Gospel. Culture. Technology. Music.

Month: July 2007 Page 1 of 3

The Wrath of God is Worse Than Any Form of Torture Devised by Man

Just consider this thought. Jesus himself said essentially the same thing in Matthew 10:28: “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” Fear the wrath of God more than man. Why? Because if man, at his worst, in devising ways of torturing and killing people can come up with such awful ways to go about achieving this end, how much greater is the infinite wrath of the Creator toward those who oppose Him who extends His hand in mercy through Christ and allows them to live, breath, eat, drink, day in and day out, all the while slapping Him in the face over and over again? The wrath of the Creator who breathed out all things in existence ex nihilo (from nothing) is so much worse than anything man can do to us. This is a frightening thought, as it should be. And consider how awful human torture is! And then to consider the ways in which God can inflict pain at this level and at the spiritual level forever for the way we trample on His glory!

And yet God in His mercy has sent a Savior to take this eternal torture, eternal shame, spiritual torment, utter darkness, that we all earned for our rebellion, and bear it on the cross on behalf of those who believe in Him. Jesus willingly, out of His infinite love, suffered the eternal torture and wrath of God for those who believe. This Jesus, who from eternity has always existed, gave up His creator rights, uniting Himself to man, so that He could live the perfect life none of us could ever live, and do so on our behalf. And in so doing, He became the perfect sacrifice for any who would believe in Him. And upon suffering the wrath of God on the cross, those who believe in Him now inherit His perfect record freely through faith in His blood. Turn to Christ that you may escape the wrath to come, and even better than that, that you may be reconciled to the only Being worthy of all honor, praise and glory, that you might find the greatest joy ever in Him! There is no joy or pleasure greater than what the Creator of all things can bring. He is the Joy of joys, the Pleasure of pleasures, the source from which all good things come.

“Fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” And how much none of us fear as we should, even as believers. If I feared God for His power and might as I should, and at the same time knowing all that power was now for me (not against me), man how I would be changed and live to His glory more than I do! And yet I cannot see God as I ought by my own reason, strength, will or intellect. The Holy Spirit must come in and awaken my dead soul through communion with Christ and through the application of His Word. I am a sinner, and as such, my sin has rendered me spiritually blind, deaf, and without knowledge of Him. I am in a desperate condition everyday. How quickly do I desert Him who loved me with His blood! How quickly do I forget the price that was paid at the cross. And how quickly do I forget His mighty, terrifying, eternal strength and power that should have destroyed both my body and soul in hell forever, and yet Jesus stepped in the way and took the blow! What amazing mercy … I must cry out day in and day out that God reveal Himself to me in greater and mightier ways through Christ who was given for me. I must pursue Him that I may know Him through His Scriptures, and in knowing Him, fear Him as I ought, as in Isaiah 6, Ezekiel 1 and Job 40.

And in relation to others, if I feared God properly more than man (not a fear that runs from Him but rather submits to Him under His sovereign grace), how much would the fear of man just fizzle out? May God turn our hearts by His sovereign grace to see His holiness and wrath, as well as His love and mercy. May this unbelievable love that bore infinite wrath and torture be the overarching theme for change in our hearts everyday, both in relation to God and others.

John Hendryx on Many Young Calvinists Treatment of Arminians

John Hendryx, founder of Monergism.com responds to interview questions pertaining to young Calvinists and their “I’m more reformed than anyone else” attitude toward others and especially their terrible treatment of Arminian brothers and sisters in Christ. These attitudes fly in the face of the point of Calvinistic theology: humbleness before the throne of God and others, to the glory of God.


7. How much cooperation can there be between Calvinists and strongly Arminian evangelicals?

I have worked side-by side with them overseas in missionary activity for years. It can be done. These are our brothers and sisters. Some Calvinists who don’t think so need to get out more.

8. My own interaction with young Calvinists has made me less enthusiastic for Reformed Christianity. In my essay “I Hate Theology” I catalog some of the negative by-products of what often amounts to an obsession with theological minutiae at the expense of kindness and charity. Am I off base?

No, I think you are right on the mark, Michael. I have had my share of battles with many of the type of people you are describing. However, perhaps you should try to distinguish those persons who consider themselves “Truly Reformed” from the average Reformed believer. There are vocal groups out there that have an “I am more Reformed than anyone else” type attitude, but I would argue that such persons constitute a minority in Reformed circles. Their activism and vocal nature has made them appear more influential than they are, and many of these groups also have prolific writers. While I will not mention them by name I find their arrogance equally as repulsive as you do, Michael, especially since they claim to represent my brand of theology. But the existence of such groups, I believe, should not discourage you from the biblical clarity and rich heritage that Reformed Theology has brought to the Church. God has truly blessed the Church with such preachers and theologians as Augustine, John Calvin, Peter Martyr Vermigli, John Owen, Jonathan Edwards, C.H. Spurgeon, Herman Witsius, Thomas Watson, Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Richard Sibbes and J.C. Ryle. It would be a truly tragic event if the existence of the “Truly Reformed” troublemakers would turn people aside from such theological treasure that the Holy Spirit has given the church.

– Excerpt taken from http://www.internetmonk.com/articles/J/ … dryx1.html

Guatemala Email 8


Good Morning (for the last time) from Santiago. We finished up working yesterday. Over the course of the week we roofed and cemented floors at the church at Panabaj, held a VBS and played with lots of kids at La Colonia, dug ditches and laid cement for a child’s play area/basketball court at La Colonia, helped cement floors and roof and build walls for homes at La Colonia, painted a lot at the main church downtown, moved rocks and cleared lots of land at Camp David. It’s been a good week. And to God’s glory, no one missed a day of work due to illness or injury!!

This morning we are having breakfast and then loading the boat to head back to Panajachel. We’ll eat lunch there and then load the buses to drive to Guatemala City. We’ll eat dinner at Pollo Campero and spend the night at the Pan American Hotel. Then it’s off to the airport really early Saturday morning to get on planes. We would appreciate your prayers for safe travel. Additionally, a couple girls were feeling a little sick last night; pray that they feel better for the trip and that no one else gets sick.

Also, this year for the first two weeks we’re back in Fort Worth we are going to meet for about an hour three days a week (MWF) at 10:30 at the Outback to pray together, talk about the trip, and consider ways we can continue serving and hopefully make an impact in Fort Worth. Please pray for these times together and that what God has shown students and done in their lives will permanently impact and change them.

I need to go to pray with the girls and then our day gets really busy. Hence this final email to you is brief. Again, thanks for partnering with us in praying for this trip. May God be glorified in what has happened and what will continue to happen in Santiago, Tomball, and Fort Worth.

Soli Deo Gloria,
Kathy Harrelson
High School Director at Christ Chapel Bible Church in Fort Worth, Texas

Guatemala Email 7

Good Morning!

It is our last day out at the work sites. It’s hard to believe that we leave Santiago tomorrow morning. This morning we are out at all 4 work sites. Thanks for your prayers yesterday. Things went really well on every site. A lot of work was completed, and students were positive and encouraging. Please continue praying today. By the way, both Sam and Colin’s luggage arrived yesterday. Praise God!

Late yesterday afternoon some of our students played a soccer game against some guys from Alfa y Omega. After a defeat last year, we bounced back and won this year 3-1! Everyone had a really good time. We had our group meeting (Sunni taught on Biblical community). And then folks stayed around and played games, which is usually what we do at night.

My email today needs to be a little brief. I am getting ready to go with Wayne to survey some sites and be thinking about future trips. I do want to thank Richard Yantis; he coordinates our email list every year and makes life very easy for me. Thanks Richard!

In our daily devotional books we create we include some prayers at the end of each day, usually from The Valley of Vision (a book of Puritan prayers). The one from yesterday made me think of all of you who have prayed for us. I hope this has been your experience this week as you’ve prayed for us…

O Lord, in prayer I feel close to your eternal world.
When I pray my soul gains victories over all the evils I find in the temporary world.
In prayer I see myself as nothing; I find my heart running towards You with intensity and I am filled with a passionate desire to live for You. I am blessed by the strong winds of Your Spirit that fills my sails and moves me towards Heaven.
In prayer all the things in this world disappear and nothing seems important but the holiness of my heart and the salvation of others.
In prayer all the cares, fears, and worries I find in this world fade away like a puff of smoke.
In prayer my mind rejoices with thoughts about what You are doing for Your people.
I long for sinners to say Your name is great.
In prayer I am lifted above the sad and insincere praises of this world and I taste heavenly joys from You; longing to enter into eternity with You so I can give myself to You with all my heart and belong to You forever.
In prayer I can place all my burdens in Your hands for You to do with them as You desire.
In prayer I can plead for my friends, for those who don’t know You, for your church, and for Christ’s return.
I pray with great freedom and an even greater hope because of Your character.
Help me to continually pray to You for and about all things.

Soli Deo Gloria,
Kathy Harrelson
High School Director at Christ Chapel Bible Church in Fort Worth, Texas

Guatemala Email 6

Hello again from Santiago.

It is yet again a beautiful day, and folks are back out at three work sites . It is good to be here and to be working. But I can tell that the physical strain of working so hard and the emotional strain of being away from home is beginning to wear on folks a little. Pray for increased stamina, encouragement of heart, and great joy today!

Yesterday the painters worked really hard. And the folks at La Colonia had a great day of work and a lot of fun with the Vacation Bible School we held for the kids. The folks at Camp David also worked really hard. As we clear the land, it lets the folks at Alfa y Omega have a better view of the land. Thus they’ll be able to see the landscape and better sketch drawings for the design of Camp David.

This morning some of our seniors gathered their peers early for prayer before breakfast, and they led the prayer time. A group of guys met early around the pool to pray for the day and the Guatemalans. And a group of girls met up overlooking the lake to pray. As I scanned the faces of the dozen or so girls who’d gathered early to pray (when we’re all already really tired), I was encouraged about the next generation and the church. Statistics and stories we hear on the news don’t bring us much encouragement. But here I get to get a glimpse of what this generation can do as the next generation of leaders in the church, and I have tremendous hope.

Our daily devotionals this week are based on a book by C.J. Mahaney called The Cross Centered Life. Every day the students read a chapter in the book (they are short) and study a Scripture passage centered on the cross. Sterling shared with me that she is excited to see God answering her prayers because some of the things she’s been praying about recently are what is being covered in the devotional times. Today’s devotional hits on lots of verses about the cross: Isaiah 53:3-6, Romans 3:23-26, Romans 5:6-11, Romans 8:32-39, 1 Corinthians 15:3-4, 2 Corinthians 5:21, Galatians 2:21 and exhorts us to memorize some of them. So I’ll pass along that challenge to you.

A few days ago we sang a song about the cross that greatly encouraged me so I’ll close with those words.

How deep the Father’s love for us
How vast beyond all measure,
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure.

How great the pain of searing loss
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the Chosen One
Bring many sons to glory.

Behold the Man upon a cross
My sin upon his shoulders
Ashamed, I hear my mocking voice
Call out among the scoffers.

It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished;
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished.

I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom;
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection.

Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer.
But this I know with all my heart:
His wounds have paid my ransom.

Jesus, I stand in awe again at what my sin cost and how great Your sacrifice was. The vast chasm between Your majesty and my sinfulness makes me realize anew how great Your grace really is. Praise you for the cross.

Soli Deo Gloria,
Kathy Harrelson
High School Director at Christ Chapel Bible Church in Fort Worth, Texas

Guatemala Email 5

Good Morning!

It’s a beautiful Tuesday morning in Santiago. Folks are back out to three different work sites today. La Colonia. Painting Downtown. And Campamento David (which I will tell you about today; be sure to read that part!). The weather has been great. It has rained some in the afternoon most days but nothing that has hindered any work. It’s just gotten us a little wet running from our rooms to the dining hall. We did experience a unique occurrence of nature yesterday…2 really small earthquake tremors. So small that I didn’t even feel either one. I’ve been assured by several folks it’s nothing to worry about, though we had a brief earthquake preparedness chat with the students last night just in case. Small tremors along the way decrease the likelihood of a big earthquake coming one day so it’s actually a good thing for the area.

We have had remarkably few injuries and illnesses this year. Praise God! No one has missed a day of work. Bethany was sick for a day but is better now. Josh, Christian, and Sarah Haverly all hurt some part of their foot (though none actually occurred working at the work sites). Sarah may need an x-ray today but her foot is better today than yesterday. Please pray for all of them to be totally healed and for no injuries and illnesses. Pray for stamina and focus on the work sites; now is when the students start getting physically and mentally drained. Pray also for Greg & Georgia Love who left today an hour ago travel back to the US; they have a commitment in DC.

There are a few people who I really want to thank who have played a significant role in this trip. Wayne, of course. John Carmichael, our travel agent. You can imagine the details he’s dealt with getting 90 folks to and from another country. David & Susie Glanville who own the Posada in Santiago. They and their staff are so good to us. Amelia Dansby is usually here with us on the trip but is 7 months pregnant and couldn’t make it this year. She helped in many planning aspects of the trip. And Pam Barnum, our student administrator at Christ Chapel, who keeps track of paperwork, money, etc. for all 90 folks. Finally I want to thank all the leaders who are here on the trip. They are some of the most tremendous believers and friends I’ve ever met. You’ve already gotten to see multiple pictures of Wayne. But I did include pics of the rest of them:

Our high school volunteers: Anne Monaghan, Jared Kesler, George Montague, & Greg Love.

Our high school staff: Jon Dansby, Kara Burr, Sunni Sonnenburg, Andrew Haverly, Brandon Stewart, & me

Our Life Stage 1 Student Pastor: Joey Turner

Our doctor and nurse: Joe & Molly Burkett

CrossPoint Youth Minister: Dixon Jowers

Christ Chapel Missions Administrator: Sarah Haverly

About Campamento David

Finally, I’d like to tell you about the only work site I have yet to tell you about: Campamento David. The story and work at Camp David is (for me) the most meaningful. In March 2005, David Phillips (our late Life Stage 1 Student Pastor who was killed in a car wreck in February 2006), Amelia Dansby, & Jon Dansby went with Wayne Huff to visit a piece of property the young people at Alfa & Omega had purchased. The young people wanted to build a soccer field to play soccer and share the Gospel with their lost friends. In July 2005, our CCBC high school students cleared the land and helped begin preparing the field. CCBC’s college ministry has worked there since as well. Eventually the vision for the area expanded to include a basketball court.

Because of Dave’s years of close relationship with the Alfa y Omega church, they named that area Campamento David in his memory. Our high school students worked at the site last summer. And this year Christ Chapel gave money for land to be purchased to make Campamento David not just a soccer field but a retreat center…soccer field, basketball court, cabins, swimming pool…to reach many more lost and encourage believers. Now here’s where the story really gets interesting.

On October 5, 2005, Hurricane Stan sparked mudslides which destroyed many homes and killed many people right here in Santiago. Furthermore, the government evaluated the Santiago area and declared some additional areas disaster areas because future mudslides could easily destroy more homes and take more lives. The government has been looking for a place to move these families. Just this morning Wayne spoke to some government surveyors. The government is planning to move 900 families to land that directly borders Camp David. The government plans to break ground in the next 2-3 months to build a market, schools, homes, etc. That will be almost 4000 people living next to Camp David: a place where they can hear the Gospel. Wayne has talked with Alfa & Omega and they are considering also buying some more land at Camp David to build a church. God’s providence and sovereignty are clear.

It’s tough for me to think of a more fitting tribute to God’s glory and Dave’s memory than Camp David. Dave loved students, loved the Gospel, and loved missions. Last night Stephen Wilson gave glory to God for Dave and Dave’s influence on his life…specifically putting in him a heart for missions. There is much work and much need at Camp David. Yesterday we started clearing the new land which is covered with much brush and trees (see the pictures I included). We could all stay a month and not get done simply clearing the land. Pray that the money and resources needed to develop this land would come quickly. Work like this often takes us years and the families will be there sooner than we are usually able to complete this work.

Please continue to pray for us. Praise God for his providence and sovereignty. And, as believers, rest today in God’s working for His glory and your good, whether you are able to “see” it today or not. My prayer for all of you is Psalm 73:28 … that you would make the Sovereign Lord your refuge and tell of all His deeds. “But as for me, it is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all your deeds.” Psalm 73:28

Soli Deo Gloria,
Kathy Harrelson
High School Director at Christ Chapel Bible Church in Fort Worth, Texas

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Deepak Chopra vs. Greg Koukl

Greg Koukl challenges the fundamental presuppositions of Deepak Chopra’s relativistic worldview …

Guatemala Email 4

Hello from Santiago!

This morning our teams are back out at the work sites.

Additionally, one group of folks has gone back across Lake Atitlan to visit Vina studios. Vina is an organization through Wycliffe which works on audio and video presentations of the Scriptures and the Gospel. Obviously Bible translation into languages which don’t have a copy of the Scriptures is of great importance; however, it is not useful in written form for those who are not literate. So Vina works so that all (even those who can’t read) can know the Scriptures and the Gospel.

Yesterday was a fun and busy day for us. After breakfast we had a little free time. Then we had our worship service at 11. Clifton Hickman (one of our graduated seniors) spoke on evangelism. Then we gathered at the pool for a picnic (hamburgers and hot dogs). After lunch we broke into groups to walk into town for shopping and sharing the Gospel. When we returned, a group gathered to hear Wayne Huff demonstrate the process that occurs to begin understanding an unknown language, developing an alphabet, etc.

Then at 5 we all gathered and split into two groups. One of us went to a worship service at the church at Panajba (within walking distance of our hotel). It is a church plant of the Alfa y Omega church and was celebrating their 20 th anniversary yesterday. It is also one of our work sites where we are doing construction. At the service, Jon Dansby shared a greeting on behalf of Christ Chapel, and Chris Cole (one of our graduated seniors who is fluent in Spanish) translated for him. The other group went to a worship service at La Colonia. They were installing a new pastor. So Pastor Abraham (the head pastor at Alfa y Omega) preached. Wayne Huff lead the prayer of dedication for the new pastor. At each service we only stayed for the singing and prayer (about 45 minutes). Dinner was a little late but worth the wait… tacos! We then split into two groups again. The guys all met together. And the girls all met together. Some of our seniors discussed priorities in our lives and then we met in small groups to talk about what we need to work on when we get back to Fort Worth.

I can’t tell you how encouraging it is to come back to Santiago year after year and see some of the same folks and see the progress and changes over the year at the places we work. Caroline Dorris was most excited about coming back to Guatemala to see a little Guatemala boy she befriended last year. She saw him last night and gave God the glory for that at our meeting last night. The worship services were also meaningful for us. Though the language is a huge barrier, we are united as brothers and sisters in Christ because of the cross of Jesus Christ. We (and they) look forward to rejoicing together, without language barrier, in heaven one day. I am aware as I have written often about the cross of Jesus Christ and the Gospel that I have not been very clear as to exactly what I am talk about. Therefore, I have included an explanation of the Gospel below. May what Christ has done sustain and encourage your heart today…whether you believe today for the first time or are reminded again of the work of Christ on your behalf. As always, thanks for the prayers. Please keep them coming.

Soli Deo Gloria,
Kathy Harrelson
High School Director at Christ Chapel Bible Church in Fort Worth, Texas


I. Bad News

A. God is holy.

1. verse: Isaiah 6:3: “Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty.”

2. illustration: Let’s say you have a perfectly white sheet and it gets a stain. It must remain spotless, or it ceases to be perfect. God cannot allow any sin into His presence without judging it.

B. You are a sinner.

1. verse: Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

2. illustration: One person may be in the valley of sins, another on the mountain of our own good works. Attaining God’s standard is like trying to reach for the stars for both. Both fall equally short. No amount of good works can save us.

C. The wages of sin is death.

1. verse: Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death.”

2. illustration: You work for wages at your job and get paid what you earn. Because we’re sinners, we work for sin. The wages of working for sin is death. We are working our way to eternal separation from a holy God.

II. Good News

A. Christ died for sinners.

1. verse: Hebrews 9:27-28 “Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people”

2. illustration: You have liver cancer. I have a good healthy liver. We transplant: you get my clean liver and live from my good liver and I receive your sick liver and die from your cancer. Christ took our sins and was punished, dying in our place. He was our sin substitute.

B. You can be saved through faith.

1. verse: Ephesians 2:8-9 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.”

2. illustration: When you sit in a chair you are using your faith. You believe that it is strong enough to hold you up, but believing that is not enough, to use faith you must sit in the chair. We must believe that Christ is good enough for our salvation and we must stop trying to work our way to heaven.

Have you believed this?

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Guatemala Email 3

Good Morning!

It is Sunday morning here in Santiago and we just finished a late breakfast. By late I mean 9am. We normally have breakfast at 7:30am but today is our day off so we got to sleep a little later. We’ll have our worship service this morning and then head into town for shopping later.

Yesterday was a great day of work. No injuries or illnesses yesterday. Praise God! (Thanks for the prayers. Please keep it up). I’ve attached a picture again which will give you a visual of some of the things we do. Lots of dirt, paint, sweat, rocks, and laughter.

I said that I’d tell you a little about our work sites throughout the week so today I’ll highlight two of them. One work site is downtown at the Alfa y Omega church. We will be painting their downstairs basement. Yesterday the team purchased supplies, put together scaffolding, and began putting on the first coat of paint. It’s hard work, especially the ceiling. Folks from Christ Chapel (sparked by our pastor Ted Kitchens) have worked with the Alfa y Omega church for about 10 years but in recent years have mainly been working at some of their church plants and other locations. We are glad that we get to help and be a blessing to the main church this year.

One of the other sites is La Colonia. About 15 years ago the youth minister at Alfa & Omega took his youth regularly to pray for the sick and impoverished. After a while one of the teens became concerned. While she appreciated praying for the folks, she did not think it was enough; the Scriptures said to also take care of people’s physical needs and she was concerned that they weren’t being obedient to God and His Word. So the group began fixing roofs and providing for physical needs as well. Eventually the church (about 10 years ago) bought land to build homes for widows, orphans, and families with no homes. There are now about 35 houses (for about 200 people) and a church on that property, which is called La Colonia. It is encouraging to go back every year and see how much has been done. We are helping build some additions to some of the homes this year. When I first went to La Colonia 4 years ago I was so convicted and exhorted by their example I have had James 1:27 on my screen saver ever since. “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”

La Colonia ties in well with our message last night. Greg Love taught about materialism. Here are some of this thoughts. Our love of our “stuff” can be of our greatest hindrances to loving and following Christ fully. Greg contrasted the response of the rich young ruler in Luke 18:18-30 with the response of the wealthy Zaccahaeus in Luke 19:1-9. Having stuff isn’t wrong and isn’t even really the main issue; it’s about what your heart treasures (Matthew 13:44). Do you love your “stuff” more than Jesus or Jesus more than your “stuff?” Greg said, “When Christ means everything, your stuff means nothing. ‘Stuff’ is not a gift from God; it’s a loan. I won’t take it with me when I die. So use your ‘stuff’ to glorify God.'” This morning Jamie Lain got up early to spend time with the Lord. When she came back into our room I asked her what she learned. She said she’d read some things about materialism and was convicted and reminded of some things she needs to do when she gets home. Continue to pray that we all will be changed.

Thanks for reading and praying. Until tomorrow.

Soli Deo Gloria,

Kathy Harrelson
High School Director at Christ Chapel Bible Church

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Guatemala Email 2


We are all in Santiago, Guatemala!

Yesterday morning in Antigua our students had many conversations with folks and shared the Gospel many times. Chris Cole was particularly excited that the gentleman he talked to put his faith in Christ. After sharing the Gospel and handing out papers with the Gospel in Spanish (especially for those of us who don’t speak Spanish), we went back to the Hotel de Don Rodrigo for lunch. They entertained us with a Spanish folk dance accompanied by marimbas while we ate. Some of our students even joined in for part of the dance. It was really cool and unique; we’ve not gotten to see anything like that on previous trips to Guatemala. We then loaded two buses for the 3 and a half hour bus ride to Panajachel. Then we got on a boat to cross Lake Atitlan to travel to Santiago. The weather has been amazing so far (no rain) and cool…great working conditions. Please pray this fabulous weather continues. And thanks for your prayers for our safe travels. Praise God we are all here safely!

Last night we had dinner and then our group meeting. Our group meeting usually consists of worship songs (thanks to Jon Dansby, Ben Brown, & Joe Burkett), time to Give God the Glory, and our teaching time. Every night this year we are going to be teaching on something we’ll be experiencing in Guatemala (missions, service, evangelism, community, joy, priorities, materialism, etc.), seeing what the Scriptures say, and discussing how we can implement these things when we’re back in Fort Worth. We really want the students’ hearts to be changed and these things to be a part of their lives year-round…not just for a week in Guatemala. Please pray with us that this happens and that this trip is not simply a “camp high” experience for our students.

While I always enjoy the teaching we do in Guatemala, I must say that my favorite parts of our time together are the singing and Give God the Glory time. The acoustics in our meeting room and the students singing to God here make this my favorite place in the world to sing to God. I feel almost selfish that I get to worship God with them and hear them Give God the Glory and you just have to read about it in an email. For our Give God the Glory time, anyone who wants to share stands and completes the sentence, “I give God the glory for…” Here’s what some said last night… how He controls His creation, allowing us to come here year after year, that the bus ride is over, His creation, the smile on the kids’ faces while we were sharing the Gospel, how people are different/unique, the evangelistic hearts of the students (especially Walker, Chris, & Alex), Dixon and that the body of Christ keeps coming back together, life itself, the Guatemalan people, His grace, the 4 students from CrossPoint, that the language barrier is no obstacle for God, great hosts, freedom as Christians to speak the Gospel, new brothers/sisters in Christ, how we get to be a part of what God is doing (He doesn’t need us but uses us and lets us see Him work), seeing God save someone today, hearts of the seniors, everything He’s given me…

This morning we went to 4 work sites and will be working all day. I’ll tell you more about these work sites throughout the week. With 90 people working, it’s quite a logistical puzzle to figure out. The elders and deacons at the Alfa y Omega church in Santiago are gracious hosts to us. Many take off a week of work to come to the sites to give us direction. Pray for them as they lead us. Pray for safety on the sites. Pray for us to be able to get the resources we need (the first day on the site it always takes time to get learn what we need to know, get tools, etc.) and for students to be patient and flexible. We plan a tremendous amount before we get here but there is only so much we can know and do until we actually get to the sites.

I’ve attached a picture with a few images from Antigua. May you all have a great day. And as always, may God be glorified in all things. “So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31). Thanks for praying with us to this end.

Soli Deo Gloria,
Kathy Harrelson
High School Director at Christ Chapel Bible Church in Fort Worth, Texas

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