On April 15th we celebrated our one-year anniversary with Teen Missions. It has been a year of tremendous growth for all of us, both spiritually speaking and concerning our children, also physically speaking. I believe Caleb, Gaby, and Sarah have grown a few inches taller and a few shoe sizes bigger. This has been a year of refining fire for all of us. As precious metals are heated to eliminate the impurities, so have we been tested in many ways to examine our “true” character before God. We want to thank each of you who have walked with us through tears and pain, rejoicing and laughter. Thank you for your financial support, standing with us in prayer, and sending us encouraging notes to lift our spirits. Through our friendships with each of you, we are reminded that we are not alone and that God sees and hears every prayer we offer up to Him with thanksgiving and praise. We pray that each of you would also be reminded of God’s goodness and know the abundance of His love for you. “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:1-3
This verse has been the cry of our heart these last few months as we have grown together as a family with the six students. They too, have been walking through the refining fire having come to this school with tremendous baggage. God is doing an amazing work in each of them as they learn to surrender their hearts to our precious Father. Nothing good is accomplished in any of us but through the work of God’s pure love and gracious hand. The Bible curriculum is only a very small part of what these students are gaining from their time here with us. Above all, their hearts are being healed from tremendous wounds, bondages are being broken and joy is being renewed. Just as important, they are learning about good work ethic, servanthood, honesty, forgiveness, and how to speak the truth in love. Please, keep each of them in your prayers as well.
We are grateful for wonderful friends that the Lord has brought our way. We have been blessed with
many charitable gifts, including a wood-burning stove where we cook our beans. This saves on fuel costs. It was an original creation out of recycled truck rims; it saves time from cleaning the black ash off my pots as well. We were also given some leaf lettuce starters for our upcoming garden. We planted them in a small area we had started to clear and have been enjoying fresh salad nearly every day, a great luxury to substitute our cabbage diet.
We had the privilege of hosting a class of 34 high school students who were required to serve five hours of community service. We had a number of projects that they helped us with on the property, including clearing away the jungle for our summer Boot Camp where the campers will be sleeping in tents. We have been visiting several churches to promote our camp and are starting to collect registrations. We have had many speaking opportunities and been able to take our students on a few occasions to share a presentation of dramas and testimonies. For this semester, our BIBLE, WORK & MISSIONARY Training Center students have been invited to share, teaching on a bi-weekly basis at a primary school in Santa Marta. This is where one of our summer teams will be building a shelter in the school yard for a dining area. This is an answer to prayer as we have been asking the Lord to open up doors of ministry opportunity for our students. They are also active in a youth group on Saturday afternoons where they have spiritually adopted the younger children in the church to encourage them. They have also been zealous about personal evangelism and have shared the Gospel on many occasions.
We were recently acquainted with a high school group from Canada that was visiting Belize on a short-term mission trip. God’s favor was poured out on us as our school was invited to share a sight-seeing day with them at no expense. We went snorkeling at Goff’s Caye. It was a first for most of the students and some of them had never even been on a boat. What a wonderful blessing for us all!
We took our students on their first camping trip to end our second semester. We found a great spot by a river in the mountains of the Cayo district near the Guatemalan border. It was more challenging for some than others, but most everyone enjoyed the trip. Some of them enjoyed swinging from a rope swing into the river, Sarah being the first to brave the way. We closed the day with a campfire, roasting hot dogs and marshmallows, singing worship songs and thanking God for His goodness. It was a beautiful memory to share together.
We are very excited about the generous gift of a keyboard and guitar as we undertake music class in this 3rd semester. Sarah and Gaby have already started teaching the keyboard to some of the students and we are all trying to learn the guitar. David is teaching five classes this semester and I am teaching one. I chose to teach geography, hoping to improve my knowledge on the subject. I’m trying to find more time to homeschool our own children, although they have done a great job educating themselves for these last two
• Pray for the health of our family and students
• Pray for our summer camp and for each of the participants; that lives would be changed and all would come to know Christ as their Savior
• Pray for wisdom and order in bringing every detail together for the camp
• Pray for local volunteers to join us in this labor
• Pray for the protection of our own children as they give up their lives for the cause of Christ
Thanks again for laboring in love with us to further the Gospel in Belize.
Yours in Christ,
David, Becca, Sarah, Gaby, Caleb
The Powell Family
P.O. Box 208
Orange Walk Town