Monday, March 21, 2011

Guatemala - Day 8 (The Final Day - Journal Entry)

This is the final entry from my Guatemala journal. I hope it has encouraged you to read about God moving in the midst of the Pokomchi people, and I would like you to know that it has completely changed me. My passions, my calling and my life are being re-molded into what God wants me to be. I am now preparing to apply for Journeyman with the IMB to serve God somewhere in the world. Please pray for me as I pursue His will. :-)
Much love, The REAL Bowman

3/12/11 The Return Flight
-How heartbreaking it is to say goodbye to those you love, to leave a place you love, to leave the place where God was evidently working. I find myself incredibly emotional about returning to the States even though it is my home. I can't help but feel that I am not meant to stay there. I must pray, fast and seek the LORD about this, but I am considering the Journeyman program. It is obvious to me now that I am meant to be in ministry wherever I am. It is oh so hard though to want to stay in America.
My heart yearns for more than the mediocre life I am living now. Everything is just.... off. But I must pray for wisdom and contentedness too, for if I am to stay I must be prepared to humble myself before the mighty hand of God, that at the proper time He might exalt me (1 Peter 5). These are intense feelings, but at the same time are necessary, as I evaluate my work, location, relationships and passions.

Proverbs 4:20-23
"My son, be attentive to my words;
   incline your ear to my sayings.
 Let them not escape from your sight;
    keep them within your heart.
For they are life to those who find them,
   and healing to all their flesh.
Keep your heart with all vigilance,

   for from it flow the springs of life."
God at work through us.
-Last night Jeff spoke to us about the next step of the mission and his testimony.
Even though our work was hard in La Campana, we saw actual fruit to our work and that fueled us. Now is the hard part. We must pray. Pray. Pray constantly. Pray continually. Pray for the people. For their hearts. For the leaders. That they would want to know God in their "awamna". We must get our churches praying for the Pokomchi. For names. For Erma the burn victim - that she will be a testament to God's goodness and that she and her family will come to Christ as a result.
Pray for Benito - our smiling, thankful, helpful guide. That God will give him true joy and that that will be used to lead others to Him. That his boldness and excitedness would become focused on Christ. For all those who we could not help- the blind lady, the infertile couples, the children with rashes, the people with parasites - that whether God works a miracle and heals them or not, the they would be drawn by God to the TRUTH planted this week in the their hearts by the Bible stories.
Brothers in Christ. :-)
-I found Jeff's testimony to be incredibly encouraging and ridiculously similar to the way I work. :-) He has muscular dystrophy and for years Satan tried to use that along with past failures in ministry to keep him from being effective in ministry. The enemy kept saying "You won't be able to physically be a missionary! You'll fall, be an embarrassment to yourself, your family, your children and the IMB." One day though, Jeff realized that he was putting his condition above the power of God in his mind.
And with that realization came great miracles and 'God moments' in which He proved his faithfulness.
I love these guys! At the Arkansas House.
For years I have struggled with a call to ministry (music/youth/missions/whatever)  in light of my steadily deteriorating hands and constantly weak security of self. The testimony of Jeff just rocked my world. I realize how I do just what he used to do - elevate my problems over the power of God rather than wait for HIM to act. It is inspiring to watch him in his ministry. Jeff is truly a man of God and such an example to me. It has been very hard for people to understand why I am so frustrated all the time, and yet I met a man who encountered far worse difficulties- and now God is using him in Guatemala. It makes me wonder if He'll send me places. I want to go. I love people. I want real, deep relationships and want them to honor God. BUT I want more than that for my faith to increase. I want my actions to truly show that I believe God can and will use me. Yes, I will have it hard but Proverbs 4:20-23 makes it clear. God says " Listen to MY voice." There is life in His ways.
The coolest part is this though. Vs. 22 says that HIS words are "life to those who find them and healing to our flesh." Healing. I have never noticed this verse before. It is as if God is saying "Quit worrying! My strength is perfected in your weakness! My words are healing to You!" To add a cherry to the top of this spiritual sundae, this morning's devotion (which Jeremy read in both Spanish and English this morning in our room, completely blowing me away with it's perfect applicability) was Psalm 73:25-28.
           "Whom have I in  heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth
            that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but 
            God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."
When he read those words I could just feel God reminding me of who was in charge. :-) I am now on a plane back to the States, missing Guatemala and the Thomas', but curious as ever as to what God is going to choose to do with me.
What happened here was life-changing indeed.
"The Word we study must be the Word we pray." - Brennan Manning

"The direct experience of God is grace indeed, and basically there is no one to whom it is refused."
- Ignatius of Loyola

The REAL Bowman

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Guatemala - Day 6 & 7 (Journal Entries)

I hope that by reading this blog that you are moved by God the same way he moved me by the experience I had working with the Pokomchi people of La Campana, Guatemala. He taught me much about Himself, myself and what it means to be on mission for Him. This was written in my journal and is an actual excerpt of what I wrote. God bless you.
3/10/11 AM
-My Pokomchi bath yesterday was one of the most welcome and glorious things ever. The water temp was perfect. Compound that with the fact that I was on day 4 without a shower... Yeah, my hair felt awful. We tried to pay the host Benito (The other Benito) for the water, wood and service, but he adamantly declined, saying it was a gift in return since we had given so much to their village. It is amazing how so little by American standards means so much to the Pokomchi. A month's worth of vitamins and acetaminophen do little, but it gave us opportunities to share the Gospel with 10-25 people per house in 80 homes. In their native language too. It was such a risk, but last night one of the group's guides came to us to thank us and said that the Bible stories helped him a lot - that he learned a lot through them. :-) Our work is not in vain. BUT I do pray that the seed falls on good soil and not rocky ground, where the weeds choke it out. Nevertheless, it is encouraging that the leader's hearts are being stirred by the Spirit. The village looks up to them so they could be a major force for good in La Campana.

-Last night we were fed a traditional Pokomchi meal by some of the families. it was basically a version of chicken and dumplings, just made with turkey instead (and Jeff had to eat the head!). We ate with their homemade tortillas instead of spoons. 
Jeremy with 3 adorable little girls.
Quote of the day: 
Jeremy: "Here's an orthodox for you!"
Me: "Ummm.... I think you mean paradox...."
(And I promise you there was a story here. Ask me about it!)

3/10/11 Late AM
-We went to the schools this morning to do a brief talk on hygiene. My group went to a smaller school off on the mountaintop and talked about teeth brushing, good eating and drinking habits, hand washing and covering your mouth when you sneeze or cough.  We then blew up latex gloves like balloons and then gave them to the kids. The teachers thanked us and truly seemed touched. At the main school the teachers Jose and Sadie told us that nobody had ever done this for La Campana and that the village had really been touched by our presence. He said we were welcome back anytime. :-) Jose and his wife drive an hour on motorcycle every day to teach - which is very dangerous due to the roads and landslides. They are the ones who have been truly making a difference for the past 7 years.
Hannah blowing up a glove balloon
More Pokomchi:
Awamna - heart

A Pokomchi Song:
-Wach curus ré Jesús xitoj ni' cacharik (3X)
(pronounced 'watch coo-ruse, ray Hay-zus. She-toe knee ka-cha-reek')
On the cross Jesus paid for my life.
-Ruum ajre ké suk ni' cux
(pronounced 'roo-oom a-kray, ke sook knee cush')
Therefore I am very happy in my heart.

Prayer List
-The Thomas family
-The Kent family
-Matteo - a burned little boy
-Erma - a badly burned young lady
-Erma's family
-Benito, Ruben and the other leaders
-Jose and Sadie - the school teachers
Jose and Sadie

3/11/11 AM drive
-I feel like something of a jerk. This morning we had breakfast again at Doña Lisette's. Coffee, fruit, french toast and eggs. It was great. When I went up to get my food, however, I set this journal on the table and upon returning found it missing! Alas and alack! I was annoyed but played along for the 1st 10 minutes or so. When  I didn't get the journal back and nobody fessed up, though, I began to get frustrated! Agh! All my thoughts, memories and prayers in here....the thought of not getting them back made me so mad! After going back down to pack up I told our team leader Brady that I had not gotten it back yet and that I did NOT want to know who took it to avoid being a jerk to them. In the moment I let my emotions reign and self-control was beginning to shut off. Right before we left Doña Lisette's I saw it sitting on the counter and snatched it up, still moderately fuming. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that everyone had signed and written a note to me on the back 2 pages! Really kind words to a person who was letting a stupid journal come between him and them - a journal which had been used as a testament to our relationship and unity in Christ.
This is what it's all about... 
-It is funny the things God uses to show us our pride. It was very humbling to realize that no, the journal wasn't taken out of anything other than love. And so now I write to you my teammates - Brady, Anthony, Brian, Jeremy, Max, Jeff, Alfredo, Hannah, Dana, Meagan, Bethani, J.B., Janice and Rhonda - you all have encouraged me so much this week! It is incredible how perfect this team was. God certainly orchestrated everything for our good! Where one of us would have a weakness there was always someone whose strengths fit that hole perfectly. Encouragement when needed. Dedication to the mission. Love for God, the Pokomchi and each other. My hat is off to you. As you pursue the LORD I pray He continues to use you in a mighty way. We all are a part of the body with Christ as the head. We each are used in unique ways to bring glory to the Father through our ministries.
It was a sad thing to leave the village.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Guatemala - Day 5 (Journal Entry)

I hope that by reading this blog that you are moved by God the same way he moved me by the experience I had working with the Pokomchi people of La Campana, Guatemala. He taught me much about Himself, myself and what it means to be on mission for Him. This was written in my journal and is an actual excerpt of what I wrote. God bless you.

3/9/11 AM
-Day 4 without a shower!

-Matthew 6:19-24
-Psalm 62:5-8
"For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.
He only is my rock and salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
On God rests my salvation and my glory; my mighty rock. my refuge is God.
Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him;
God is a refuge for us.

-Chacuy Ni'mahc - Please Pardon, I'm sorry

-House 1 Cultural Note - In the house we were offered real Guatemalan coffee. It was brewed with cane sugar and tasted amazing! The funny thing is that the 5 or 6 year old here was drinking it too! (Note: Ironically, I saw a toddler drinking coffee from a bottle later that very day.) Unfortunately, I could not drink it all, just to be safe. I snuck outside and sneakily tossed the rest...
It was an honor to serve with Dana, Jeff and J.B.
3/9/11 PM
-Cascarones - eggshells filled with picu picu - confetti

-Today we finished all of our sectors! Praise God! In the morning we hit 5 houses and saw countless Pokomchi. I was really hit hard emotionally when at one house a blind lady was brought to us. Her spirits seemed down and she had to be led to her seat when she came in. Immediately my heart ached for this woman - no older than 35 - who needed so much medical attention that we could not provide. The one thing that she needs more than anything is Christ, whom we proclaimed to her; but seeing this young mother suffering made my heart heavy. Jeff was such an inspiration to watch with her though, from his kind words, gentle touch and genuine concern to the prayer we prayed for her. I could just feel Christ present in Him. You could see genuine love and compassion in his eyes as he lifted her up to God. It reminded me of Zephaniah, where it says that "God quiets us in His love." I genuinely pray that the Lord not only opens her spiritual eyes, but her physical ones as well. How can I go back home? I deserve nothing that I have. I should be the blind one. I am really feeling torn about living in a grossly indulgent society. Lord help us all.

 (Note: I would like to add that this experience was the most impactful moment for me while in Guatemala. As soon as I saw the blind lady and began to be burdened for her, God spoke to me. He said "Yes, you want to heal her physical sight, but what she needs is spiritual sight!" Is. 61:1-2 says
            “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim
              good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the 
              prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, 
             to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” 
I realized in that moment that as much as we want to do practical missions and help people's physical needs, that is not what matters. It is temporal. They need Jesus. That is all that we can give that truly gives life, satisfies, heals and GIVES SIGHT. I pray she saw through our prayers, our love and the Gospel what life in Christ is like. I was reminded of the passage in Acts 3 when the beggar asks Peter for material help. His response is appropriate. "Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you." We must realize the importance of what we have! It is the only thing that the world truly needs. End note.)
My awesome team inside a Pokomchi home.
-After lunch some of us walked to a cave and actually went down. :-) If we had the equipment we could have gone down about 40 feet. It was cold and oh-so-cavelike. Ha. Upon coming out we discovered a crowd of 30 or so people watching us. Some had somewhat shocked expressions on their faces. Apparently the Pokomchi believe that the mountain eats Gringos. :-) Guess we proved them wrong!
A Band of Spelunkers
-We then went to a view where we could see the river and accumulated a crowd of children following. They followed and the crowd grew as we went through the village, picked up some cascarones at the local tienda and smashed the confetti filled eggshells on each other's heads then journeyed back to the HQ. Some of us are now playing frisbee/Father Abraham/duck duck goose/etc. with the kids; some of us are consulting patients; and the rest of us are just chilling. At 5 o'clock 8 of us are going to take a Pokomchi bath at a local man's bathhouse. Should be very interesting. Apparently they put water of varying temps in different pots and you mix them to your preferred heat...
Bethani in mid-cascarones attack!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Guatemala - Day 4 (Journal Entry)

I hope that by reading this blog that you are moved by God the same way he moved me by the experience I had working with the Pokomchi people of La Campana, Guatemala. He taught me much about Himself, myself and what it means to be on mission for Him. This was written in my journal and is an actual excerpt of what I wrote. God bless you.

3/8/11 AM
-A couple of things....
I'm really tired.
I'm really dirty.
I haven't showered in 3 days.
Taking on a mountainside is hard. 
It's even harder when you trip.
It's harder still when you drop your toilet paper.
I'm not feeling the best, but not because of the food. Not sure why.
I need to pray harder today
La Campana
Psalm 145
"The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all He has made.
All your works praise you, LORD; your faithful people extol you.
They tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might,
so that all people may know of your mighty acts
and the glorious splendor of your kingdom." (V. 9-12)
Glorious Splendor indeed!
C'alen Tut - Hello (to a woman)
C'alen Jau (pronounced 'how') - Hello (to a man)
C'alen Muchik (pronounced 'moo cheek') - Hello again.
Nach - 1
Kim - 2
Shim - 3
Kahim - 4
Ho'om - 5
Wachim - 6
Wokum - 7
Waxakim - 8
Wilakim - 9
Lachem - 10
(Spelling on the numbers is not correct, I'll try to get those soon!)
Suk na'a kux (pronounced 'sook na a cush') - How are you?
Suk - good
Taret (r pronounced almost as a soft d) - okay
Mas taret - good job, very good
Holohic acamanic - beautiful work
Holohic xiban (pronounced she-wan) - beautifully finished
Ha - water
Chak lam - nice
Chak lamil (almost like 'chocolate milk') - really nice
Kaxik (pronounced ka-sheek) - difficult
Nech - a little

J.B. and Jeff treating a toddler in a Pokomchi home.
I do not trust chickens. (Ask me to tell the story with this statement!)

3/8/11 mid AM
-It's interesting how every single house we have visited in the last 2 days have had in the center of their homes a shrine of sorts. As soon as we walk in we see a table against the back wall. On the table and leaning against the wall are crucifixes, rosaries, pictures of Jesus and various saints, and these fascinating curios with painted crucifixes inside surrounded by flowers. In some cases there have been hand-painted figurines carved from wood into the likeness of saints and Biblical icons. It is truly sad to see how they are surrounded by truth, yet do not have eyes to see it.
To them Catholicism ( and Christ) is simply culture and religion. I pray that they will experience the love of Christ through our presence here and accept Him by having a relationship with Him. These people are content in their primitive lifestyles, yet they don't need things and technology. Instead they need a personal saviour. Not one of these idols in glass cases.
Catholicism and Mayan Paganism have been syncretized into a false truth.
3/8/11 PM
-I just wrote my 1st prescription!
-We need to pray for the couple (Arnorldo and Lorenza) at the 1st house we visited after lunch- that God will use the medicine we gave them to bless them with a child as a testament to His goodness.

-So, we were served drinks in glasses freshly washed and dripping in parasite water. :-) I really hope my bowels don't implode.


Ni chak - my older brother
Cimayu - Come here
Atuk - knee
Naux (pronounced na-oosh) - nose
Was - younger brother
Mets - significant other/pet name
Atik - sissy
Watz - monkey
Kushuel - food
Xila - chairs
Jeff explaining his muscular dystrophy to a family.

3/8/11 PM - Prayer Requests and Night Devotion
-Pray for Benito to know Christ.
-Arnorldo and Lorenza - to be blessed with children
-The couple in the house down the hill - the blessing of children
-The Leaders in the village.
-The Local Church- that it would proclaim TRUTH

Philippians 2:3-5
"Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others better than yourselves, not looking to your own interests, but each of you to the interests of others. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus."

Colossians 3:14-17
"And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him."

1 John 3:16-18
"This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth."

-Alfredo went over Po'kom with me! :-) AND I am speaking and understanding mucho mas Espanol ahora.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Guatemala - Day 3 (Journal Entry)

I hope that by reading this blog that you are moved by God the same way he moved me by the experience I had working with the Pokomchi people of La Campana, Guatemala. He taught me much about Himself, myself and what it means to be on mission for Him. This was written in my journal and is an actual excerpt of what I wrote. God bless you.

3/7/11 -PM
-Wow, I am exhausted and alive! This earthly shell of mine is really feeling fatigue and pains, yet my spirit (the real me) is alive and well, because Jesus my Lord is alive and here in La Campana! This morning we split into our mission teams after a breakfast of oatmeal and instant Guatemala coffee. My team was Dana Sneed, J.B. Williamson and Jeff Thomas - the missionary here. Before we could even leave for the houses though, the doctors had to go to the house of a 28 year old burn victim - Erma - to help her out and tend her wounds. While they were gone I went with Bethani Thomas, Dana Sneed, Brian Knack and Hannah Phelps to walk around and visit local villagers. Right away we were invited into a house/tienda where a girl named Mariela, her mother and some extended family members were. We immediately found ourselves sharing Bible stories with them as Bethani translated into Po'kom.
The breakfast area at our site.
-Over the day my team visited 5 separate houses. In each we saw from 12 to 25 people. We saw everything from stomach aches to shoulder problems to worms to rashes. J.B. and Jeff diagnosed, treated and gave out medications for most everything (except for the parasites unfortunately). It struck me how welcoming and thankful the Pokomchi were as we came to their homes. My preconceptions were that they would be cold and fearful of us. But God is good! They had so little - dirt floors and wooden beds with perhaps a table or a shelf - in a 1 room shell of a house. Yet these people are so grateful, content and happy.
The Pokomchi people were humbling to be around.
- I was almost moved to tears many times seeing their gratitude and Jeff's love for them as he served. They obviously were glad to see him and he was equally glad to see them. We all helped with distribution of the medicines and I was privileged to be able to tell the Bible stories twice in their houses. The confidence I had in the Holy Spirit to recite Cain and Abel, Nicodemus and "Let The Children Come to Me" surprised me. As Jeff was translating a particular phrase I thought about the fact that this was the 1st time the Gospel had been proclaimed here and was just overwhelmed. I feel God moving here and He is changing me too as I serve Him! I wonder if perhaps God is calling me to missions.... :-)
If He is I feel confident that I would be obedient to go.
Jeff and one of our guides, Benito (from Day 4)
- The kids here are so fun! They like to come play with us and are constantly peering into our windows, following on our heels, peeping around corners and just wanting to be with us. I love these kids. Thank God that many of them speak Spanish in addition to Po'kom, haha. I am surprised at how much Espanol that I remember as well! God is Good!

-Tonight Dana and I tried to get the kids to teach us different phrases in Po'kom.
   Hello - "C'alen" (add "Tak" if plural)
   Goodbye - "Noj Pe" (pronounced Noch Pay with a throaty 'ch' sound)
   Thank You - "Intioux Awe" (pronounced 'In-tee-osh away')
   Yes - "Ho"
   No - "Max Ta" or "Ta" (pronounced 'mosh ta')
Hopefully I'll learn more the more time I spend with the children.
Jeff giving the girls their first taste of peanut butter.
-At one point today I thought to myself 'I wish I had some time to myself' but God quickly broke me. After all, my attitude should be the same as that of Jesus Christ (Phil. 2) and he said "Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to such as these." Talk about being put in my place! Now I am sitting outside in the amazing night air in from the dying embers of the fire talking to Bethani, Hannah, Jeremy Smothers and Brian. We are talking about life, love and what all God is doing in our lives. :-)
So I leave you, my journal, eager to see what the day brings tomorrow, wanting to see the LORD God move yet again! In Christ, Esteban

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Guatemala - Day 1 and 2 (Journal Entry)

I hope that by reading this blog that you are moved by God the same way he moved me by the experience I had working with the Pokomchi people of La Campana, Guatemala. He taught me much about Himself, myself and what it means to be on mission for Him. This was written in my journal and is an actual excerpt of what I wrote. God bless you.

3/5/11 -Guatemala Day 1 - PM
-From the first aerial sights of the mountains, the erupting volcano, the insane fast paced traffic and over-crowded impoverished slum houses of the city to the stunning vistas, outdoor social life, bright colors and smells, near death road experiences and STARS in the sky of rural Guatemala-- my first day here has been amazing, encouraging and fun! Although I confess that I am a bit nervous about talking with the Pokomchi, God is reminding me that it is Him, not me, at work here. And that is an awesome thing. Our God is greater! How could I ever doubt Him in the majesty of a country such as this?
-As 2 Corinthians 12:9 says, His strength is perfected in my weakness. So, I will not worry or fret, cause my God is at work in all I do! My prayer for tonight is this - that I will simply decrease and that He will increase. Lord, make me the hands and feet of the gospel!
The mountainous terrain of Guatemala - Day 1
3/6/11 AM
Morning readings: Psalm 63:1-8
Proverbs 16:1-3, 9
- I am asked in my devotion this morning what my motives were in coming to Guatemala. This is very hard because the easy answer is God's will, His glory, to serve, to preach, etc...
But does my life reflect this? At times I think maybe I am obedient not because of bringing God glory but somewhere deep down I still feel as if my motivations are fueled by a lie- that I still have to prove myself. That somehow grace isn't enough. On the plane I read the 1st chapter of "The Ragamuffin Gospel" and was emotionally grabbed. I did not expect God to speak so strongly to me. I am accepted by the precious blood of Christ. Who am I to assume I have to prove to God, my family or myself that I am a Christian? It is by faith that I live in Him, not my works. Granted, fruit will come if I abide in Christ.
It is so interesting though to experience so much spiritual and emotional upheaval so quickly! I haven't felt culture shock, haven't seen anything truly crazy and haven't really interacted with others. I hold onto Proverbs 16:3 and 9 though "Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established. The heart of men plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps." It is not Steven at work here, but Christ.
- I forgot to journal about this last night, but as I watch the sun rise over the Guatemalan mountains while seated on the 2nd floor of a beautiful bed and breakfast place - Dona Lisette's - why not? So here goes-
Jeff Thomas talked to us last night about the Pokomchi and his work with them. He deliberately tried to get into the most closed villages and to minister to the most fearful people. We take our Christian roots for granted in America but here the Pokomchi have only know the pagan Mayan practices passed on through the years. They have never had the Bible preached in their homes and have never had prayer in the name of Jesus in their homes. So whether the Pokomchi realize it or not, huge leaps are being made and history is being made in their society - and God is allowing us to be a part of it. Oh what an honor!
Beauty of God's Creation
3/6/11 Early PM
-Nothing can explain how unforgettable the drive and arrival to the Pokomchi village was. After driving higher and higher, further into the mountains and further from society, we arrived at La Campana to an enthusiastic greeting. I had thought that they would be scared and would stay away, but lo and behold, men women and children greeted us as we drove up to the breathtaking mountaintop village. Both rustic and beautiful, the village is on top and side the mountain. All around are peaks, farmlands, houses, farm animals, faint laughter and melodies drifting to my ears, and the colorful confetti of women dressed in their traditional dresses and guipiles (pronounced "wee-peels") walking to and from their daily chores. My mind is overwhelmed and I am emotionally hit in the heart as I see these people and their contentment in their lifestyles. Even though they have no power or running water and live in incredibly simple homes, these people truly appreciate the little things in life, love each other, rely on each other and work with their hands for their livelihoods. Yet one glaring thing remains- these people are without Christ. And that breaks my heart.
Our amazing -God built- mission team
Our HQ Building in La Campana- just a shell
3/6/11 - Bedtime
-It is ridiculous to think about how decadent the average American life is in comparison to the lives the Pokomchi live. Yet even in their splendor they constantly complain and cry for more. More rot, more death, more of things that are temporal. Here the people are truly happy with what they have. They are content. And they are hungry for truth. Truth that only Jesus can give them.
-I need to be able to be content in Christ, I feel that. To be truly satisfied in Him. To recognize that my life hinges on Him and Him alone. Matthew 5:6 - "Bless are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled."
The heavens truly do declare the glory of God.
- I see the children watching us- their bright eyes analyzing everything that we do. And simply because we are not from here. We are strangers. Journeying far from home because we hope in the Glorious Unseen. We understand that God is not a God of religion but a God of relationship. As I read in "The Ragamuffin Gospel" - we are accepted by Him and we need to just accept that without trying to earn His grace. For it is by grace that we have been saved through faith and NOT by anything that we have done. My actions should reflect that and I should appear to be a humble sinner in need of a savior.
It was a grace gift to be there.


Friday, March 4, 2011

Hands and Feet

I apologize for the long delay in blog material!
Much has happened in my world, both professionally and personally.
Loser's Way Home is doing incredibly well and on the verge on some MAJOR opportunities career-wise.

I currently write to you as I am preparing to leave for Guatemala. I will be there for a week with
a mission team from the University of Memphis BCM and Bartlett Baptist Church ministering to the
Pokomchi people. They are an unreached people group whose religious beliefs are a mixture of Catholicism and Mayan paganism. Our teams will be splitting up and going into their villages administering medical services and aid house to house. As we serve them we hope to have opportunities to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with them. These people rarely see outsiders and as a village without electricity or running water the appearance of outsiders will be viewed suspiciously by them.

Please pray that the Pokomchi will be open to the Gospel, that God would work in their hearts, that our team will be safe in Guatemala, that Satan will be bound from the place and that God's will would ultimately be accomplished in what we do.

Romans 10:15 "And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written "How beautiful are the feet of those who carry good news!""

Thanks for reading and thanks for your support!
I look forward to sharing all about my experience here at

In Christ, needing prayer, exhausted, but excited to see Jesus Christ work,
The REAL Bowman