Cuba is a fascinating country with a hard but hopeful history. It’s a land stuck between the third and first world, between 1950s’-style suburbs and concrete apartment buildings, between European streetscapes and two aisle grocery stores with only hot dogs in the meat section.
The island landscape is beautiful, but the people even more so! Few speak any English but their smiles and hugs and multiple kisses on your cheek speak volumes. They are friendly, hospitable, and kind.
We had truly productive and inspiring meetings with the regional leaders while there. During the meetings there was honest discussion and decisions were made concerning organizational leadership, funding, office roles, and unity of the team members.
The Lord also restored the vision and purpose of raising up one million laborers for the harvest fields of the world. Recently, most of our staff and leadership have gotten so bogged down in admin, details, issues, and funding that we had forgotten to look at the bigger picture, the grand horizon of training laborers who will bring the gospel message to the ends of the earth. The regional leaders were re-inspired to take up their roles as apostolic, visionary leaders and strategists who can help churches see greater kingdom vision within their countries.
Without vision, the people perish (Prov. 29:18); we thank the Lord that He renewed and granted vision again.
We had the privilege of attending house churches on Sunday and joining them in worship was refreshing. We also got to meet and encourage the facilitators of the first schools in Havana!
The facilitators were energetic and excited about their schools and many showed us their organized files with the one-page notes from every student! They are already half-way through the curriculum. When asked about their outreach, every facilitator wanted to share how they had done door-to-door or street evangelism and seen many come to the Lord! We had to stop the sharing time because there were so many stories! 🙂
Praise the Lord that Cuban believers are taking to their streets to proclaim the gospel!
Another team from Columbia came down to do facilitator’s training in a more remote village in Cuba that week as well. The church was ecstatic to see them as they had never had missionaries come to their village! The Lord granted the team incredible success in training and they have some amazing stories to tell!
Behold, it is a new day.
It’s harvest time!
Therefore, it’s time to pull the combines out of the barn – out of the four walls of the church – and get them into the field! 2016 was a time of revealing and healing. Let 2017 be the time to reap and keep the harvest! Fill your tanks up with the fuel of the Holy Spirit! Crank up those engines by stirring up the gift of God in you! Head to the fields! Launch out into the deep! Drop your cutting blades in! Throw your nets on the right side of the boat!
It’s harvest time…may your boats almost sink with the catch! HARVEST! HARVEST! HARVEST! The fields are ripe unto harvest! Let us celebrate the New Year, for today is the day of salvation! Open your mouth and prime the pump. Declare the Good News and people will come to see you burn like a stump…a stump that burns and burns and never goes out. This is the fire of the Spirit, which drives darkness out. You’ve been trained and raised armies for battle. Now it’s time to run at full throttle. For the Harvest is ripe, and you are strategically placed.
Lift up your eyes and run your race! Lift up your eyes and give glory in the light of His face! By the power of His grace, we will finish His race! Therefore run with focus; there will be no disgrace. Run with abandon in Christ our King, and let Him subdue His enemies through you and through me! Multitudes on multitudes will bow their knee. And then you will see why He has called you. Then you will understand why He called you to himself.
– Chip & Kathy Carroll, West & Central Africa