Friday, March 26, 2010

Texas, Drama, Stress.....and Peace.

The last two weeks have been such a blessing to me. I came back from my missions orientation in Texas last week both refreshed and encouraged. I learned so much and had time to really focus on my vision and how to better connect people to God's mission here in Costa Rica. During the orientation and my time talking with my pastoral support, I have decided to take a trip to Calgary for 2 months to raise supporters and reconnect with my community there. I am praying about when and how to go about this. Please pray for me as I make preparations for this.

Of course, whenever I leave the country, a surprise situation is always waiting to be uncovered upon my return. This last week here has definitely been a challenge. When I came home, my room mate was very sad. As she explained what happened, she started to cry. Some people in leadership in her life accused her of doing some things that she hasn't been doing. She is so hurt by this. She has had a rough life but Christ started changing her life around two years ago. Some people think that she is still living like she did before. This has really made me sad because I know that she has been doing well. I know Satan is really using this situation as a huge discouragement in her faith. She is losing trust for the Christians who are in her life. Please pray for her during this time and pray for me as I continue to love and encourage her in her faith.

Also, pray for me as I will be speaking with her leadership regarding the situation. I don't want to enter this situation thinking over protectively of Marilyn but just as someone who is questioning the situation with love and understanding. This is a challenge after seeing her so upset all week and crying every day about the situation. But God holds this in his hands and I trust that he will give me the words I need.

The positive of everything that has happened in the last months is that God is filling me with his peace. I was so worried and stressed and it was running me down. But through my trip to Texas and just taking it easy this week and praying, I feel peace. God has my finances and he has Marilyn in his hands. I need not worry but just to continue walking and seeking after God's direction.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Transparency in Financial Issues.

Me and Marilyn moved to a house a couple blocks away from our old apartment last week. The house was very cheap to rent and seemed perfect for us. So we moved everything in and started putting things in their place.......only to find that we had a cockroach problem! So I went to the store and bought bottles of cockroach spray. I sprayed the place to death trying to kill the cockroaches. Well.....that lasted about a day until I realized that we needed professional help. After attempting to take care of the problem, I tried to ignore the problem.....after all, the cockroaches hide, so I tried the out of sight, out of mind theory......hmmmm didn't work. As I was reading the Bible with my friend Anita on the couch, I saw a ton of cockroaches skittering was then that I decided to call the fumigator. Some problems aren't meant to be faced on your own......

Since we are all a family in Christ, I have been realizing that I am bearing a load that is not meant for me to handle on my own. I need to be open with all of you because you are an important part of God's mission here in Costa Rica.

Something that is really hard for me to do but it so needs to be done, is to be completely honest about my financial situation here. I have really been praying for more support here as I have been running a deficit nearly every month for the last year. Because of this deficit I have gotten into debt. I have tried to ignore the problem but it has come to the point where it cannot be ignored any longer. It has hit me that if something doesn't change......I might just be another missionary forced to leave the field due to finances.

 It has been a hard line for me to draw. I ask myself......Do I really need to share this with people or should I just be quiet and trust that God will provide in his own way. It then occurred to me that I have been rediculous not to share. I have come to the realization that my pride has held me back from truly asking for help. I have lately just felt God nudging me, reminding me that this is not my mission but his mission. Anything that is God's mission is the churches mission as well. We share in the ministry here in Costa Rica. I'm not quite sure sometimes how to voice my needs so I'm hoping that the following info will convey the extent of my need.

Monthly Budget:

Rent: 300.00
Food: 300.00
Gas: 200.00
Car Insurance: 15.00
Electricity: 30.00
Water: 10.00
Total Needed: 855.00 U.S minimum is needed to cover main expenses here not including ministry expenses
Average Monthly Support: 500.00 U.S
Deficit: 355.00 U.S

Medical insurance for the year: 900.00 due on March 4th
Required trip to Texas for Missions organization: 1000.00....leaving on March 14th

Something that I am working on is taking the time to truly communicate with all of you as to what is going on here. I have been so caught up in ministry that I have found that months sometimes go by without me writing an update. I want you all to know what is going on here in my ministries and the things that God has been doing in my life. God truly has opened doors here for me in ministry and I would like to continue serving God here. I know that God called me here and that I moved here in obediance to that call. When I came I was very afraid because I didn't have any clue what was going to happen. I feel that God has blessed me beyond measure here and I don't feel like my time here is anywhere close to done.

Having said that......I know that God is more than able to provide for all my needs and that whatever his will is, will come to pass. I am asking for you all to unite with me in prayer. Prayer for provision, prayer for my ministries, prayer for me and Marilyn.  I need your partnership to continue the mission that God has given me here. I also ask that if God lays the work going on in Costa Rica on your hearts, that you will consider partnering with me financially to allow me to continue to serve here. God does provide. But God also uses people to provide. I apologize for keeping this problem from you for so long, God is helping me to face my pride and to be open about my needs.

If any of you have any questions about my work here in Costa Rica, I would be more than happy to explain in more detail. Feel free to check out my video on youtube under "Rachel Garber Missionary in Costa Rica".

As God lays it on your hearts, you can send all support to the following address.

1731 Lesperance Road
Windsor ON N8N 1Y2

The check should be made to Commission to Every Nation or CTEN. Make sure that if your sending a cheque, that you include a note with my name on it.

For all letters:

Rachel Garber

Apdo 428-1011
La y Griega
San Jose, Costa Rica