Battles and Victories

Dear friends and ministry partners,
I hope y’all are well, and that your motivation to walk in obedience to God’s word is stronger than ever. We are doing well here by the strength and the power of God, who refills our cup as often as we seek Him and worship Him with all of our heart. Our biggest struggle is that so many times we wait to give our burdens to Him until we are tired and wore out of carrying them before we hand them over to Him and allow Him to relieve us and refill our empty cup with renewed energy and strength.

“Do what?” asked Chris as he came in the door and overheard me tell the others about the new court summons from Waspam. ” So what is the case about this time” he asked. I explained that it was again from the same group of people that have been trying to run us out of town by trying to prove that our land papers were not legal. (This group of about a half a dozen families has taken me to court 8 times over the last 5 years, with almost every false accusation under the sun, trying to somehow gain control over us so they can pressure us into paying them money every month.)
” But in the court case last month the territorial president and territorial judge said that all our land papers were legal, and closed the case,” protested Chris. Yes, that was the case, but it is obvious that Satan has not given up yet on shutting down this work of the gospel. He has taken these three men captive (who are in the lead at the moment) to be his slaves to do his work. They have said they will continue until they have completely destroyed us, or have run us out of the country, even if they die doing it.
“But really, what can they do? The case has already been examined and closed by the territorial judge and president, so nothing will come out of it,” I said. But little did I know that these men had join forces with the religious leader in Waspam who also hates our guts, and gone to the judge in Waspam and told her all the hideous lies about me they could come up with.
But to be on the safe side I asked the territorial leaders if they would go with me to court, so they could explain to the judge what they see in the case. Because I had noticed that the last few times I was in the Waspam court the judge there greatly disliked me. They agreed, and when the time came they went along.
When we got to court we were in for a surprise. The judge did not allow the territorial leaders into the courtroom, because she had already made up her mind that she was going to do whatever it takes to run us out of the country. Her conduct that day was not that of a judge whatsoever.
She only allowed my opponents to speak, falsely accusing me of all kinds of serious crimes. While they were accusing me, she jumped in with them accusing and lecturing me and telling me how terrible and stupid I was. She told my opposing party that they have every right to run us off our land and to take over by whatever means they want to, even breaking our buildings down if they need to.
After she finally gave me a few minutes to speak, I told her that I don’t have much to say, but want to inform her that the majority of the people in our village and the villages around us do not have a problem with us, and that this case has already been dealt with by the territorial leaders and has been closed. And that they are willing to talk to her about what’s going on in their territory, if she’s willing to hear them.
At hearing mention of the territorial president and judge she cussed them out right there in the courtroom, and said they and their work doesn’t amount to anything. I told her that I respect my leaders and their work, but if she doesn’t want to respect them, this case might go to higher court, because they were given authority by the government. With this she ordered me out of the courtroom.
There were some people standing on the outside of the courtroom listening, and someone got a recording of what happened. When the territorial leaders heard how the judge disrespected them and didn’t honor their work, they were greatly upset. They immediately called their authorities and told them what happened. With that the case was accepted by the next level of court and officials.
Long story short, this past Saturday there was a huge court case about what happened in Waspam court. There were many high ranking officials there to hear the case, including an official who works next to the president of this country. Many of our village people were there, the village leaders of 9 other villages, as well as our territorial leaders, all speaking in our favor, telling of all the good things that we have done to help them, and that the opponents are just jealous that they can’t get their hands on all that money themselves.
After the officials heard all these things, and the opposing party not being able to come up with one thing we had done that violated the law, or people’s right, they encouraged us to keep going. They gave harsh warnings to the opposing party about their behavior, and told them to leave us alone, because if they keep stirring up trouble they will find themselves in trouble.

We are greatly rejoicing over this victory! We praise God for touching the hearts of these great officials to look upon us with favor, and to rule justly for the sake of the people. God knows that we are not here to seek or receive anything for ourselves, but to seek the lost and introduce them to the loving Lord who desires to save their soul, as well as binding the forces of darkness that keep the people from being able to see the light.
We know that this spirit of oppression is what has kept the Miskito people in bondage and fear for many years, keeping them from being able to move forward out of poverty. Just like these few oppressors and fear mongers who are only interested in fulfilling their own lustful desires, even if it means hurting thousands of their own people to get what they want. We know there will still be many more spiritual battles that need to be won, but we are praising God for what has been won.
An investigation has been launched on the judge in Waspam, and it sounds like she will probably be removed from her position. It is said that she has had many complaints against her about ruling unjustly, and that the recording that was gotten was the hard evidence they needed to build the case against her.

We are honored that God has called us to be a part of such a great work as to free a people group from such spiritual darkness. I want to also thank each and everyone of you as part of our team for all the prayers and support that you give.
It is interesting to think back and remember how God brought each one of you on board with this ministry. Each one of you is special to us, because we know it was God who connected us. God has chosen you to be a faithful vessel to take the gospel to the lost and dying. Thank you for doing your assignment, which causes it all to work together for the salvation of many people. Your brother and coworker for the kingdom, from Eli Lee and the team on the ground.

PS. A little feedback and encouragement for those of you who give for a certain program. The good deeds that came up most at the hearing where; the Old People and Widows Sponsorship Program, the Love Tubs, the Emergency Medical Transport, and helping the churches. These are programs that have repeatedly caused people to speak favorable of us, and opened many doors for us to go into other villages. Thank you for financially supporting these programs!

And many thanks to the ones who give without specifying a program! That is what enables us to continue to operate, making it possible for us to do everything we do here.

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Christmas Is In The Air

Mud covering my rubber boots, eyes red from smoke of the wood cook fires, exhausted and dirty I sat down on the makeshift table/bench and began sorting out the rice that had slipped through the huller unshelled. I had gone along to Kitaski (several villages upriver from KrinKrin) where we were hosting a large meeting with church leaders from along the river (the churches that asked us to take them under the ministry’s wing after their own leaders abandoned them). Chris and Marcos had picked up 70 plus people the day before and brought them there by boat, and I had come along to help cook.
“What is your name,” I asked the young lady who had stopped by the temporary kitchen to help out for a minute. “Velma” she replied and began helping me sort the rice for the evening meal. For a while Velma and I sat in silence our fingers busy sifting through the thirty pounds of rice while the other ladies chattered away about dishes and clothing.
 “My favorite utensil that I have in my kitchen is the knife that we got in the family love tubs almost two years ago,” stated Perla, one of the cooks. “Me too” chimed in Mali pouring water into the huge aluminum pot, “I had wanted a knife like that for years but was never able to afford one so when I saw one in the tub I was beyond happy.”
 “Our village was really fortunate that the Americans agreed to take the lead of this little church, because the things in that tub were all things we use every day,” added Velma, obviously thinking we gave the love tubs to the village of Kitaski because we oversee a church there. “No,” Perla stated stopping what she was doing, “when they gave us the love tubs they still hadn’t even been heading up this church. Just think about it, Mali and I aren’t members of their church; we’re Moravian but we all got tubs! Remember, before they handed the tubs out to us they said that it was a gift of God’s love, and that God’s love isn’t bound under different denominations.” “That is so true” added Velma solemnly letting the thought soak in for a minute. All the ladies nodded their head in agreement then went on exclaiming amongst themselves about the different items that were packed in the love tub and how they still use them daily. I smiled to myself happy to know that they still used the things given them two years before, but mostly because the message had come through that this was more than just a handout, it was a gift of God’s love toward them.
 With a welfare mindset being very dominate among the people here I sometimes struggle with giving out the love tubs, afraid that they will just take it for granted and further this mindset. Yet when I am able to here that the message really did come through clearly it makes me very excited about doing it again. As the time approaches and we are starting to order things to pack into these love tubs I am so grateful for each of you that have given to pack a tub full of necessity items for a Miskito family. I pray that you will be blessed for your contribution!
Chris and Marcos continue to make lots of trips up and down the river visiting local churches and dealing with constant issues that arise. The new small 20HP motor has hardly gotten a break since the day we got it; it is such a huge blessing! Continue to keep Marcos and Chris in your prayers as their work is no easy one.
The weather here is beginning to feel a lot like Christmas, breezy and less rain, even cooling down to 70֯ degrees some evenings sending us on a search for our sweaters and blankets. Christmas songs can be heard ringing across the property throughout the day and anticipation rises as the days are counted down till the rest of the family joins us here for the Holiday.
 Plans are in the making for a village Christmas party! Each of the 110 families from KrinKrin will receive a flash light and some candy, names will be drawn for door prizes such as a blanket, cooking pot, machete, buckets, and brooms, and a few toys for the children. There will be snacks to enjoy along with lots of fun and games. We are super excited to be able to do this with the whole village!
I hope ya’ll have a very blessed Christmas!
In Christ, Sarah Lee
-Remember to count the blessings that you God has given you today! –
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Ministry Update from Sarah

It’s a beautiful Saturday forenoon; from my window where I sit at my desk I can look out across the village, cows and horses grazing, ladies preparing to cook the noon meal on their wood fire boxes, little boys walking on homemade stilts, and little girls running down to the wet-weather creek to fetch water for their mother to scrub their house. The month of constant October rains has left the village one muddy mess and we expectantly await the November winds to maybe dry the land out just a little, (and maybe, just maybe a little less rain and a little more sun) along with cooler evenings. A breeze has picked up and blows through my window across my face; outside on the porch the sound of the noisy wood planer wines as rough cut lumber is fed through the blades; the boys are working on making foldable benches for Bible classes and other group events that we host. These will be super helpful as before we have always just set up makeshift benches, stacking lumber on top of cement bags or whatever we could find that worked.We hope to be hosting another intensive discipleship course at the end of November for the people of KrinKrin as well as a few pastors and church leaders from other villages that have asked if they could attend. We will also be hosting a large meeting next week with the little churches scattered along the river that have asked us to take them under the ministries wing.

My Dad mentioned in a previous update that we were needing a new small boat motor for traveling from village to village visiting churches and pastors. We are happy to announce that we now have the motor in hand and will begin using it this upcoming week. Thank you to all who gave to help make this possible!Until next time! In Christ, Sarah Lee

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Update from Eli

Dear friends brothers and sisters,

Thank you all for your prayers and support for the work of the Lord in Nicaragua. Leah and I came back to the States for our yearly updates the first part of June. I am on my way back home now, but Leah is staying for the new grand baby that’s coming the first part of September. I apologize for not putting out an email with our plans when we first got there. I had written one and thought I sent it, but later realized that people hadn’t got it. After investigating I realized it had never sent.😞
Our daughter Lizzie who has been sick and went back to the States about 3 or 4 months ago is doing much better now. The defective heart valve that was causing her problems ended up not being the root of the problem. After much testing and searching the doctors found that she had celiac disease, which is an allergy to all wheat products and gluten. It had poisoned her system to the point where her heart is about to give out. Once she cut all that out of her diet she immediately got better and has been regaining her strength since. She will be staying in the states for a few more months to gain her health back before she comes back home.
Our time in the States has been really good, connecting with friends, family and many of yall, our support team. Thank yall for being on our team! We don’t take it lightly, that yall trust us with the responsibility of administering God’s resources the way He would have it done.
This visit I’ve been encouraged to see the amount of people who have a desire to go deeper then the normal Christianity we see a lot. I believe God is doing a work in many, bringing them to the point where they realize that the way things have always been done isn’t necessarily the way God desires it to be. But that he desires to lead and guide each one individually according to his great wisdom and knowledge, to fulfill his plans on this Earth. There is so much work to do yet, so many people that need to hear and understand what the love of Christ looks like.
 And to see Christians realize how much Freedom and joy there is in total surrender to Christ, is refreshing. I believe God is raising up a new generation that will be going out with power to fulfill His plans, as more and more are understanding that salvation is not just adding Jesus to your life, but if they want a Saviour they also need to surrender to Him and give Him permission to be the Lord of their life.
I’m also encouraged that God has made a way for us to be involved in Ministry to the Amish people as well. We were part of a four-day Spiritual Revival or Crusades in the middle of Amish Country Ohio. God is doing a great work among my people, the Amish. And I’m excited to be a part of it! There are already plans being made for next year, when we hope to have a few more of these Crusades.
I know many of you are wondering how our safety is in Nicaragua. I was all over Managua yesterday and today, and things are pretty much back to normal now by what I can see. The political unrest has definitely taken a toll, and it’s been heartbreaking to see all the chaos and destruction. But where we are out along the river everything is pretty normal. The uprising was about people trying to overthrow their president, a lot like the riots in some of the cities in the states 4 to 6 month ago. There has been a lot of violence and killing but again, there has been no direct danger to our family in KrinKrin.
 The work of leading and teaching the people of our six churches has kept us pretty busy this last year. It is encouraging to see them understand some of the foundational truths about God, and start making the right choices. In a culture where the very fabric that holds it together is total immorality and witchcraft, making the right choice often means being ridiculed and attacked by their fellow tribesmen. Satan is so in control of the culture that literally everything comes against those who choose the road of righteousness. (Like stealing or destroying everything they own, including their animals)
Thank you for your continued prayers for us and our ministry. Please also pray for the ones who are making decisions to follow after Christ. To God be the glory! Written by Eli Lee
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