Valle Hermoso, Panama

Winter 2018
Written by Byrne & Lois Foreshew - Panama

"Remember ye not the former things, neither consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth, shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert." Isaiah 43:18-19

"Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:13-14

We keenly lend an ear to the "pressing forward" of these verses. From the prophet and the preacher come these compelling words. That, we must leave behind the past and any sin that would easily beset us, and extend ourselves to the full measure of which the Spirit would help us in order to walk the way in the wilderness, enjoy the freshness of the rivers in the desert and to lay hold of the prize of the high calling of God!

Baptism in Valle Hermoso

We look back over 2018 with much thanksgiving as we see how the Lord worked and blessed His word, His people and His assembly. It wasn't an easy year, and we find ourselves very tired as we enter 2019. We thank the Lord for encouragement in the restoration of a couple to the fellowship of the assembly, the salvation of others and the baptism of a young lady in November and Lord willing her sister will be baptized in February. Another young lady who was saved in mid-2018 also desires to be baptized.

Another young lady who was saved and baptized a few years ago, has come back and is enjoying the things of the Lord again, and has expressed a desire to be gathered with the believers in the local assembly. This gives us much joy, and we trust that she is sincere before the Lord. Her mother, whose husband is not saved, was in fellowship a few years but got away from the Lord but has been attending the meetings of the assembly again for some time. God is a God of salvation and restoration as well.

Children's Class in park

The months of November and December were very busy. We helped in a gospel series in the assembly in Dolega, where our fellow missionaries (Marcos and Sara Sequera) labour. Upon returning home, we had the final bible class and prize giving at the orphanage. This was followed by a week of VBS at the hall in Valle Hermoso, finishing up on Saturday the 21st with a community Christmas meal where we were delighted to serve over 90 plates of food. The majority in attendance would have been unsaved, so an excellent opportunity to share the gospel and make new contacts.

We designed and printed our calendars this year for the first time, and they turned out to be well received by the local people, in fact, people were still asking for them, but we had already run out. We plan to print a larger quantity next year Lord willing.

The Friday night young people's class is still an encouragement. Though the attendance fluctuates from week to week, there is good participation and interest. Some have shown seriousness about salvation and others who are saved are showing signs of growth.

We continue with individual bible studies during the week with those that have questions and a desire to study more of God's word, and we find that these studies are very profitable in the spiritual development of the believers. Most come from homes and marriages where they are the only ones saved, so there is no spiritual support for them, and it's not an atmosphere conducive to spiritual growth.

A number of the younger believers are studying at university, for which we are grateful, but this causes a conflict with the assembly meetings, as most have classes in the evening. Some are studying part-time and working full time, and this as well makes it difficult for them to be at the assembly meetings. We pray that the Lord will give them schedules that would allow them to be more available to help out in the assembly.

On Saturday mornings we have an outreach in a place called Potrero Grande. We now have three Bible classes at the same time, the children's class, the young lady's class that Lois teaches and a toddler's class that a young sister has been looking after. We are encouraged by this outreach and would long to see some fruit in salvation.

We are looking forward to a group of young people that Marcos and Sara Sequera are bringing down from Dolega to be with our young people on February 15th. We are planning to have a meal and the young people's meeting at our place where there is space enough to play ping pong, board games, soccer, and volleyball. Because of the 6.5 hour distance between Valle Hermoso and Dolega, the opportunity to get together like this happens infrequently, so we are looking forward to it.

We would value your continued prayer for the assembly in Valle Hermoso as well as Dolega, for wisdom and grace to be a help to the believers and to live a Godly example before them. We are faced with numerous challenges, and at times we feel somewhat weak and insufficient to rise to these challenges, but we are thankful that we do not walk in our own strength. We have a great God, one to be worshiped, feared, sought after and trusted. He cannot fail, and He will give to us all that we are in need of to fulfill His will in our lives on this earth as we serve the Best of Masters.

Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it. Brethren, pray for us. 1Thess 5:24-25

Winter 2018
Written by Byrne & Lois Foreshew - Panama