Juan and Denise serve in partnership with the Council of Rural Indigenous Evangelicals of Mexico (Consejo Indígena Campesino Evangélico de México, CICEM) in Chiapas, Mexico. They both work in training, prevention and education as they learn the community needs and look for ways to emotionally and economically empower leaders in their communities. Juan focuses on theological education and leadership training as he accompanies, coaches and disciples new church leaders. Denise’s ministry seeks to empower women, especially those who are victims of domestic abuse.
Juan writes in a recent journal – And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, support, strengthen, and establish you. To him be the power forever and ever. Amen. 1 Peter 5:10–11 (NRSV)
We will never know from experience God’s richest blessings of comfort and compassion toward others until we ourselves have had trials. T.J. Bach
Early in May, my family was traveling to Puebla for CICEM’s board meeting. When we reached a town called Córdoba in the state of Veracruz, I (Juan) felt dizzy and with nauseas. I could barely walk. We decided to call an ambulance. But before the ambulance arrived, I called a friend, who is a medical doctor, in San Cristobal and I told him my symptoms. “For what you’re describing, you seem to have vertigo. Go to a hospital and have an ENT check you,” he said. When the paramedics arrive, they confirmed I was having vertigo. They suggested that I go to a local hospital for treatment. At the hospital, I received treatment, but I wasn’t feeling any better. On the contrary, when I opened my eyes, I saw everything around me spinning with more intensity. So, I kept my eyes closed.
[Juan then describes steps taken to treat his condition. Read his entire journal at
God put in the hearts of two of our Tseltal churches to raise a love offering for us. They called to let us know they had a gift for us. Denise and I were deeply moved as we know the challenges they face. We didn’t want to take the gift. But we realize that it was God’s way of showing He is with us. We needed to be humble and vulnerable.
The Lord’s opened the door at the National Institute of Neurology and Neurosurgery in Mexico City and I had an initial appointment with the otoneurologist on June 4th. I will have further exams and another appointment on August 6th and 12th. We’re praying that after the exams and appointments, we will have a certain diagnosis of what’s wrong and how to deal with it.
We continue to be in communication with our partners but have paused all traveling so we can focus on recovering my health.
We invite you to join us in this part of the journey by lifting us up in prayer so the Lord brings to our path the right medical team that can properly diagnose and treat me and the peace in our minds and hearts that everything will be ok. We know that with this trial God is inviting us to a deeper trust.
Thank you for your prayers and support.