Aaron and Rachel Halbert - May 2018
Dear Christ Covenant Family and Friends:
Recently I started reading a book by Sinclair Ferguson in which he has a chapter about John Flavel and the Mystery of Providence. There is a brief section in it where he writes, we need to “work hard at remembering and exploring the providence of God towards you.” As I sat down to write this update I realized that is what this update is mainly about. Looking at the providence of God in our lives over this past year. The things that I mention below have been great balms to my soul as I have thought about God’s providence in the life of our church, ministry, friendships, and family. Ferguson says when we look at the providences of God we should particularly “try to trace the relationship between prayer and providence to see how ‘providences have borne the very signature of your prayers upon them.’” As I look at all the Lord has done in bringing our church to this point I can see, clearly, the connection between prayer and providence. How the Lord has kindly and graciously answered the prayers that have been prayed for us and this work in Tegus. Below we hope will be a brief update on what the Lord has done in Honduras, we pray it is an encouragement to you!
First time for everything
In God’s kind providence we have been going through a season of many firsts for us here on the field. When you do things for the first time there is always a lot of excitement, but also some trepidation because you want to do things well (or as the Scriptures remind us decently and in order). That being said, one of the highlights recently was getting to do my first wedding here in Honduras! It was a delight to see one of my former students get married and be asked to do the pre-marital counseling and then do the wedding here in Honduras. It was a great time of celebration and a joy to get to press the gospel home to their hearts and those in attendance. It truly was amazing to see how a relationship that began while I was teaching high school 10 years ago grew to the point of me being able to do this former student's (now dear friend's) wedding in Honduras.
One of the other major firsts we had recently was our church’s first year anniversary. To be honest, it is overwhelming to think that we that we have now been regularly meeting for a year. It truly has been by the sustaining mercies of God that we have made it through this first year. We have had such a blessed time growing as a church family. The blessing of growing in our understanding of the Word, in our friendships, and in number has been an encouragement to us. It is always fun to take a moment at each anniversary and look back over the past year and see what the Lord has done. As Josue and I recounted all that has happened we were overcome by the reality of all that has happened in a year. We realized that our church family has read through or been taught through the books of Genesis, Ruth, Ephesians, Galatians, and we will finish Matthew soon. We have studied 15 chapters of the confession together. And spent many hours in prayer together as a church family. We have also started talking about the ordination process for Josue and the electing of elders for our church plant. It has been amazing to see what the Lord has done but even more amazing to be reminded through it all that the Lord is King and head of His church and He will sustain her. This reality has allowed us to serve and ask the Lord that He would continue to cause growth in number and in depth. We would ask you to continue praying that with us(if you would like to see pictures of our past few months please click here).
We have some upcoming firsts that we would love for you to pray for. This summer we will be hosting our first team. They are going to be doing a VBS for our church and we are going to be doing some outreach to the community around where our church is located. We are praying that the Lord would richly bless this event. We would also ask you to pray that this might be a means to getting to know more families in the area. Pray that during this time we would see the saving of souls. We long that kids, parents, and households come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Pray that we would be clear in our teaching and translation. Most of pray all, that God would be honored!
Our last first, but not least, is that we will also be hosting our first conference this summer. We are having a three night conference focusing on Covenant Theology. One of the things that we are quickly learning is that there are many folks who have been taught false doctrines. Many of those doctrines have been taught using many of the same terms and phrases that we would use on a regular basis. We are planning to have annual conferences trying to teach our people and others that may come about core doctrines. We are praying that this will be a wonderful time of fellowship for our congregation and with other churches and pastors we are inviting. Please pray with us that it would be well attended. Pray that it would be encouraging, clear, and fruitful to those who come. Again, pray that God would be glorified!
Finally, we would ask you to be in prayer for Josue and Ely this summer. They will be spending 10 weeks in the states as Josue will be taking some classes at RTS in Jackson, Mississippi. We would ask you to pray that it would be a fruitful time for them as they get to know some of our supporting churches. We would also ask you to pray for them as they function in English for 10 weeks. One of the toughest things about being outside your own culture can be language. They all speak English, but having to speak it regularly may be overwhelming! Please pray that it will be a fruitful time of study and friendship making. Also, please pray we would be able to secure housing. We are still waiting to hear back about some housing options. If you live in the Jackson area please feel free to invite them out for coffee, a meal, or just to hang out. I know they would be very appreciative!
Finally, we would like to say thank you! We are grateful for your continued prayers for us and for our work here in Honduras. "Thank you" never seems to be enough to describe how overwhelmed we are by the thought of having so many people praying for us regularly. As we visited churches earlier this year, it was balm to our souls to hear, "we pray for you regularly." We will never be able to fully express what that means to us, but please accept our deepest thank you!
We hope this finds you doing well and looking forward to the summer months! Again, if you would like to see pictures from some of the above mentioned "firsts", please click here.
Continued growth in depth for our church plant
Our first church conference
Our VBS and outreach
Josue's Hebrew studies and their time in the USA
Housing for Josue and Ely while studying in the USA
One year anniversary of the church
Continued church growth
The girls turning two
First team coming down soon
Aaron, Rachel, Ford, Catherine, Ryley, Whitley, Anne Waverly