Thieves, Prayers and Progress
We Know God is at Work Here
“It's another sign that God is at work here in Window Rock,” another missionary tells me one evening after hearing the story of how our small church plant was broken into, which led to our church truck (that hauls our mobile church trailer) being stolen also. Her thoughts echoed my own the Sabbath we came to church to learn that the church had been broken into.
It has been a somewhat challenging time here in the Navajo Nation’s capital. The devil is fighting and reeling against our efforts; and we believe it’s because he is aware that there is a harvest on the horizon that he doesn’t want to come.
But God remains good and mighty, and we want to thank each of you for your prayers during this last month as we have been faced with many “opportunities for growth.”
If you are reading this, we are sincerely asking for your prayers over two months. The small church plant in the Navajo Nation’s capital that we have been working to start and keep going these last two years will be hosting an Amazing Facts evangelist: Wyatt Allen, from July 20-August 18. We are seeking prayers leading up to these dates and during the meetings.
We are personally praying that the darkness that prevails here will be broken by God’s light, love and truths, and that God will move in a mighty way to use His servant Wyatt Allen, and each of us helping to share the Everlasting Gospel with the Navajo people in the Navajo Nation’s capital. We are also praying for the stamina (and help) to continue to disciple the new believers that the Lord may be preparing to send our way. By God’s grace we trust that the harvest is coming and we want to be ready for His outpouring here in our small mission field!
In His service, Tony and Darah
Theft and Prayers
We have been praying…and praying more…and then praying again. Struggles in life have led us deeper in prayer for this area of the Navajo reservation and for our family. On our knees is where we find ourselves often.
Recently, we arrived at church to find that the front door remained held shut by the small piece of wood we wedge in between the door handles, but the massive chain and lock that are normally there were missing. Then we saw inside that the church projector; speaker; and a few other items were also gone or damaged. The church had been broken into. At first thought, we agreed that something good must be about to happen for the Window Rock Church because we were obviously on the devil’s radar. I (Darah) found some strange comfort in this, because recently we have lost several Navajo members in the church—so to think that something good was about to happen was an encouragement.
Tony talking with Officer Whitegoat after the first break-in at the church.
We called the police, and within the hour Officer Wally Whitegoat came out to take the report. Somewhere in the conversation of things stolen Officer Whitegoat began to ask about the church: “when do you meet; how many people attend; how long have you been here…” Tony used his questions as an opportunity to share our faith and invite the officer to our summer prophecy series on the property. Only the Lord knows if through this not-so-good event this one soul will come to know Jesus and find salvation!
While the officer and Tony were going through what was stolen we moved the Sabbath School class outside so they could go through the trailer. We praised God that whoever stole our church things had not taken our heaters, propane tanks or the truck. We also took time to pray for whoever stole God’s things, that God would reach their hearts through this, and that one day we could be worshipping side by side in the same church they stole from. Believing that God can take the most hardened heart and turn it into a new creation for His glory!
Aside from having our handicap ramp stolen several months ago, we had never had issues with theft before, but now we are far more alert to the possibility. And praise God, He has already provided help to get gates on the fence coming into the property, which we are very grateful for.
After the officer left, some of the church members were eager to make sure the thief wouldn’t be able to come back for the truck, so they took out the battery and we removed items of value from the inside of the truck just in case.
The truck used by the church to move the mobile church trailer after it was stolen and wrecked into a tree.
Unfortunately, a few days later the truck was stolen. We received the call from the church Bible worker that when he arrived on the property one morning the truck was not there, and did we have it— but, we didn’t. We praised the Lord though, because just one month earlier Emilio, the Bible worker had unhooked the church trailer from the truck to use the truck, so God had protected His house of worship, knowing in advance that had it still been attached the thief could have just as easily taken our entire church! We filed the police report and asked the next officer who was dealing now with the truck, what the likelihood of us getting the truck back would be. He replied, “well, if you see it before we do, please be sure to call and notify us.” That didn’t feel too reassuring. And then he told me that we might have a 50% chance of getting it back if they were to file a nationwide search for it (though he never did say if they were going to file a nation-wide search). We thanked this officer and left with not-so-high hopes of getting the truck back.
But, again, God is good! Another few days passed and this time we received a call from the police saying that they had found the truck! It had been found only a few miles from our church, run into a tree. It ended up being towed to the junk yard just several hundred feet from the trailer park where we live.
A friend of ours was able to tow it over to our personal driveway until we could figure out insurance issues and what to do about the damages and repairs. God had answered our prayers that the truck would be returned, and we believe God will answer our prayers (and already is) to help us fight the devil’s attacks and to be ready for that “something good,” that is about to happen for the Window Rock church plant when it comes.
Please help us pray as the evangelism series comes to the church property this summer that God will block any more attacks from the devil to slow progress and will open wide the blessings of heaven as Wyatt Allen shares a message of hope, salvation and Biblical truth for these last days we are living in.
Emilio, Jasmine, and Jackson working after the truck was stolen to unhook the towing mechanism on the church trailer so the thief couldn't come back for the church too!
PROGRESS AND BLESSINGS
Despite the many attacks from the adversary, God has been busy pouring out blessings and clearing the way for progress. Currently, we have the church property fenced on two full sides, with locking gates at the two entrances. We have electricity almost ready to begin using in our mobile trailer so we can stop having to use the generator (which members have complained about due to fumes), and water lines and plumbing are set to be put in soon.
We are still praying for the soon-to-be donated trailer from the neighboring Mormon church to come through (and hopefully soon!), and have been told that they are only waiting on some paperwork after having to get a new title for the trailer (they couldn't find the original title). So, we know they are working as best they can to get that released so that we can move it onto our property. What an amazing and unexpected gift this will be to have to begin worshipping in.
We have a group coming next week to help setup RV hookups and possibly work on finishing the fencing on the property. And, we have a 8’ x 10’ church sign ordered and ready to be placed onto permanent backing and posts once we get the posts dug into the ground, hopefully by the beginning of July. Several people have said whom we have invited to church that they couldn’t find our church property, because they see the small trailer (but no real signage on the lot) and think that couldn’t possibly be the church…but soon we hope to have a large, clear sign and even a new, more permanent modular trailer to hold services in.
We will also be holding a Depression Recovery Seminar on the church property on July 1 and the next day we will be holding a health fair at the Navajo Museum in the center of town. As well as setting up the ATGO booth at the local flea market that week to make new friends, pray with people and pass out invites to these events and to the summer evangelism series.
We can see that the Lord is moving mountains on our behalf to be ready for the evangelism this summer and even for the harvest of people that we pray will come to start worshipping with us after the meetings. Will you help us pray for continued clearance of obstacles as we work to get the land ready for evangelism and a larger space to worship in?
ARE YOU BEING CALLED? Are you being called to come to the Navajo Reservation to give of your time and talents? Is God calling you to share with His children here? “To those who are looking for a place where they may work in the Lord’s vineyard, come over and help us. Come prepared to practice self-denial, determined that you will not fail nor be discouraged. We can not pay your passage, nor can we give you large wages. We can not carry you financially or spiritually; but if you will come to do a work for the Master, if you are willing to visit and labor for souls where they are, come, and we will co-operate with you as long as you co-operate with God.”2 “Helpers are needed who have some means, who can engage in some employment and sustain themselves and not draw upon the [church] for their support.”3 “Let such workers go…where truth was presented years ago and the work has not been followed up. True, it will require self-denial to leave the churches where [you] have assembled to worship. But, if Jesus, the precious Savior, had studied His own pleasure and convenience, as many who profess to be His followers do today, He would never have left the mansions of bliss, His heavenly home, and come to our world, all seared and marred with the curse…”4
Though these words above were spoken over 100 years ago, they apply to all of us today. The call is still being sounded for individuals to come; only this time to the Navajo Reservation. We need people who would be able to help in short-term and possibly long-term capacities with a variety of skill sets, and who are willing to be self-supporting in the work. If you are interested and feel the call to come: please pray about the following needs and if God is calling you to come?
#1, #2 and #3: from the book: An Appeal for Self-Supporting Laborers to Enter Unworked Fields: A Call to Finish the Work; pages 26; 27-28; 29 (in respective order)
Evangelism Series Coming in July!
In July the church plant in Window Rock will be hosting Amazing Facts evangelist, Wyatt Allen and his team. They will be with us for a month long series of tent meetings. Wyatt came last summer to our sister church in Chinle, AZ. During those meetings we carpooled several of our members there to hear the messages. It is truly a miracle and a blessing that they have agreed to come back again to share in our area of the Navajo Nation's capital town of Window Rock.
Wyatt does an great job explaining prophecy for these last days we are living in. You can watch Wyatt's testimony here on youtube: https://youtu.be/r9nPMJiD-hc. Or read his story in his book: The Least of the Least. Jesus is coming soon and we want our Navajo brothers and sisters to know God's truths found in His Word and to be ready for His return. Please help us pray that we will have the church property ready for their arrival, as we need to have RV sites ready and water on the land for their equipment and RV's. We are also praying that the donated Mormon church trailer will come through before the month-long series, so we will have somewhere to meet when the Lord brings more precious souls to worship with us.
PRAISES & PRAYER REQUESTS:
Praising God for finding our stolen church truck.
Praising God for the group from local missionaries who came to help put gates on the fence.
Prayers needed for summer evangelism team and for many souls to attend.
Prayers needed for the utilities (water, and gas) to be installed soon on the church property.
Prayers for Bible workers who can work as a team in this area sharing the Everlasting Gospel, and permanent housing solutions in the area for all volunteers.
Prayers for our missing members, to be reached and to be able to attend the summer evangelism series.
Philippians 4:6: Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God...
Funds to continue the church building project (currently we have around $35,000 to start the work, but estimate the entire project to cost more)
Volunteers to help finish the fencing around the church property.
Bible workers and other consecrated volunteers who have the means to be self-supporting and who desire to see more people on the Navajo reservation come to health, healing and salvation.
To share the message of salvation with Native people groups using health outreach aimed at improving physical and emotional wellbeing.
To help Native people groups know Jesus by teaching from the Word of God.
To equip indigenous peoples to reach their own with the Gospel and to prepare them for Jesus' second coming.
How To Donate: would you like to help us keep this outreach going? You can donate towards any of our current needs. All donations received will be used towards our most pressing needs in the order God is leading us to fulfill them. There are no overhead ministry costs, as we all work on a volunteer basis. We are able to provide tax deductible receipts for some donations (specifically, if they are donated to the local church plant needs), contact us directly if you need a receipt for tax purposes on your donation. Support can be mailed to: ATGO Ministries PO Box 3173 Window Rock, AZ, 86515 You can also contact us via email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 928-275-3180.
You Can Also Donate Online: www.ATGOministries.org!