“Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless,
Maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed.”
Like so many pastors, God had given me vision that could impact many lives if only it could be fulfilled and come to pass. The value of a vision fulfilled is to see lives changed. Big plans and dreams in our hearts can easily be delayed due to the daily demands of ministry or the more pressing needs of the people we are currently serving. We as a church wanted to make an impact in the lives of orphans in Guatemala and help impact a nation’s leaders through a minister’s training school. Like many, we had a vision but did not have the resources or the personnel to see this grand vision fulfilled. We knew if we had more resources, children’s lives could be changed and a generation of future ministers would be raised up.
In order for this God given vision to come to pass it would require more than what one church could offer or do alone. Thankfully, strong relationships were already established in our life with other pastors and friends. The most natural thing to do was to call them and share what was in my heart. Amazingly, God had already ministered some things to their hearts. At that point, I, along with a team of pastors decided to take equal ownership of a plan that would help shape a nation for God. It was no longer just my vision or their vision alone but it became “our vision.”
At the time we did not see the wisdom in five close pastor friends coming together around a single missions vision. We soon found out the plan God gave us would have never been fulfilled if we did not come together as one.
Ecclesiastes 4: 9-12 (TLB)
Two can accomplish more than twice as much as one, for the results can be much better. If one falls, the other pulls him up; but if a man falls when he is alone, he’s in trouble. Also, on a cold night, two under the same blanket gain warmth from each other, but how can one be warm alone? And one standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer; three is even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.
There is such power when churches come together around a single purpose! We all still have our own churches to lead and provide vision for but coming together for this extension of our local churches together caused this to come to pass.
We all brought our own specialties and strengths to the table. For instance, there were tremendous legal hurdles to overcome with the government of Guatemala. One pastor had relationship with a national pastor there that facilitated us overcoming that challenge. Websites, marketing, developing procedures, handling finances, and a myriad of challenges arose as we moved forward with the plan. The wonderful thing was each pastor involved seemed to have skills to help solve various problems. It seems like every time there is a need, one of the founding pastors has a contact or connection to provide for that need.
When we look back at what has been put together with pastors from California, Colorado, Mississippi, and Florida, we realize that we all had a unique contribution to make and each one of us were necessary. Today, the Children’s home and Minister’s training school are up and running. But, in order for this vision to be fulfilled, we had to come together!
One thing people may have to overcome to be part of a team effort like this is recognize that even though we all have a significant part to play individually, we could not get the job done alone. President Ronald Reagan said, “There’s no limit to what a man can get done or where he can go if he doesn’t mind who gets the credit.” Within this group of churches and ministries there is no arrogance or intimidation amongst us. There is no competition rather, cheering each other on in our respective roles. We all lead and we all follow so a nation can be impacted.
I believe God put us together and the challenge to do our part in reaching this nation was overcome because of a team. This team loves each other and reaches goals together. Each of us had a unique contribution that made the victory happen. We had “to do this together” for it to come to pass. Today, there is a strong children’s home in Guatemala that provides for children like we would if they were our own. There is a minister’s training school that is equipping future ministers and leaders. I know it was God’s plan to put us together to accomplish what He called us to do!
Below are comments from the Partnering Pastors who made “House of Destiny” a reality!
Pastor Ray Dubois – Family Worship Center of Port Orange, FL
Being part of the vision and work of HOD Children’s Home and Minister’s Training School has revolutionized the missions program at FWC. It has inspired, refreshed and motivated our church to a new level in our missions’ involvement, commitment and giving. Realizing that HOD and DSM is “our” home and ministers school, along with the other churches, has caused an increase in individuals engagement in the care, support and prayer for the vision of HOD & DSM with their faith, finances, prayers and time. There is excitement in our church family each time we receive pictures from the directors of the HOD and we see the marked improvement and the difference in the children’s lives. Knowing that sadness and frowns are being replaced with love, joy and smiles makes it all worth the effort.
The people of FWC are encouraged knowing that they are part of something bigger than themselves, part of something that is changing lives, a nation and the world and that they are sharing this commitment with other churches that are likeminded. HOD children’s Home and Minister’s Training School is more than just a project for us, it truly has become an extension of our church family.
Pastor Chuck Ford – Harvest Family Church of Jackson, MS
One benefit of partnering with other churches we discovered was that it afforded an opportunity for our people to be involved in a missions project knowing they were supporting the vision of their local church.
For instance, we have a young man that’s been in our church from childhood, graduated from Bible School and has a heart to do missions work. He is also very committed to our church and feels he can fulfill the vision for his life by helping us fulfill our vision as a church. As a matter of fact his exact words to me were, “the thing that excites me the most about the work in Guatemala is that it’s ‘us.’”
Pastors Peggy and Scott Heald – Believers Victory Church of Lake Worth, FL
Being a part of House of Destiny has been an amazing experience for our church body. We are able to look at the faces of the orphans and see the immediate impact our participation has had on the lives of the children. We look at these children as “our own” our responsibility. Each child has become part of our church families. Through the efforts of a team of people we have seen the remarkable difference being made by ordinary people who decided to manifest God’s love through action.
Jay and Valerie Ranton, Directors – House of Destiny, Antigua, Guatemala
Making a difference. We hear that phrase far too often without hearing what the difference really is.
Last November, Kendrik, our oldest child at 3 years, was receiving a lecture from me about biting his little brother, for the umpteenth time. During our talk I asked Kendrik if he knew how to ask Jesus to help him and he said “Si, Jesus Cristo ayudarme” (Yes, Jesus Christ help me). Valerie has been teaching Kendrik this phrase as we have been dealing with fear in our home.
After Kendrik told me how to ask Jesus for help I asked him if he wanted to ask Jesus to live in his heart. He told me “Si.” Kendrik repeated after me, “Jesus vive en mi corazon por favor” (Jesus live in my heart please). Today when you ask Kendrik where Jesus lives, he says “en mi corazon” (in my heart). We also have not had a biting incident since that day.
Spiritual, emotional and physical needs are being met and impacted. This is the difference we are making at Casa del Destino.
Harry Wilson, Director – Destiny School of Ministry, Antigua,Guatemala
It is a great honor as an individual missionary and former pastor to be working with other churches and ministries for a common goal. Destiny Ministries can reach and touch farther because many different ministries have combined their resources and talents. One ministry can make a difference, but a group of ministries can make an impact!
Destiny School of Ministries is one of a three part vision. Its purpose is to train laborers for the harvest. If you want to change the spiritual climate in a nation, people have to be taught the uncompromised Word of God and learn to flow with the power and anointing of the Holy Ghost. It has been proven that for any lasting move of God in a nation, you have to train the nationals for ministry! It’s so exciting to see what God is doing in the lives of the students as the Word of God is planted in their hearts. Our interpreter shared how he hadn’t been able to get a job because he had a fear of failure. After hearing the teaching on the Authority of the Believer, he realized he didn’t have to live with the fear and could get a job. That same week he had an interview and got a wonderful job.
The vision of one pastor has brought together many and the work of Destiny Ministries is getting done in the wonderful nation of Guatemala!
Pastor Ray Gene Wilson – West Coast Believers Church of Santa Barbara, CA
It’s difficult to adequately explain the affect that Casa Del Destino has had on our people. It’s been a breath of fresh air to our congregations to be apart of something bigger then themselves. They look forward to participating in the various special offerings we have taken for things such as a vehicle, Christmas and birthdays. Their gifts have connected them to the hearts of the children and made them feel apart of their lives. Not only do they rise to the occasion in their giving but they consistently pray for them as well. I’m reminded of one of our college students who had such a passion for the children that she sowed her entire tax return. They realize the reason for the blessing of Abraham…the essence of true prosperity—blessed to be a blessing!!!