Air

Back on the Air

After prolonged technical difficulties, the gospel is once again being aired in a critical access area.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow! By His grace and through His many instruments, a miracle has happened before our eyes. After a year and a half of technical difficulties, Redemption Radio is back on the air!

It took an engineer from Panama to come and install the new transmitter purchased with the sacrifices of God’s people. The following Thursday, we started up a trial broadcast, but faced some challenges with our studio equipment. We solved most of these difficulties within the next few days. Our first full day back on the air, we asked those who were listening to get in touch with us and report that they could hear the radio program.

With the station being offline for so long, it may take some time for people to become aware that the radio station is back on the air. It will also take time to find out how far the signal now reaches—but we will get there, by God’s grace. To increase the station’s immediate effectiveness, we hope to hire some temporary workers to visit the nearby villages and tell them about the radio station. We have some posters of the Ten Commandments that people here really like to hang on their walls, so the plan is to send the workers out to distribute the posters and have them tell the people where they can tune in to listen to our programming.

Keeping a radio station live takes a lot of work. Although we are broadcasting, the work at the station site is not yet finished. With our new transmitter, we believe that our radio signal should be reaching farther than it seems to be at present. The engineer told us that he thinks the problem is in the design of the antenna system. As he explained to us the problem, I thought: Oh no, another big expense! Just then he said, “I will do this work for you for the cost of my travel expenses; I will not charge you for the labor. I feel like I am among family here, and I want to take part in your efforts.” We are so thankful for his kind offer, and we hope that when the work is finished, we will be able to reach places we have not penetrated before. We need your prayers that the Lord will accomplish this, for His message must be spread throughout this country.

While we are waiting for the engineer to make time in his schedule for our repairs, we will do all we can to promote awareness of the radio station in the nearby villages and get as many new listeners as possible. After over 19 months off the air, it’s a real miracle that the Lord has given us a brand new transmitter. He must have an important purpose for the station in these last days! Our next project may be to purchase a laser color copier that we can use to print small tracts to share as autumn leaves. People these days don’t care much about reading, and will usually put aside a magazine or a large tract—but we have found that many people will gladly read something small and colorful. That’s why we want to make our own small tracts and give them to lay workers around the country to distribute.

Thank you so much for being part of the miracle of restoring Redemption Radio to the airwaves!


Location
Honduras

Author
Teresa Jimenez is a lay worker in Honduras, using radio and print media to spread the gospel in her country.

How You Can Help
Pray for the listeners who tune in to Redemption Radio. Pray that the repairs to the antenna system will enable the signal to reach much farther than ever before.

Give. Funds are needed to maintain radio equipment and continue airing Redemption Radio. If you would like to help spread the Three Angels’ Messages in Honduras by radio, send your donations marked “Redemption Radio” to:

Spanish Herald
PO Box 143
Dillard, OR 97432

Thank you!
The Jimenez family would like to give a big “thank you” to all who helped get Redemption Radio back on the air.


The Girl at the Dump

The Girl at the Dump

A young girl flourishes under the care of her new friends.

At first, we thought the children were playing. Then we realized they had business here at the dump. Little children rummaged through the trash heaps looking for anything edible or wearable. As they sifted through the rubbish, they had to fight off dogs and buzzards also scavenging for food.

One young girl stood off by herself, battered, ragged and skinny, her stomach distended. Stopping our truck, we went over to talk to her. She told us that she lived close by with her mother, and that she came to the dump every day. Looking at her forlorn face, we knew that God had brought us here to befriend little Hilda. We had been given a new mission: to visit the dump several times a week to help Hilda and the other children.

Our visits to the dump soon became a true joy. The children eagerly welcomed us as we brought them clothes, washed their hair, gave them vitamin C drinks, sang to them, and did our best to minister.

After getting to know Hilda better, we asked her if we could visit her home. Hopping in the back of our truck, she directed us to her tiny dwelling, built for her family by donations. Hilda’s mother turned out to be a fine lady, kind and generous despite her struggle with severe poverty. Instead of asking anything from us, she offered us food and drink!

For several years, we visited Hilda often at her home or the dump. When Hilda’s mother had grown to trust us, we invited Hilda to visit us at the clinic. She hesitated, but finally agreed to come later that week. Sure enough, one morning Hilda showed up on our front porch.

It just so happened that my husband was about to start a medical missionary training class, and he asked Hilda if she would like to join. Hilda nodded eagerly, but she shrank back when she saw the other students. We all did our best to make her feel welcome, and she kept coming back. Over time, Hilda learned wound care, I.V. administration, minor surgery, and other basic medical procedures. She often volunteered at our clinic. She caught on so quickly that we could see that Hilda would really benefit from more education!

Hilda’s mother greeted me with a smile when I went to visit. “I have a question for you,” I began. “We can see that Hilda is a very smart girl. May we send her to a Christian school?”

The mother’s eyes pooled up, and tears streamed down her face as she nodded. The following school session, Hilda enrolled at Reach International. Soon our little dump girl became a confident, hardworking, self-sufficient young lady.

Today, Hilda is a grown mother, living and working in Mexico. We lost contact with her for many years, but recently I received an email from her saying that she had been trying to contact us, and that she wanted to come visit. When she came to see me at the restaurant, we just hugged and cried.

We never know the long-range effects of our actions—simple things like reaching out to a child. It will bring us such happiness in Heaven to meet those that God permitted us to minister to! “What rejoicing there will be as these redeemed ones meet and greet those who have had a burden of love and salvation in their behalf!” Review and Herald, January 5, 1905. 


Location: Honduras

Author: Elsa Willis is a missionary with Maranatha Medical Ministries in the mountains of Santa Barbara, Honduras. mehw1844@yahoo.com

How You Can Help

Pray for the multi-faceted work of Maranatha Medical Ministries, with their health clinic, restaurant, elementary school and varied community outreach programs. Pray that the souls they minister to will become subjects of God’s Kingdom!

Donate

To support the work of Maranatha Medical Ministries, send your donation to:

Maranatha Medical Ministries
PO Box 390
Keysville, VA 23947


Ariana

 

Ariana

A young girl is in need of daily treatments for her disabling condition.

Ariana is a sweet little girl who lives in Honduras. Sadly, although she is six years old, she is unable to walk. That’s because Ariana was born with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid builds up inside the skull, putting pressure on the brain.

Cerebrospinal fluid is normal and necessary when it flows freely through the brain and spinal column. However, when the flow is obstructed or too much fluid is produced, the extra pressure can cause brain damage, resulting in physical and cognitive disabilities. The condition is particularly severe in children who are born with hydrocephalus. Still, surgery and extensive therapy can help mitigate the symptoms and restore quality of life to the sufferers.

Since Ariana was born with hydrocephalus, she has intensive treatment needs. Unfortunately, the cost of treatment is too expensive for her poverty-stricken family. Once or twice a year, she receives a grant from a city-wide fundraiser for children with disabilities; but because the funds are divided between many needy children, the actual sum each child receives amounts to very little. Ariana receives therapy once or twice a week when her family can afford to pay, but she really needs daily treatments if she is ever to gain full recovery of her motor skills and brain function. She tries so hard to walk, but the limited therapy she receives is not enough for her to make significant progress.

This is where Maranatha Relief Organization comes in. The purpose of this ministry organization is to reach out to the forgotten poor and minister to their needs, providing health care and education and helping them to know about a God who loves and cares for them. We believe with all our hearts that as Christ’s followers, we “have been redeemed for service. Our Lord teaches that the true object of life is ministry. . . . Not more surely is the place prepared for us in the heavenly mansions than is the special place designated on earth where we are to work for God.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 326, 327. We praise God that over the years, through the love, prayers and gifts of our supporters, this ministry has been able to help many people in need!

Maranatha Relief Organization (MRO) does not ask for financial assistance often—only when we see a dire need. Ariana is one of those cases. Her family can barely provide for themselves, let alone provide for Ariana to receive adequate medical treatments. Yet her medical problem is urgent.

Will providing financial assistance for Ariana’s treatment enable her to recover from her devastating condition? We believe so. While the doctors can give no absolute guarantee, it is actually very likely that if she receives help in time, she will be able to live a relatively normal life. If the Holy Spirit moves upon your heart to help Ariana, please do. Every day that passes without her receiving treatment is a day hindering her recovery. I pray that one day soon, Ariana will be able to walk, go to school and church, and read her Bible!

“I was an hungred,” Christ says, “and ye gave me meat; I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink; I was a stranger, and ye took me in: . . . I was sick, and ye visited me.” Matthew 25:35, 36. Will you help this precious little one in need? 


Location: Honduras

Author: Joseph Willis is the director for Maranatha Relief Organization. They help provide medical help for the poor and the outcast in Honduras.

How You Can Help

Pray for Ariana daily! It is earnest, fervent prayer that moves the hand of God.

Donate. All funds which MRO receives in Ariana’s behalf will be turned over to our missionary contacts in Honduras, and payments will be made directly to the hospital and clinic which provide her care. Contributions can be sent via PayPal to missionarytraveler@yahoo.com, or mailed to:

Maranatha Relief Organization
12433 Dessau Rd. #4109
Austin, Texas 78754

Thank you. MRO thanks you in advance for your prayers and support!


Letter from Cody: Honduras – August 2014

“Standing by a purpose true, Heeding God’s command, Honor them the faithful few! All hail to Daniel’s band! Dare to be a Daniel, Dare to stand alone! Dare to have a purpose firm! Dare to make it known.” How true and striking are the words of this familiar children’s song, but how often unheeded do they go. As another familiar statement says, this world is in need of Daniels today! “The greatest want of the world is the want of men—men who will not be bought or sold, men who in their inmost souls are true and honest, men who do not fear to call sin by its right name, men whose conscience is as true to duty as the needle to the pole, men who will stand for the right though the heavens fall.” Education, 57. Paul was another individual who would stand for the right regardless of the consequences. “In his ministry, Paul was often compelled to stand alone. He was specially taught of God and dared make no concessions that would involve principle. At times the burden was heavy, but Paul stood firm for the right. He realized that the church must never be brought under the control of human power. The traditions and maxims of men must not take the place of revealed truth. The advance of the gospel message must not be hindered by the prejudices and preferences of men, whatever might be their position in the church.” Acts of the Apostles, 199, 200. God is calling us to stand for that purpose true, heeding God’s command today. He gives us the grace and the courage to stand firmly for Him, making no compromise where principle is concerned. He is calling us to answer that greatest want of the world—the want of men and women who will stand for the right though the heavens fall! May we dare to be Daniels today!

Around the world there are men and women who are daring to be Daniels and who are sharing with others the blessing of standing for that purpose true. One such location is in Honduras where they have been fearlessly broadcasting the truth over the airwaves for many years. Teresa Jimenez and her husband Jorge are instrumental in leading out in this work there. Recently they have been able to relocate to a new site, and the Lord has just recently opened the doors for them to begin broadcasting over the internet, as well. Recently, the Lord has provided a radio operator for them who, among his other duties, has three live broadcasts a day! Brother Wagner is so thankful to be working for the Lord in this radio station and shares how happy he is to be in the Lord’s service. “It’s a great privilege for us to be a part of such a wonderful ministry as the radio, because in this way we are using all the means within our reach in order to fulfill the great commission God has entrusted us in Matthew 28. As we work here, we are trying to contribute with the little bit we can in order to reach as many as possible with the everlasting gospel and the three angel’s message given in Revelation 14:6-12. For this reason we have decided to dedicate our whole time to this ministry’s work. I have always prayed that I might be able to work in a radio station that was completely Adventist and which had a programming that identified us as a peculiar and distinctive people, but it seemed like something impossible. With God’s help, we hope to do the best we can in this ministry, so the work can move forward and the distinctive message of God’s remnant people may spread far and wide.” Praise the Lord for faithful brethren, standing firmly for God and giving His message with power! If you would like to help the work of Redemption Radio, you can mark your donation accordingly. In order to continue the good work of broadcasting the truth far and wide, they need our prayers and support!

Yours in daring to be a Daniel,


03/27/2010: I Wanted to be a Priest

I Wanted 
to be a Priest

A story of God’s saving providence in Honduras

March 27, 2010


Many years ago, I felt the need in my heart to seek God. I have very good parents, but there was no one that could give me the correct religious instruction. I wanted to serve and help people, so I thought the way to accomplish this was by becoming a priest.

A short while after I began my studies for the priesthood, I developed some serious problems with my eyes which made it impossible for me to continue my studies. I continued to be active in the church, along with the rest of my very devout family, until a difficulty took place at our local Catholic church and I decided to stop attending.

For the next few years, I threw myself into my work; that’s how I kept occupied. Over the next several years, I met three different young ladies whom I considered for marriage; but somehow, at the last minute, some problem would arise and the marriages would be called off.

During these years, God had sent His servants from Maranatha Medical Ministries to Honduras, and an Adventist church was established here in the village of La Zona. They would kindly invite me to their meetings, and once in a while I would attend. Gradually as time moved on, the visits became more frequent.

I always found the messages to be simple and sincere, and the testimony of most of their members to be that of true Christians. I felt satisfied and blessed whenever I attended their church.

On one occasion, Brother Hernando Cuesta, a missionary from Colombia, and I were talking and he asked if I liked the teachings of the Adventist church. With sincerity I responded that I liked it, and that I agreed with about 75 percent of its teachings, but there were some things that, to me, were too extreme. He then proceeded to ask me if I wanted to study with him and perhaps we could clear up the other 25 percent.

We began to study together, and God even had Brother Hernando spend a couple of weeks at my place, due to the outpost being filled with guests. During those two weeks, I learned more about the Bible than I had learned in my entire life. By his example, I also learned the importance of personal devotions with God in the morning.

I began a new life. Now I understood why I had that sickness with my eyes that pulled me out of the priesthood; why the marriages had never taken place—it was in reality the hand of God guiding my life.

Now, with great joy, I can serve God and help others. I decided to offer my help and skills with the young men up at the outpost at the Missionary Training Center. The Lord has surrounded me with people that I too can learn from; people that are kind, humble, and most of all, filled with the Spirit of God.

The time that I used to dedicate to calculating my work, vain thoughts, etc., I now dedicate to the study of God’s Word, the Spirit of Prophecy books and prayer. I can only give the thanks and praise to God for all that He has done. I know that it is His grace that works in me, because He is the One that gives us faith, leads us to repentance, and leads us all to do that which is good.

There was a time that I thought I could never keep the Sabbath—I always had so much work to do—but now I look forward to Sabbath. It is the happiest day for me. Sabbath school is my favorite time, because the Divine Teacher comes to teach us His wisdom and all that He has left us in His Word. It is a wonderful blessing for me. Every Wednesday afternoon, the Missionary Trainees and I go into the mountains and give Bible studies and medical consultations. What a blessing this is!

The majority of my family does not support me in my new life, and especially in my decision to get baptized. I pray much and I’m very anxious for that glorious day when I can publicly demonstrate my desire to be a part of God’s eternal family. I know that God gives special blessings and promises to those who get baptized. I know that in God’s strength I will be able to meet all the trials and temptations that come my way.

I could go on telling all that God has done for me, but I’d rather ask that you pray that God will keep me faithful and firm, that on that glorious day we can all meet together by that river of life. May God help us all, is my prayer.

Note: This testimony was written by Jorge Muñoz, and translated into English. By the time you read this story, Jorge will be a baptized Seventh-day Adventist. His desire is to work full-time with Maranatha Medical Ministries, helping in our Missionary Training Center. In addition to his missionary outreach with the young men, he will also be teaching them carpentry skills and small-scale construction. We thank God that He has provided us with a mentor for our young men. Please keep Jorge in your prayers; that God will keep him strong in His truth. We know that he will be a great asset to the ministry, and to God’s work here in La Zona.

By Jorge Muñoz. Maranatha Medical Ministries, Honduras. Donations can be sent to Maranatha Medical Ministries, 
PO Box 501, Sherman, NY 14781.