This past Sunday, Pastor Louis declared that in September, as a church, we would be partaking in a Month of Consecration.
Consecration is a noun defined as, “the action of making or declaring something, typically a church, sacred.” Simply put, it means being set apart, and as such, we are being called to set apart September as a sacred time to get realigned with God.
Pastor Louis challenged us to go deeper in our prayer and fasting life and he invited us to join him on Wednesdays in fasting.
Join us every Sunday in September as we continue to consider what it means to be A Consecrated People.
We are also going through a teaching series entitled Set Apart during our Wednesday night Midweek gatherings which will focus on the topic of Spiritual Formation and how it relates to consecration.
Over the last 2+ years I have been in communication with a brother in India and have followed his ministry to the poor and orphans. I have been amazed by the commitment, consistency and tenacity lived out daily to take the gospel to the poor and love the unloved with whatever they have. They walk as much as 15 miles to the forest “to take bread and minister to the hungry children who live without proper clothes, have no houses and no schools”.
His son was being treated for typhoid-malaria and I was prompted by the Lord to ask how we can help. Arlene suggested we ask about water. Well, they had no clean water and had to walk as much as 5 miles to get it (see the lady with the pitcher). I took a step of faith and offered to get a well, so for $1000 we had a hand well dug and installed. The joy that it brought their community is priceless.
They then needed book bags because of the heavy rains that soak the children’s school work, so we provided them. Look at the faces. The needs are great, (notice they have no shoes but they would love to have a pair and clothing is sparse, they need school fees and various supplies).
Throughout our communications, I have been so blessed to get to know Steven Dora and Save Orphans. Steven loves Jesus and he loves His kids. He rises at 4am for prayer and receives strength for the day. Steven is full of joy and faith and daily minsters with anticipation of God’s intervention wherever he goes.
The Lord has opened the door for me to go to India to serve alongside servants of God who take literally “freely you have received freely give”, and experience for myself a living faith that does not discriminate and truly loves the least of these.
As of now they have a full agenda for me: Inaugurate the Hand Well, the Old Age Home, the Church Hut and churches, visiting orphanages and ministry places in other villages, encouraging pastors, attending a baptismal service and baptizing them in the River and attending a wedding. I thought I was busy here 😉
I leave Sunday, September 3 for 11 days.
It’s taken me a while to get this out because of all that is going on in Houston and Louisiana. They have my prayers and support.
Being welcomed by the beautiful children. Officially “Uncle”.
After a 21hr flight, a 3.5hr wild ride (on the left side of the road with the driver on my right) to the orphanage; dodging vehicles, small motorcycles, (no helmets with as many as 3 passengers, ladies sit on the back sideways) bicycles, people, cows, bulls, pigs, goats, and chickens, mostly through dirt roads with no lights (some vehicles with no lights) we finally get to the Hill Tribal Orphanage about 1:30am.
At 9am the children welcome me and I’m officially an uncle to 26. Spent time with the children, visited tribal villages and prayed with some folks, went to a service and preached, prayed for every person, was taken to a home to pray for someone who was snakebitten and a deaf lady. Led a couple of people to Jesus, then returned to the service to eat with the folks. Definitely an interesting and different menu, but grateful for the privilege of being with brothers and sisters.
I must say, I have never seen poverty and living conditions like these in my life, not even in the movies. I’m humbled to see how people survive, love and share what little they have.
These pictures tell a little of the story. – Pastor Rick Del Rio
Update: September 8, 2017
Visiting a tribal village this morning for a service with these beautiful people. Had a great time encouraging them in the Word 1John 3:1,2. Encouraged them to put on there Armour daily, which we did. Then each one came for prayer. What hunger and thirst for God that transcends things. It didn’t matter that the hut was maybe 12’x12′, with a bed where 2 Pastors sat, 1 chair they had for me, the ladies sat on the floor and the others sat on the floor at the little entrance. They took time to pray then they served lunch. No tables, no chairs, just thankful to God for provisions and fellowship. I’m humbled by how people live. No complaints, just smiles, love, gratitude and generosity. I’m grateful for the experiences and the lessons. – Pastor Rick Del Rio
Update: September 8, 2017
I did the last post from a motorcycle dealership. In the short time I’ve been here I’ve met pastors that travel by bike, walking, scooters, public transportation for hours everyday to visit the tribal villages, the sick and go to church. My heart broke as I reflected on how privileged we are. Motorcycle, car – I drive for 6, 10 blocks out of convenience. So, I felt prompted to help. I took a step of faith and purchased 3 motorcycles for the pastors and paid to repair one for another.
Trusting that folks will get behind me, but taking action now I felt would make a huge difference for the gospel to go forth. Here are the pastors. They were so happy. Pastor Steve Dora is their leader and has given everything to help these folks in ministry. So glad God connected us. Help me make a difference. Thank you for your support. Blessings and love. https://www.gofundme.com/missions-trip-to-orphanage-in-india – Pastor Rick Del Rio
Update: September 9, 2017
Children receiving shoes and socks we purchased and donated clothing and toys brought from AGM. They are grateful for their breakfast, 3 slices of bread with a half teaspoon of jelly on one of them and a glass of milk.
When I think of how we can spread as much jelly as we want on a piece of bread and they share a small jar amongst 26 children, it’s tough to process. So i decided to do something very special; tomorrow Pastor Steve is going to feign as though they are fasting for dinner so they don’t do prep and we’re going to get the food that the children like best, and cake and ice cream with soda pop. The things we take for granted and they never have. Can you help me bless them? Will you share of your bounty? Please go now to https://www.gofundme.com/missions-trip-to-orphanage-in-india
I thank you in advance and I thank all of you who have supported. – Pastor Rick Del Rio
Update: September 11, 2017
With my nephews and nieces after a wonderful celebration. – Pastor Rick Del Rio