Maria and I celebrated 25 months of marriage this month and Maria experienced her first Mother’s Day as a mother! She is already an awesome mom! We are getting more and more excited for the birth of our daughter Mia Joy Snyder. We have been blessed with several gifts such as a high chair, stroller, and other things for baby. We are also thankful that it has started to rain here after a 5/6-month drought! We were also blessed with the opportunity to teach about the Great Commission in our church’s Sunday school class for teens! Maria has also been busily planning her baby shower that will be held July 6 and is very excited.
Maria and I have been challenged to spend more time together in prayer and to focus completely on God’s Kingdom! Everything we do here in this life will be reflected in heaven, and we don’t want to just settle for heaven, but go after heavenly awards and treasures. Jonathan has been challenged to put more of his trust in God and not in people as well as challenged to truly love people and make them more important. He is also learning patience, choosing to give thanks in every situation, and to truly surrender and not do things in his own strength. Maria is learning to be more patient and understanding in each situation and is learning new skills and abilities. She is also growing in her love for God and others. AND…she finally has finished her college classes and will be graduating in the ceremony on September 20.
Enciende El Fuego
Things this past month in the ministry have been challenging and also exciting. We are excited to be doing “missions months” from June-August. Everything we will be doing will be dedicated to teaching the kids all about missions – evangelism, stories/testimonies from famous missionaries, praying for countries, talking about persecution in different parts of the world, etc. We are declaring that many kids will receive and answer the call to missions and develop a missions perspective on life!
We have some exciting things planned in June for the ministry in addition to the missions months. On Monday, June 3, three of us will be giving a teacher training to a group of 8 teachers from Iglesia Salvador. It will be the 2nd teacher training opportunity for Enciende El Fuego and the first that Maria and I will be leading. Also, on June 3, we will be doing an evangelistic event and activities for kids in Cuidad Equidad. There could be close to 100 kids attending! The most exciting opportunity that we have is our second missions trip, this time to Barranquilla, a major city about two hours from Santa Marta from June 24-27. We are still working on details, but Maria and I will be taking a team to do a VBS for kids in a low-income area and doing other ministry activities.
We are praying that God brings more committed volunteers as we have seen a decline in commitment from several teachers. At the beginning of May, Valeria from Bogotá decided to move back and is no longer with us. We were thinking about leaving her in charge of things when we go the States. We are declaring and praying for God to bring us a missionary (American/Latino) couple to work with us and eventually take over things here in Santa Marta. We give glory to God because in spite of the changes and challenges, we have seen several of our volunteers really grow and have more opportunities! We know that the Lord has even greater things for this ministry, the volunteers, and the kids!
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” – Mt. 6:33
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9
Maria and Jonathan