"He sat in an old hammock, strung up between the two sides of his small shelter at the edge of the city garbage dump. The structure, built from items found in the trash, was maybe ten feet long by five feet wide. But it provided a place to get away from the bright Guatemalan sun, and four or five of us stepped gratefully inside, not knowing who we were about to meet.
The man was old, very old. The deep lines etched into his face grew deeper still as he smiled and shook hands with each of his visitors. He wore jeans, a shirt, and a white cowboy hat.
“Me gusta tu sombrero,” I said as I shook the old man’s hand. “I like your hat.”
“Gracias,” he replied, and then went on to explain that he owns two cowboy hats - one for working, and one for going out on the town. He was ninety-three years old.
Pastor Roni sat beside the man, and the two began to talk. The man’s name was Sixto. Their conversation spanned many topics, not all of which I was able to follow with my limited Spanish - but they talked of God, and I could understand that Sixto was telling of the creation account, of the waters and the skies.
“Tiene un biblia? Do you have a Bible?” Pastor Roni asked. Sixto explained that he had once owned the precious book, but it had been destroyed in the weather. Pastor Roni told him he would return with another one, one with big letters. Sixto responded with gratitude. We closed our eyes and prayed aloud for him, lifting the man from the garbage dump up to the throne room of Heaven, to a God who sees, and who holds for Sixto an inheritance that can never perish, spoil, or fade (1 Peter 1:4).
My husband and I talked about it later, of the contentment displayed in the old man’s language and demeanor. “These people may need our financial help, but they don’t need our spiritual help,” he observed. Like the apostle Paul, Sixto has learned “the secret of being content in every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want” (Phil. 4:12). With Paul, the old man in the cowboy hat can declare, “I can do all things through him who gives me strength” (Phil. 4:13).
With God’s help, maybe someday soon I will be able to say it with the same conviction."
-Debbie Canfield, a participant of PJM's summer mission trip in July of 2019
“On Tuesday of each week, we visit the nursing home. A few weeks ago, Jorge suffered from a stroke that left him unable to move his arms and legs. He was taken to the hospital but they could not do much for him. We went to visit him at the hospital, and it was difficult to see him in that condition. The only thing we could do for him was pray and that we did. The following week when we were visiting the nursing home, I was surprised when I saw that Jorge was already back. He hadn’t improved, and on the contrary, he was worse. I was very sad to see him in pain, and I told him, “Jorge tell the Lord Jesus that you are ready to go with him” and Jorge told me, “I will.” That day, I asked my church to pray for him, and God performed a miracle. The following week, Jorge was much better and I have hope in God that he will continue to improve. I thank God for the opportunity to serve through Pure Joy Missions.” - Yeni
Jorge is now able to move his arms and the fingers of his right hand. He is still unable to move his left hand and is physically weak. Please continue to pray with us for complete healing! We are thankful we can remind the elderly in their time of need that they are loved and not alone. Thank you for allowing us to do this time & time again!
“Recently, Puerto Barrios has been affected by a mosquito borne virus called Dengue. Several deaths of children and adults have been reported. On Tuesday, I was at the hospital and I could see that the emergency room was filled with people, the majority of which had symptoms of dengue. Our team in Puerto Barrios also had many of the symptoms, as did the children at Project Valor and at Club Exploradores. Thanks be to God and thanks to the prayers from each one of you, I saw the hand of God on those affected, and each day they improved. I thank God for his shelter and protection for Pure Joy.”
Please keep everyone in Puerto Barrios in your prayers! Pray for protection, pray for healing for those affected, and pray the doctors, nurses and caregivers who are caring for those affected.