Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Pictures of the House

Here are the pictures of our new home. We were able to get moved in last week and have enjoyed our time there so far! You will see on the front of the house it says "Casa Timo". In Spanish this is "Tim's House". The owner of the home is named Timothy. We felt like this was not a coincidence as we feel that God is allowing us to have this home to be able to raise up Timothys, not only in the body here in Artolita, but also in the future, those that feel called to the mission field in Latin America.
1 Co 4:17 For this cause, have I sent unto you Timothy, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance, of my ways which be in Christ, as I teach every where in every church.

Monday, April 14, 2008

"Unless the LORD builds the house....

...they labor in vain that build it." Psalm 127:1 We are so thankful for our Father that has been building HIS house! In February, we were able to let you know about us taking over the care of the church in Artolita that was given to us through a Pastor in San Jose. We are so excited to report on the GOOD NEWS of the church growing. When we first started in mid-January, there were some that were not pleased with the change. Those are the ones that we just committed to prayer and asked the Lord to have His will be done in their lives. The very first service that we had as new leaders of the church, we had 6 children come to church. We knew that God had control of everything and we continued to place our trust in Him. Since that service, we have fluctuated from a handful of children, to 4-5 adults and some children, to having up to 48 people! It is such a blessing to see growth taking place! The last few weeks we have been having 18-20 children in attendance and 18 or so adults as well! We have one gentleman that has been a part of the church since it began 8 years ago. In November, he was battling with several health issues and we nearly lost him. God is so faithful...He has completely healed this man and he just celebrated another birthday! He was able to come to church for the first time in months a few weeks ago. After service, he pulled Dave aside and said that he was so excited to see what the Lord has been doing in the midst of the church. He said that he saw people at church that night that he had NEVER seen come to church before! It was so exciting to hear this good report! We knew that God was doing something, so to hear a confirmation of it was wonderful!

We have our mid-week service on Thursday nights, which is normal here in Costa Rica. For the last several months, Dave has been teaching on prayer: how to pray, the importance of prayer, and understanding corporate prayer. We have designated this night each week to take the time to pray as a body for the needs of the church, our community, our country, as well as many other things. Many of them are learning how to step out and lead a prayer for the evening. It is great to see them growing and learning!

On Sunday nights we have our children's classes at the same time as the adults have church. Many of the children that come to class, come completely on their own! Their parents do not attend church or their grandparents may come every so often. About 12-14 of the children that come, do not have their family with them in church. The children have been so faithful in coming each week, for Thursday's as well as Sunday's. In our classes on Sunday, they have been learning how important they are to the Lord, the love God has for them, and for the last few weeks they have been learning about worship. We love seeing the enthusiasm these kids have each week when they come to class. Most of them are learning basic Bible stories for the first time. During Easter week I asked the children about why we celebrate Holy Week (a huge celebration in Latin cultures). Many of them were not able to tell me the significance or importance of why we celebrate Easter! What a joy it was to be able to share with them such a wonderful story!

Starting in March, we began to implement a Missions Sunday each month. The first Sunday of the month is designated to the body learning that there is a need in other countries, as well as in Costa Rica. They are learning to give offerings that will be used to help support Pastor Serafin Pagan in Jinotega, Nicaragua. As you may remember, this is where we lived for 7 months before coming to Costa Rica. The church has truly embraced reaching out and giving to missions! Many people in this area of Costa Rica, that have steady employment, average around $300-$400 per month! We have had two missions Sunday's, March and April, and just recently we were able to send our first offering to Nicaragua for the Pagan's! What a blessing to see these people reaching down from THEIR needs and reaching out to another country of people that is in need! We had one gentleman in church tell us, "We should do this EVERY Sunday!"

This past Sunday we had our first dinner fellowship as a church body. Dave has taught them about how we are all a family, working together for one purpose, and the importance of fellowship in the body. Sunday was just the first of many to come! We plan to have a dinner fellowship once a month as a family. This past Sunday was awesome! We had a total of 48 people at church, adults and children together. That is the most we have had and we believe it will just continue to grow from here! We had a time of praise and worship, Dave shared a few Scriptures with them about the importance of breaking bread together, and then we ate together as a family. Everyone was so excited and are looking forward to the next dinner!

God has been moving so much this year on our behalf and once again He is moving us!! We have been living in a two bedroom, one bath house that is in a town about 15 minutes from the church. We had been praying and believing God to open up a bigger home for us in an area that is close to the church. Once again, God is so faithful!! We are moving tomorrow, the 15th, to a home that is about a mile from the church! The house is owned by a Canadian man that spends half of his year here in Costa Rica and the other half in Canada. He has been NEEDING someone to stay in his home so that he can leave and go to Canada. We are happy to be able to meet his need! We will be able to rent his home for a very reasonable rate each month. He had the home built to be a type of bed and breakfast where he could rent out each bedroom individually. The house has four bedrooms and each room has its own bathroom, equipped with a shower! It sits on two and a half acres of land and has a river at the back of the property. We will be moving from a house that is about 600 sq. ft., to one that is about 1600 sq. ft! This house will be a huge blessing to us! We will now be close enough to the people of the church and be able to have fellowships in our home. Where we are now, we would not be able to have anyone from Artolita in our home because the majority of them depend on public transportation to get around. We are looking forward to being able to have people from church in our home now, as well as reaching out to new people in our area. There are currently no pictures available of the new house. We will be able to take those and post them in our next update. The owner is returning to Costa Rica in December and he has told us that we are welcome to stay in the house as long as we want to! He has begun construction on two additional bedrooms with bathrooms. He has told us he will resume this construction in the fall. What an answer to prayer this house is! We have a vision to not only be able to use the house to raise up the body of Artolita, but to also have space sufficient for our family and extras! Part of our vision for this home is to be available to help raise up any missionaries that may feel a call to a Latin American country. We now will have the space to be able to house them, as well as any visitors we may have! The house is up for sale. The owner has had it for sale for about 3 years now. We are believing God that we will be able to buy this home! Several things would have to fall into place: finances and the dropping of the price, but we know that we serve a great and mighty God and if this is His will for us it will come to pass! We ask that you keep this in your prayers for us as well!

We have recently found out that our baby that is due in August is a baby girl! We are naming her Isabella Micaela. Isabella means my God is a vow and Micaela means who is like the Lord. The Lord has truly shown us His promises through this precious little one. We found out at 11 weeks of pregnancy that there was a problem with the placenta being detached from the uterus. The doctor was very concerned about it, so she placed me on bed rest for almost 2 months. We spent the time praying and trusting in His might for complete healing. By my appointment at the end of March, the ultrasound showed that everything was completely healed and in place! Praise God! He is so faithful! We had another checkup last week and the doctor said that it was as if there had never been a problem!! Thank you so much to those of you that knew about it and stood with us believing for a complete healing! God has truly manifested His promises to us!

We have been able to set up a new post office box to receive any "snail mail" now. Our new address is:
Charles Davis Anderson
Apartado 117-5019
Playa del Coco, Guanacaste, Costa Rica, C.A. (it is important to put the periods so as not to confuse postal workers into thinking it is for California!)

We ask that you continue to stand with us in prayer as we continue to endeavor in the work that God has called us to. We are seeing His hand move mightily and we look forward to seeing more! Thank you so much for your prayer support for us. It makes us so excited to be able to share with you the mighty things He has done because we know that it is the prayers of all of you that help back this ministry. We love and appreciate all of you and pray His richest blessings upon you!