Ruby Ranch: Camps are happening!

We wanted to share an update on weekend camps that have been going on out at Ruby Ranch. You may remember we shared this post in the Spring about the exciting new possibilities with the construction of two bunk houses. Well it has been six months full of camps and Praise Jesus it has been outstanding! Brinson and Todd have been in a constant rhythm of hosting and facilitating at the Ranch.

It is a strong burden we have to make Ruby Ranch available to local ministries, and sponsoring camps is an amazing way for us to join supporters who may not be able to be on the ground here in Nicaragua with local churches that are leading people into a personal relationship with Jesus!

Click here to partner with Ruby Ranch by sponsoring a youth camp…

Over the last few months we have hosted youth groups from local churches in Managua, local women’s ministries, churches from the southern region of Nicaragua and the North, as well at the entire leadership of Verbo Church…God is moving in people’s hearts and we are so blessed to be a part of that, and hope you are encouraged as well. There is so much fun to be had a Ruby ranch with hiking trails, sports fields, the water slide, soccer pitch, trampolines, etc… So, when the groups come and are able to spend two nights with their friends it becomes such an incredible time to go deeper in relationship with one another.

One of most important parts of the retreats is making it an environment where God’s Holy Spirit is free to move in the lives of everyone who comes. Each church uses this setting to go deeper into Bible study and discipleship and also to share the Gospel to some who have received Christ into their lives for the first time and get baptized at the bottom of the slide! Such great things.

An incredible part of camps for our family, is the opportunity to go out to the camps and have a very specific time of prayer and prophecy over the campers. (1 Corinthinans 10-12) As a team we end up praying over so many people young and old, leaders and members, pastors and elders. It has been a great opportunity for all of us at Open Hearts to pour out into people through prayer. It is just an awesome way to serve and be used by the Lord…God is moving in great ways! Amen.

Thank you for your continued prayers and support! We love and appreciate you!

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Playgrounds are Amazing!

Yes, Yes, Yes, playgrounds are amazing! The thing is, down here we don’t have access to the incredible playgrounds that are in just about every school in the United States. So, when our friends from Hope Rising Church in Pennsylvania made the trip down earlier this month to install new playgrounds there was sooooo much excitement, and it did not disappoint!

God orchestrates things in interesting ways. Our friend Pastor Randy and Feed the Hungry organized an amazing blessing to our ministry. They worked stateside with Kids Around The World to get two playgrounds donated and shipped to Nicaragua for Open Hearts, such a huge blessing. Then COVID hit and the playgrounds sat disassembled…for two years! That made the arrival of Pastor Harry’s team from Pennsylvania even more exciting! As I said, playgrounds are amazing!!!!

Assembling the playground at Club Esperanza was quite the endeavor. Sometimes you have to improvise and we used that tree branch you see up there to get the roof up and on to the four poles! It was amazing and maybe just a little not so OSHA approved LOL! Even more amazing was that the team was able to do miraculous work and finish this playgrounds installation in only two days!

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Clinic days are back…

As the world opens back up and we move on together from this horrifying pandemic we are excited to start welcoming our friends from overseas back to Nicaragua to serve with us. Our home church Christ Journey has been providing medical relief here in Nicaragua for almost two decades now…and after a sad hiatus we were finally back together again serving Jesus by caring for the sick and injured among us. It was such a joy to be back on the field together with old friends and new ones…clinic days are back again! Praise the Lord!

One of the most difficult parts of health care here is not just finding a doctor to see you. It is having the money to buy the medicines your are prescribed, especially if they are hard to find. A free doctors visit is not worth much when they find something is wrong but you can’t afford the medicine at the pharmacy. Christ Journey not only traveled down with skilled doctors but also with a full pharmacy…and if we didn’t have it on hand, we made sure to find it at the local pharmacy. One of the first things we did together was get all of those meds sorted out and into individual packaging…Juliette was a big help!

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Casa Robles: Fun from the states…

Whenever we come home from the United States we always try to bring some fun back! We got to spend a little time with the boys from Casa Robles last week and gave them their gifts….we are gonna have a big ol’ Nerf battle some time soon!!!!

We appreciate and need your continued prayers over Denis, Elery and Maryel. Some specific prayer requests…For Denis he is in University now and it has been a challenge academically, so please pray for his time management and overall encouragement not to give up. Elery and Maryel are both doing well in school (making the honor roll!) but their conduct needs our prayers…you are not supposed to take other kids snacks Maryel!!! LOL! It is sort of funny, but also not funny. Just typical boy stuff, but please do pray for these two to grow up in honesty, good behavior and kindness.

Also, your continued prayers for Mama Angelica are appreciated. She and Yuri are outstanding house parents and have really dedicated their lives to this calling. These children are their own even in some of the hardest circumstances. Angelica is a cancer survivor and walked through very difficult times over the last year and a half…so please pray for her continued healing! Ever appointment and every exam brings some fears and anxieties as I am sure those of you who are cancer survivors know.

Thanks for your love and prayers for Casa Robles!!!

If you would like more information on Casa Robles click here. Also, any donations toward this rescue home ministry are a huge help. We are entirely supported by friends and donors, amen and thank you!

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Great time with Family and Friends…

We just traveled home for a time of vacation visiting family and friends. We were so blessed by so many friends we got to see in person, friends we didn’t see who still sent us fun things for our travels like gift cards and meals, and most importantly time with family…we had so much time with family and it was such a blessing. Our favorite place to be is at Mema’s house! We did so much fun stuff with Mema….including going to the Magic Kingdom (Mema is in her 70s and rode all the crazy rides, check out the pictures!!!). The absolute best part that we all love is being at Mema’s house and just enjoying spending time with her, hanging with her doggies Jagger, Georgia and Merlin, riding bikes out front, and all the amazing home cooked meals Mema makes for us (and Mr. Bill on the grill)! The hardest part of living overseas is missing family…so these long visits make up for lost time and give us invaluable time together! I love you momma and miss you already! (ps. Mason passed Krista in height while we were at Mema’s!)

We also had sooooo much fun with all of the cousins this visit. We stayed in Florida and spent a week at the Rahals, a week on an RV trip with the McDonalds, and then we all mixed it up in the in betweens. We also got to see Grandpa and Gramma Losi, Aunt Lizzie, missed Uncle John because of Covid (argh!), got to be with Pop Pop on father’s day weekend! Of course time always gets away and we missed some of our extended family in Florida which really makes me sad…one day we will have to have a big cousin reunion!

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Club Esperanza…we have our land title!

After many months of praying and getting papers in order, we have the official land title for our land at Club Espernaza! In fact, we were selected to be recognized by the local government offices to receive the title in person at a ceremony last week. What a blessing! It is so great to find favor and be recognized for the hard work and impact that we are having at Club Esperanza. Jesus is glorified in these good works that our team are doing every day of the year…amen! “Let your light shine before men, so that they might see your good works and glorify your father who is in heaven.” -Jesus (The Gospel of Matthew 5:16)

Why is this important? Having this land title will allow us to move forward in building our educational building, arts center and sports fields with all proper permits and approval of the local municipality. We have been operating in make shift classrooms for the last two years…but we are out of space, so this will be amazing! Now for the next big steps, because this is a $250,000 endeavor. But Jesus is huge and all things are possible with God. Please be in prayer as we move forward into the next big things at Club Esperanza…and if you want to give to help with the building of the school we would be greatly blessed by that! (link to donation info here).

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A little family update…

Since switching from doing paper newsletters by mail to sharing almost entirely on our blog, one of the things we sometimes omit is sharing family updates. Having your support for our family means so much to us and we want to give a little update and let you know we are doing well, our kiddos are growing up, and life is charging along…

Our daily life consists of a lot of random and wild ministry happenings that can hardly ever be predicted, while at the same time Krista keeps us all sane by bringing at least some order to our lives everyday at home. Homeschooling four kiddos (two high schoolers) is quite the task but all of them are doing really well with school. Having online classes available has been a huge blessing and has helped to keep things pretty consistent. Aliyah is actually preparing to start doing college courses in certain subjects…getting college credits as she finishes her final years of high school. We are super thankful to have so many resources for homeschooling. Krista can testify, that it is not an easy task being a full time teacher for all four grade levels at the same time…but God is good and we are blessed! Life at home is full of lots of fun and laughter…and maybe some crazy moments too, but we are doing well!

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Walakitang Happenings…

We continue in our support for Pastor Victor in Walakitang and the church planting network along the Rio Coco in the indigenous region of Nicaragua on the Honduran border. We support Victor and the churches under the banner of Verbo Church here in Nicaragua. Recently Verbo organized a pastoral training seminar in Puerto Cabezas for the Pastors from all the churches along the Rio Coco. It is so important to take the time to train and equip these men who have dedicated their lives to spreading the Gospel to the most unreached regions of Nicaragua.

Pastor Earl, who is the national director of Verbo church and an awesome brother in the Lord, organized the seminar and reported that it was a great success. He was thankful that we were able to step in later in the planning to help get all of the pastors transportation to Puerto Cabezas. Depending on where they were coming from it was a three hour bus ride or a full day boat ride. The dedication of these men is admirable, and we are always encouraged by the stories we hear of lives being changed.

Pastor Victor recently shared this photo he took from a village named Tigni Sangni. Victor decided to make the two our hike through the forest to get to the village to share the Gospel there. By the end of his stay he was in the river baptizing men and women into the Kingdom of God. The Good News of Jesus Christ reaches to the ends of the earth.

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It is the little things…

I write that it is a little thing, but do you ever think about the bed that you sleep in every night? Have you ever not had a bed? In my entire life I have never not had a bed to sleep in. I know that I should never take that for granted. The work we do and the people the Lord has put into our lives, make us realize that having a little thing like a bed is not a guarantee. A bed is a blessing, not everyone has one. Have you ever thought about that?

Just a couple of weeks ago we had a group of athletes from Ohio State University down, led by Harry Miller and Mission for Nicaragua. Some crazy airline cancellations cut the team in half, the trip down then detoured through Coast Rica and ended with crossing the border by land…it was a wild adventure to get here! But in the end Kaitlyn, Harry, Big Jack and Little Jack (he is bigger than big Jack) made it down, Praise the Lord! When they visited Club Esperanza we had the funniest experience. All the kids asked if they could take pictures of them…it is usually the opposite where we are getting fun photos of all our new friends. But, they were impressed at how big the team was and thought Harry was Thor…so they were just taking pictures of us! Of course we entertained them making for some fun laughs, and then got a picture together at the end.

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Ruby Ranch: Weekend Camps!!!

We have great news….camps have begun at Ruby Ranch! After months of hard work Brinson and Todd have reached the place where we can now have sleep over camps at Ruby Ranch!!!

Have you ever been to camp? For me it is one of the most important times of my life. I got saved at Camp University when I was thirteen years old…100% the best moment of my life! There is so much adventure, so much time for God to speak into our lives, time for fun, time for friendships, time for all kinds of awesomeness…AT CAMP! A few weeks ago was the first camp of the year with leadership and youth from Verbo Church here in Nicaragua.

Brinson was just telling us the other night how Isaac had tears in his eyes as he left camp expressing how grateful he was for the time they had, and how impacted he was by Mr. Buzbee’s prayers and teaching. Isaac is the leader of the group, so just imagine how God impacted everyone else!!!

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