Missionary zeal does not grow out of intellectual beliefs, nor out of theological arguments, but out of love.
The Apostle John was known as the “disciple whom Jesus loved” His Gospel account has been called the Gospel of love. In his first epistle John even writes the bold theological statement “God is love.” There is perhaps no better witness for the Christian faith than a life lived in the grip of Divine love. Nothing can motivate our commitment to the Great Commandment better than love. Wherever our steps lead us, to our neighbor’s yard or to jungles far away when our steps are measured and motivated by love they have the best effect.
May we be a people known for our love. May we love God with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength resulting in holiness. May we love our neighbors as ourselves resulting in their eternal benefit. Love God, love others and live accordingly!
With much love,
It is difficult not living near our family. We are not complaining but our kids are missing out on family history and shared stories. Recently the grandkids and Grandpa had some time to reflect on Dad’s military service. Right out of high school Dad joined the Navy and due to his propensity for math he was able to get placed on a Submarine. He served on two submarines during his time Navy the sweatshirts the boys are sporting are from the USS Croaker. Why is family history so important? For our kids it provides a glimpse into a long interaction between our family members and God. Our family stories are always enveloped in God’s presence and work in our lives.
The Downing Family
On January 22, 1973, seven unelected officials made a decision that has resulted in the deaths of 61,678,839 innocent children in in the United States. Tragic for our nation! Yet, Jesus still offers healing and hope to all who seek him.
Ecuador’s conservative abortion laws have been called “violence against women” by leftist groups. It is odd that no one seems to call out the inherent violence against babies brought about by liberalized abortion laws.
We pray that this will be the generation who sees abortion for what it truly is and abolishes it.
With love, The Downings
On Tuesdays we try to share ways that you can help. Today we are happy to announce a go fund me campaign to help with ministry and construction expenses. In the past when we made a ministry or construction need known, several of you have met those needs by contacting us privately and donating directly to us. We made sure all funds donated reached their intended ministry.
We set up this campaign for the National Leadership (Junta) of the Iglesia de Dios in Ecuador. We are simply promoting it and facilitating it. All funds that come in will be given to the Junta to fund ministry and construction projects.
Blessings, The Downing Family
What do the Inca, the Conquistadores, the cult of Pachamama and Mariolatry have in common? Find out by listening to today’s Cultural Insight podcast.
Rumicucho is one of the “high places” the Conquistadors destroyed.
with much love, the Downings
Hello friends, are you looking for the “20/20 Vision Part 2” post that was promised last week? Our apologies, we had an intense ministry week here in Ecuador and some technical difficulties we hope to have what you are looking for posted on Sunday next week. In the meantime please enjoy this throwback post titled “His Yoke Is Easy”
I’ve found my Lord and He is mine,
He won me by His love;
I’ll serve Him all my years of time,
And dwell with Him above.
His yoke is easy, His burden is light,
I’ve found it so, I’ve found it so;
His service is my sweetest delight,
His blessings ever flow.
No other Lord but Christ I know,
I walk with Him alone;
His streams of love forever flow,
Within my heart His throne. [Refrain]
He’s dearer to my heart than life,
He found me lost in sin;
He calmed the sea of inward strife,
And bade me come to Him. [Refrain]
My flesh recoiled before the cross,
And Satan whispered there,
“Thy gain will not repay the loss,
His yoke is hard to bear.” [Refrain]
I’ve tried the road of sin and found,
Its prospects all deceive;
I’ve proved the Lord, and joys abound,
More than I could believe. [Refrain]
Love, The Downing Family
This recipe for shrimp stuffed avocado is made with ripe avocado filled with shrimp, red onion, radish, bell pepper, celery and cilantro mayonnaise. It is a delightful appetizer but we find it is filling enough to be counted as a meal! If you dislike shrimp you can salvage this Ecuadorian food experience by replacing the shrimp with pulled chicken.
First. Chop the cooked shrimp in half, if desired keep a few whole to garnish.
Then. Combine diced onions, radishes, bell pepper, celery, eggs, shrimp, ½ of the lime juice and mayonnaise in a bowl, mix well. Taste and salt/pepper if necessary. Keep mixture refrigerated until ready to use.
Then. Cut avocados in half, remove seed and peel carefully.
Then. Drizzle remaining lime juice over avocados, this help keep them from darkening too quickly.
Then. Use a spoon to stuff avocados with shrimp salad filling.
Enjoy. Add any garnishes and serve immediately.
This dish is best served with aji or hot sauce to spice it up.
With much love, The Downings
Unless I am sure I am doing more at home to send the gospel abroad than I can do abroad, I am bound to go.
-A. B. Simpson
In Matthew’s rendering of the Great Commission Jesus puts legs on the Great Commandment. Love of God and love of our neighbor demands that we are in perpetual motion. To that end Jesus says go. Go is such a simple command and yet it is often misunderstood or worse ignored. Greek, the original language of the New Testament sheds some light on our call to go. The participle “go” is followed by the aorist imperative “make disciples” which linguistically means that “go” becomes part of the imperative. Consider the words of Daniel B. Wallace, professor of New Testament Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary, “Don’t ever let anyone tell you that grammar is inconsequential! Matthew’s grammar paints a picture and urges an action, and we seriously err if we neglect what our Lord is really teaching at the end of this Gospel.”
In light of the Scripture, may the measure of our calling reflect the wisdom found in A. B. Simpson’s words. May we weigh our responsibility to the Great Commission in terms of effectiveness.
The Downing Family
Imagine being jolted awake by a car accident. Only the sound of crunching metal and the smell of hot brakes aren’t far outside of the safety of your home. No, this car accident quickly becomes a home invasion as a driver losses control on the dark mountain road far above your house and comes crashing through your roof!
Unfortunately the Pinchao family did not have to imagine such a horror, they lived it.
The five members of the Pinchao family have a testimony of God’s protection and provision. Even though a car crashed through their roof and landed in their bedroom late one evening the family testifies of God’s protection. The kids received a few cuts and bruises when the car crashed through the roof. A brick wall fell on the mother but she only received few abrasions. The doctors still want to run some tests but it is obvious that she was divinely protected. The father received burns on his feet when an electrical wire fell on him but he was able to escape the bedroom with his family with no other ill effects.
The family lost most of what was in the home but they are not complaining. They are blessed with a new place to rent and they are grateful to have each other. Currently they have foam mats for beds, a few kitchen items and a stove.
This past Sunday we were blessed to hear their testimony and also blessed to pass on a gift to the family. After hearing about the situation a christian sister was moved to give us enough money for the family to pay their next month’s rent! Because of this blessing the family can focus on each other and the parents can look for employment without the stress of next months rent. We were honored to pass along this blessing.
We know that the hand of God is on this family and we are happy to walk alongside of them and their church.
Blessings, The Downing Family