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“Gloria a Dios!!”

courage

Sometimes God moves externally.  Still other times he moves internally.  Today our team got a taste of both.  When we set out to do Jesus Ministry this morning we thought we would be doing the drama four times at one school.  The principal had set aside about 45 minutes for each group of two classes to see the drama at a time.  However, God wanted some other people to see the drama.  After we performed the first two dramas, the principal said that he liked what we were doing so much, and loved the kids’ reactions so much he wanted more of the kids to see the drama.  Our team was visibly exhausted after the fourth time, but God tells us that His power works best in our weakness.  That was certainly the case today, as the strength, courage, and boldness of a pride of lions burst through our team.  The fifth drama was easily the best of the day.  The result of our team being willing witnesses was many salvations.  God placed before us students of all backgrounds.  There were some students who were Jewish and many who were Catholic, and still others had no sense of any religion or belonging.  Each small group ministered to about ten students at a time, and countless times all ten of those students accepted Christ and surrendered their lives to Him.  Anyone reading at home who has been to Panama before knows that no one ever wants to leave the schools, and that was absolutely the case today.  Parents, friends, and family after today (yes this early!!) I can guarantee that these students will not come home the same.  Part of their heart has been, and will always be left behind in Panama!

At Awe Star, we believe that the only thing better than God moving externally is when God moves internally.  This afternoon we got to go see a woman who is very important to us, Nivia.  Nivia has been our cook in Panama for five years.  Anyone who has ever met Nivia has met one of the strongest and sweetest women in the world.  She drops everything she is doing to come cook for students who follow God’s call to Panama.  She has made countless journeys to Icandi, Calabaso, Tabardi, and many other places in the jungle and mountains.  Unfortunately Nivia suffered a stroke only days before our first team arrived.  She is back in her house and on the way to recovery, but her right arm and leg are still paralyzed.  One thing Nivia loves is worship through song.  Today she reminded us that even though she doesn’t speak English, she still feels God moving through her the same way we do when we worship.  Nivia has always given all of herself to the One who gave everything for her.  She sat today with her strong hand raised high, pouring her heart out to God as tears ran down her cheeks, my cheeks, and the cheeks of many of our students.  We ended our time with Nivia by praying over her.  We believe, and Nivia believes, that the power of prayer is far stronger than any earthly measure.  God has all authority over all situations.  He is able!  Not only that, but we know He is with us, and He is for us.  We ask that you would please join us in praying for Nivia.  Regardless of what transpires, I can say with certainty that Nivia will give all glory to God in sickness or health.  I wish you all could have the chance to meet her, but you should know that she is praying for you, and appreciates all the prayers for her.  As Nivia always says “Gloria a Dios!!”

Chad, Daniel, Charlotte, and Walker