New Years Resolution

This is a post that I jotted down last night while returning back to Puno from Cusco:

Dear Supporters,

I am only going to apologize this one last time for my neglect on this blog.  It’s tradition that people make New Years Resolutions, but from a  Christian perspective, I find NYR too secular and shallow.  If something is wrong in your life it shouldn’t take a certain time fo the year to push someone into making it right.  As much as I feel this way.  I’m making a NYR only because I’ve realized my fault at this time of the year.  My NYR is to be more responsible about making regular blog entries to keep YOU better informed.

Tonight, as I’m riding back to Puno from Cusco, having had the blessing to have seen Machu Picchu (my Christmas present this year), I felt a burden for you, my supporter.  Actually, it’s been an itch in my brain-lobes for quite a while now.  You are just as involved in this mission as I am.  You may think that’s silly and that’s not true, but how couldn’t it be?  If you were not sending your prayers and money, how could I be here?  How could I be serving God?  One of the main reasons I want to write this post is again to thank you all.  In this very moment as I’m writing on a very bumpy bus and wondering how I will read this later to publish online, I am tremendously humbled by my unimportance.  I am Trevor Ruhland Allen and it is only by God’s grace that I am able to serve my Lord in Peru.  It’s quite astounding to find myself where I am.  I look behind and I see the lost pathetic man who I was.  I ask often, how is it that God would want me?  God’s grace is bigger than my insufficiency.  That’s the answer.  I am willing to serve my King humbly and He, in turn, uses me.  I thank you all for being willing to send your support which is part of your service to the Lord and then mine.  Thank you for your obedience!

continue to support me.  But I beg that you would support as much, if not more, through prayer.  The truth be told, things are not going according to plan.  Our plans as human beings are fallible and likely to change.  Sixto has gone and Sammy is now my new partner.  He is my 4th partner.  I feel that every time I’ve changed partners we have had to start over.  I believe that this is what God wanted all along.  There has been nothing that has happened through which God has not shown me His truth.  I love Christ’s statement to Pilot when He tells him his purpose on earth was to be witness to the truth (John 18:37) and He continues to do so today.  As crappy as everything seems, I know GOd has it all purpose-filled.  everything trial that I’ve had has been a blessing from God and I thank Him.  I believe Sammy is the partner I was destined to have.

There is a reason why I’m asking you for your prayers.  Even though everything seems positive at this point… and it’s another lesson that I’m learning.  I didn’t think so, but I was depending on myself or on team strategies to reach people and change their hearts.  I thought the tone of my voice or a slight brush on the arm were keys to opening these people’s hearts.  But how foolish was I!  I treated the gospel like I was selling worldly life insurance or some other product when my attitude should’ve been focused on the power of God.  He hardens and softens hearts (Romans 9:18).  It’s not my will but His.  There is nothing I can do to change the people of Puno’s hearts.  And I’m ashamed that I subconsciously thought that I could.

In the States we view fasting as maybe a dead spiritual practice.  If you don’t, then you’re part of the minority.  Here I’ve realized the amazing spiritual discipline that it is.  Instead of depending on my INterpersonal skills to reach people, I’ve refocused on God.  I’m pleading out to God in fasting a prayer weekly on Tuesdays.  We have 7 months left of work and the fruit is hard to reap in this culture of Puno.  It is a cold culture with hard hearts and any religious ties are with the Catholic Church which is laced with satanic paganism.  I wonder if you would help Sammy and me as we do all we can do… depend on God.  Esther asked the Jewish nation to fast with her as she went in to speak with the King.  I ask that you would fast with us.  Fast breakfast, lunch, something, two meals, one meal, or all day.  Fast with us on Tuesday as we search for God.  Fast with us as we plead to God His work and change in the people of Puno.  We have little time left, and humanly we would consider it a lost deal, but I have faith that God has a plan here.  If you decide to fast with us, would you please tell me?  ruhlandt@gmail.com

We are seeing some fruit.  Not all is bad.  Here’s some good stuff happening for which we are praising the Lord!

  • Diana, in Juliaca, is showing spiritual maturity and asking questions I see as inspired by the Holy Spirit’s conviction in her life
  • Yeny, a girl who has recently been coming to the church in Ilave, is a guitarist.  This is something we’ve been looking for as we need someone to take charge of the worship ministry in the church there once we are gone
  • A group of women in Ilave with whom we have been meeting weekly to study the Bible continue to show interest and some have given their hearts over to Christ
  • There is a lot of spiritual growth that we are seeing in Manuel and there is evidence of his decision effecting his family
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