October 2023 Andrew & Melissa Schellenberg Update
Now by this, we know that we know Him if we keep His commandments. He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this, we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as Jesus walked. 1 John 2:3-6
The early church was often referred to as the Way. Jesus Himself was even called the Way. We all enter into Heaven’s Kingdom through an encounter with the Living God. We can all point to a moment where we met Jesus through a revelation of truth experienced His power or felt the comfort of the Holy Spirit. But it's those encounters that are meant to draw us into intimacy with God so that we can learn how to live as Jesus did. In relationship, we are holding the hand of God as we learn to walk in His ways and do what Jesus did. By hiding the word of God in our hearts and running to the secret place for times of prayer and fasting and being generous when no one is looking, we prepare our hearts for fruitfulness. For everything we do in secret that honours the Lord, God rewards publicly. Our private obedience proves our love for God and prepares us to reap a harvest.
These past few months we have held multiple children’s events, hosted guest speakers, evangelized our streets, and organized large evangelistic tent meetings. The seed of the gospel continues to be scattered widely, with thousands hearing the truth, many encountering God’s power and love, and some receiving new creation life. The harvest is ripe, and Jesus will have his bride. But the source of this fruitfulness is found in the secret place where His church zealously pursues fellowship with the Holy Spirit. We regularly unite with Kaleo churches and home groups for times of fasting and prayer meetings.
During the summer months, we challenged the churches to join our leadership team in a 40-day fast to deepen our relationship with Jesus. Additionally, every Tuesday the Reynosa churches meet in one of two locations for a night of prayer and worship. I have been blessed to teach on prayer and worship and lead these meetings as we lift up the needs of our brothers and sisters. The faithful devotion of these beautiful people does not go unnoticed by God, who faithfully cares for his children and continually increases our congregation.
One of our churches, called “The Tent”, was transformed this year from a canvas tent on a large cement pad to a full cement building that now holds hundreds of people. We use this building for services and conferences but also to host our children and family events. Bouncy castles, face painting, games, and prizes draw hundreds of children and their families to our church, where they are presented with the gospel. Many children make decisions to live for Jesus, and many of their parents have begun attending our services.
The number of Kaleo kids is growing and many attend the same international school.
Our children have become our partners in ministry as the Holy Spirit ministers to others through them.
Construction at our refugee centre continues as an American team erected a large pavilion for Sunday services. New apartments and offices were also built at the centre where we serve. Some projects are left unfinished, while others need some additions. This has provided Andrew the opportunity to use his construction skills to build shelves in the storage building, a stage for our church services, and a laundry closet for one of the apartments.
Our young adults group continues to grow along with our fellowship. Melissa prepared an Israeli meal for us all to enjoy, giving our group a taste of Jesus's life and what the first disciples would have eaten. We have become a strong community that studies God's word, serves the local church, prays, and eats together.
We are now beginning a new adventure, saying goodbye to our Mexican family and returning to Canada to plant a Church.